Ronda Rousey Told to Show Her Face by Mike Tyson in Conan Interview

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistJanuary 21, 2016

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 14:  Ronda Rousey waits backstage during the UFC 193 weigh-in at Etihad Stadium on November 14, 2015 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

Former world heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson has encouraged UFC star Ronda Rousey to step out of the shadows, insisting the former bantamweight titleholder has nothing to be ashamed of.  

Rousey has been out of the public eye since her shocking loss to Holly Holm at UFC 193, with some believing she was unbeatable prior to the bout. Tyson suffered a similar defeat during his boxing days, and he had some advice for Rousey on how best to cope with it during an interview on Conan (h/t Andrew Roberts of Uproxx):

She has to understand, we’re in the hurt business. I don’t care if you’re the king of the hurt business, we’re in the business where we get hurt. And um, she’s just gotta be seen, come out of the house. I see she’s been around, show your face. You’re human. She’s just unfortunate that she’s a goliath.

David is a great king, he’s done great things…He built the civilisation! But he’s more famous for beating goliath.

Here’s a look at a longer clip of Tyson’s interview, in which he continues to discuss how the MMA star should seek to get over disappointment:

Tyson was considered by many to be unbeatable during the early years of his heavyweight career. He won his first 37 fights in succession before running into rank underdog Buster Douglas, who knocked out the then-undisputed heavyweight champion in the 10th round of their fight.

Tyson's loss to Douglas was one of the biggest shocks in boxing history.
Tyson's loss to Douglas was one of the biggest shocks in boxing history.Mike Stobe/Getty Images

In the aftermath of Rousey’s loss, despite having only won her first 12 fights, some compared the defeat to Holm to Tyson’s loss to Douglas, including BT Sport’s Gareth A. Davies, who noted nobody is immaculate when it comes to combat sports:

As Tyson mentioned, there’s little reason for Rousey to be ashamed of her efforts, and there is no need to hide from the spotlight. But it may not be a decision based on the fact that she lost to Holm.

Taking herself out of focus might be a wise move on Rousey's part.
Taking herself out of focus might be a wise move on Rousey's part.Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

Let’s not forget, ahead of UFC 193 and throughout much of 2015, Rousey was under intense media scrutiny. She was involved in many press conferences, interviews and promotional events, and after a while, that would surely take its toll. So stepping back and letting people forget about her may not necessarily be the worst move.

Bleacher Report’s Jonathan Snowden thought a message from the fighter to her fans might have been appropriate, though:

There aren’t many greats in combat sports who have remained unbeaten throughout their career because they always seek to push themselves further. Although there are some flaws Rousey will need to amend before she gets back in the cage, she could still be revered as one of the greats, just as Tyson is.

It’s unclear when Rousey will return to action, with UFC President Dana White ruling out an appearance at UFC 200, per Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports. But when she does, expect to see a refreshed fighter following her time away from the intense spotlight that was trained on her for much of 2015.