Leading up to Ronda Rousey’s highly anticipated return to the Octagon at UFC 207, there was much controversy as to Rousey’s media blackout leading up to the fight. While Rousey, who normally does quite a bit of promo leading up to her fights, was completely silent, the MMA community was left to speculate as to her mindset going into her return after taking a year off following the first defeat of her career over a year prior.
While some members of the combat sports community weren’t too thrilled to find out that the UFC gave Rousey a pass on media obligations just several months after UFC superstar Conor McGregor was pulled from UFC 200 for refusing to fulfill his media obligations. Despite that, UFC President Dana White defended the decision, explaining that Rousey had put in more hours of media than anyone else in the promotion’s history.
On the heels of Rousey’s UFC 207 loss to Nunes, former UFC champion Rashad Evans believes that Rousey’s media blackout actually goes back to to buildup to her UFC 193 fight with Holly Holm.
Evans spoke to MMA Alpha:
“You know where you step into that spotlight to have a great performance, you also got to understand you may not have a great performance and you got to understand that you may be criticized for what you didn’t do or what you could’ve done or whatever,” said Evans in an interview with MMA Alpha. “Another part to that, is I think that she is not trying to be hung by the same words that she was last time. If you recall Ronda going into the fight with Holly Holm, she was uber-confident, she was almost disrespectful, you know? ‘No one can be champion as well as me’ and just her arrogance … it was kind of disgusting.”
“I think those were the words that kind of ate at her when she lost because everyone brought it up,” continued. “And now I think she’s to the point where she’s like, ‘You know what, I’m not going to say anything, I’m not going to give you a soundbyte to hang me with afterward if I don’t win this fight’.”