On Feb. 23, women’s MMA will debut in the Ultimate Fighting Championship at UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche. The historic event is headlined by the first female bout and title fight under the UFC brand.
Some have been critical about the UFC bringing in a women’s division, but Dana White couldn’t be happier with the decision.
“I’ve heard some flack about the girls. Their mitt work is better than half the (expletive) guys. Their hands are great. They’re well-rounded. They represent the sport well. They represent themselves well,” said the UFC president following UFC on Fuel TV 7 in London on Feb. 16. “I couldn’t be happier that I made the decision, and I couldn’t be happier with the fight.”
Ronda Rousey is undefeated in her mixed martial arts career, winning all of her fights in the first round by armbar. The Olympic medalist in Judo captured the Strikeforce women’s bantamweight title by defeating Miesha Tate on March 3, 2012. She defended her title once before being brought over to the UFC, which owned the now-defunct Strikeforce.
It was announced at the UFC on Fox 5: Henderson vs. Diaz pre-fight press conference in December that Rousey was the first UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion, and she was presented with a UFC belt.
Liz Carmouche (8-2) challenges Rousey for that title at the Honda Center in Anaheim on Feb. 23.
Asked about the possibility of bringing in other women’s divisions, White took a wait-and-see approach.
“We’re cool with 135 right now. Let’s see how that goes and we’ll go from there.”