The Boxing Diary

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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Holm vs Rousey: A Win/Win for Everyone

On Saturday night in Melbourne Australia, Holly “The Preacher’s Daughter” Holm (10-0, 7 KO’s) knocked out former bantamweight UFC champion “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey (12-1, 3 KO’s, 9 by submission). Rousey was a HUGE favorite going into the fight. Everyone thought this was going to be another submission or KO win for Rousey. Big plans were already in the works after the predicted win over Holm.

The next step for Rousey was to potentially dabbe in the boxing world, in an attempt to win another world title. In fact, she just graced the January 2016 cover of “The Ring magazine,” which hits stands on November 15. The well known and respected boxing magazine, sells itself as the “Bible of boxing.” Not only is she the second woman to be featured on the front page, she is the first MMA fighter to take the cover. Oscar De La Hoya was licking his chops, anticipating this win so he could make a whole lot of money off Rousey, the cash cow. Holm upset the plan and has officially conquered the MMA and boxing world. For those of you who don’t know Holm, here’s a snippet of what she has accomplished.

Holm was a professional boxing champion who won world titles from the 140 pound to 154 pound division. She held a record of 33-2-3 with 9 KO’s. Holm defended her world titles eighteen times. In addition to her boxing accomplishments, Holm was also a kickboxer who held a record of 2-1 1 KO. The question going into the fight was, could Holm be effective against Rousey’s dominant ground game. Rousey has dominated her past few opponents in the stand up game. So add Rousey's ground game to how she much has excelled fighting on her feet, everyone thought Holm was just going to be another sacrificial lamb. Holm ended up knocking out Rousey with a round-house kick which is being named, “The kick heard around the world.” A rematch was talked about immediately after Rousey got off the canvas. A definite win for Dana White. $CHA CHING$

This was not Holm’s first rodeo. She has been in with the best fighters in the world and has dominated. The trash talking is nothing new to her. She knows that all of the mind games and name calling does not matter. What matters is what happens in the ring or the cage. Holm’s experience was very apparent during interviews leading up to the fight. It was also apparent at the weigh-in incident when Rousey attempted to intimidate Holm by placing her fist in her face. Holm responded by pushing Rousey off with a her fist of her own. Rousey began to trash talk Holm saying she “sees right through her.” Holm just sat back very calm and collected and just looked at Rousey as she was running her mouth. Holm told Joe Rogan when asked what the exchange was about, “I don’t know, I was just having a drink, you know.” Holm has been in world title fights before. It’s nothing new. The only difference is the whole world was now watching it.

Many believe this was a huge blow to Rousey and the MMA world. Many believe she will not come back the same. I believe this loss was actually a win for everyone, including Rousey herself.

Rousey was built as being an invincible fighter that no one could come close to beating. There were even talks at one point of her getting in the cage with pound for pound great Floyd Mayweather Jr. A fighter who is built up that much could lead to very devastating consequences. One that stands out is hubris. The fighter feels untouchable. No one could tell him/her what to do. The law doesn’t apply to them. Opinions from people who look out for your best interests don’t apply. The fighter starts listening to groupies, hang-arounds, and moochers. The fighter starts to stay out a little later and skip training sessions a little more often. The fighter decides to leave the trainer and management that brought him/her up. An example is someone who I and many others, have compared Rousey to. That example is Iron Mike Tyson. I’m not saying Rousey was going in the direction of Tyson. It just appeared a little hubris was starting to creep in.

The fight was a huge win for women’s boxing. Several female boxers throughout the world have not received the recognition they deserve for being a willing participate in one of the most unforgiving and brutal sports in the world. Women get to the highest level of their craft and are not recognized whatsoever for their accomplishments, hard work, and dedication. Holm brought women’s boxing to the forefront. For just a little bit, women’s boxing has received some recognition due to Holm being a three time world champion boxer. Hats off to you ladies!

This fight was not only a win for women’s boxing, the fight was a positive for boxing. Period. No where near this magnitude has boxing gotten the attention it deserves in defeating a mixed martial artist. Yes, Holm knocked out Rousey with a roundhouse kick to the head. Because of this, it is natural for the layman to believe that her kickboxing skills got her the victory. But what people do not see is the subtle intricacies that the sweet science allowed for that devastating kick. Holm’s footwork and straight left hand set the table. Holm moved left to right, staying on her toes, using lateral movement to stay away from Rousey’s take downs and wild punches. The movement also frustrated Rousey and got her off balance as she was trying to pressure Holm. Holm also used her southpaw straight left several times throughout the fight, blooding Rousey’s nose. When Rousey was on the attack, she lost her balance, and BAM! Lights out.

Did boxing win on Saturday night? Maybe a little bit. But who truly won was Holm. Her preparation won her that fight. If she went into that cage simply wanting to kickbox or box Rousey, it would have been a very short night. She would have gotten trapped in an arm bar, like many of Rousey’s past opponents, and submitted. She defended against the takedowns and against the submissions. Holm was on her bicycle, running circles around Rousey, tagging her at every opportunity. Holm was the victor. But I have to admit, I’m glad boxing helped her big time winning that UFC championship.

Rousey will bounce back. She always has. She’s been down before in the judo matt and ended up being the first American in women’s judo to win an Olympic medal. All the credit in the world goes to Rousey for putting women’s combat sports on the map. The attention would be nowhere near the magnitude it has become without the great Rousey. I just hope the attention lasts for a while...

1 comment:

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