There is a strong mixed martial arts connection, as well as future crossover implications, to the December 7th IBA and WBF light welterweight title fight between 12-time, three division world champion Holly “The Preacher’s Daughter” Holm (31-2-3, 9 KOs) and WIBA super featherweight champion Diana Prazak (11-1, 7 KOs), who will square-off in the 10-round main event on Fresquez Productions-presented “Fire And Ice” show at Route 66 Casino Hotel in Albuquerque.
Holm (31-2-3, 9 KOs) is the pound-for-pound Queen of Boxing whose victims among the world’s best women’s boxers, ranging from the 140 through 154-pound weight classes, include Ann Sophie Mathis, Christy Martin, Mary Jo Sanders, Mia St. John, Myriam Lamare, Jane Couch, Duda Yankovich and Chevelle Hallback (twice).
Holm also is an accomplished MMA fighter with a 2-0 (2 TKOs) record, both wins coming by way of kicks. Her lack of MMA fights is due to her concentration on boxing, which has been more lucrative and competitive.
Holm’s head trainer in boxing, Mike Winkeljohn, is one of the head coaches at the famed Jackson’s/Winkeljohn Mixed Martial Arts Gym in Albuquerque. Team Jackson-Winkeljohn is recognized as one of the best in MMA, featuring UFC light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones, a training and sparring partner for Holm.
Prazak, a native of Australia, is trained by former world boxing and kick-boxing champion Lucia Rijker. One of Prazak’s training partners in Los Angeles is Strikeforce bantamweight champion “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey, who won a Bronze Medal in Judo at the 2008 Olympic Games. “I train with Ronda who walks around at 145 (lbs.),” Prazak explained why her move up in weight to fight Holm won’t be a problem for her. “She is a very powerful fighter and we are getting in some great sessions.”
Holm certainly isn’t looking past Prazak but her promoter, Lenny Fresquez, has to look to the future, ironically, and Holly may be heading towards a major MMA showdown in 2013.
“Prazak is tough and we expect a very good fight,” Fresquez said. “Holly is focused only on her December 7th fight against Diana, but I have to think about Holly’s fight career. If we get past Prazak, I’ll try and make a deal for Holly to fight (Cecilia) Braekhus (21-0, 5 KOs), something we’ve tried to get done in the past without success. Holly’s 31 and we’re not going to wait around for Braekhus. If we can’t get a deal done to fight her, I will look into an MMA super fight between Holly and Ronda Rousey.”