In women's MMA, the buck stops with Ronda Rousey. She is the bantamweight champion, and almost as important, she's the money fight. Every female in the division wants her belt, and every one of them that have tried to take it have been finished impressively. The saying "you mess with the bull, you get the horns" absolutely applies here, so when a new girl starts making noise, it's kind of hard not to think that she, like all the others before her, will fail at her task.
Meanwhile, Brazilian native, Bethe Correia has been methodically picking apart her own opponents, two of which are Rousey's close friends. Bethe has been saying she'll beat all 4 of the "Four Horsewomen," as Ronda, Marina Shafir, Shayna Baszler and Jessamyn Duke refer to themselves as, an ode to the "Four Horsemen" of 80s pro wrestling fame. Since Shafir is not on the UFC roster, that only leaves one left, the champ. Now, Correia's wish has been granted, and on August 1 in Brazil, she will challenge for Rousey's title at UFC 190.
Rousey has never been one to mince words, especially when directed at those she views as interlopers. In a recent interview with FOX Sports, she made it clear that this fight is personal.
"I would definitely say this is a personal fight," Rousey said on Friday. "My dad had a great saying when somebody needed to be shown what's up. He would say that this person needs to have a 'come to Jesus' meeting and Bethe is going to have her own 'come to Jesus' meeting in Brazil. I'm happy to come down here while I discipline this girl."
"I understand Bethe's tactics and I understand why she went about things the way she did, but just because I understand it, doesn't make it OK," Rousey said. "The fact is in order to get a title shot as quickly as possible, she disrespected my friends, which I consider my family. If you f--k with my family, you are f---ed. It doesn't matter. This fight is more than just about an athletic competition. It's about proving a point and punishing someone."
For Ronda, the best way to deal with this perceived disrespect to her family, is to teach Correia a lesson, and to do it in front of her own fanbase.
"I felt like if I'm really going to make an example out of Bethe, I don't just want to defeat her. I want her to leave that arena embarrassed," Rousey said. "The best way to do it is to come here and beat her in her own backyard."
One thing is certain, the buildup to this fight should be epic if yesterday's staredown is any indication. Keep your browser locked on Bloody Elbow for continuous coverage leading up to this fight.