Ronda Rousey has once again made headlines for an interview with Ellen DeGeneres.
As many of you will remember, it was the Ellen show where the former UFC bantamweight champion appeared in the aftermath of her first and only loss to Holly Holm last November at UFC 193.
The interview came a few months after the loss, and Ronda shocked her fans by admitting that she had contemplated suicide immediately following.
That appearance was also one of few that she has made in a live, non-controlled environment, and her scarcity with the press — after long being a media darling — caused many to suspect that she would never return to the sport that made her famous (and that she helped to make famous).
In the latest Ellen interview, Ronda Rousey is sort of confirming some of that speculation in spite of the fact that she will fight again before the end of the year at UFC 207.
Ronda Rousey Discusses Her Future On “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” https://t.co/bez4O2PMGy pic.twitter.com/8UFu15e5mS
— MMA Spread (@MmaSpread) November 2, 2016
In her next bout against current champion Amanda Nunes, she has said that it will be “one of her last fights.”
That’s a cryptic comment to be sure since it includes the plural even while having an air of finality to it. Some are speculating that what she means by “one of her final fights” is that there could be more in the tank if she wins, but if she loses, she’s done for good.
UFC President Dana White — also one of Ronda’s best friends — isn’t giving the media mill any grist. In a recent interview with TMZ, he said he knew of Rousey’s plans to wind down her career, but added that he would like to “let her make her own announcements.”
White also notes that Ronda Rousey wants to be an actress and that “she’s good at it,” so it may be time to give that a shot.
The only caveat to Ronda’s plans: her two highest-profile post-loss movie deals were for Mile 22 with Mark Wahlberg and the remake of Road House. Both are in limbo with speculation that Mile 22 is getting scrapped altogether since it no longer appears on Wahlberg’s IMDb page for upcoming projects.
Of course, it could all be a smokescreen for the real reason that Ronda Rousey seems to be bowing out of her comeback even before she makes it — she knows she is going to lose to Amanda Nunes, and the “focus on other things” narrative of starring in films will provide a built-in excuse to preserve some semblance of her fighting legacy.
Unfortunately, it does not seem that Ronda Rousey was an athlete ever cut out for combat sports. Yes, she has terrific judo skills, and yes, she held two world championships in MMA from two different organizations, but those accomplishments come with a couple of asterisks.
First of all, Rousey’s dominance took shape while women’s MMA was still in its infancy. As there proved to be a market for it, the competition grew more fierce making a loss all but inevitable.
Secondly, losing is a part of the sport. The best in the world right now have losses — sometimes rather embarrassing ones — to their credit.
Take Jose Aldo, who at 25-1, ended an 18-fight winning streak when he faced Conor McGregor at UFC 194 and got knocked out in just 13 seconds. He would go on to win the interim UFC featherweight championship in his very next fight.
Then there is Cain Velasquez, who has won and lost the UFC heavyweight championship twice, and remains in title contention.
Last but not least, the sport’s most famous trash-talker, Conor McGregor, in his very next fight after the Aldo win, faced journeyman welterweight Nate Diaz and lost despite the fact that Diaz had no time to pull a camp together for the fight.
The point: MMA fighters lose. The ones who lose without an excuse and are able to bounce back belong. The ones who can’t or won’t, don’t.
Ronda Rousey will unfortunately be remembered as the latter type of fighter. She used the excuse of exhaustion in the Holly Holm defeat. With Nunes, she hasn’t even lost yet, and she’s giving herself the “out” of retirement and a budding desire to act even as Hollywood loses interest in her.
— MAIN EVENT (@MainEventTV) November 2, 2016
But what do you think, readers?
Is Ronda Rousey already planning to lose the Nunes fight? Does she have a career on the big screen? And did she ever really belong in MMA to begin with? Sound off in the comments section below.
[Featured Image by UFC]