Back in late 2015, the seemingly unbeatable Ronda Rousey was knocked senseless by a second-round Holly Holm head kick. The once dominant fighter did not respond well to this match of adversity, disappearing from the MMA limelight for well over a year.
Ultimately, of course, Rousey did march back to the cage, where she attempted to reclaim the women’s bantamweight crown from new champion Amanda Nunes. Regrettably for Rousey and her throngs of fans, this comeback fight went even worse than her bout with Holm, as she was knocked out by Nunes in less than a minute.
In the opinion of three-time UFC title challenger, Bellator NYC star, and MMA talking head Chael Sonnen, part of the reason Rousey responded so poorly to her losses is because she is not a real fighter.
“Somewhere along the line the word ‘fighter’ became corrupted in my lifetime,” Sonnen said in an interview with FloCombat.com’s Duane Finley. “It used to be about who could get up and move forward when the chips were down. Who could get up and move forward when it was the toughest thing to do. That’s what a fighter was, but now I have no idea what the kids of today would define a fighter as.
“I read some stuff that Ronda [Rousey] put out – and I’m a personal fan of hers – but I was stunned at some of the stuff I read. It had me sitting there saying, ‘Ronda, you’re not a fighter. You understand one thing and that’s aggression. When someone is standing there who sucks, you understand how to attack that person. That is called aggression.’
“Fighting is when it’s hard,” Sonnen continued. “Fighting is when that person is coming back at you with equal or greater resistance. That’s what a fighter is, and when it doesn’t go your way and you want to stay in bed in the morning, when that alarm goes off you get your ass up, put your boots on and you go face the world. That’s what a fighter does.”
Do you think Chael Sonnen is right about Ronda Rousey?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 6/13/2017.