Brock Lesnar and Holly Holm have both reacted to Ronda Rousey’s claims that she’d been having suicidal thoughts in the wake of her loss to Holm last year.
Speaking on the The Ellen DeGeneres Show (h/t Paul Chavez of the DailyMail.com), Rousey said after the defeat at UFC 193 she was “literally sitting there and thinking about killing myself.”
Lesnar said it’s important that fighters learn how to cope with defeat as well as winning. This was the first loss of Rousey’s career.
“One thing that I learned and she should have learned a long time ago was that you have to learn how to lose before you can actually win," the former UFC heavyweight champion said on SportsCenter on Tuesday (h/t Damon Martin of Fox Sports). "... You've got to be able to get back on the horse and this life is very precious and very short. One fight isn't going to make or break her career.”
Holm conceded that when she heard the quotes from Rousey, she wasn’t quite sure how to react.
“When I heard that she said that, for me it’s one of those things it’s like, ‘How do I respond to that?’" said the bantamweight champion, per Tristen Critchfield of Sherdog. “I don’t want to say I’m sorry because I think on a competitive level for me, if somebody was to say they’re sorry after [beating me], it’s like, ‘No, I’m a competitor.’ I’m not a charity case.”
Holm hopes Rousey’s disappointment could be used in a positive way: “In the long run, she’ll be stronger mentally from it.”
Bleacher Report’s Jonathan Snowden feels as though it’s important the former champion takes some time before returning to competitive sport in light of these most recent comments:
Rousey was the huge favourite to triumph ahead of her showdown with Holm in Melbourne, Australia, at UFC 193, having won all 12 of her competitive MMA bouts previously. However, she was a stationary target, allowing Holm—a skilled striker—to light her up with fierce shots.
In the second round, the fight came to a dramatic conclusion, as the underdog landed a brutal left hand before downing Rousey with a head kick. Here is the fight in full:
Since the loss to Holm, Rousey has kept herself out of the spotlight and has not scheduled a return to the sport. Indeed, the appearance on the show was her first sit-down interview since the defeat.
As noted by Snowden, given the nature of the comments, it seems wise for Rousey to take a patient and considered approach to any comeback. That seems the best course of action not only for the fighter’s long-term well-being, but also if she’s to dominate the Octagon as she had done in many showings prior to the shock loss.