Holly HolmFollowing a year and a half layoff from MMA, boxing champion Holly “Preacher’s Daughter” Holm returned to the sport this past February with a second-round TKO stoppage of Katie Merrill at Bellator 91.

The win not only signified Holm’s return to MMA, but also helped her realize that her future lay in this sport rather than in the one she had accomplished so much in.

“I had two (MMA) fights in 2011 and had been wanting to get back since then,” said Holm. “It was just a great opportunity and actually after that (Bellator) fight and the next boxing match (against Mary McGee in May) I told my coach I was done with boxing.

“I’m just really excited about MMA and I feel like I’ve improved a lot and I’m excited about the fight coming up. I want to take what doors are open and make the best of it. When I felt like my passion for boxing was fading, I decided to make the full jump over.”

Holm (3-0) will look to remain undefeated in MMA as takes on Allanna Jones (2-2) in her promotional debut at Legacy FC 21 in Houston on Friday night. The event airs live on AXS TV.

“I think she’s pretty composed, confident and has had challenges already in her career. So I feel like any time you fight someone like that, it’s a threat,” said Holm of Jones. “She’s not afraid to get in there and has the confidence in herself to do well, so I think that’s the biggest thing to fear in her is her confidence.

“I don’t like to look too much into an exact plan, because you never know what’s going to happen. We have a Plan A and a Plan B and we’ll see how things go.”

With such a storied background in boxing, it would be easy for people to label Holm a one-dimensional fighter, but she told MMAWeekly.com that assessment couldn’t be further from the truth.

“I think I have a lot more that people haven’t seen,” she said. “I think I’m improving every day. It’s not going to happen overnight by any means, but I feel like there’s a lot that people haven’t seen me do.

“My only hope and my goal is to show people what I have learned in training. I want to get in there and show it when it counts.”

Having been on boxing’s biggest stages and fought some of that sport’s premier fighters such as Christy Martin and Mia St. John, Holm will be able to put aside any of the outside distractions that come with fighting live on nationally broadcasted TV and focus solely on her fight Friday night.

“I feel like it’s helped me prepare with things mentally,” she said. “When you’ve gone through something that’s a big challenge, it gives you a lot of confidence to overcome the next challenge. It’s helped me be a little more focused and not let the little things get to me.

“Whether people are watching or not, I want to win just as badly, and so I feel like the experience I’ve had with the bigger things in boxing have helped me zone that stuff out and not let it work me up so much.”

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