UFC fighter Holly Holm claimed in her post-fight press conference that Germaine de Randamie intentionally hit her after the bell following both the second and third rounds during their matchup at UFC 208.
On Thursday, De Randamie disputed those claims.
"I never threw any dirty shots," she said in a Thursday conference call, per Dave Doyle of MMAFighting.com. "I never threw any cheap shots around the referee. As soon as he stepped in and put his arm in, I stopped. Of course, I try to hear the bell and stop, but sometimes when you’re in the heat of the moment you’re in the fight. You get hit, you hit somebody."
"It was never intentional. That’s what upsets me so much," she added. "People try to say I’m a dirty fighter. I’m not a dirty fighter. It really hurts me when people say that. I never had any bad intentions, I truly respect Holly. I respect the UFC. I respect Holly’s camp."
De Randamie won the five-round thriller between the two fighters, with the judges ultimately giving her the 48-47 advantage and making De Randamie the inaugural UFC women’s featherweight champion.
But Holm pointed out that referee Todd Anderson didn't dock De Randamie a point the second time she hit Holm following the conclusion of a round.
You can see Holm's full comments below:
Holm took it a step further after the fight, filing "an official complaint with the New York State Athletic Commission, hoping to get the result overturned," per Doyle. De Randamie disputed any suggestion that the result shouldn't stand, not surprisingly, but did offer Holm a rematch:
If Holly believes the point deductions are the reason she lost the fight, and she’s looking to make it a no-contest or a draw, she should simply put out the offer for a rematch I put out. If she feels that way there’s nothing I can say much about. I respect everyone’s opinion, I truly do. I believe I was the fair winner, I believe I had the better shots, I believe I dominated the standup. I understand Holly is sad she lost the fight. I’m sad certain occasions happened during the fight that was not in my plan and not intentional. ... I believe justice will be served and the athletic commission will make the right decision.
Holm might want to take her up on that offer. She's now 0-3 since shocking the world by upsetting Ronda Rousey at UFC 193 and acknowledged in her post-fight press conference that she would take any fight she could get in the wake of her recent struggles.
It's certainly hard to imagine any fans complaining about a rematch between the two fighters after their excellent battle at UFC 208. And the rematch would also give De Randamie another opportunity to prove that she's a clean fighter whose win wasn't tainted, and Holm the chance to prove she's the better fighter of the two.