UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey successfully defended her title against Liz Carmouche in the main event of UFC 157 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
In a shocker to no one, the defending champion won by way of armbar in the first round.
What was shocking was Carmouche's ability to put Rousey in trouble early on. "Girlrilla" nearly pulled off the upset of the century when she nearly choked out Rousey in the opening minutes of the fight.
However, it was Rousey once again wrapping up her signature armbar as the opening round came to a close who walked away the victor.
The victory comes in Rousey’s first fight in the UFC—the first female fighter in company history—and her second overall title defense (formerly held the Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Championship).
This win marks the seventh straight for Rousey and further proves that the former Judo Olympic medalist was born for the MMA game.
Another convincing win in a marquee fight proves Rousey is here to stay.
What It Means
A win over a bona fide star like Carmouche—coupled with the brutality of Rousey’s first six submission wins—proves that she is the best female in the sport right now and the pound-for-pound toughest woman in MMA.
The UFC will look to find another women’s star in this division by lining up fighters like Miesha Tate or the undefeated Sara McMann as the next opponents for Rousey and her title.
Whomever the UFC decides on for Rousey’s next fight, the company must realize the magnitude of the star it has on its hands and find an opponent for the bantamweight champion who will polarize the fans into caring even more for the blossoming star.
It took the UFC long enough, but they finally wised up when they hired Rousey as one of the fresh faces that would take the company to new heights.
Not only is Rousey a strong female with a great personality who can sell the MMA community on women fighters, her ability to reach a mainstream audience is exactly what the sport needs to prove it isn’t stuck in the Stone Age.
It’s great to see a woman finally get a chance to shine in the UFC.
Not only is this victory great for Rousey and her career, this is a huge step for women’s MMA. With the mainstream seeing Rousey heralded as a hero, the female athletes who choose to pursue combat sports will have a main-event level that they can aspire to reach.
This is a huge step in the right direction for the sport of MMA.