The Rise and fall of “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey

Jack Rosen, Sports Editor

Ronda Rousey had one of the most electrifying starts to a sports career, regardless of the sport. She joined the UFC women’s bantamweight divisions when at the very beginning, and it didn’t take her long to show she was the queen of the division. During her quick rise to the top, she faced little to no adversity. She either knocked out or submitted every opponent she faced in her first 12 fights. She was an unstoppable force

Then, people started ask questions. Could she compete with the men? Would she ever have a competitive fight in the women’s division? All those questions were answered on November 14, 2015 at UFC 193. She went up against a tough boxer in Holly Holm, and Holm’s striking ability proved to be way too much for “The Rowdy One.” Ronda Rousey took the loss way harder than anyone could have imagined. She went into the darkness for months, and allegedly even thought about committing suicide. She went from being the biggest star in the sport to a sob story. However, after a while in hiding, she was set to return. It was another title fight, this time against Amanda Nunes. Nunes presented the same problem as Holm: she was a world class striker. Ronda decided not to be in the spotlight in preparation for the big fight. She stayed in the dark, didn’t attend press conferences and refused to do interviews. The biggest question going into her redemption fight was, did she learn how to strike on her feet, or at the very least learn how to deal with a barrage of punches? Again, just like the Holm fight, the biggest questions were answered. The answer was a resounding NO. She got absolutely obliterated by Nunes. It was sad to watch, as a star who ran the show for two years couldn’t even touch the current champion.

Rousey’s rise to stardom and fall from grace were both historic. She was untouchable for quite some time, she was even considered the biggest attraction in all of the UFC (maybe outside of  McGregor). Some blame the media and the fame for putting Rousey’s focus on her acting career instead of her training. Others blame Rousey’s trainer for never teaching her how to box. But at the end of the day the blame falls on Ronda herself. She just couldn’t keep up with the quickly evolving women’s division. Will she ever fight again? Only time will tell, but she will never reach the same levels of stardom as a fighter ever again.   


* photo via Google Images under the Creative Commons license