Known by his monikers Trailblazer and Big Mouth, Kevin Holland is regarded by many as one of the top middleweight prospects in MMA today. Holland is also considered to be the breakout UFC star of 2020.
Kevin Holland is coming off a unanimous decision loss against Derek Brunson at UFC on ESPN: Brunson vs. Holland (March 20th, 2021). Holland was criticized by certain sections of the MMA community for spending most of his time during the Brunson fight on talking rather than fighting.
The young middleweight star will be making a quick turnaround after his recent loss. Holland has now stepped in on short notice to fight Marvin Vettori at UFC Vegas 23 aka UFC on ABC: Vettori vs. Holland (April 10th, 2021).
Speaking to Ariel Helwani on ESPN MMA’s Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show, Kevin Holland asserted that fans will get to witness his Trailblazer persona rather than the Big Mouth persona:
Speaking of how he was booked by the UFC as Darren Till’s replacement in the fight against Marvin Vettori, Kevin Holland said:
“It popped up in the air. So, of course, I let them know. You can always call me, you know, ‘Trailblazer’. They like to say call ‘Big Mouth’, but on this one, I like to think they’re calling Trailblazer. So, we’ll just go out there and get the job done, you know. Go out there and blaze that trail. That’s the only goal in mind, you know, blaze a trail.”
Additionally, upon being asked what the difference between Big Mouth and Trailblazer is, Kevin Holland said:
“Yeah, you know, everybody has lots of egos. At least I like to think that everybody else does, so I don’t think I’m crazy. But, you know, there’s a little bit more action with Trailblazer. Trailblazer is a little bit more zeroed in, just a little bit more focused. Big Mouth is a little bit more for entertainment. Trailblazer still talks, but he’s definitely more focused than (Big Mouth).”
Kevin Holland alluded to a fact he’d previously revealed – about UFC president Dana White anointing him as Big Mouth – and added:
“I think Big Mouth was just created, you know. I ran with it, you know. But Trailblazer, it’s just something I’ve always been.”
Ariel Helwani then questioned Kevin Holland about whether the individual who fought Derek Brunson was Big Mouth or Trailblazer. Holland responded by referring to the ‘Bumson’ jibes.
“That was me having a good time; no excuses, you know. The guy who fought Derek Brunson came up. I called him ‘Bumson’ the whole time, I came up the bum that night. So, props to that man. But after I get done with Marvin Vettori, granted that goes a special way, I get one more, and it’s kind of like inevitable. I kind of get that rematch, you know what I mean. He’s probably like, ‘Heck, no. I’ll retire before I get that rematch’. But we’ll get it one way or another, even if I’ve got to do it on a video game. We’ll get it, you know,” Holland added.
Kevin Holland made no excuses for his loss against Derek Brunson, and he instead reiterated that he’s going to return to the win column in style by defeating Marvin Vettori.
Kevin Holland will pay more attention to what his coaches/corner persons are saying in the Marvin Vettori fight
Ariel Helwani once again broached the topic of Kevin Holland potentially talking less in this fight compared to the Derek Brunson fight.
Helwani asked if Holland would feel comfortable saying that he’ll talk less in his upcoming fight against Marvin Vettori. Holland responded by saying:
“Yeah, I don’t think there’s no way I talk more than I did in the last one, you know. The whole time I was just non-stop. I think it’s safe to say that in between rounds, if it goes that far, I will be focused and zeroed in on what Travis (Lutter), (Coach) Shug, and Cowboy (Justin Adams) have to tell me. So, it’ll be a good night.” (*H/T Sportskeeda for the transcription)
The coaches and corner persons Kevin Holland was referring to are tagged in Holland’s Instagram post below.