Rousey executed her fifth consecutive first-round armbar, earning the title at 4:27 of the opening five minutes.
Tate pushed forward with punches and tagged her opposition with several strikes early in the round. Rousey got the fight to the ground and locked on an armbar, but Tate persevered, escaping and returning the the feet.
The champion did well to defend Rousey’s ground tactics, but after getting the fight back to the ground with a hip toss, the challenger locked on another armbar. This time, Rousey extended Tate’s arm to the point where the champion’s face showed extreme pain.
Tate tapped out and Rousey was awarded the championship belt.
The pre-fight banter between Tate and Rousey garnered a lot of headlines, but the performance by the new champion is sure to garner many more following Saturday night.
“I didn’t talk my way into that one,” Rousey said following the win. “She’s much more savvy on the ground than I anticipated. She’s good, she’s legit, but I don’t feel that bad about it.”
Tate said she respected the new champ, despite not caring much for her opposition going into the title bout.
“I really didn’t like her, so I wanted come out here and come out hard,” she said. “I got a little overzealous, she got the arm. I gotta give her respect.”
With the win, Rousey sustains her perfect record at 5-0 and now owns Strikeforce gold. In defeat, Tate drops to 12-3, losing her first fight in seven outings.