Friday, 30 December 2016 17:46

Rousey vs Nunes: Prediction and breakdown

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Nearly 13 months after being knocked out by Holly Holm, Ronda Rousey returns to the UFC as the first challenger for Amanda Nunes's bantamweight championship.

Since Rousey’s reign ended in October 2015, the title has bounced around from Holly Holm to Miesha Tate to Amanda Nunes who beat Tate in July.

(Image courtesy of Sherdog)

Ronda Rousey’s mindset
Rousey's state of mind will be key tonight. Is she ready for this assignment? She hasn’t been in the media much this past year. And as UFC president Dana White put it, she wanted to disappear; and that's exactly what she did.

Is Rousey's 'Houdini' act a sign of weakness? Is she still struggling to deal with the defeat to Holm?

Aside from an appearance on Conan O'Brien's late-night talk show recently, the last time we saw her she was crying on Ellen.

Not exactly the best look.

But the notion she is mentally weak is crazy.

She became the first ever United States Judo competitor to medal in the Olympics and has dealt with a lot of adversity in her life. To suggest she has completely lost it mentally after one loss in MMA is outrageous…. But, if her state of mind is fragile, tonight’s fight with Nunes may be her last.

Amanda Nunes
The UFC Bantamweight champion is a powerful pressure fighter who often overwhelms her opponents. She has 5 finishes in the UFC, second only to Rousey among female fighters.

In her title-taking win over Miesha Tate, Nunes swarmed the then-champion and eventually got back-control to finish the rear-naked choke.

Unfortunately for Nunes, that kind of strategy would be kryptonite against Rousey. To beat Ronda, Nunes must completely avoid the ground.

Nunes must keep a safe distance from herself and Rousey because 1) the latter can get the clinch and use her elite-level Judo skills to get the fight to the ground where she is in perfect position to take hold of the arm and 2) she’ll be more likely to bait Rousey into a boxing match (like Holm was able to) by staying at harm’s way and striking.

She has to stay conservative, land the big shots and dictate the fight’s pace.

If Nunes gets greedy and goes for the takedown, don’t be surprised if she taps in seconds like several of Ronda’s previous opponents.

Rousey vs Nunes Prediction:
This is a very winnable fight for Rousey because of the favorable style match-up.

Rousey wins by submission in Round 1.

Mark Weber

Born and raised in Philadelphia, I currently reside in South Jersey which is about 20 minutes away from Philly.

I'm a Communications major at Gloucester County College and lifelong fan of several sports, including Boxing, Mixed Martial Arts and Kickboxing.

I fell in love with Boxing during the era of the little giants... Erik Morales, Marco Antonio Barrera, Manny Pacquiao, and Juan Manuel Marquez.