‘Venom’ Page joins UFC, to fight Holland in debut

The UFC has signed coveted free agent Michael “Venom” Page, and he is already booked in a major fight early next year.

UFC president Dana White announced the signing Saturday night at the UFC 296 postfight news conference in Las Vegas. Page, a flashy knockout artist formerly of Bellator, will fight Kevin Holland at UFC 299 on March 9 in Miami, White said.

Also on the UFC 299 card, former UFC bantamweight champion Petr Yan will face Song Yadong, Ian Machado Garry will clash with Geoff Neal and Gilbert Burns will fight Jack Della Maddalena, White announced.

Page (21-2) also had a significant offer from PFL, sources told ESPN. He was at the PFL Europe show last week in Ireland and had a faux faceoff with PFL striking prospect Cedric Doumbé in the cage.

Page, a 36-year-old England native, has won seven of his past eight fights, including five by knockout. Some of the knockouts were spectacular — he has won fights with flying knees, leg kicks and a tornado kick.

Holland (25-10, 1 NC) is coming off a split-decision loss to Della Maddalena in September. The California native, who lives and trains in Texas, was on a two-fight winning streak before that. Holland, 31, is 12-7 (1 NC) in the UFC.

UFC 299 will be headlined by a bantamweight title fight between champion Sean O’Malley and challenger Marlon “Chito” Vera.

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