Two of the best female mixed martial artists in the world fought last night (August 18, 2012) as Strikeforce women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey battled former champ Sarah Kaufman in the main event of Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman in San Diego, California.
Kaufman was expected to be Rousey's most difficult challenge yet, but in the end, it was more of the same:
Close distance, grab an arm and torque on that sucker until your opponent cries "Uncle!" A former champion, Kaufman lasted just 54 seconds against the "Rowdy" one.
Fans who tuned in last night didn't just see a title fight, they bore witness to one of the most dominant champions in mixed martial arts today.
So how did Rousey succeed and beat her opponent when they knew it was coming? And what happens next for both ladies?
Follow me after the jump for our Ronda Rousey vs. Sarah Kaufman Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman post-fight review and analysis.
Rousey was the aggressor early, pressing forward with punches and catching Kaufman off guard. When Kaufman backed into the fence, the trap was sprung as Rousey grabbed the back of her head and initiated a clinch.
Rousey tried to toss Kaufman over her shoulder but was met with resistance. Instead, she switched up her attack, kicking Kaufman's leg out from under her and landing directly into mount with a beautifully smooth transition.
From here, it was just a matter of time. From full mount, Rousey dropped a few punches but then stepped over immediately with an armbar attempt.
Kaufman resisted by clasping her hands together, and both ladies rolled on the ground as Rousey repeatedly took out Kaufman's base to keep her moving. The second Rousey broke the grip and extended Kaufman's arm, the former champion tapped out.
It was over in just 54 seconds.
For Sarah Kaufman, as she admitted in her post-fight interview, she was embarrassed by her performance. This was a shot to get her title back and she didn't get any offense in whatsoever. She couldn't control distance on the feet, got backed into the fence and from then on was stuck playing defense and reacting to what Rousey was doing. She held out for a bit with Rousey's armbar but it was only a matter of time as her opponent had leverage on her side. This is the second time she's tapped out to an armbar and it has to hurt her pride more than anything.
For Ronda Rousey, this was an immaculate performance. She's getting better every time we see her and she's still so new to the sport that it's starting to get scary how good she is. This was a former champion that she just demolished in less than a minute and someone who is still in their prime. Rousey is a freak athlete with some of the most powerful and technical attacks I've ever seen.
At this point, it's not just if she's the best female mixed martial artist in the world today, it's whether she's the greatest female mixed martial artist of all time. She's that damn good.
It's not going to be easy finding challengers at 135, but Rousey was quick to call out exiled former 145 pound champion Cristiane Santos. If that fight can actually materialize, then it's next. Other potential options include a rematch against Miesha Tate or a bout against Alexis Davis.
So what did you think, Maniacs?
Were you expecting Kaufman to put up more of a fight? Just how good is Ronda Rousey and how great could she be?