Smith won the bout with an incredible rally in the last two rounds, landing 84 power shots over the final six minutes.
Vettori is slowly moving toward a title shot and he wasn’t going to be beaten by an opponent with such a gaping hole in his game.
“It’s funny that everybody wanted to see ‘Big Mouth’ until ‘Big Mouth’ didn’t do his job and they got all upset and mad,” Holland said.
Smith is never going to win an award as the sport’s slickest boxer, but if you like your fighters to be fearless, to go for the knockout and to fight anyone, Smith is your guy.
Vettori appreciates Holland taking the fight, but he’s hardly impressed with the attributes the 10th-ranked Holland brings to the table.
He doesn’t want to give up his belt, but Herring feels the fight with Valdez is significant enough that it’s worth it if that’s what it comes down to.
On Saturday (3 p.m. ET, ABC), Holland will step in for fifth-ranked Darren Till, who suffered a broken collarbone in training, and will face No. 6 Marvin Vettori at Apex.