Holly Holm hasn't had a single bad thing to say this week about Miesha Tate. The same thing cannot be repeated about Holm and the boxing media.
In an interview with Ariel Helwani on Monday's edition of The MMA Hour, Holm slammed the boxing press for not paying attention to her when she was the best female boxer on the planet. Only now as a UFC champion, Holm said, are boxing reporters actually showing an interest in her.
"That's a two-sided thing there," Holm said. "There's probably been more articles written in boxing now that I'm doing MMA. In a way, that's great. Thank you guys for supporting me. But where were you my whole boxing career? I'll call them out on it. I'm not trying to be sweet about it."
Holm was a three-division boxing champion and a two-time Ring Magazine female boxer of the year. She's one of the best women ever to put on the gloves. Yet female boxing is criminally underexposed. In the UFC, Holm has been in the main event and co-main event of a pay-per-view in just three fights. On Saturday, she's co-headlining with Miesha Tate at UFC 196 in Las Vegas.
Publically, Holm is always a class act and very rarely says anything negative -- about anyone. But it's clear she just doesn't understand why she never got more love when she was a world-class female boxer. And it's not just about her -- it's about the sport. Holm believes female boxing should be getting far more attention.
"For me, it wasn't like, 'Oh I need spotlight,'" Holm said. "It was more like, 'Let's have opportunities so that women's boxing can grow.' If it's gonna bring attention to women's boxing, great. But if they ever ask me about it, I'll often call them out on it and ask, why now? You could have been covering this a long time ago."
Holm is one of the fastest rising stars in all of mixed martial arts now. Her knockout win over Ronda Rousey didn't just make her big in MMA, it made her a mainstream name. That's something she never achieved in women's boxing, through no fault of her own. Holm was the best at her craft, a celebrity in her hometown of Albuquerque and has always been marketable. The female side of the sweet science just never caught up to the male side and it still has not.
"The Preacher's Daughter" doesn't mind the attention that boxing media is giving her now. She's just bummed out that it took this long -- and that it took until she left boxing altogether.
"I love that they're supporting," Holm said. "And the fact that it brings any attention to boxing, great. Because I want there to be more attention on women's boxing, because I always wished it was there."