clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

UFC fighters react to Ronda Rousey's bantamweight belt ... and not everyone agrees it should have been gifted

Like Jose Aldo before her, former Strikeforce women's bantamweight titleholder Ronda Rousey was able to enter the UFC as division champion, despite having never fought inside the Octagon.

How did Ronda Rousey become Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Women's Bantamweight Champion?

She came to a press conference earlier this month and UFC President Dana White handed her a belt. I think the general consensus is that Rousey, who was already the 135-pound titleholder under the Strikeforce banner, was simply making a lateral move as her division slowly (but surely) migrates to UFC.

Not everyone agrees.

MMA Interviews caught up with a handful of current ZUFFA fighters to get their take on the newest addition to the UFC roster, including Dan Hardy, Brian Ebersole, Anthony Perosh and Kyle Noke, who believes it makes the promotion "look bad" by just handing over the gold.

"I think it's great that women's mixed martial arts is getting into the UFC, but I think Ronda Rousey should have definitely fought for the title first. Made her a number one contender against somebody else. In every other division guys have had to fight for that belt. I think it makes them look bad by going out and giving her the belt. She'll win it and she'll earn it, I guess. Either way she'll have it at the end, I guess it doesn't matter."

The move is hardly unprecedented.

When World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) folded in late 2010, reigning featherweight champion Jose Aldo was gifted a UFC 145-pound title during a brief ceremony at UFC 123 in the latter part of 2010, despite having never stepped foot inside the Octagon.

He's still champion to this day.

Rousey, undefeated at 6-0, will have the opportunity to prove that her belt presentation was a formality -- not a gift -- when she takes on Liz Carmouche in the main event of UFC 157, which goes down on Feb 23., 2013 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.

See more on that fight here.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Mania Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Mania