Strikeforce: Ronda Rousey Plans to "Change Women's MMA for a Long Time"

Matt SaccaroContributor IIIFebruary 28, 2012

CHICAGO - APRIL 14:  Martial artist Ronda Rousey poses for a portrait during the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summitt at the Palmer House Hilton on April 14, 2008 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Silver-tongued Judoka Ronda Rousey has taken women's MMA by storm as of late, and she plans on doing more.

Her fight with Strikforce women's bantamweight champion Miesha Tate is just the next big step on her journey. 

The fight is the most hyped fight in the short history of women's mixed martial arts.

It's quite an amazing fact since some believed that WMMA was dead after Gina Carano was battered at the hands of Cristiane "Cyborg" Santos back in 2009. 

You won't find Rousey disagreeing with her fight against Tate being of historic significance. 

"I think that’s part of what makes this fight so exciting and so anticipated," Rousey said at the Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey media conference call at which Bleacher Report was present.

"We’re pretty much getting into unarmed combat where anything’s possible, someone could die, you know.

"If you see two girls who basically look like warrior princesses—that was a show on TV for a reason—people want to watch it.

"This is gonna be a huge fight and change women’s MMA for a long time."

Part of what has made the fight so talked about is Rousey's incredible "trash talk" ability.

WMMA was in dire straits in the post-Carano, post-Cyborg's failed drug test era, but Rousey has rekindled interest in it by her words outside the cage and by her deeds inside the cage. 

Regarding those words, they may sound venomous, but to Rousey they're benign. 

"I never said that I had anything personal against [Tate]," Rousey said.

"I kind of created this rivalry on purpose because I had enough friends and could really use a few enemies.

"It’s not personal to me and I understand why she doesn’t like me and why she might take it personal because I’ve been being pretty much overtly rude.

"But yeah, I don’t feel bad about it. She can take it personal if she wants—I don’t."

Rousey isn't a disrespectful upstart but rather a sly businessperson. She understands how marketing works and that bigger draws get bigger fights.

But the woman who is now fighting for a world title wasn't always so famous or popular.

When she started, she had to work her way up from nothing. 

"This day one year ago I was working three jobs and struggling to train and do all this stuff, and I just wanted to be done with all that," she said.

"I wanted to be able to support myself through fighting and do that as quickly as possible…I knew that I could win the title the day that I started and the quicker I could get it the better.

"If giving more entertaining interviews than the other girls helps me out, then I want to do that."

Rousey's critics may contend that it's only her witticisms and good looks that got her a title shot, but her Olympic level judo abilities also had something to do with it. 

She's had four pro fights and four submissions—all by armbar in under a minute.

That's impressive no matter what you think of her and it helps make Judo more respectable, which was one of Rousey's goals all along.

"One of my major goals when I started doing was not only to push Women’s MMA but also to promote judo, because judo has been kind of going down hill for the past few decades," she said.

"But it’s really cool to see really respectable athletes, like I see Jon Jones doing judo throws all the time and I freak out."

Rousey has had an incredible impact on the MMA world and she's only been here since March 2011 and had four fights.

Can you imagine what she can do given even more time?

When you look at it that way, changing women's MMA for a long time doesn't seem like that far off a goal.

Rousey has already changed it for the better and the fight with Tate hasn't happened yet.