In the main event at UFC 170: Rousey vs. McMann, UFC Women's Bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey (8-0 MMA; 2-0 UFC) takes on challenger Sara McMann (7-0 MMA; 1-0 UFC). This five round title fight headlines the five fight main card live on PPV. The UFC Rankings have McMann as the #4 contender, with champion Rousey at #9 on the Pound for Pound list. UFC 170: Rousey vs. McMann airs this Saturday, February 22 live on PPV with a fight time of 10:00 p.m. ET / 7:00 p.m. PT for the main card.
This is a very interesting fight for the still developing Women's Bantamweight division. For the first time, we are getting a fight built on the supreme technical accomplishments of the two fighters. Both Rousey and McMann are Olympic medalists with serious pedigrees. Rousey took the Bronze in Judo in 2008, McMann the Silver in Freestyle Wrestling in 2004. The UFC has botched these credentials a bit, calling Rousey the first woman to medal in Judo, which is not true, but clearly both women have serious skills in their respective disciplines.
How do these two stack up?
Rousey: 27 years old | 5'6" | 66" reach
McMann: 33 years old | 5'5" | 66" reach
What have these two done recently?
Rousey: W - Miesha Tate (Sub) | W - Liz Carmouche (Sub) | W - Sara Kaufman (Sub)
McMann: W - Sheila Gaff (TKO) | W - Shayna Baszler (UD) | W - Hitomi Akano (UD)
How did these two get here?
Dana White recently called Ronda Rousey the UFC's biggest star, and while that might not be 100% accurate just yet, she's definitely on her way. From her Strikeforce run to her two UFC title defenses to her stint on TUF to her increasing roles in Hollywood, Rousey is a powerhouse figure. She lost some fans during TUF, as her feud with Miesha Tate soured many on Rousey's personality, but her continued ability to armbar every single opponent she has faced in MMA is incredible. She'll try to keep that streak alive and continue to build her star tonight.
More Bloody Elbow coverage of UFC 170: Rousey vs. McMann
Sara McMann has only had one UFC fight, but she made quite an impression, dominating Sheila Gaff with her wrestling and pounding her out for the easy win. McMann has tremendous amateur credentials and has been a pro for just 3 years, going undefeated at the regional level, then in Invicta (where she won the Bantamweight title) and ultimately the UFC. She remains very much a wrestler, but has been improving her all around game during her brief MMA career. This is a step up for McMann, but with an Invicta main event against Baszler under her belt, it's not a huge step.
Why should you care?
Because Ronda Rousey stands right next to Jon Jones as the UFC's biggest "must watch" fighter right now. She is not to be missed.
Here's some video analysis of the final three fights on the UFC 170 card by our own Kid Nate, Dallas Winston and Connor Ruebusch. They dive deep into Ronda Rousey vs. Sara McMann, Daniel Cormier vs. Patrick Cummins, and Rory MacDonald vs. Demian Maia.