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The Aftermath of Rousey vs. Holm

Kent Martinez |
November 19, 2015 | 3:21 p.m. PST

Contributor

Ronda Rousey and Holly Holm (@melani3r/Twitter)
Ronda Rousey and Holly Holm (@melani3r/Twitter)

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On Saturday night, we saw bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey lose for the first time in her career. Holly Holm, an experienced an accomplished female boxer, defeated Rousey early in the second round via knock out. Rousey with a 12-0 record, is revered as arguably the greatest female MMA fighter of all time, but on Saturday night, that was not the case.

Holm was a 12-to-1 underdog in this fight. Throughout her career, Rousey has never fought a fighter with superior boxing skills. Throughout the first round, Rousey was stalking Holm, pushing the action, landing a few punches, but not doing very much damage. Mid-way through the first round, Holm began to unload and exhibit her superior striking abilities. A quick left kick to the face of Rousey while scrambling is what began to slowly turn the tide in Holm's favor. She then landed a beautiful left-handed punch that she followed up with vicious elbow to the face. 

The story in this fight was going to be whether Holm could match Rousey’s ground game which she did by momentarily defending Rousey’s judo throw. Holly actually defended it pretty well , and even when Rousey took her to the ground and attempted a submission off of her back, Holm was able to escape it. The real shocker came when Holm actually picked Ronda off her feet and took her down.

There was a moment in the fight when Rousey attempted a hard left punch that she missed so badly, it looked like an amateur going up against a pro fighter. I had never seen anything like it before. The embarrassing missed punch by Rousey, in my opinion, is what mentally broke her. 23 seconds later Holmes rocked her with a vicious straight left, which she followed up with a devastating left kick to the chin that put Rousey out cold.

Holm's victory over Rousey was the upset of the century according to many people, but I disagree with those odds. The fact is this was going to be for the most part, a one-sided fight. Either Ronda was going to dominate Holm on the ground, or Holm was going to dominate Rousey on the feet if Holm found a way of keeping it there. There was no way that Rousey was going to beat Holm at her own game.

Could Rousey beat Holmes in a rematch? Not likely, but who knows? Holmes being the classy individual that she is, openly admitted to being open for a rematch, as she feels that a champion like Rousey deserves one. If Rousey finds a way to change her training style as it relates to her striking abilities and gets better on her feet, thenn there might be a chance for Rousey to make the fight much more competitive. But Holm is simply the superior boxer, and in a stand-up fight alone, Holm will not only win that battle, but will make Rousey look foolish. Rousey in the standup battle, looked like a white belt going up against a black belt. She got exposed and showed weaknesses. 

Holm looks to have a future in this sport as she is undefeated herself and is now the world champion in the bantamweight division. But at age 34, how much does she still have left? Clearly on Saturday night she looked to be in the prime of her life. But like with most male athletes in MMA, the beginning of the end occurs during their mid to late 30’s. 

But don't mistake this for the end of Rousey's reign. Rousey is tough and will be back. She, like Holm, is a warrior as well.



 

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