Date: TBD Location: TBD Venue: TBD Broadcast: TBD UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Miesha Tate A Strikeforce bantamweight champion at 25 years old, Miesha “Cupcake” Tate (18-5) shocked the world when she submitted Marloes Coenen at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Henderson to win the belt. Tate has great takedowns, a good chin and is willing to brawl or take the fight to the ground. She also has decent size and holds improving power on the feet, making her a difficult match-up for just about anyone in the bantamweight division. Other than Holly Holm, Tate is the only other woman to give former UFC bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey a decent run for her money before becoming one of many victims to the champ’s famous armbar submission, losing her Strikeforce title at the end of the first round and the rematch in the third round. Since the second loss to Rousey, Tate has reeled off five straight wins, including last night where she submitted Holm to become the new UFC women’s bantamweight champion. UFC Women’s Bantamweight Contender Ronda Rousey Ronda Rousey is the biggest crossover star in MMA, between her appearances in high profile movies, showing up at Wrestlemania, hosting Saturday Night Live, or her general presence in the media, there is nobody who gets more mainstream attention than the former women’s bantamweight champion. It is all well deserved too, Rousey had lorded over her division to the tune of a 6-0 UFC record (12-0 overall) with 12 stoppages. Her six UFC victories had come in just 18:57 combined before she squared off against Holly Holm this past November. Holm shocked the world by perfectly countering Rousey’s aggression with constant circling and heavy strikes to pull off a second round knockout. She has taken time off from fighting to pursue her film career the past few months, and it will likely be a full year before she’s back in the Octagon to challenge the new champion Miesha Tate for her title. Opening Odds Analysis: MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened Rousey a -400 favorite (bet $400 to win $100) with Tate a +310 underdog (bet $100 to win $310) at 5Dimes Sportsbook, and the line is yet to move. Tate was a heavy underdog in her last fight against Holm, opening over +310 as well, so it will be interesting to see if she can follow a similarly successful path here. As far as the actual fight goes, Tate has certainly gained confidence. She’s seen Rousey not only lose, but in devastating fashion, and she finished the woman who finished Rousey. That’s a big confidence booster. If you factor in that Tate is the only other woman other than Holm who’s made it out of the first round against Rousey, she could believe in herself enough to pull this off. The biggest question mark of all will be Rousey herself. She had a bit of meltdown after losing her title, and with so many opportunities in front of non-fight related, she could find herself letting her eyes off the prize. That being said, Rousey has faced Tate twice already and finished her both times via armbar, so it’s not crazy to assume she can do it yet again.
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