After Holly Holm handed her the first loss of her career, Ronda Rousey credited her boyfriend, fellow MMA fighter Travis Browne, for getting her through a very dark time in her life. It would appear Rousey is getting that same level of support from Browne in the wake of her second loss.
On New Year’s Day, Bellator fighter Michael “Venom” Page joined in with the thousands of others who have been mocking Rousey on social media:
Jones, who is 22-1 in his career, hasn’t really endured a soul-shattering loss the way Rousey has first to Holly Holm and then to Amanda Nunes. But he has had plenty of down moments in his career, as he’s been stripped of the title twice — first for a hit and run and then for a failed drug test.
Rousey may feel pretty miserable after losing to Nunes, but most fans don’t want to see her leave the sport on this note. Perhaps she just needs some time to rebuild her confidence and come back to the octagon.
Ronda Rousey issued her first public statement since her UFC 207 loss on Saturday, thanking her fans for their support and saying she needs time to consider her future.
Rousey issued a statement to ESPN in which she was noncommittal about her future.
“I want to say thank you to all of my fans who have been there for me in not only the greatest moments but in the most difficult ones,” the statement read, via Ramona Shelburne of ESPN. “Words cannot convey how much your love and support means to me.
“Returning to not just fighting, but winning, was my entire focus this past year. However, sometimes — even when you prepare and give everything you have and want something so badly — it doesn’t work how you planned. I take pride in seeing how far the women’s division has come in the UFC and commend all the other women who have been part of making this possible, including Amanda [Nunes].
“I need to take some time to reflect and think about the future. Thank you for believing in me and understanding.”
The 29-year-old Rousey has now lost two consecutive fights, and despite some claims to the contrary, there was widespread speculation that she wouldn’t fight again after Amanda Nunes defeated her in just 48 seconds. It sounds like she’s going to give a lot of thought to stepping aside.
We don’t know what Rousey is pondering at the moment, but we have some evidence to suggest this might be wishful thinking on White’s part. Rousey has said herself her UFC career is in the home stretch. She looked absolutely shattered after Friday’s defeat, and it’s a really big question as to whether she wants to go through all the training and preparation again having been so thoroughly embarrassed a second time.
At the end of the video, Nunes is seen going over to Tarverdyan to shush him.
You can tell based on the audio clip that Tarverdyan’s strategy was to let Nunes throw punches, as evidenced by his, “make her miss” instructions before the fight. Rousey let Nunes dictate, and once she was hit hard, it was over.
Just 14 months ago, Ronda Rousey was widely considered an inspiring figure for women and beloved athlete in sports. An intimidating presence compared to Mike Tyson, Rousey was a symbol of power, strength and beauty. She had made herself into an icon and role model for females.
And then so much of that crumbled in a matter of two fights.
First Rousey lost to Holly Holm in Nov. 2015 and was so broken up by the loss she had suicidal thoughts and needed over a year before coming back. When she finally did return, she stayed away from doing media events and insisted she was in great shape.
And then the bell rang.
Just like in her loss to Holm, Rousey was completely tagged by Amanda Nunes and lost the fight after being crushed in the stand-up game. Nunes needed just 48 seconds to destroy Rousey and win via TKO.
Afterwards, Rousey was mocked as is custom for the internet. Most of the mocking focused on a brutal photo of Rousey:
Amanda Nunes knew she was going to beat the crap out of Ronda Rousey, and she did just that.
Nunes retained the UFC women’s bantamweight championship with a devastating victory over Rousey at UFC 207 in Las Vegas on Friday night. The Brazilian fighter came out swinging and destroyed Rousey with a flurry of punches, leading referee Herb Dean to stop the fight after 48 seconds.
After her win, Nunes said that she knew she would “beat the s—” out of Rousey. She delivered on her vision.
Nunes thanked Rousey for what she has done for women’s MMA but said Rousey is done and should go make movies.
One has to wonder whether Rousey will walk away from the sport. She was already talking about retirement even when she was dominating the fight game at 12-0. Now she’s lost two fights in a row — in embarrassing fashion no less — and the mystique seems to have worn off of her.
Will she leave the octagon and go straight to Hollywood? That is a very legitimate question.
Meanwhile, Nunes is now 14-4, has won five fights in a row, and she is the class of the division.
The chatter over Ronda Rousey’s behavior at a UFC 205 staredown still has not stopped.
Rousey is set to face Amanda Nunes on Dec. 30 for her first fight in over a year. The two fighters met on stage at a UFC 205 pre-fight event for a staredown/face-off to give the media photo opportunities, but Rousey ended up storming off the stage afterwards while UFC commentator Joe Rogan began interviewing Nunes.
UFC boss Dana White later defended Rousey’s behavior.
“She was never supposed to speak, and neither was Amanda,” said White. “My production guy screwed that up. It made Ronda look bad again – like she just stormed off. They were not supposed to do an interview. They were supposed to go out there and square off, and they were both supposed to walk away.”
Earlier this week, a Twitter user asked MMA Fighting’s Dave Meltzer whether it was true that Rousey was upset and had to be consoled after the incident with Nunes. He said it was.
@davemeltzerWON any truth to the reports that Ronda was upset & had to be consoled after a face off in NY? If true, she's done.
Whether you believe what White said or not, it sure looked like Rousey was upset that Nunes was introduced as the champion and interviewed first. Rousey was devastated after her loss to Holly Holm in her last fight and has taken over a year to get back into the cage. She’s also already talking about retiring soon after the Nunes fight. The loss to Holm seemed to truly affect Rousey’s psyche, who previously seemed invincible.
“Not that long — I’m wrapping it up,” she said when asked how much longer her MMA career will last. “This is definitely one of my last fights. The show can’t go on forever.”
Rousey may have felt differently before she lost to Holly Holm over a year ago, but we all know how important her undefeated record was to her. While the 29-year-old hardly ever admitted weakness in the past, she now says preparing for a fight takes a lot out of her.
“I think it’s definitely the buildup that’s more tiring than anything else,” said Rousey. “If we had a fight right now, I’d go fight right now and then get dinner. I wouldn’t really feel tired over it. … It’s that buildup for weeks on end. If it just happened right now, I wouldn’t be nervous at all. It’s the waiting.”
In fairness, Rousey isn’t only contemplating retirement because her undefeated record is no longer intact. She has always been passionate about acting and even has an extremely lofty goal for herself if she takes that career path, so fighting was never her only plan. If Rousey loses to Nunes, it seems like a virtual guarantee that we won’t see her in the Octagon again.