When he returned 13 months later, he beat Nick Diaz at UFC 183 - but failed drug tests associated with the fight and was suspended for a year. Now, Holm, the default biggest star in the bantamweight division (which, for all intents and purposes, she's still in) with Miesha Tate and most likely Rousey retired, is being put into the most lopsided risk/reward fight she could possibly be booked in.
But she knows the fight game.
However, Germaine de Randamie does have one fail mark pertaining to her career in UFC. "You really second guess yourself a lot".
And she mentioned it again at Gleason's Gym after the open workouts on Thursday when talking about the daunting task for fighting Holm on such a big stage. One thing that footage accomplishes is that that de Randamie has got heavy hands, and she's not afraid to let them go.
Ms. Holm, 35, enters the fight following back-to-back losses to Miesha Tate (fifth-round technical submission/rear-naked choke) that saw her lose the women's bantamweight title in March a year ago, and to Valentina Shevchenko (unanimous decision) four months later. There are, at most, half a dozen fighters of note at 145 if you count Holm and De Randamie (less if you don't), and they're spread out across the UFC, Invicta Fighting Championships, and Bellator MMA.
Either way, one of them will soon be the answer to a trivia question - as the first ever UFC women's featherweight queen - but in the eyes of most fans, Sunday's victor will be a paper champion.
With both fighters coming from a striking background expect a bout that will be easy on the eye, and don't rule out a knockout.
We'll be live on BT Sport 2 and BT Sport 2 HD from 1am on Sunday, February 12th to witness Holm's attempt to become the first female to win world titles in two weight divisions.
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In trademark style, Holm refused to talk badly of de Randamie when pressed on her ability ahead of the bout.
As for the UFC opening a women's featherweight class, Mr. Icasiano said it is very intriguing yet could potentially spring surprises.
"You second-guess yourself. I remember when I got knocked out, every time I would spar for the first two weeks, every time I would get hit, I would be like, am I OK?" And I believe the UFC made a great move.
Hollywood and WWE were strongly rumoured, but as we know, she took one year out from the sport and attempted to recapture her bantamweight championship against Amanda Nunes at UFC 207. "It's not Cris versus me or Cris versus Holly".
That said, many of those competing Saturday night have had some big-time performances in recent years - the sort of outings that could warrant your money come fight night.
"But I do know that coming off of the knockout, when I knocked her out, that helped the fight with Nunes go faster if that makes any sense". She said that Dutch fighters have a way of creating havoc for opposition. "Whatever, right now it's Holly vs.me". My thought process is just keeping it focused on good.
"If her and Nunes fought before Ronda and I fought, I do feel like that fight would have gone longer than it did, I really do". I'm not afraid to get knocked out, and I'm not afraid to take risks.