Although UFC president Dana White has stated that newly crowned women’s bantamweight champion Miesha Tate will face former champion Ronda Rousey in her first title defense, “Cupcake” doesn’t care who she faces.
A third fight against Rousey may be the big money bout to make, but a rematch with Holly Holm, the woman that dismantled Rousey, would also stimulate the public’s interest. Cat Zingano is ranked third in the division and holds a win over Tate. Fourth-ranked Amanda Nunes would be a compelling match-up.
No matter whom Tate faces in her first title defense, she plans to be prepared for them all.
“I know that there’s a lot of really top contenders; a lot of girls in the division are chomping at the bit. I think I’ve been called out by everyone probably in the top six, if not the top ten,” said Tate during a media scrum interview in Brisbane, Australia.
“They’re all gunning for me, and they’re all dangerous. They all have their different attributes to bring to the table,” she said. “I think my job as a champ is to stay ready for whoever. I’m just going to stay in the gym. I have to be able to beat every single one of them.”
Tate has two previous losses to Rousey. She holds a win over Holm, but lost to Zingano. The division has been turned on its head, and Tate has no preference for who is next.
“At this point, I don’t really care (who I face next). I think that I just need to be ready to handle whatever is thrown my way,” said the 29-year-old champion. “If I could fight at UFC 200, that would be awesome, but I really have no idea what the UFC has in mind for that. I think they may already have a couple title fights, so that may not be realistic.
“I don’t think it’s my job as a champion to pick who is next. It’s not really what the champion does. A champion fights whoever they say is next, and whoever has earned that position.”