UFC 168 is just weeks away, and fans have been clamoring to see the co-main event between Ronda Rousey, the current bantamweight champion, and Miesha Tate, the former bantamweight champion under the Strikeforce banner. Both have fought in the past where Rousey was able to win via armbar in the first round.
Since their first meeting both have improved as fighters making this bantamweight championship one for the ages for women’s MMA. Rousey comes into this fight having defended her belt once in the UFC to Liz Carmouche. Carmouche put up a good fight, but Rousey was able to lock up an armbar, a finishing move she has been able to pull off seven straight times in her career.
She is undefeated and is one of the best grapplers in the women’s division. People give her flack about her striking, but she was able to hold her own against Carmouche, who is one of the better strikers in the division.
Tate comes into this bout off a loss to Cat Zingano. She looked great for two straight rounds, but some brutal knees in the third caught her and the ref was forced to step in. Tate argued that the stoppage was premature, but the bout was stopped regardless. Even though she lost the bout, she was still able to coach against Rousey on TUF as Zingano suffered a knee injury.
Now Tate has the opportunity of a lifetime, and it seems she’s mentally ready for this bout. She seems to be detached from Rousey as an opponent, taking a more calm and collected approach heading into their monumental bout. To date Tate is the only fighter to really challenge Rousey on her feet and on the ground, and if she can make several adjustments she has a great shot at winning the belt.
It should be an exciting bantamweight title fight, given that these fighters have not hidden their animosity toward one another. So much is at stake in this bout so it’s going to be an all out war.