LAS VEGAS – Ronda Rousey‘s impact on women’s MMA is evident. After all, the UFC wouldn’t employ female fighters if it weren’t for the “Rowdy” one. But UFC boss Dana White believes she’s transcending the boundaries of MMA.
“I think she’s important to women’s sport, period,” the UFC president said following Saturday’s UFC 175 pay-per-view event at Las Vegas’ Mandalay Bay Events Center. “I think she’s such a big game-changer for women, period – women in general in life and everything.
“Ronda Rousey is a game-changer.”
Rousey (10-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC) co-headlined Saturday’s fight card, and she needed just 16 seconds to thoroughly steamroll top contender Alexis Davis (16-6 MMA, 3-1 UFC). The highlight-reel finish, which saw Rousey fling her opponent to the mat and blast away with punches for the victory, marked the first time Davis had been finished in more than five years.
White said the brutal ending was just the latest example of Rousey’s greatness as an athlete.
“It was just so explosive and crazy and fast and just, you know, she’s unbelievable,” White said. “She’s a huge superstar, she’s one of the pound-for-pound best fighters in the world, and she’s the most unique athlete that I’ve ever worked with in my whole life in every sense of the word.”
In the past 17 months, Rousey has picked up four UFC wins, defending her UFC title each time. All but one of her 10 career wins have come in the opening round, and she seems only to be getting better with each appearance.
White believes her skills are on par with any of her male counterparts on the UFC roster.
“When you look at the NBA, women play basketball, but everybody sh-ts on it like, ‘Ah, it’s women’s basketball; it’s terrible,’” White said. “This is a chick that could leave this building, walk down the Las Vegas Strip and wreck every guy on the Las Vegas Strip. There’s never been a women in the history of the world that could do that.
“Even back in the day when you had good boxers and everyone was all crazy about Lucia Rijker, you know Lucia Rijker was a women that had to go in there and trade with a man, trade punches with a man. Ronda Rousey might get past a couple of your punches, but once she grabs on to you – I don’t care how big you are, how strong you are – she’s going to drop you on your head.”
And if you don’t like it? Well – in the parlance of MMA fans – haters gonna hate, according to White.
“Ronda Rousey is a f-cking mega-star,” he said. “People can rip on her and say whatever they want, but the girl is a rockstar in every sense of the word.”
For complete coverage of UFC 175, stay tuned to the UFC Events section of the site.