The former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Rousey made her return to the octagon after more than 13 months since enduring her first career loss against Holly Holm in November 2015.
In the opening seconds of Round 1, Nunes connected with a high kick that began her attack, stunning Rousey. For the next 30 seconds or so, Nunes displayed an onslaught of right and left jabs to Rousey’s face and head, causing the referee to stop the fight shortly thereafter, making Nunes the winner.
Prior to her two recent losses, Rousey had accumulated a 12-0 record (6 of which were in UFC), with 11 of those wins occurring in the first round via a KO or her armbar submission. She was one of the top ranked fighters in the UFC and one of the most dominant athletes in any sport. Rousey won the Best Female Athlete ESPY Award in both 2014 and 2015, the Best Fighter ESPY Award in 2015, and was voted as the Best Female Athlete Ever in a September 2015 ESPN poll. Rousey obtained a level of mystique and dominance over her competition in ways not often seen by many athletes in any sport or era.
Now with two straight losses on her résumé, both in shocking fashion, it will be interesting to see where she goes from here. Losses aside, Rousey should be amended for bringing a level of intrigue and excitement to women’s UFC that hadn’t previously been there. People paid to see her dominate and while these recent losses hurt, Rousey is a trailblazer for women in the sport and was a draw who boosted ratings and helped elevate the sport. Whether she decides to return to the octagon for another fight or not, her legacy remains intact and she’ll continue to be one of the greatest UFC fighters ever.