It was January 2011 when UFC president Dana White was confronted by TMZ while exiting a Beverly Hills restaurant. The subject, a women’s division in the UFC. When asked there would be a women’s fight in the UFC, White emphatically responded, “NEVER”.
Fast forward to August 2012! After beating Miesha Tate for the Strikeforce women’s title back in March, the champion had her first title shot against then contender Sarah Kaufman. It took Rousey only 0:54 to make Kaufman submit. What made this win sweeter than the previous five in her winning streak is she was able to do so in front of the very man who denounced the idea of women’s MMA in UFC. Soon after the bout, White set up a meeting with Rousey at the very restaurant where he rejected women’s integration into the sport. He brought her there to tell her that women’s MMA will indeed be a part of the UFC.
In addition to the impressive showing that she provided in her only Strikeforce title defense, Rousey has never participated in any action outside of the first round. The closest she came to the second round was her title win over Tate, where she submitted her with a mere 0:33 left in the opening round.
With a six fight career, where all the wins have resulted in first round submissions, it’s an understatement to suggest Rousey believes in not fixing what isn’t broke. With all the media attention that surrounds her, the hype must be looked beyond so that reality is illuminated.
The game tape that is out on Rousey carrer carries a consistent theme. She strikes, not for the sake of accuracy, but to close the distance just enough to get you in a clinch. From there, she tosses you to the canvas, locks in an armbar and pulls for dear life until her opponent taps.
The reason’s name is Liz Carmouche. Carmouche is anything but reluctant when it comes to letting her hands go. When she throws them, she’s out to do damage. In addition, her strength fuels her takedown abilities and she’s relentless in the takedown department.
Fight fans that have followed women’s MMA have never seen Rousey in adverse situations, so her ability to show resolve remains a question. Rousey has never fought outside of the opening round. Does she have the cardiovascular endurance to stretch fights beyond her comfort zone?
Carmouche is the exact opposite! Carmouche has been placed in adverse situations and even though they resulted in losses, she was able to gather herself enough to continue into the latter rounds of the fights. Carmouche has experience in the second, third and fourth rounds.
On a night where trails will be blazed and ways will be paved in women’s MMA, there is another first that will shake the foundation of UFC’s women’s division. Just as Antonio “Big Foot” Silva derailed the plans of Alistair Overeem being UFC’s next golden boy, Liz “Girl-Rilla” Carmouche will also alter the company’s plans of UFC’s first lady. In a shocking defeat, Carmouche will outwork Rousey, making Rousey’s title reign the division’s shortest to date.
Yes fight fans, I’m going against the Rousey grain here. Tune in to TNP Sports for a full recap of this ground breaking, momentous event.
By Antoine Hoffman