Count Vitor Belfort among the growing list of Ultimate Fighting Championship legends shifting gears to boxing late in their careers.
Per a press release on Friday, Belfort (26-14, 1 NC MMA; 1-0 Box) will be toeing the line against Michael Holston (0-0 Box), also known as “The Real Tarzann.” The two will tangle on the Triller Fight Club undercard on June 19 at the LoanDepot Park in Miami. According to ESPN, the bout will be a professional contest consisting of eight two-minute rounds, and the competitors will wear 12-ounce gloves. The match is still awaiting clearance from the Florida State Boxing Commission.
According to Kavanaugh, the duo got into an altercation in a Florida gym today. pic.twitter.com/owSyoCwklp— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) June 4, 2021
Former UFC champ Belfort recently came to blows with Holston in a gym in Florida, where the two had a verbal altercation that turned physical. Many viewing the footage, including ex-champ Daniel Cormier, believe that the whole encounter was staged in an effort to drum up interest in this match.
Belfort will be returning to the boxing ring for the first time since 2006, when he made his first appearance by knocking out fellow boxing neophyte Josemario Neves. As a professional MMA fighter, the majority of his wins came by knockout, with most from his hands. The 44-year-old retired from the sport after Lyoto Machida knocked him out with a front kick at UFC 224 in 2018. “The Phenom” went on to join the ranks of One Championship, but he never competed under that banner. He is no longer under contract with One, per ESPN.
Holston, an animal rights activist and conservationist, has never competed in any professional combat sport. Although he has never professionally set foot in the cage or ring, he did made the news in the past for a fracas, when he allegedly fought with a python wrestler near his home in 2019. Holston was charged with burglary as well as battery for the incident. “The Real Tarzann” maintains a sizeable following on Instagram and YouTube, with millions of followers between those two platforms.
The two will compete at an event that will be headlined a lightweight championship affair pitting undisputed lightweight Teofimo Lopez (16-0, 12 KOs) against unbeaten challenger George Kambosos (19-0, 10 KOs). The Triller show will feature a few more title fights, as well as live musical performances from names like Snoop Dogg and Meek Mill.