She’s back! The Ronda Rousey UFC 207 fight is set to take place on Friday, December 30 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Does new female bantamweight champ Amanda Nunes have a chance against the formidable Rousey, who in an upset of mega proportions lost to the current number three seed Holly Holm at UFC 193 on November 14, 2015?
Nunes, who’s nickname is “The Lioness,” defeated former Ronda Rousey rival Meisha Tate at UFC 200 to become the new champion. Tate has never beaten Rousey, but did end up taking the bantamweight title against Holm at UFC 196.
According to Forbes, the Ronda Rousey UFC 207 fight could be a challenge for Nunes because the 28-year-old Brazilian’s go-to fighting style is to dominate her opponent on the ground, but against a fighter like Ronda, the ground may not be the ideal place to achieve victory, unless Nunes has already significantly weakened Rousey.
Nunes doesn’t seem to be too worried about it, as according to a recent New York Post article, her confidence is rock-solid.
“‘The only thing I know is that I will beat her,’ Nunes said Wednesday while in Manhattan for UFC 205 Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. ‘It’s going to be a dream [come] true. Beating Ronda Rousey is going to make everything perfect. Everybody is going to respect me and I’ll be viewed as a champion.'”
Sources indicate that Rousey fans may have reason to doubt her ability to beat Nunes, as her loss against Holly Holm took some of the wind out of her sails.
Some are speculating that Ronda, after being mentally and emotionally crushed by her loss against Holm, no longer has what it takes to be a UFC champion. Reports of her weakened verve after UFC 193 showed the world a different side to the former champ, as MMA fans witnessed her hard exterior broken by the sting of defeat.
The rigid composure always on the face of Ronda before the Holm match crumbled in the fight’s aftermath. Her plunge into the murky depths of emotional anguish was painful enough to have her teetering on the edge of life and death, as during an appearance on Ellen, Rousey confessed to the talk show host that she had contemplated suicide in the wake of her defeat.
Most recently, according to a report from International Business Times, Ronda had to be soothed by others due to overbearing emotions after the UFC 207 faceoff between her and Amanda Nunes. Rousey, aka “The Rowdy” didn’t waste time as she walked on stage to pose fighter stance opposite “The Lioness” Nunes. Once it was over, she exited the stage without taking time to speak with commentator Joe Rogan.
However, UFC owner Dana White defended Ronda, insisting that there was never a plan for her to be interviewed either before or after the faceoff.
Amanda is among those who think Rousey is too mentally unstable, which appears to strengthen her belief that she will achieve victory in the Ronda Rousey UFC 207 fight. Though the Brazilian mixed martial artist insists that if she does lose, she’ll still be the same fighter she has always been.
“‘I want to be the same person,’ Nunes said. ‘I don’t want to be like Ronda Rousey and not talk to anybody. I want to be the best. But I want to be normal. I don’t want to change. She looks weak mentally as a person.'”
Forbes also notes that Rousey is different from her fellow fighters in that she doesn’t necessarily need to continue a career in mixed martial arts to be successful in life, hence suggesting that a Ronda Rousey UFC 207 upset could mark the end of her Ultimate Fighter reign for good.
Could the former bantamweight champion still be battling the demons that arose as a result of her defeat by Holm? One thing we do know is that Rousey has never been in this situation before, coming back from a loss that shook her to her core to take back the title she held onto for so long. Can she take the pressure?
The Ronda Rousey UFC 207 fight takes place in a little over three weeks, and anticipation is rising by the day. Will the once formidable and dominant champ steal the belt from fierce Amanda Nunes, or will she once again leave the octagon empty handed?
[Featured Image by Michael Reaves/Getty Images]