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UFC 299 results, highlights: Michael ‘Venom’ Page dazzles in debut with win over Kevin Holland

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Longtime Bellator MMA fighter Michael “Venom” Page made his UFC debut on Saturday at UFC 299 when he stepped in the Octagon to face UFC veteran Kevin Holland. Page showed the slick striking style that made him one of Bellator’s top stars, picking apart Holland over three rounds to take a clear unanimous decision victory and immediately make his mark as a player in the welterweight division.

Page came out in his standard karate-inspired stance, turned sideways and looking to flash quick kicks and punches. Despite his own dangerous striking, Holland sought to neutralize Page’s attack with some grappling, pushing Page into the cage with a clinch. Page was able to navigate the clinch before getting back to striking range and landing a host of flashy strikes, including a twisting back elbow.

In his corner after the first round, Holland commented to his team that Page was faster than they’d expected. Page utilized that speed by keeping the fight at a very long distance and jumping in to land quick strikes before moving back to distance.

Page’s increasing confidence was nearly his undoing in the second round. After flashing a few kicks, Page slipped to the canvas and Holland chased him down and took him to the ground where Page was forced to fend off a choke attempt as well as some ground and pound before getting back to feet and dominating the rest of the round.

Holland grew increasingly frustrated as Page was too quick and too technical for him to catch up to on the feet. Every Holland rush was met by slick dodging from Page before a smashing counter strike would follow. By the middle of the third round, Holland looked mentally defeated. Minutes later, the defeat was official.

The official scorecards read 29-28 across the board for Page with the judges seemingly favoring Holland’s brief moment on the ground in Round 2 enough to give him one round.

“I’ve got a little more work to do. A lot more work to do,” Page said of his performance. “But this is where I’m supposed to be. Anyone who doubled this is where I’m supposed to be, see for yourself.”

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