100 day blogging challenge, Blogging, MMA, Sport, true self, UFC, WMMA

Day 72: Why we should hate Ronda or Reality Shows – are what we see real?

I know the producers wants me to feel otherwise, because I’ve read this reaction on every message board I’ve visited, but I just don’t buy into all the Rousey hate, that seems to flush through MMA communities like rings around a drop of water.

And it’s not like I’ve been a Rousey fangirl either. When she met Sarah Kaufmann in Strikeforce, I was actually rooting for Kaufmann. (Maybe because she’s a striker as myself). If you were watching Strikeforce on the Danish Eurosport, you might remember me talking about this fight. On her Strikeforce title fight with Miesha Tate, I remember thinking, she came off as a bitc* and I felt it was a bit unnecessary.

When Rousey got signed as the first female fighter in the UFC, as a woman, I had to take my ‘hat’ off to her. Females in the UFC seemed impossible for so many years, and UFC President Dana White turned the subject down, every time the question got raised. Ronda Rousey made him change his mind, and she became the first signed UFC fighter and since the first female champion in a smoking fashion when she beat challenger Liz Carmouche. (Whom I by the way also rooted for).

So NO! I haven’t really gotten to like Ronda before now. Respected her, her accomplishments in both MMA and her former career as Olympian Judoka yes of course – but I never really liked her. Not until now. Not until now, where the producers of ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ show seems to do everything they can, to make us all hate her.

They show her crying, when her fighter lost. They show her getting mad at Tate and saying quite odd things like ‘I saw you smiled at my fighters defeat’, and they show her in Hallmans face, after Hallman and her head coach Edmund¬†Tarverdyan had a small fall out. (A fall out the production team showed as being purely Edmunds accomplishment, but has later been revealed from Jessamyn Dukes blog, to be in fact instigated by Hallmann).

I’m not sure, if it’s just me, who’ve seen too many Ultimate fighter shows and got hyper allergic to the way they cut the material and always make it ‘Good guy/ girl vs Bad Guy/girl’, or if the fact, that they’ve chosen to show Ronda in more emotional situations (picking a fighter back up mentally after a grueling loss (Bazzler vs Pena) or backing up her head coach (approaching Hallman and letting him know, he could take his bullshit elsewhere).

But it seems that I – unlike most MMA fans – have swung the other way after seeing Ronda on The Ultimate Fighter. I like her better now.
I respect her for being in the corner of her fighter, her coach and herself, and I like she’s not all that controlled and icy, as she comes off at fight time. As she said: ‘In the cage, I’m a cold, calculating cunt‘.

So while most of the MMA communities seems to have turned their love and root for Ronda on a dime, I’m guessing there will also be more like myself, who see through the production and come through to the other side.

And to all that asks, why the production team/ UFC would want to harm Rouseys image, by portraying her so bad as they do (eg.: ‘That’s Dana’s favorite’, ‘it can’t be all production’ – which is right. It must have happened, since they can show it right?. Yes – but there can be several scenes leading up to every situation, that they choose not to show!!)
Anyway back to why UFC/ Production team is making Ronda look bad: To sell tickets for the fight against Miesha Tate.
– Tate had no place being on the show, as Cat Zingano put a severely bad beating on her, and won the right to fight Rousey, and coach opposite her.
– She lost the first fight to Ronda very convincingly: Armbar 1st round. Didn’t inflict any damage or posed any real threat to Rousey. Everyone with the smallest knowledge of MMA, wouldn’t put a dime on her in any rematch – let alone pay to see the fight. It wasn’t one of those close call fights, that you wanted to see a rematch on, like Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafson. It was a one-sided fight, that no one actually wants to see – until UFC/ FOX production turns the masses sympathy to Tate, whom they now will follow and root for in the upcoming rematch.

Personally, I can be afraid that this whole ‘Reality show’ can ruin more for Rousey than doing good, and I could be worried, she would lose focus and become emotional come fight time. I hope all her years of experience can help her, remote herself from all this witch-hunt which seems to be going on, and just focus on what’s she’s good at: Fight & win!

 

Ps. On a closing note: I’m pretty sure we had seen a different Rousey presented to us on TUF, had Zingano been able to coach opposite. Then they would have no reason to make Rousey look so bad.

 

The show as it is now:  Rousey vs Tate

The show as it is now:
Rousey vs Tate    

The opponent who should have been there: Cat Zingano

The opponent who should have been there: Cat Zingano

 

 

 

 

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100 day blogging challenge, MMA, training, WMMA

Day 90 – Women in Fight Sport

It wasn’t that long ago Dana White, president of the UFC said that women never would find their way to the octagon (unless they dressed down and picked up a sign). As all of us who follows UFC/ Fight Sport knows, this was pre-Ronda Roussey. This women almost single-handed changed White’s mind about female fighters – and he was able to see a superstar in Roussey.
A woman who could both deliver exciting fights and thus keep UFC’s reputation as the ‘most bad as* fight organisation on the planet’ and also appeal to the masses, and of course make money!

Soon (in September) The Ultimate Fighter show will launch again – and this time the house will be full of female fighters! Ronda Roussey and Miesha Tate will be the coaches, and the reality show that got MMA mainstream and in so many ways, was responsible for the huge popularity UFC got (with a special thanks to Stephan Bonner and Forrest Griffin’s epic finale fight), is now being used to promote female fighters to a wider audience.

The big question is (after my humble opinion) how the audience will react to this. I have no doubt the women fighting on the show, will be just as good as their male predecessors. I also believe that the ‘battle’ between Roussey and Tate will be just as entertaining as when Tito Ortiz and Frank Shamrock (S02) clashed, and of course 16 women in the same house, are bound to cause a commotion. If you have any doubts of this, just remember how much the guys were bitching.

However all this doesn’t erase the big question: How will ‘the public’ take to two female fighting each other. Beating each other up – and making each other bleed.

When I first posted about this season of TUF on my Fight Club page (on Facebook), the first response was: Women shouldn’t fight. When asked into the reason behind this mindset, the guy answered: ‘I don’t like to see women beat each other up and bleed and stuff’.
As a former female fighter and professional fight sport reporter my hope is, that this seasons TUF will help the female fighters gain respect and recognition from fight sport fans as the Fight Club fan.
I hope the show will focus on their hard work, their drive, their hope and dreams – and not just on the drama and stupid jokes and situations that the last many TUF seasons have been about.

To get women’s MMA to a higher level, I can see TUF becoming a big step of the way. Unfortunately I can also see the show tear down what female fighters – and the WMMA organisation Invicta have spent years building up. Only time will tell – but for now, I’m just stoked that female fighters are getting their own show – and a platform to show fighting doesn’t have any gender limits.

And I apologize for the delay of my 100 days blogging challenge. Our Internet died, so am now blogging from the nearby cafe.

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