It’s a great thing when mystery and intrigue are involved in MMA fights. We’ve seen so little of Ronda that it’s hard to say where she’s really at. There’s so many unanswered questions. Well, the suspense is killing me. I can’t wait till March 3rd. Here’s how I’d break down their skills:
Striking – While Miesha has better striking than Ronda, she doesn’t have an advantage. Miesha makes a lot of mistakes. She overreaches, her right hand is usually telegraphed and slow, she’s not very explosive standing up and has slow feet. She leaves herself open for counters. But Ronda isn’t good enough to capitalize on that. Ronda isn’t going to do anything but jab and clinch, and she’ll get the clinch because Miesha isn’t good at circling away from attacks. She only ever circles away once she’s already out of range, but when someone comes at her she moves straight back.
While Ronda’s boxing trainer may big her up, it must be taken with a grain of salt. How many times have we heard trainers say how great the striking of say, Demian Maia was (and then he gets knocked out in one punch), or Mayhem Miller (before he laid an egg). It reminds me of when they were letting James Toney or Kimbo Slice get up from the ground (emphasis on the word letting) in training and saying how good they were getting. It was more to create doubt in their opponents and instill confidence in their fighter. But I am quite sure in my stance that Ronda’s striking is terrible.
Which is fine, I mean she’s only been training a year. And she’s good at what she does, close distance and clinch. It’s all she’ll need against Miesha.
In just about every fight she eats a couple hard shots and seems to wince and turn her head in. It suggests she’s still fear reactive to incoming shots. I imagine it’s being worked out, and it’s not like Miesha hits as hard as Julia budd.
Cardio – Miesha mostly fought 2 or 3 3 minute rounds in her career, but she showed against Marloes that she has the gas to go 5 5′s. Ronda uses her Judo experience as a case for her having the endurance. I see what she means, but to me she’s still untested. Judo experience be damned. There’s just so many weird variables that seem to affect fighters performance. Take Jason Miller. He went 5 rounds in tough matches against Jacare and Shields. And yet he gasses in 5 minutes against Bisping? I hope Ronda’s Olympic run has steeled her nerves, and that she doesn’t pull a Miller and have the whole experience, attention, weight cut and stakes (a whooooole lotta shit talking) drain her.
I’d have to give the edge to Miesha, though she seems to lose a lot of her pep early, too.
On a side note, I hope this fight gets the viewers it deserves and doesn’t get overshadowed media wise by the UFC on FX the night before. Even if that’s the case, if it’s an exciting fight it’ll make the rounds on youtube.
Takedowns – Judging by her strikeforce fights, I doubt Miesha will score a clean double or single leg. She does better getting takedowns against the fence, but that’s Ronda’s game. I honestly see this fight going into a clinch against the fence again and again, and I see Ronda coming out on top. Though I’m not sure either scores consistent takedowns against each other. This might be the fight where her strategy changes though and Miesha comes straight out the gate shooting doubles left and right before Ronda has the chance to clinch.
I find this to be quite even, though if it goes to the clinch like I’m sure it will, I see Ronda tripping Miesha with those sweet combos.
My prediction is Ronda by armbar in the first round. I think Miesha will make the mistake of trying to stand with Ronda, which she’ll use to start relentlessly clinching until she gets a trip. From there it’s only a matter of time.
Ronda Rousey (52 votes)
Miesha Tate (13 votes)
65 total votes