Miesha Tate no longer living 'The Ronda Show' after The Ultimate Fighter
Miesha Tate looks back on her season as coach on The Ultimate Fighter while expressing real joy that people finally got a chance to see what Ronda Rousey is really like while watching the show.
Miesha Tate feels like she got the best of Ronda on The Ultimate Fighter.
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By Damon Martin
When this season of The Ultimate Fighter started, Miesha Tate wasn't even supposed to be a part of the show.
Original coach Cat Zingano fell out of the running when she blew her knee out just before the competition began and so the UFC made the call to ask Tate to step in and replace her against women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey.
Tate accepted the challenge immediately because she still had unfinished business with Rousey that dates back to their fight in 2012 when she lost the Strikeforce women's bantamweight title to the Olympic bronze medalist after her arm was snapped in the first round.
The move to take the coaching gig didn't come without some expected animosity courtesy of Rousey, but now that the season is over Tate says she wouldn't change a thing about how it all played out.
"It was good, I learned a lot," Tate told FOX Sports. "It was challenging, it helped me grow as a person. I enjoyed it. Other than having to deal with Ronda and what not, that was challenging at times, but for the most part it was a positive experience and I'm glad I got to do it."
The whole 'dealing with Ronda' part actually may have worked in Tate's favor in the long run. Despite the fact that she had to deal with more middle fingers being flaunted in her face than every opponent Nick Diaz has ever faced, Tate took everything with a grain of salt and came out a better person on the other side of it all.
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As it turns out in many ways, Rousey was painted as the villain during this season of The Ultimate Fighter with what was perceived as over the top behavior and very little sportsmanship being shown towards her fellow coach. Tate reveled in the moment and says ever since the show began airing, the tides have turned a bit and she's no longer living in what she calls 'The Ronda Show'.
"There's been a huge sway in the fan base and that's been kind of cool just because not that my goal is to make everyone hate Ronda, but my goal was to just get my side of the story out there. I felt like for the longest time that she kind of had the monopoly on everything. Like everyone just wanted to hear what Ronda had to say," Tate said. "She was getting more of a push, it was really the Ronda show. She was getting a push from the UFC and before The Ultimate Fighter, everything she said would get 20 times the press of anything I would say. People were only hearing one side of the story."
For a long time after their first fight, Tate swelled up with angst when dealing with anything Ronda Rousey related, but when she got the call to coach on the reality show it gave her the opportunity to turn the other cheek and try to be the bigger person.
For a little while there yeah I was bitter and pissed off and a little bit jealous and what not. Then I just decided I needed to grow up.
"For a little while there yeah I was bitter and pissed off and a little bit jealous and what not. Then I just decided I needed to grow up," Tate said. "The only reason I lost is because I lost, I can't blame anyone else and especially not Ronda. What I can hold her accountable for is the kind of person I feel like she is. I always felt she was just disrespectful."
The six weeks she spent on the show teaching and training alongside a group of bantamweight men and women was a cathartic experience for Tate, and she's still smiling about the experience. Of course the fact that Rousey seemingly took a bit of a nosedive throughout the season for some of her perceived misgivings certainly didn't hurt either.
"I think the shoe's on the other foot this time," Tate said. "I figured it out. The first time I had never dealt with someone who was so rude and so I learned a lot. The way I decided to deal with it was just be myself, take a step back from it and be as emotionally uninvested in anything that has to do with Ronda Rousey as possible and just to have fun with it."
Tate will watch with pride on Saturday night as both Chris Holdsworth and Julianna Pena compete in the finals of The Ultimate Fighter after spending an entire season under her tutelage. Then on December 28, Tate will have her chance to finally silence Rousey once and for all when they meet in their long awaited rematch at UFC 168.