Brendan Schaub believes Kevin Holland made mistake by making ‘gentleman’s agreement’ with Stephen Thompson: “You need wins”

By Josh Evanoff - December 7, 2022

Fighter-turned-podcaster Brendan Schaub believes Kevin Holland had the wrong game plan at UFC Orlando.

Last Saturday night, ‘Trail Blazer’ made his return for the first time since being submitted by Khamzat Chimaev in September. Standing opposite Holland was former title challenger Stephen Thompson. ‘Wonderboy’ entered the contest on a two-fight losing streak.

Despite the losing streak and age, the Karate specialist put in a near-flawless performance at UFC Orlando. Despite some early success from Holland, Thompson stayed composed. The former title challenger wound up battering his opponent en route to a fourth-round TKO. Holland wound up calling the fight off himself due to a broken hand.

The loss was a heartbreaking one for Kevin Holland, but Brendan Schaub believes it was avoidable. On The Schaub Show, the podcaster stated that making a gentleman’s agreement to keep the fight standing was a massive mistake.

While the former heavyweight contender noted the fight was fun, the UFC likely won’t see it that way. Schaub opined that Dana White and the promotion could hold the loss over Holland’s head, especially come the end of his contract.

Stephen Thompson, Kevin Holland

“If you’re a black belt, you can drag [Thompson] into deep waters. It can get pretty dicey for a guy at a blue belt level,” stated Schaub on his podcast. “So, Kevin Holland had a huge advantage there. Then, you do a gentleman’s agreement coming off a loss, as much as I respect it, if I’m his coaches and his team I’m saying ‘Dude, let’s forget this gentleman’s agreement’.”

He continued, “…If the submissions there, go for it, man. We need wins, you need wins, especially in the welterweight division you need wins. Because, that gentleman’s agreement doesn’t pay your mortgage. The gentleman’s agreement doesn’t extend your contract with the UFC. The Dana Whites and Mick Maynards of the world don’t care about a gentleman’s agreement.”

“They care if the fight’s exciting, but at the end of the day, do not get it twisted. They’re not your friends… I’ve been in those meetings, it doesn’t matter how exciting it was. If you lost, they will hold it against you at all costs when you go to re-negotiate your contract. At all costs, it’s the one thing they will fall back on.”

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Brendan Schaub Kevin Holland Stephen Thompson UFC UFC Orlando