Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey Review – Who Gon Stop Her?
A review of Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey featuring the baddest female on the planet who is not on steroids.
Ronda Rousey def. Miesha Tate: This was the longest and toughest fight of Rousey’s career, but the end result was the same as her previous four bouts – Rousey by armbar. It looked over early when Rousey got the takedown and locked on the armbar, but Tate did a nice job to survive and end up on the back of Rousey. Tate worked hard for a rear naked choke, but Rousey showed good defense to shake off her opponent and get back up. Tate was actually landing some good punches on the feet but ended up clinched with Rousey, which led to a sweet judo throw, an excellent pass to mount, and then a sick nasty armbar that gave Rousey Tate’s arm and her title. Even though it was another fight that didn’t make it out of the first round for Rousey, we finally saw how she was when she didn’t lock on an armbar immediately and when she ended up in a bad position. She also showed no remorse for snapping Tate’s arm, which I had no problem with because if Tate wanted to save her arm, she should’ve tapped earlier. I applaud the referee for not stopping it given that it was a title fight and the main event. Let the champ go out on her sword. Rousey is now the new face of Women’s MMA and unlike Gina Carano, she’s someone who loves to fight, loves the competition, and won’t walk away from the sport the second a big time director knocks on her door. Also, unlike Carano, she’s not shy when the camera is turned on and she’s going to bring a lot of attention to the sport, even if it’s not all positive since she’s not afraid to speak her mind. Next up for Rousey is Sarah Kaufman, who put on an excellent fight on the undercard and it should have been on the main card. Kaufman has a sprawl and brawl style, which is the way to beat Rousey, but keeping it standing will be easier said than done. Rousey proved to be very legit and until Cris Santos serves her suspension, I’m not sure anyone can beat her. And of course by the time her suspension is up, Strikeforce will probably be dead.
Josh Thomson def. KJ Noons: Until the third round, there wasn’t much to this fight. Thomson just kept taking down Noons and holding him on the ground while not doing much damage or advancing his position. Noons got so frustrated that he started rolling his eyes at one point as Thomson just held him down. Thomson turned it up in the third round though, getting a takedown and going for submissions and landing ground and pound. Thomson nearly finished the fight with an arm triangle but Noons did a nice job to survive and live to get beat up for another three minutes. It wasn’t a super impressive performance from Thomson but I’ll cut him some slack as he was coming off another injury filled layoff. At least he realized that his performance was shit, although I thought he was a little hard on himself considering a dominated the whole fight. I expect a better Thomson against Melendez pending he’s able to stay healthy and fight on time. I hope this talk that Noons is a good fighter ends now. He’s an overrated boxer and offers very little in terms of grappling. Every time he’s fought a top guy, he’s been defeated. I’ll give him credit for being tough, but as always, that only gets you so far in MMA.
Kazuo Misaki def. Paul Daley: When Daley is shooting for takedowns, you know the fight isn’t going his way. Misaki did a nice job pressing the action, getting in Daley’s face, and making him uncomfortable on the feet. As good as Daley is with his offensive striking, he’s always had trouble with guys who move forward and use the jab. It was nice to see Daley add a new element to his game, and it nearly won him the fight, but he wasn’t going to finish Misaki on the ground unless he was able to cut him, which did happen but didn’t lead to a stoppage. As expected, Daley threw with a lot of power but failed to land his big left hook and eventually just started head hunting as the fight wore on. Misaki on the other hand just stayed busy on the feet, eventually started stuffing the takedowns, and I think broke Daley a bit mentally by constantly moving forward, being unafraid of Daley’s striking and power, and even landing with some good shots on his own on the feet. It was also Misaki’s first time at 170, so I expect to see a better version of him in his next fight. Aside from Tyron Woodley, Tarec Saffiedine, and the newly signed Nate Marquardt there isn’t much talent at 170 so Misaki could be a win away from a title shot. Daley on the other hand will probably go back to England, miss weight, and beat some dudes who aren’t very good.
Lumumba Sayers def. Scott Smith: Predictable fight was predictable. Lets be honest, Smith sucks. He’s famous for getting his ass kicked and then catching over confident guys coming in. It’s made for some great comebacks and narratives but it’s also just shown how bad of a fighter he is outside of his hail mary punches. Against Sayers, he got rocked on the feet, slammed to the ground, and then submitted with a guillotine where he had no clue how to defend. Sayers did what he needed to do against a one shot opponent but it’s tough to get a read on him as a fighter with all his quick victories. I give him credit for taking care of business and making it look easy, but I still want to see more from him.
Ronaldo Souza def. Bristol Marunde: And another predictable fight was predictable. Souza dominated the entire fight before putting a clearly overmatched Marunde away in the third round with an arm triangle. Souza probably could have ended the fight in the first but was way too content on standing and striking with Marunde. Even though he was getting the better of the exchanges, he probably should have just stuck to what he does best and put Marunde away in the first. Instead he allowed more tape on himself to get out there with his striking. Souza will probably fight the winner of Luke Rockhold and Tim Kennedy for the title unless he finds some way out of his Strikeforce contract and jumps ship to the UFC before the end of the year. As for Marunde, he fought like a guy who knew he had no chance instead of coming out and going for broke, which always baffles me as a fan.