Sunday, March 1, 2015

UFC 184: "Just...F@#$!"


Zingano's exclamation during her post-fight interview pretty much sums up everyone's reaction to Ronda Rousey's 14-second victory over her, including mine.  With this victory, Rousey demolished the last of the "murderer's row" of the top female bantamweights in the world and cemented her place as the undisputed Queen of MMA.

Let's just face it: this belt isn't going anywhere unless Ronda Rousey (pictured with her sister and mother) retires. Image by MMAJunkie (Link to:

Here's my take on this night of exciting finishes:
Ferguson vs. Tibau: Ferguson rocked Tibau with a right to gain the upper hand early.  Several choke attempts later, "El Cucuy" had Tibau in a deep rear naked choke with double leg hooks to get the victory via tapout.

Walsh vs. Jouban: Walsh's forward pressure and aggression was turned against him when Jouban caught him with a left elbow as he rushed in and got the TKO victory after the referee stopped it.  I personally felt this was an early stoppage.

Ellenberger vs. Koscheck: This looked like it would be the most boring fight of the night.  Both Ellenberger and Koscheck appeared to be afraid to engage on their feet.  Koscheck looked like he was trying to cruise to a decision victory by smothering Ellenberger with takedown attempts.  Fortunately, that ended in Round 2 when "The Juggernaut" caught Koscheck in a standing guillotine and took him down into a North-South choke (which I've never seen before in my life) to give him his first submission loss in almost 10 years.

Holm vs. Pennington: This was the fight of the night in my opinion.  I believe that this should have been a unanimous decision victory for Holm instead of a split.  The only round in question was Round 3, when "Rocky" caught her with several hard rights, including one that dropped "The Preacher's Daughter" near the end.  Nonetheless, Holm clearly controlled the rest of the fight with great takedown defense and pressuring Pennington with boxing combos and head kicks.  The real question, however, was whether or not Holm could prove she was a threat to Ronda Rousey.  The fact that Holm had such a hard time defeating the 14th-ranked woman in the division is proof that she is not.

Rousey vs. Zingano: Zingano clearly took Rousey by surprise with a flying knee followed by a suicide throw which had the champ doing a somersault in the octagon.  Unfortunately, Rousey was too level-headed and technically sound to be taken aback for more than a few seconds.  During the scramble that ensued, Rousey took Zingano's back, transitioned into an omoplata, and from there had the second-best female fighter in the world tapping in a straight armbar within 14 seconds flat.  I'm not sure what impressed me more: the fact that Rousey crushed her challenger in record time with a type of armbar that I had never seen before, or her display of sportmanship and class afterward, in which she consoled a clearly distraught Zingano with an embrace and kiss on the cheek.

This completes a face-turn which Rousey began when she commended the effort of her rival, Miesha Tate, at UFC 168 and I can honestly say that I am now a huge fan of the champ.

Now that Rousey has slain every dragon that WMMA has to offer, what should she do next?  Well, she could defeat Holm and Jessica Eye as a formality.  In fact, to make things more efficient, the UFC may consider making Eye and Holm face off in a title eliminator to decide who gets the next beatdown at the hands of the champ.  As another formality, Rousey can go up to catchweight to smash Cyborg (provided that the latter continues to lay off the 'roids).  I would appreciate this, not because I think Cyborg is a credible threat without PEDs, but because it would make her foot-kissing fans shut up.  If Rousey does those two things, she really has nothing left to accomplish and would be better off moving on to bigger and better things such as Hollywood or getting married and starting a family.

At any rate, two things are clear: Ronda Rousey is the undisputed Queen of Queens of MMA, and her character has finally caught up with her talent.           


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