Vettori vs. Holland took place April 10 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada. Marvin Vettori (17-4-1) and Kevin Holland (21-7) collided in a middleweight contest in the night’s co-main event, which aired live on ABC. Catch more video highlights below.
For more on Vettori vs. Holland, check out the live blog from MMA Fighting’s Steven Marrocco.
Round 1: Holland attacks with legs to the legs and body early, and Vettori presses forward. A kick goes south of the border, and we pause for Vettori, who’s not wearing it well, pacing the cage. Dean gives Vettori a hard warning and restarts the action. Vettori continues to press forward and take leg kicks. They trade head shots, and Vettori presses through and clinches up. Here’s where the Italian can take the steam out of Holland’s punches. He backs off and advances again after a right. Holland’s volume is high, but his power and accuracy isn’t enough to make Vettori respect him. Another clinch, and Vettori is smothering his foe. Body lock takedown fails, and Holland slaps the ear. Vettori changes levels and can’t get the takedown. Holland says his first words since the fight, and Vettori backs off. More fast punches from Holland, and Vettori manages to elude most of them before clinching again. Vettori gets the trip takedown, and he’s in Holland’s guard. Holland shrimps off and bicycles his legs to create space, and Vettori closes to seal top position. Ground and pound from Vettori, and Holland does what he can from the bottom. Holland resists the pass, and then pulls off a crazy sweep to get back to his feet. Vettori presses and lands a couple of nice punches. Holland stays with it and fires back, but Vettori closes again and presses him to the fence.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 Vettori.
Holland out first with his punches, but again, they don’t seem to have much of an effect. Finally a straight right gets his attention. Vettori counters and charges for a double. After a short struggle, Holland is on the canvas, and Vettori is working to pass. Full guard, and Vettori goes back to bread and butter ground and pound. Vettori has had a full camp to prepare for this, and Holland is the short notice foe who’s just coming off a five-round grinder. Holland begins a chat, and Vettori tries to restrict his breathing. Holland tries to initiate a scramble, but he exposes his head, and Vettori pounds away. If nothing changes, this is where the rest of the fight will take place. Vettori stands overhead momentarily, and Holland wheels his legs, but he settles back on top. Scramble attempts continue to expose Holland on bottom, and Vettori lands a hard right hand in close. Less than one minute to go, and Holland kicks him off, only to get dragged back to the mat. Back in full guard, Vettori still working body-body head. Holland kicks him off rto get space, and Holland rolls to his knees and then to his feet, taking shots all the way. Vettori clinches against the fence, and Holland wraps the head as time runs out.
MMA Fighting scores the frame 10-9 for Vettori, who’s up 20-18.
Dean calls in the doctor to check a cut on Holland’s eye. Holland covers up as Vettori charges in again and gets the body lock. As he adjusts, Holland tries to set up the guillotine, only to get bowled over. Back in half-guard. Holland gives up Vettori’s neck and tries to create space as Vettori advances to mount. Vettori sets up for an arm-triangle from mount, and Holland answers the phone. Vettori adjusts his legs, and Holland hands on for dear life. Vettori doesn’t quite have the leverage, however, so he gives it up. Holland walks the cage and fires an elbow. North-south, and Vettori hands on the back as Holland kicks his way up. Kimura gets Holland the escape, but Vettori presses in again with punches and ducks under for the takedown. This time, he ends up at Holland’s back, but Holland manages to get back and recover to the clinch. This is a grind, and Vettori is far better suited for it. Holland slaps the ears, and Vettori peels off. Both men are tired. Technique not quite there, and both fire sloppy punches before Vettori presses Holland against the fence. Less than 30 seconds to go, and the difference in size between the fighters is beginning to play out. Holland manages to escape and sting Vettori with a shot. Then another, and it seems like Vettori is a little wobbly. But time runs out before Holland can turn momentum.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 Vettori, who’s up 30-27.
Round 4: Vettori presses in and lands a left hand. Holland fires back with a flurry of winging punches and kicks. He’s throwing everything into his shots, but Vettori just eats them and ducks under for the takedown. Again, Vettori is on top. Vettori stacks Holland and follows as Holland tries to roll away. Not enough juice to get back up. Pass attempt fails, and Vettori takes the back as Holland rolls again. Holland up, and Vettori keeps the body lock. Sprawl doesn’t last long for Vettori, who winds up in mount with half the round left. Another arm-triangle setup, and Holland answers the phone. Back to half-guard, and both men snipe with short shots. Pass to half-guard from Vettori, who’s doing just enough to keep top position. Less than one minute left. Holland kicks him off briefly, but Vettori simply lunges back in and stays on top. Cage walk fails for Holland, and frame ends.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 for Vettori, who’s up 40-36.
Last round, and Holland needs a miracle. His left eye is badly swollen. But he lands a nice one-two off Vettori’s punches that hurt his foe. Vettori, however, just shoots in and gets the takedown. And here the fight will end unless Holland can something magical. Vettori punching from up top, and they’re having a conversation muffled by the space. Holland tries to shrimp away, then walks the cage before bicycling the legs and kicking his way up. Vettori is right on his torso and gets the body lock takedown. Back to ground and pound, and Vettori passes to half-guard. This is a smart, if unspectacular, approach for Vettori in minimizing damage. He gets to mount and punches with his free right hand. Dean warns for action, because it’s clear Vettori isn’t doing much other than holding position. Holland explodes to his feet, and Vettori instantly grabs the body again. Holland wraps the head for a choke, and Vettori scoops and dumps him. This is something of a repeat for Holland, who’s been outwrestled on two straight occasions now. Holland again kicks up back to his feet, and he tries to kick his way off the fence and pound at the head as Vettori hangs on for dear life to his torso. The final bell rings, and this grinder comes to an end.
Marvin Vettori def. Kevin Holland via unanimous decision (50-44, 50-44, 50-44)