Ronday Rousey is it, guys. Ronda Rousey is the UFC’s next big star, their biggest discovery since Brock Lesnar and the fighter who will be able to bridge the gap between mainstream entertainment and with hardcore fans. These are the talking points that we’ve been hearing since the UFC absorbed Strikeforce into itself, much like Majin Buu in Dragon Ball could absorb organisms into his bulbous pink stomach, but honestly, these talking points about Rousey seem to be crumbling to pieces now that Rousey is given a lot of face time with the cameras.
Ronda Rousey has been preparing for the worst, even leaving the country for when The Ultimate Fighter 18 began airing to avoid the inevitable beating that she was going to take in the press so that she could properly prepare for her upcoming fight with Miesha Tate at UFC 168. Of course you can’t run away from the marvels of reality television, where just like the season where Ken Shamrock and Tito Ortiz were coaches, the tables were turned and the heel became the face, and the face the heel. Everyone went into this season expecting to hate Miesha Tate and rally around Ronda Rousey, yet after all is said and done, many feel that Rousey came off poorly in the show (be it creative editing or whatever she might claim now), so one would think that doing some press for the upcoming fight that she’d maybe try to do some damage control.
Those people would be wrong.
Instead, Ronda Rousey appeared on camera a number of times tonight and came off as rude, despondent and disinterested in fulfilling her media obligations all while Miesha Tate came across as an affable, supportive coach to the fighters on her team and that she was prepared to once again fight Rousey. While I’m all for professional entertainers and athletes expressing themselves and being true to themselves, for the UFC this is nothing short of a disaster for them. Rousey has been their centerpiece for a while now, their new, big breakthrough star that they’d get to build up themselves (unlike Lesnar who was a star in a previous entertainment brand), coming without the baggage.
It couldn’t be any further from the truth as Ronda Rousey seems completely disinterested in “playing ball” and trying to fix her public image. I’m sympathetic of her point to an extent; yes, reality television is heavily edited to be dramatic and past seasons of The Ultimate Fighter that weren’t heavily edited to be dramatic were heavily panned for being too drab, but then again, you don’t sign on to do a reality television series and then give the producers golden material to work with and make you look bad. It just seems like common sense to me; if you didn’t want them to paint you as a rude, condescending person, don’t give them ammunition. Then, if you were unhappy with that portrayal, why go on live television and live up to this “character” from the television series that fans have grown to despise?
If the UFC was looking for a bubbly, cute and fun girl who could double as a bad ass while handling all of the pressures of media obligations maybe Ronda Rousey wasn’t the right person for the job. Then again, that is what she signed up for, isn’t it?