It was about one month ago that Ronda Rousey‘s mom came out publicly as “not a fan” of her daughter’s coach Edmond Tarverdyan. Actually it sounded like AnnMaria De Mars pretty much hated the guy who is in charge of the now former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champ after a devastating loss to Holly Holm at UFC 193.
I never expected Rousey to go undefeated, but I also never anticipated her getting absolutely throttled like she was against the powerful Holly Holm. The fight was not close, and Holm was never in danger. Not for one second.
Rousey was completely dominated and fought the perfect fight for Holm to use her boxing experience.
No adjustment was ever made by Rousey or her coach. As impressive as Rowdy Ronda had been in her professional career, she was just as unimpressive against Holm.
Sloppy is a better description of Rousey’s performance. She was made to look foolish on multiple occasions as she lunged desperately toward Holm, who had to be shocked at how easy the champion made it for her.
Holm let Rousey chase her constantly all over the Octagon as Holm tagged the now 12-1 Rousey again and again. After about three minutes of this disastrous plan, one would think that the champion would have changed up something. Anything. Maybe for a start, stop chasing the bigger Holm around the ring. It clearly wasn’t working.
But no change came. The entire first round was the same. Holm’s fists planted squarely on the face of Ronda Rousey repeatedly.
I thought surely her coach would help his pupil out in between rounds one and two. Uh, no. His main advice was that all Holm had was that straight left and Rousey should avoid it.
Good Lord man! Your fighter is getting destroyed, and you tell her to avoid getting punched?
Why not suggest staying away from Holm and invite her in to tie her up?
How about telling your fighter to use a couple minutes of round two to clear your head before going on the attack?
How about telling the greatest armbar tactician on the planet to focus solely on that goal and forget the idiotic tactic of standing toe to toe with a former boxing champion?
As dumb as it was to try striking with a bigger, stronger, more experienced striker in round one, it was insanity to keep up that game plan in round two. Especially after Rousey was clearly still hurt coming off the stool for round two.
I don’t know if Bill Belichick watches the UFC or not but had he seen Rousey play right into the strength of her opponent; he would have been utterly confused. His philosophy of taking away what an opponent does best was the exact opposite of what Team Rousey did against Holly Holm.
Holm and her team could not have asked for a better situation than what Rousey handed them. The now former champ fought in the worst style possible for herself and the best one for her opponent.
I have never coached a professional fighter and likely won’t get any job offers anytime soon to do so. I do have enough sense to know to change up when things are not working, though.
I get it. Once you’re in a fight, it’s hard to listen to your corner. After all, you’re the one getting punched in the head, not your coach or trainer. But for Rousey’s team to just push forward with the same game plan that had her badly hurt and disoriented made no sense to me.
I can’t speak to whether Edmond Tarverdyan is a “terrible person” like Ronda’s mom claims. I can see that Rousey should take a long look at what he has brought to the table when it comes to her career.
It’s certainly possible that she would have gotten the top of the fight game with any coach, just like AnnMaria De Mars has said.
I do wonder how much this loss has to do with Rousey trying to be entertaining. As she was winning fights early in her UFC career, it was armbar after armbar. Some said she was one dimensional, and she then started focusing more on her stand up game. While that has been fun to watch and better for UFC fans, it was not the best move for her career.
Her goal should be to win the fight.
Entertaining the masses should have been secondary. I’m not saying she should have went with Floyd Mayweather‘s paint drying style, but she didn’t have to get reckless either.
Wreckless was what I saw in Rousey’s last fight with Bethe Correia. Sure she knocked out the Brazilian in 34 seconds but took some shots that could have cost her the belt on that night.
Holly Holm was not a pushover like Correia, and now Holm wears what once was Ronda Rousey’s UFC belt.
The rematch will be here before we know it and it may well set a PPV record for the UFC. There are a lot of questions between now and then. The biggest one is whether Ronda Rousey is being coached by the right man at this time.
After what I saw on Saturday night, I’m with Rousey’s mom.