Ronda Rousey has fought twice in the last two and a half months and won both of her bouts fairly easily. It looks like she may be running out of opponents in women’s MMA, which means the UFC may have to get creative with her next fight. And they may be doing so.
UFC commentator Joe Rogan teased a big announcement about Rousey’s next fight during an appearance on “Kevin & Bean” on LA radio station KROQ Friday. Here’s what he said (as transcribed by MMA Fighting):
“I wish I could tell you what I know. I wish I could tell you,” Rogan said in response to the hosts questioning whether Rousey will be challenged. “I know some secret stuff. I know some secret stuff, but I can’t tell you. You might actually know, but I can’t tell you. I can say no more than I’ve already said. I will tell you this … within the next probably week or so a huge announcement will come about women’s fighting… It’s going to be crazy. Madness. I wish I could [talk about it now], but I would betray the confidence of my friend and employer.”
Wrestling Observer’s Dave Meltzer mentioned two names as possibilities for Rousey’s next fight: Gina Carano and Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino.
Carano seems like a very unlikely opponent to me. She is 31 and has not fought since Aug. 15, 2009, when she lost to Cyborg. She’s starred in a handful of action movies since leaving the fight game, so I don’t see why she would get back in the octagon. And if she were, why would she start with a fight against Rousey? That’s too tough of an assignment.
Cyborg seems much more likely as an opponent. She has fought twice since being suspended a year for testing positive for steroids in 2011, and she has expressed plenty of interest in fighting Rousey. She’s also made it easier for the UFC to make the fight by no longer having Tito Ortiz, a longtime Dana White antagonist, serve as her manager. The one issue about a Rousey-Cyborg fight is the same one we’ve had all along: at what weight will they fight? Rousey fights at 135, while Cyborg fights at 145 and has said she can’t cut to a weight that low. My guess is they’ll figure something out.
On a related note, ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reports that Dana White told him Rousey’s next fight will be in the fall, not during the summer as some reported.
H/T Bloody Elbow