Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
Bloody Elbow presents their UFC 157 PPV fight card primer, previewing all the action at UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche. Here, we look at the main event: Ronda Rousey vs. Liz Carmouche in the first ever UFC women's MMA fight.
The main event at UFC 157 is indeed history being made as, for the first time ever, two women step into the UFC Octagon. Women's MMA figurehead, Ronda Rousey (6-0 MMA; UFC Debut) faces Liz Carmouche (8-2 MMA; UFC Debut) with Rousey's UFC Women's Bantamweight Title on the line. This five round title fight closes the show at the UFC 157 PPV. UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche airs live from Anaheim, California this Saturday, February 23. The main card begins on PPV at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT.
While Carmouche brings her own interesting story into the cage, this fight is clearly all about Rousey. Ever since Gina Carano made her name in EliteXC, there has been heavy focus on the idea of one woman as the face of Women's MMA. And as of late, that woman has decidedly been Ronda Rousey. The division is almost entirely built around her, so much so that a loss here seems unfathomable. It's fair to say that in many ways, the entire future of women in the UFC is riding on this fight. No pressure.
How do these two stack up?
Rousey: 26 years old | 5'6" | 66" reach
Carmouche: 29 years old | 5'6" | 65" reach
What have these two done recently?
How did these two get here?
What else is there to really say about Ronda Rousey at this point? Her credentials are well established. She's a 2008 bronze medalist in Judo in the Olympics. She's the former Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight champion, and the first ever UFC Women's Bantamweight champion. She's a perfect 6-0 with every one of those fights ending the same way - armbar, round 1. In fact, in those 6 fights, only Miesha Tate has survived longer than 1 minute. She has so many ways to get you to the mat and to secure that armbar that it seems nearly impossible to stop at the moment. And that makes her a fascinating fighter to watch.
Liz Carmouche brings her own unique story to this fight. She's a former Strikeforce fighter, whose only losses come against Sarah Kaufman and Marloes Coenen. She's won 2 fights since, both in Invicta, both via stoppage. A 3 year pro, Carmouche is also a former US Marine, plus makes headlines for being the first openly gay fighter to compete in the UFC. Some have been unhappy with her title shot here, but to be honest, given the current depth of the division, she's not a bad challenger by any means.
Why should you care?
History in the making here. Plus, Rousey is a special kind of fighter that demands attention. Will she pull off her 7th straight round 1 armbar sub, or will Carmouche figure out how to stop her? That question provides some high drama, even if it only lasts a minute.