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Ronda Rousey 'willing to die in there,' but is concerned how PPV will sell

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

LAS VEGAS -- For a moment, there, UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey appeared to shift over into action-hero mode as she talked about the differences between herself and her Saturday night challenger, Sara McMann.

"I'm willing to die in there," Rousey said during Wednesday's UFC 170 open workouts at Mandalay Bay, "and she can't."

The only place that's likely to happen, of course, is up on the silver screen. But Rousey said that a willingness to put it all on the line is what is going to ultimately separate her from McMann, who many feel has the best chance of any Rousey's challengers of lifting her crown.

"Sara, on paper, is a great athlete, and on paper you could say that we are very close to equals and that's why people are so excited for this fight," Rousey said. "I think that I'm more of a fighter than she is. I can tell that this title is not as important for her as it is for me, she had a kid at home and she has to go home to that kid, and I can afford to be selfish, where she can't."

Rousey, who will defend her title for the second time in eight weeks before taking a break from MMA to film her role in the upcoming move version of "Entourage," admits she's a bit concerned about having to carry the pay-per-view event this time around. The fight is coming just two months after the blockbuster UFC 168, which featured both Anderson Silva vs. Chris Weidman and Rousey's title defense against Miesha Tate. And this card wasn't helped when Rashad Evans had to drop out of his match with Daniel Cormier due to a knee injury.

"I have my concerns. It's a really quick turnaround on pay-per-view, so I really haven't given people a chance to miss me, after two huge PPVs, the Super Bowl card and the New Year's card," Rousey said. "When I'm on as the headliner, all the pressure does fall on me to deliver."

Ultimately, Rousey is doing her best do shove aside PPV concerns and let the promoter do the promotion.

"I do worry about these things," Rousey said. "It's like, the number one issue in front of me is the fight. The pay-per-view is second. I have to do what's best for me in the fight to win. I've talked to Dana [White] about whatever concerns I do have. He says its [White's] job to sell PPVs, just worry about winning the fight."

Rousey told reporters she expects to return to MMA sometime around late summer, which is faster than the time frame White has given her for a return. As to the constant conjecture that she's going to bolt from MMA and never come back, well, let's just say she's turned that into her newest motivation.

"There's quite a few UFC champions and there's quite a few action stars and there is no both," Rousey said. "I want to be the first one to do that. There's a lot of people that doubt me and that really motivates me to do both."

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