As the promotion machine ahead of UFC 193 started to rev up several weeks ago, bantamweight queen Ronda Rousey has been quoted several times as saying that her opponent Holly Holm isn’t ready for the life of being a champion.
Rousey, who is undoubtedly the biggest star in all of mixed martial arts, stated that the demands she’s taxed with on a daily basis would make most fighters crumble and shy away from the spotlight like a vampire scurrying away from the sun.
Even if you strip away all the pomp and circumstance that goes along with the customary promotion leading into a show, at the end of it all Rousey is still standing across the cage from them ready to face plant someone in the canvas or make bones, muscles and ligaments twist in directions that aren’t good for the human anatomy.
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"Nobody’s ready," Rousey told FOX Sports in an exclusive interview. "They all think they are though and that’s why they show up but then they leave and they are quite aware that they were never ready and they will never be ready.
Before the fight starts, Rousey’s opponents first get a taste of what it’s like to walk in her shoes and that’s already a difficult path to tread.
Her opponents’ obligations multiply exponentially with interview requests and appearances and even then it isn’t a good example of the amount of work she does outside the gym and Rousey is confident that there’s no one else in the women’s division who could handle what she does leading up to a fight.
"The thing is they have to deal with a lot more than they ever have before when they have a fight with me, but the thing is I still have to do 10 times more work outside of training than they do," Rousey said. "Once they get to be No. 1 contender, they get a peek into what kind of workload I have and when they go through that process when they get ready to fight me, they realize what they’re fighting for is something they don’t even want.
"A lot of times that title run is visceral, it’s hard and it’s a lot of work that they’re not used to doing and by the end of it, by the time the fight actually comes around they’re second guessing whether they even want to be there and that’s what I mean when I say that’s something they don’t really want. The life that they don’t really want."
Rousey wouldn’t trade her life for anything because she had to suffer a lot before she got the point where she’s at now.
Whether it was winning an Olympic medal and then coming home to find out there were no parades or even jobs awaiting a third place finisher at the most prestigious athletic event in the world or being confronted with UFC president Dana White saying that women had no place in the Octagon just after she decided to dedicate her life to fighting.
Rousey has broken boundaries and broken the mold for what it means to be a mixed martial artist in 2015, but for all the success and fame she’s found, there’s still always something more to do and that’s tough on anyone.
Especially someone who has no idea what’s about to happen to them.
"There are a lot of things that come along with it. Yeah, you get a lot of money and a lot of respect and a lot more status, but other than that, it’s just a whole lot more work that you really didn’t even sign up for," Rousey said. "I think that’s really breaks a lot of their motivation in the end."
Following the litany of interviews, appearances and photo taking sessions, Rousey’s opponents then have to prepare to face maybe the scariest woman on the planet, armed with knockout power in both hands and a devastating ground game that’s virtually unstoppable.
Rousey isn’t just going into win her fights — she wants to dismantle her opponents and leave them sitting in the middle of the Octagon wondering why they asked to end up there in the first place.
Whether it’s Holm, Bethe Correia or anybody else, they all talk a good game, but actions speak louder than words and Rousey’s last three opponents were silenced in a combined 64 seconds.
"I’m in there not to convince the judges that I’m the best — I’m in there to convince my opponent that I’m the best," Rousey said. "They always walk out knowing who’s the best and that’s me."