So either Ronda Rousey was getting ready for Stephanie McMahon at Wrestlemania 32 by practicing her incredible selling and ability to put someone over masterfully Ric Flair-style, or she just plain got her ass kicked by Holly Holm Saturday night in Australia.
We’ll assume Holm just beat the crap out of her. How could this happen? Well, apparently, obviously, unfortunately, Rousey really needs to work on her standup game. Even the worst-of-worst fighters know a few things about self-defense. Maybe Rousey just forgot her game plan in an uncontrollable rage to snap the arm of the preacher’s daughter, but regardless (hey, CM Punk, I used the word correctly), Rousey looked like an amateur against Holm.
But don’t count “The Rowdy One” out. All great fighters bounce back from getting pounded at-will in the face and then head-kicked straight to the hospital in need of reconstructive lip surgery, right? Rousey just needs to work on her boxing and we here at MMA Hot Sauce have the perfect fight advice for Rousey (and we’re pretty sure Rousey’s mother agrees with us).
Tip No. 1: Learn how to duck.
When a taller, lankier, former world boxing champion comes at you throwing straight left jabs and hooks, you should duck. Now I know that advice is a bit basic, but for Rousey it’s a starting point. Just watch the great Mike Tyson in his fight against Trevor Berbick.
Tyson is ducking Berbick’s big right hands. It’s basic but it seemed to work for the one-time baddest man on the planet.
Tip No. 2. Move laterally.
Remember a guy named Marvelous Marvin Hagler? For you millennials that’s not an old Looney Tunes character. Or a comic strip your parents used to read. And he’s not the subject of an underground, kitschy, woe-is-me Vice documentary. Hagler was a 5’ 9” middleweight champion in 1985. He took on a guy named Thomas “Hitman” Hearns, a 6’ 1” beanpole who just happened to pack a hammer in his right glove. He had one-punch knockout power. So how did Hagler counter this?: He moved from side-to-side. It’s a pretty cool concept when you are fighting someone who is world champion boxer.
Notice how Hagler negates Hearns’ superior punching power by ducking, and moving side-to-side to give Hearns angles. It’s a fight after all, not a game of face-pong. When Rousey walked head first into Holm, it would have been the equivalent of Holly stretching out her arm and saying, “Hey Ronda, wanna break my arm?”
Tip No. 3: Don’t lead with your chin.
Tuck it in. Let’s go back to Tyson for a second. As a young man he was invincible because he had incredible energy, drive and athleticism. Oh, and he scared the crap out of everybody. By the time he stepped into ring against Lennox Lewis in 2002, he was a shell of himself. And what happened? He stopped moving laterally, led with his chin, and fell on his back. Rousey meet Tyson.
You can’t walk right into your opponent head first unless you want to fall on your back faster than Kim Kardashian and end up in the hospital with a chick you already killed twice by armbar talking smack about you in front of the whole world.
Tip No. 4: Protect your face.
Let’s go old school: 1994 and George Foreman against Michael Moorer for the heavyweight championship of the world. Moorer was 18 years younger than Foreman. Didn’t matter. Moorer, a wily left-handed assassin couldn’t beat Foreman. Why? Oh this really important skill called protecting your face with your hands. Watch Foreman keep his hands close to his face, actually showing a little respect for his opponent. Yep, self-defense works.
Old man strength right there.
Tip No. 5: Always touch gloves before the fight.
It’s just the right thing to do. Rousey is an Olympian, afterall. It’s like saying please and thank you. They don’t really matter — until you don’t say them, then everyone notices.
Follow @MMAHotSauce on Twitter and Facebook. Also follow MMAWeekly.com on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.