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Posted on August 19, 2012 by Jack Thurman
Strikeforce Bantamweight champion–and recent ESPN: The Magazine cover girl–Ronda Rousey successfully defended her belt in impressive fashion on Saturday night by submitting challenger Sara Kaufman in under a minute. Once again a more experienced opponent was no match for Rousey’s top of the food chain judo skills and that’s becoming a trend that MMA betting enthusiasts have not been slow to note. All six of Rousey’s opponents have lost via submission with none making it out of the first round and only one (Meisha Tate) surviving the first minute of the fight. The official time of Saturday’s win was :54 seconds of the first round.
If you’d seen Rousey’s previous fights you might have thought you were experiencing deja vu watching her defense against Kaufman. It fit the same template as every other fight–Rousey coming out and quickly establishing the jab to set up a takedown and a quick armbar for the tapout. In some ways that may be the most impressive thing about Rousey’s dominant run–all of her opponents have known what is coming but none have been able to stop it. For that matter, only one opponent has been able to survive the first minute of the fight. Rousey improved to 6-0 with her victory.
Rousey’s biggest problem now is something of an enviable one–she’s running out of credible challengers. For that reason she’s been ‘calling out’ former Strikeforce 145 pound champion Cris ‘Cyborg’ Santos who is currently under suspension by the California State Athletic Commission for a failed drug test (such tests are honored by other states’ athletic commission, effectively representing a suspension from the entire sport). Despite the suspension, the ‘back and forth’ between the two women has already started. Cyborg doesn’t want to cut to the lower weight, a fact that Rousey brought up in her post fight promo:
“People want to see you have the first fair fight of your life. I’m the champ now. The champ doesn’t go to you. You go to the champ. Come down to 135 and let’s settle this.” Despite Rousey’s dominance to date, a battle against Cyborg would be a very intriguing fight. Cyborg would have a decided edge in size and strength–as well as striking skills–but its unlikely that she’d be able to do anything against a top level Judoka like Rousey on the mat. At the very least it would be a competitive fight and could attract two way betting action. To underscore Rousey’s dominance, the MMA betting odds on her to beat Kaufman closed at -700.