Sarah Kaufman: Ronda Rousey ‘Hype Train’ Skewing Perception of Title Fight



Ronda Rousey is generating plenty of attention ahead of her Strikeforce bantamweight title defense Saturday, but challenger Sarah Kaufman believes people may be overlooking her ability to take the champion’s belt.

“They’re forgetting that I had the Strikeforce title,” Kaufman told the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show. “They’re almost looking at it like, oh, I have no fights and I’m just some scrub who’s getting put in the cage and I’m going to get killed in five seconds. You know, Ronda’s only had five fights. Looking at that, on paper you would think that I would actually have the advantage, but people are clearly on the Ronda hype train, and hype really changes how people perceive fights.”

Rousey’s ascent in MMA has certainly been a rapid one. A bronze medalist in judo at the 2008 Olympics, she became a Strikeforce champion after just five professional fights when she submitted Miesha Tate in March. Her media rounds ahead of her first defense have included a photo shoot for ESPN the Magazine’s The Body Issue and an appearance on Conan O’Brien’s late-night talk show on TBS.

“Ronda has done, and been able to do, a lot of really good things when it comes to extra media and things that get people talking,” Kaufman said. “ESPN Body Issue and ringing the bell [at the New York Stock Exchange] -- there’s just a lot of things happening that should get coverage, and I’m glad they have gotten coverage.”

Meanwhile Kaufman has been overshadowed, though. She might spark more attention if she were willing to spar verbally with the outspoken Rousey, but that’s not her style.

“I’m trying to hype the fight in a way that I deem appropriate for myself,” Kaufman said. “I’m not going to make something up or get caught in a word battle because that’s how I think a fight has to be hyped. There’s so many ways to hype a fight. I’m really looking at this as I’m coming back. I’m the former champion, lost my one fight. I’ve made my way back. Ronda got kind of a gift in stepping over me and got the title fight with Miesha. She won the title, and now I want to win it back. To me, that’s an interesting story and it’s an exciting story for fans to follow. I don’t think there needs to be verbal trash talk and bashing each other personally or as athletes to make this fight exciting or make people want to watch it.”

Kaufman is complimentary of Rousey, praising her composure, her competitiveness, and her submission ability. At the same time, however, Kaufman doesn’t think Rousey has fought strong opposition outside of Tate.

“I don’t necessarily consider those wins to be nearly as substantial as beating Miesha, who is definitely a better opponent, but Miesha’s beatable,” said Kaufman, who outpointed Tate in May 2009. “She’s been beaten three times. I fought Miesha. Again, it’s a great win against a well-known and well-respected fighter, but Miesha’s just not on the same level as I am in different areas that I think will counter Ronda’s ability to have her game go her way.”

In Kaufman’s view, Tate either used a poor game plan against Rousey or let her emotions affect her -- and still had some early success in the fight before getting submitted. Kaufman’s confident she can capitalize in ways that Tate could not.

“If people want to kind of overlook me and think that I’m just going to get stepped on really fast, that’s great for me because I’m considered an underdog and who doesn’t like being an underdog?” Kaufman said. “When you win, it’s that much better.”

Listen to the full interview (beginning at 1:58:35).

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.
From Around the Web

Related News

  • 11 days ago
  • 1 views

Prior to her upcoming title defense at UFC 184, UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey held court with reporters and photographers at a media day. Check out all the images.Filed under: News, read news >>

  • 8 days ago
  • 2 views

Women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey battles No. 1 contender Cat Zingano at UFC 184 on Saturday, February 28th, live from the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles. read news >>

  • 2 days ago
  • 6 views

Women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey logged the fasted submission in a title fight at UFC 184 on Saturday, defeating Cat Zingano in 14 seconds via arm bar. read news >>

  • 2 days ago
  • 2 views

UFC 184 was headlined by Ronda Rousey's defense of the women's bantamweight title, but it was not the only women's fight of the weekend. The star of the weekend was Rousey, as she went up against No. read news >>

  • 26 days ago
  • 6 views

In 2009, UFC women’s bantamweight Sarah Kaufman dominated Miesha “Cupcake” Tate under the now-defunct Strikeforce promotion. Six years later, Tate is a UFC star, and Kaufman wants a rematch.Filed und read news >>

  • 25 days ago
  • 6 views

UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey defended her belt at UFC 175, crushing Alexis Davis in the first few seconds of the fight. read news >>

  • 13 days ago
  • 9 views

GLENDALE, Calif. -- UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey discusses her upcoming fight against Cat Zingano at UFC 184, fighter pay, Anderson Silva, steroids, and much more during her UFC 184 read news >>

  • 12 days ago
  • 5 views

GLENDALE, Calif. -- Ronda Rousey's striking coach Edmond Tarverdyan discusses Rousey's upcoming title defense against Cat Zingano at UFC 184, her new tricks, and more during a media day. read news >>

  • 3 days ago
  • 5 views

LOS ANGELES -- Plenty of people think Holly Holm could be getting a UFC women's bantamweight title shot against Ronda Rousey before long. Raquel Pennington is not one of those people. Pennington, who read news >>