We lived up to the hype, says Rousey
MANILA, Philippines – Women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey believes she and challenger Liz Carmouche lived up to the considerable hype when they competed in the first ever women’s MMA bout at UFC 157 last weekend.
Rousey was a huge favorite against Carmouche, but found herself in trouble early after the former United States Marine applied a face crank on her.
Rousey was able to work herself out of the hold and eventually submitted Carmouche with her signature armbar maneuver with just 11 seconds remaining in the first round.
“I was glad, and it was a great fight,” Rousey said in the post-UFC 157 press conference. “I feel that we really did live up to the hype of all of it.”
“The place was going nuts, and it was a full house. I’m just really honored to be a part of it, and it might take a little while for it to really sink in,” she added.
While some were worried that the main event would end up being predictable because of Rousey’s dominance, the opposite occurred as she was severely tested before pulling out the victory.
MMA analysts believe the performances of both Rousey and Carmouche bode well for the future of women’s MMA in the UFC.
“Rousey did everything she was asked by Zuffa on the promotional end leading up to UFC 157. And she delivered like a champion in the cage, securing her seventh first-round armbar in as many pro fights,” ESPN’s Josh Gross said. [http://espn.go.com/mma/reportcard]
“Rousey’s charisma combines well with her eagerness to fight. She really is a superstar in the making so long as she continues to win,” Gross added.
About Carmouche, Gross said: “(She) did more than show up, which should make anyone who discounted her a bit sheepish... She very nearly pulled off a shocker.”
Gross said Carmouche can be expected to “feel some of that fan-favorite love for at least the rest of this year.”
Rousey, who faced intense media attention leading up to the fight, said she plans to take some time off.
“For the next week I’m gonna fall entirely off the grid as much as I can,” she said.