Since I started seriously watching MMA, I have had the chance to meet some cool fans. And although I have writing about the sport for a few years now, I still get a little bit star-struck when I have the chance to interact with a fighter, whether it is Kaitlin Young wishing me a Happy Birthday (though I did tell her it was my birthday first) or meeting Urijah Faber at a fight card at Northern Quest Casino.
Last night I had the chance to participate in a live chat with UFC Women’s Bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey.
Without mentioning all of the reasons why she will hold a place in my heart, I listened as she answered questions like who was her favorite fighter to watch – Fedor Emelianenko, and who would she would fight if she could fight a man – Bryan Caraway (she might have to get in line as I know a couple of journalists who want the first crack at him).
I wasn’t surprised by the Fedor answer because he was a lot of fun to watch in Pride. In some ways he and Ronda are kind of like each other: great at grappling, quick rise to stardom and loved by the fans. For a long time, Fedor was king of his division, much like Ronda is today…well queen of her division.
Ronda read a couple of my questions as well, one of which was “what would she be doing if she wasn’t fighting?”
Her answer: saving people’s lives.
Rousey was the first American woman to earn an Olympic medal in judo (bronze), which she won at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. She is the former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion, as well as the last Strikeforce Women’s Bantamweight Champion. She won 12 consecutive MMA fights, six in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), before suffering her first loss, to Holly Holm in November 2015. She won 11 of those fights in the first round, nine of them by armbar submission. Rousey trains under Gokor Chivichyan of the Hayastan MMA Academy, and Edmond Tarverdyan of the Glendale Fighting Club.
She hasn’t fought in a long time, but there’s speculation she will return.