Ronda Rousey delivers thrilling comeback win in UFC debut, submitting Liz Carmouche (Yahoo! Sports)


  • Share on Tumblr
  • submit to reddit

ANAHEIM, Calif. – Nothing else would have seemed appropriate.

It took her longer than it ever had before, but Ronda Rousey sent the huge crowd at the Honda Center home happy by submitting Liz Carmouche in the first round with, what else, an arm bar.

Rousey won the first women's fight in UFC history by doing what she had done nine previous times, three in the amateurs and six in the professional ranks.

Carmouche had Rousey's back at one point and it looked like she may pull off the monumental upset by securing a rear naked choke submission or a neck crank.

With the crowd roaring, Rousey dumped Carmouche off her back and then worked relentlessly to get the submission. It came at 4:49 of the first – the latest of Rousey's career – and sent the crowd into a delirium.

Rousey was the object of a massive media blitz and was profiled in Time Magazine, on HBO's "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel" and on CNN – places that normally don't cover mixed martial arts.

Rousey, though, did not let it impact her. She came to the cage with a scowl on her face and went out and brutally finished the fight.

"No amount of press is going to save these girls from me," said Rousey, a bronze medalist in judo at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

[Also: Josh Koscheck suffers upset loss to resurgent Robbie Lawler]

The bout was 22 seconds longer than Rousey needed to win the Strikeforce bantamweight title about 11 months ago when she submitted Miesha Tate.

Then, Rousey was largely an unknown commodity at the one of the highest levels of MMA. This time around, she was the big star and handled the pressure with the aplomb of a 10-year veteran.

She landed a punch early that backed Carmouche to the cage and immediately tried for a throw to get the takedown. Carmouche fought it off and eventually got Rousey's back.

But after Rousey got her down, she went into side control and pounded Carmouche's face with punches. When she saw the opening, she wrapped her legs around the arm and the crowd, sensing the finish, roared.

Rousey leaned back and cranked, pulling off the historic win.

[Also: Lyoto Machida ekes out split decision win over frustrated Dan Henderson]

In the co-main event, Lyoto Machida earned a shot at the UFC light heavyweight title with a split decision victory over veteran Dan Henderson. Machida was unwilling to engage with Henderson, much to the crowd's consternation, and he simply circled and countered all night.

There weren't a lot of clean shots landed by either fighter, but Machida seemed to score more with the counters in the second half of the fight.

Machida's quickness was the difference in the fight. He circled and moved the entire fight, not willing to stand and trade with Henderson or risk being taken down.

The result was an unsatisfying fight that left many in the large crowd booing loudly. Henderson was clearly the crowd favorite, and it roared at everything he landed.

But Henderson wasn't able to get the fight into a confined space. Even when he got top position in the second, he was unable to score much.

"I'm sorry the fight wasn't as good as the fans wanted," Machida said. "My strategy was to keep away from the right hand and to keep the fight standing up. I thought I won the fight because I frustrated him and kept the fight where I wanted it. I hope I am now the No. 1 contender. I want a title shot."

Henderson, not surprisingly, had a different view.

"I won the fight, but not officially," he said. "I hit him whenever he wanted to fight. He ran away most of the time. I thought I won."

Other popular content on Yahoo! Sports:
Watch: Floyd Mayweather's college football betting secret
Michael Jordan gets minor league offer
Alex Smith on the trading block in Indy
Wake Forest knocks off No. 2 Miami
view original article >>

Related News

  • 16 days ago
  • 43 views

Despite talk of her saving the UFC 176 card with a quick turnaround, it appears Ronda Rousey suffered a significant hand injury in her UFC 175 win. At the conclusion of the UFC 175 broadcast, Ronda Rousey was shown backstage with stitches in her hand. The stitches seemed to go across the knuckle at the joint of her right index finger and her hand. The injury to her hand likely eliminates any further need to speculate on her availability to save the UFC 176 card. Joe Rogan had asked Rousey "at th more

  • 21 days ago
  • 150 views

The UFC is full of some of the most gifted athletes in sports, and it didn't take long for Americans to find out. According to digital marketing gurus Compete Pulse, in 2006, the UFC became the fastest growing sport in America. Things haven't slowed down since then, as UFC pay-per-view events continued to rack up huge numbers, surpassing 1 million buys on many occasions, most recently during UFC 168, according to MMAPayout.com. So, what's the root cause for the epic success of this organization? more

  • 17 days ago
  • 23 views

Not only is Ronda Rousey the biggest star in women's MMA, but it can also be argued that she is the biggest star in MMA as a whole. With that in mind, a victory over Alexis Davis at UFC 175 is paramount in terms of continuing the growth of her division. Rousey is a perfect 9-0, and she will put the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship on the line Saturday night. Rousey is a heavy favorite due largely to her devastating armbar, but Davis poses an interesting challenge with her jiu-jitsu backgrou more

  • 16 days ago
  • 31 views

Ronda Rousey's incredible 16 second KO of Alexis Davis earns her a spot as the 2nd fastest win in UFC title fight history. Get the details, including the full top 10, right here. Ronda Rousey's UFC 175 defeat of Alexis Davis was imprsssive indeed. A fight so short you can contain the entirety of the fight in a single gif, the UFC Women's Bantamweight champion grabbed Davis and used her Olympic level Judo to send her crashing to the mat and knocking her out. The win earned Rousey a fourth success more

  • 15 days ago
  • 32 views

Ronda Rousey's electrifying knockout win of Alexis Davis was many things; scary, dominant, legacy-building all come to mind. While it wasn't quite record-breaking, it came pretty darn close. Officially clocked at 16 seconds, Rousey tied for the second-fastest knockout in UFC title fight history. It tied Frank Shamrock's 16-second knockout win over Kevin Jackson at UFC Japan in 1997 where he would win the inaugural UFC middleweight championship (which would later be renamed the light heavyweight more

  • 13 days ago
  • 52 views

For a moment, Ronda Rousey was a consideration to try and save the now-cancelled UFC 176 fight card. The idea never grew legs, and it's probably a good thing since it has been revealed she has a broken hand. more

  • 28 days ago
  • 54 views

So basically, Alexis Davis is screwed wherever the fight goes. Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey will defend her 135-pound strap against Alexis Davis in the co-main event of UFC 175, which takes place over Fourth of July Weekend (Sat., July 5, 2014) inside Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. And she's looking to prove a point against the "Ally-Gator." "Rowdy" is hoping to demonstrate that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is not superior to judo. And more

  • 28 days ago
  • 37 views

A trio of UFC titlists – Ronda Rousey, Jon Jones and Chris Weidman -- have received ESPY nominations for 2014. more

  • 28 days ago
  • 35 views

This year, the UFC raised the bar with nominations for ESPY awards, getting four nods for three fighters: Ronda Rousey, Jon Jones and Chris Weidman. Filed under: News, UFC more