Ronda Rousey is the most popular athlete in UFC, and the former women’s champion is finally stepping back into the Octagon after losing her title 13 months ago.
It was just announced that Rousey will take on current champion Amanda Nunes on December 30 in Las Vegas.
Yahoo Sports notes that Rousey’s upcoming fight “may prove to be the biggest fight of Rousey’s career and not simply because absence can make the pay-per-views grow fonder. This is more than the return of a champion, more than the return of the big-time atmosphere Rousey brings to her fights, and more than an intriguing matchup of the best female fighter of all time against a fast-improving and very dangerous Brazilian making her first title defense.”
Unlike other fighters, Rousey took her surprising defeat last year very hard, and wore her emotions on her sleeve, which brought her both support and criticism:
Rousey didn’t accept the defeat like most fighters. At least not publicly. She laid her emotions on her sleeve, displaying the vulnerability often missing from such a violent pursuit.
She acknowledged embarrassment. She sought solitude and cover from the cameras. She didn’t attempt to put on a brave face. She said she felt she lost some of her love of living and part of whom she was.
“I’m just really [expletive] sad,” she told ESPN the Magazine last December.
Those comments and an extended vacation led to plenty of speculation that the UFC’s biggest star would be gone, retiring with a 12-1 record. She went on vacations. She took time to film a couple movies. She disappeared from the public eye.
Everyone hoped this was a break, not a permanent retirement. No one knew for sure. The single-biggest speculative conversation starter in MMA over the last year was whether Rousey would fight again.
Millions of fans will likely tune in to watch Rousey’s return fight in December and to see whether or not the former champion can return to the top of the UFC mountain.
H/T: Yahoo Sports
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