If you don’t already know about Ronda Rousey, just ask Ronda Rousey. She’ll tell you all about herself. Look, the fighting game has always been about self-promotion. Ali was stinging and floating long before there even was a UFC. And can you blame Rousey for singing her praises.
The bruising woman is by far and away the biggest superstar in promotional history. Bigger than Brock. Bigger than the Iceman. Bigger than Rampage and the California Kid.
And, recently, UFC president Dana White revealed Rousey is also the highest paid athlete on his roster. And she thinks she’s the best too, recently saying: “What makes me so confident that I can win is that I’m the greatest fighter in the world.”
But is Rousey the best fighter on the planet? Will UFC fans get what they are not so secretly clamoring for? A Battle of the Sexes for the Ages. A Connors-King inside the Octagon? Maybe. Rousey’s record seems to call for it. Eleven first round knock-outs in only 12 fights. She’s on the sort of roll previously relegated to UFC megastar Anderson Silva. Against women, at least.
And there’s the rub. No matter how good Rousey is against the ladies — and let’s face it, she is entirely dominant. No one ever comes close — would she fare as well against the guys? In a sport where striking has become less important than a dominant ground game, can a fighter known for beating her opponents into submission win when on the ground against a stronger opponent?
Some, including her upcoming opponent, Holly Holm, might say yes. Holm told the UFC, “(Rousey) is the most dominant female athlete and when you’re on that stage she’s been able to prove she can really make that happen … it’s not a lucky fight, it’s not a lucky punch. She’s done it time and again.”
It’s true. Rousey has done it, time and again. On her way to massive paydays and a spot atop one of the fastest growing sports in the world. But how long will her celebrity last if she keeps KOing the competition in Round 1?
After a while, will fans decide the competition is not good enough? Or will they continue to wonder if there is some Lady Rocky out there who can, finally, take the champ the distance?
Ronn Torossian is the CEO and founder of New York based Public Relations company, 5W PR. Headquartered in NYC, 5WPR has offices in NY, Colorado and California.