In the few days following Holly Holm’s win over Ronda Rousey, I have literally heard it all.
A former WWE wrestler claiming the UFC ordered Rousey take a dive before heading off to film a movie. The unconscious and disorientated Rousey should could have fooled me.
Not to mention the potential millions of dollars the UFC would have made continuing to market Rousey as the unstoppable force.
We’ve also heard about how the sport if brutal and should be banned because a couple of fifty something year old men who openly cheer big hits on other sports don’t understand the sport of MMA.
Despite those two boarder line insane reactions to the incredible result, perhaps the most outrageous reaction is some on social media are now referring to Ronda Rousey as over rated, and even a fraud?
I certainly don’t need to “stand up” for the former UFC bantamweight champion, her record and training speak for themselves.
This is a woman who won an Olympic bronze medal in the world’s most hotly contested judo competition.
Ronda not only beat but took apart an Olympic wrestling silver medalist, and knocked out decorated strikers.
She has decimated highly credentialed, previously undefeated, dangerous women.
She made women who were knocking opponents out for fun look like easy beats, and in doing so made women’s MMA matter.
One loss does not take away ANY of what she achieved previously, especially when you look at the woman who delivered that loss.
Do not let the early betting odds fool you. Holly Holm was never a genuine $10 outsider in this fight.
Ronda’s reputation and the manner of her previous wins were the reason Holm was made such an outsider.
Holly Holm is a high decorated, multiple time world champion in both boxing and kick boxing.
She came into the fight with a 100% take down defence. Given the wrestling pedigree in the world’s most elite MMA organisation, that is unheard of.
Holm fought the perfect fight on Sunday afternoon (Australian time). She weathered the early Rousey storm, kept her distance, and picked the champion apart.
Styles make fights, and Holly’s style was the perfect foil for the ultra-aggressive Rousey.
She looked calm as Rousey made her high energy entrance whereas others have looked defeated.
Holm believed in her substantial abilities and fought a perfect fight.
How does that make the former champion any less of a just that, a champion?
If Rousey had defeated Holm, who could the UFC possibly put in the ring and convince potential buyers could beat the champion?
Talk before the fight was that the UFC had run out of opponents to match with their dominant champion.
Rousey’s likely next fight was a third fight with an opponent she has already comprehensively beaten twice before.
Who better than a woman who has held multiple belts in two different striking sports?
Who is to say that Holly Holm is not the next genuine superstar in the division?
It’s been embarrassing to see the reaction on social media and even in the print media since the fight.
The same people who were asking whether Holm could last 20 seconds, are now saying that Rousey is a fraud?
This is a woman who has made easy work out of a string of world class opponents, whilst turning women’s MMA into a worldwide phenomenon.
This is a woman who set a world record MMA crowd and an estimated million plus pay-per-view buyers.
Ronda Rousey is no fraud. She was just beaten on the day by the better fighter.
If you don’t like it, don’t watch it
If not for the fact I was in Melbourne for training following the fight, this would have come a lot sooner, and with a lot more venom.
Following the super successful UFC 193 show on Sunday afternoon, the usual suspects turned to their columns to spew hate about a sport they no almost nothing about.
One columnist who had previously spoken negatively about the sport, and even swore off mentioning it in future columns, watched the show JUST so he could further bad mouth it.
I could point to the statistics that prove there have been no deaths or life changing injuries inside the octagon, or the fact that these are well trained, well paid and willing athletes, but instead I offer some advice.
If you don’t like MMA, don’t watch it.
I’m not a huge fan of horse racing outside the occasional Melbourne cup punt, but I’m certainly not going to waste anybody’s time talking down about a sport I barely understand.
If only others could apply the same line of thinking.