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Morning Report: Daniel Cormier says Ronda Rousey will never return to her dominant ways

UFC ‘Go Big’ press conference photos
Daniel Cormier

Last weekend, top-ranked women’s bantamweight Valentina Shevchenko submitted second-ranked Julianna Pena with an armbar at UFC on FOX 23. The win cemented Shevchenko as the No. 1 contender to Amanda Nunes bantamweight title, setting up a rematch later in the year. When that fight happens, it will mark a turning point in the division: the first time that women’s bantamweight will have a title fight outside of the immediate shadow of Ronda Rousey.

Rousey was the original bantamweight kingpin, responsible for its creation in the UFC and the unstoppable ruler for two years until being unseated by Holly Holm. After Holm knocked out Rousey, the title was fought for twice more but both times the promise of a Rousey remained. Rousey did eventually return only to be eviscerated by Nunes in under a minute, leaving her return to fighting in question and her status as a top contender shaky. And though the division is now free to carry on without her, her profile and star power still loom large.

Rousey is still the topic of much debate and interest among the mainstream media and recently, in an interview with TMZ, UFC light heavyweight champion and FOX studio analyst Daniel Cormier was asked about Rousey’s future in the sport and a potential comeback from the former champion; he was less than optimistic.

“Can she be the person that she was a couple of years ago? I don’t believe so. This game has evolved to a point that it would be very difficult, especially if your game is limited. Again, I love Ronda, but her boxing doesn’t seem to have improved. She doesn’t kick - I don’t think she’s really kicked - so to have to go out there and really throw somebody down and grapple with them, I don’t know if that works anymore. I think that Amanda Nunes and Julianna Pena and Valentina Shevchenko ... they’ve showed how much this level has gone up in female fighting in a very short period of time.”

Rousey is an Olympic bronze medalist judoka and built her initial success off of her grappling game and her infamous armbar. She began to compliment her grappling credentials with an effective striking game, the combination of which led her to a streak of four fights with a combined fight time of two minutes and 10 seconds. Her striking game did not hold up under scrutiny though as she was thoroughly out-boxed in her last two losses. Cormier believes this weakness in her game puts a ceiling on Rousey’s future in the sport, restricting her from reaching the dominant heights she once made home.

“Can she go in there and win some fights? Yes. Can she beat women in 10 seconds, 19 seconds, 38 seconds? I think those days are gone. That’s not happening anymore, everybody’s too well-rounded.”


Results. Here are all the results from this weekend’s UFC event.

Boxing. Conor McGregor says he’s confident his next fight will be a boxing match.

50-0. Floyd Mayweather, Jr. says hand and McGregor should “give the fans what they want.”

Contracts. Dana White says if McGregor and Mayweather try and promote a match without him it will be “an epic fall.”

Champion. Conor McGregor says both Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson would be “knocked out stiff.”

Master. Valentina Shevchenko says Julianna Pena is a “good fighter but I’m a master.”


Post-fight presser.

CM Punk angling for that return.

Werdum talking about his work with Ramzan Kadyrov, Chechen President with a very checkered past.

This dude dislocates his shoulder, his opponent pops it back in, and they continue fighting. Awesome.

Bellator 171 highlights.

CES 41 highlights.


6th Round.

Beatdown After the Bell.

Fights Gone By.


The “Notorious” Instagram post that kicked off the McGregor show.

Twice now that Ngannou’s been training the finishing technique he uses in the back beforehand. Next opponent might want to sneak a camera in the locker room.

@FrancisNgannou has worked a lifetime for this moment. #UFCDenver

A video posted by ufc (@ufc) on

Shevchenko is a world champion Muay Thai fighter, competitive shooter, and competitive dancer. The woman is extremely talented.

And George Foreman is on the VS train.

Awful luck for McCall and condolences to Seery and his family for their loss.

Someone ready to step in.

And accepted.

Class act.

Nice return bout.

Fantastic walkout from Bellator.


T-Wood being ruthless.

Shoeface tapped one of the more feared grapplers going these days.

The spirit of Reebok will always live on.

Here’s a dude who wants to fight Punk.

Joanna Champion.

Tito looks to be enjoying retirement.

Ronda’s much more socially present than she was after the Holm loss.


Josh Thomson (22-8, 1 NC) vs. Patricky Freire (16-8); Bellator 172, Feb. 18.

Partick Cummins (8-4) vs. Jan Blachowicz (19-6); UFC 210, April 8.

Irene Aldana (7-3) vs. Katlyn Chookagian (8-1); UFC 210, April 8.

Shane Burgos (8-0) vs. Charles Rosa (11-2); UFC 210, April 8.


Caposa says it all.

Hope you enjoyed the weekend everyone. Take it easy and see y’all tomorrow.

If you find something you'd like to see in the Morning Report, just hit me up on Twitter @JedKMeshew and let me know about it. Also follow MMAFighting on Instagram and add us on Snapchat at MMA-Fighting because we post dope things and you should enjoy them.

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