Tonight July 19th, Albuquerque’s Holly Holm will have her toughest challenge as a mixed martial artist when she faces off with Allana “Hands of Stone” Jones at the Legacy FC 21 which will be held in Houston’s Arena Theater.
Holm (3-0) will be stepping just outside state lines to compete which is very uncharacteristic of the now retired boxing World Champion. In 41-fights as a professional boxer and mixed martial artist, Holm has fought outside of New Mexico just three times.
Serving as the toughest test to date in the MMA career of Holm is Jones (2-2) who will be representing American Muscle MMA out of Ionia, Michigan. While she only has one more professional MMA bout then Holm, she has an impressive 6-2 amateur record that indicates that Jones will be more cage experienced. Holm will not give up experience advantage to virtually anyone in combat sports as she has reached and stayed atop the pinnacle of boxing for several years however, Jones will be the first opponent of Holm to have this much MMA experience.
As her nickname suggests, “Hands of Stone” Jones has accumulated four technical knockout stoppages and has competed as heavy as 145-pounds. At 26-years old, Jones is still a legitimate talent within WMMA and will present several interesting obstacles to overcome if Holm plans to notch her 4th career MMA victory.
With the youth of Jones also comes athleticism and she has shown that for her size and muscular build, she has explosiveness and agility. The technical striking of Holm will need to stay crisp to avoid flurries coming from the heavy handed striker. As a professional, Jones has only lost via submission and that is an area that fight fans have yet to see out of Holm. As a World Champion boxer, Holm has unleashed elite boxing and striking skills that is unparalleled by anyone in WMMA and in doing so has overwhelmed her opponents until they eventually succumbed to strikes. The flip side is that many fight fans wonder about the grappling chops of Holm both offensively and defensively.
In three professional bouts, the Mike Winklejohn product in Holm has used her world class technique to land accurate punches crisply on opponents only to set up her fight altering kicks. Many fight fans are unaware that Holm competed as a kickboxer early on in her combat career. In her three bouts, two of them have ended directly due to kicks and the most recent outing at Bellator 91 was heavily impacted by her kicks to the legs and body. She will need that striking precision again versus Jones to combat the athleticism and power.
Fans of Women’s MMA may know Jones from her last professional bout. Back in May at a CFA event, Jones took on Fallon Fox who most will recall is the first openly transgender fighter in MMA. Fox came out earlier this year stating that while she was born a male and medically had procedures done to legally become a female. Fox defeated Jones with a shin choke which was a gogoplata variation in the third round of their bout.
Storylines run a plenty in this bout, as Holm had somewhat of a memorable year as well. After her last bout, the unanimous decision win over Mary McGee; Holly Holm would formally announce her retirement from the sport of boxing in order to pursue a full time career in MMA. Her promoter Lenny Fresquez has expressed the interest to eventually match Holm up with UFC Champion Ronda Rousey in what could end up being the first major “super-fight” in WMMA history.
Also on the card, fellow Jackson-Winklejohn fighter Leonard “Bad Boy” Garcia returns to action after his release from the UFC. The veteran of MMA faces off with hometown fighter Rey Trujillo in what serves as a fight of high importance for both fighters. Garcia is seeking redemption and really needs a win to end his 5-fight losing streak. Garcia has been in epic battles with Chan Sung Jung, Nam Phan and Mark Hominick but has seen the wrong end of several judge’s decisions. Trujillo steps up to the plate fighting Garcia, marking the most significant fight of his entire career. Both fighters have a lot on the line and two hungry fighters often combine to create fireworks inside the cage.
Stay tuned to SWFight.com for Legacy FC 21 results. Join us in sending Holm and Garcia our best wishes in tonight’s fights and their attempts to bring home wins from Houston, Texas.