Ronda Rousey promised to punish her trash-talking opponent Bethe Correia on the Brazilian’s home turf on Saturday and, boy, did she ever. It took the 28-year-old just 34 seconds at UFC 190 in Rio de Janeiro to deliver a knockout punch to rack up another win in her undefeated record and retain the UFC women’s bantamweight championship.
“I guess she can’t really say things about my hands anymore, huh,” Rousey said after her win, which she dedicated to WWE legend “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, who died suddenly on Friday.
Contrary to past fights, when she’s been cordial to her opponents, Rousey showed no respect for Correia, either at the beginning of the fight or at the end. The two fighters did not touch gloves before the bell and Rousey certainly didn’t congratulate her on her effort.
Rousey may have had good reason. In May, Correia trash-talked Rousey with allusions to Rousey’s father’s suicide — a taunt Correia apologized for but one that Rousey refused to accept. Correia also taunted the star after defeating two of Rousey’s friends in the Octagon, Jessamyn Duke and Shayna Baszler.
“I hope that nobody really brings up my family anymore when it comes to fights,” Rousey said.
Rousey, who walked into the arena stone-faced and unflinching, was teary eyed when the fight was over — and not because she was hurt. Rousey said after the match she had been thinking about both her father and Piper, who bestowed upon her the “Rowdy” name.
“We lost a close friend, Roddy Piper, who gave me permission to use his nickname. I hope him and my dad enjoyed watching this together,” she said after the fight.
Rousey said the fight went pretty much exactly as she and her team had planned it. She went in aggressively and beat the brawler Correia at her own game. She let Correia make the first mistake when the Brazilian tried to get Rousey caught up in a clinch near the Octagon’s walls. With Correia scrambling, Rousey took the opportunity to deliver the knockout blow.
Rousey’s famous fans reacted quickly on Twitter to her upping her record to 12-0.
Rhonda rousey is a beast Daaaaaaaaaam— SHAQ (@SHAQ) August 2, 2015
Ronda. Rousey. You are bad.— Alex Morgan (@alexmorgan13) August 2, 2015
Rousey is the Jordan of MMA. G'night.— devon sawa (@DevonESawa) August 2, 2015
Here’s how the rest of UFC 190’s main card turned out.
Mauricio Rua defeats Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
If you felt tired watching the penultimate bout of the night, think of how Mauricio Ruo and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira felt. Rio is an hour ahead of the Eastern time zone, so it was approaching 2 a.m. by the time these two guys made it to the Octagon. Despite the time, however, these two fighter who met 10 years ago gave it all they had. They went all three rounds, each so active that it looked like anyone’s game. There were blows, body strikes, take downs, submission attempts. Rua, who goes by the name Shogun, quite possibly even broke his ankle, but neither fighter ever gave up. After three rounds, Shogun won via unanimous decision.
Glaico Franca defeats Fernando Bruno
Glaico Franca provided the night’s only win via submission by putting Fernando Bruno down with a rear naked choke in the third round. That ending seemed inevitable, however, as Bruno seemed to lose all steam during the second round. After the bell rang before the third, he even wandered into the wrong corner. (Awkward!) Bruno wasn’t a total layup — at least not the whole time. He got a few strikes in and fought well enough in the clinch to tire Franca out for a bit, but it wasn’t nearly enough to stop Franca’s overall momentum.
On the other hand, the drawn-out bout was enough to stifle East Coast pay-per-view spectators’ momentum as the clock neared 1 a.m.
Reginaldo Vieira defeats Dileno Lopes
Got blood? Both Reginaldo Vieira and Dileno Lopes do, or did, rather. See, after three rounds, a whole bunch of both of theirs was splattered across the ring like a Jackson Pollock painting. This bantamweight bout didn’t start off so bloody, however. The first round was a battle of back-and-forth guillotine attempts, none of which the fighters could lock in. So they both switched it up to strikes in the second round, and by the time the bell rang signaling the end of the third round, the two were just hammering each other without really even looking at where their fists were flying. Vieira may have won by unanimous decision, but to a lot of spectators, the whole thing looked like a tie. It helped that the two ended with a hug.
Stefan Struve defeats Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira
In Vegas’s view, this was one of the most evenly matched fights of the night, although looking at the fighters side-by-side, you’d never know it. Dutch fighter Stefan “Skyscraper” Struve (29-7-0) is 6-foot-11. He’s also just 27 years old. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (34-9-1), meanwhile, stands 6-foot-3 and is 39 years old. Struve didn’t take full advantage of his reach in the first round, but he revved it up in the second and third, landing almost twice as many strikes as his opponent. Nogueira managed to get one takedown in, but he couldn’t keep Struve on the ground long enough to make it matter. Struve won the non-title heavyweight fight by unanimous decision after a full three-round bout.
Antonio Silva defeats Soa Palelei
Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva (18-7) definitely entered this non-title heavyweight bout looking like the more fired-up fighter. He literally ran to the Octagon, leaving his entourage in his dust. But he had something to prove — Silva went in the underdog against Soa Palelei (22-4) and he clearly was excited to prove the odds wrong — just like he did when he beat favorite Fedor Emelianenko in a 2011 Strikeforce fight. And well, history did repeat itself, but even fiercer this time. Early in the second round, Silva managed to pin Palelai against the cage and a few solid uppercuts and knee strikes later, referee John McCarthy stopped the fight 41 seconds in to declare Silva the winner by TKO.
Claudia Gadelha defeats Jessica Aguilar
Claudia Gadelha (12-1-0) went in as the favorite against Jessica Aguilar (19-4-0) in this 115-pound non-title fight and she proved why just about as soon as it started. The fight got off to a bloody start with Gadelha quickly taking control and possibly breaking Aguilar’s nose, which painted the American’s face red. Aguilar went the distance, however, lasting a full three rounds, even getting in some solid strikes in the third. In the end, however, it wasn’t quite enough to overcome Gadelha’s superior moves. She landed more strikes and completed four successful takedowns compared to Aguilar’s zero. Unsurprisingly, Gadelha won by unanimous decision to make her record 13-1, and afterward, the fighter rightfully demanded — in two languages not less — that UFC chief Dana White give her a title shot next against current strawweight champion Joanna Jędrzejczyk.
Excellent promo by Claudia Gadelha. In English and Portuguese. Perfect.— MMAFighting.com (@MMAFighting) August 2, 2015