Kevin Holland stepped in on very short notice to face Marvin Vettori in a middleweight bout at UFC Vegas 23. Marvin Vettori was originally scheduled to fight Darren Till in the main event of the April 10 card, but the latter was forced out of the matchup owing to a broken collarbone sustained during training.
Speaking to Nick Peet of BT Sport ahead of the fight on April 10, 'Trailblazer' addressed why he took the fight on such short notice and on such a short turnaround:
"I'm the janitor, see what I mean? When there's a mess, somebody has to clean it up. I'm here to clean it up, you know what I mean? Darren Till got a little boo-boo on him, so therefore he cannot pop up on this one. So, the janitor man - I am here to clean up the [expletive] and get it back smoking right, you know. So that's why I am here. It's a rough time and they need somebody and I am that guy," Kevin Holland said.
"185 is an easy weight class for me to make, so therefore if you need somebody last second, I'm key to making the last second, that's ideal for me."
Having fought Derek Brunson less than a month ago in a losing effort, this is a record-tying main event turnaround in the history of the UFC. The only other fighter to have appeared in two UFC headliners in the span of 21 days is Deiveson Figueiredo.
Kevin Holland calls fellow UFC middleweights "too fat, too bloated"
When asked how his name came up as a possible replacement for Darren Till despite him having fought only 21 days ago, Kevin Holland stated that he was the only option left for the UFC in the middleweight division.
Kevin Holland believes the promotion would have called Derek Brunson before him, given how Brunson is coming off a win against Holland himself. However, Holland recalled "cutting open" Derek Brunson in their fight, which means that the latter is not yet fully healed to compete in another fight:
"He's [Derek Brunson] right at the time where his stitches would have been coming out. He's not ready to go. Everybody else in the division is booked. It only leaves one man, and that one man is me. That's usually the only person left open at 85 to step in last second. Everybody else is too fat, too bloated. They can't cut the weight. Me personally, I can get there on the drop of a dime."