Surprised? UFC Books Ronda Rousey vs. Alexis Davis For UFC 175 In Las Vegas

After a ton of speculation that UFC women’s bantamweight challenger Ronda Rousey would next defend her title against former Strikeforce women’s featherweight champion Gina Carano or Invicta FC featherweight champ Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino, news has come tonight that “Rowdy” will be facing off with a woman who has already been proving her worth in the Octagon.

UFC President Dana White tweeted that Rousey will indeed face No. 2-ranked Alexis Davis at UFC 175 this July 5:

Sounds like Joe Rogan’s hint of “madness” surrounding Rousey’s next opponent actually turned out to be about the tamest avenue the promotion could have taken (although it might actually make the most sense).

The announcement comes as a bit of a surprise after this week saw Rousey express her willingness to fight “Conviction,” who hasn’t been seen inside an MMA cage since losing her belt to “Cyborg” via TKO way back in 2009. It’s unknown whether or not Carano and Justino can actually make the bantamweight limit after fighting primarily at featherweights their entire careers.

Meanwhile, Davis has quietly joined Rousey as the only woman to rack up three victories since the creation of the UFC women’s division. She leapfrogs Cat Zingano, the No. 1 contender who suffered an unfortunate string of knee injuries in training after earning a shot at Rousey by defeating Miesha Tate at the TUF 17 Finale in April 2013.

The blockbuster announcement causes even more confusion about UFC 175, which just received a new co-main event featuring Chael Sonnen vs. Wanderlei Silva a few days ago. Headlining the event is the long-awaited Chris Weidman vs. Lyoto Machida middleweight title bout. No word has been released as to if Rousey vs. Davis will replace Sonnen vs. Silva in the co-main, but you’d have to think a title bout showcasing arguably the promotion’s biggest star would move to the forefront.

Did the UFC make the right decision by going with the proven challenger, or would it have been better to wait for the bigger draws that Carano and “Cyborg” may have brought in?

Photo: Stephen R. Sylvanie for USA TODAY Sports


21 Comments

  1. Profile photo of dirt

    dirt

    April 12, 2014 at 7:14 am

    this serves as proof that the UFC is protecting their poster girl champion.

    • Profile photo of MagicMMA

      MagicMMA

      April 12, 2014 at 8:12 am

      I don't think so, Dana has made it clear that Cyborg needs a couple fights at bantamweight before he signs her, Zingano is injured and Carano was always unpractical

      • Profile photo of TheXperience

        TheXperience

        April 12, 2014 at 8:34 am

        I dont think Carano is unpractical at all! I think the issue here is "time". 3 months is not enough for Carano to get into fight shape, let alone Champion Fight Shape. She would need 6 months. So if they want Rousey to beef up the July card, that's not an option for Carano. However, i think we might see that fight on the December card.

    • Profile photo of TheXperience

      TheXperience

      April 12, 2014 at 8:37 am

      @Dirt how are they protecting her? She's facing the #2 ranked fighter in the division, whom in all honesty deserves that shot most of all, now that Zingano is still out. Other than that i don't think Rousey needs any "protection", she's been doing just fine!

    • Profile photo of movescamp

      movescamp

      April 12, 2014 at 8:38 am

      From who? What UFC fighter are they protecting her from? Oh the one who doesn't have a contract, has never made 135, has been busted for steroids, and hasn't one a fight in the UFC? I personally can't wait for the fight between cyborg and rousey just so ronda can sub her in the first round. Cyborg is an average striker who won by being bigger than her opponents and brawling. Rousey actually uses technique to win. Anyone who saw cyborgs last fight against a past prime kick boxer should know she is lacking in the technique department. She will try to clentch rousey get thrown and submitted. Her purple belt won't help her on the ground against rousey. And she isn't a great striker if she isn't bigger than her opponent.

      • Profile photo of Zip

        Zip

        April 12, 2014 at 10:36 am

        Moves, there's one thing I thought I would never do, but I did. I 'sharped' you :)

        • Profile photo of movescamp

          movescamp

          April 12, 2014 at 2:44 pm

          At least I know i am an opinionated prick :/ I coach kids wrestling and judo so I have a definite bias towards technique in a fighter and judo and wrestling in general. But nothing impressive about cyborg to me. She is a really nice person actually. But she had an advantage by cutting weight and being much stronger than her opponents. When she moves down other fighters will share her strength to weight ratio and she will have a lot of trouble with the top of the division. I think holm is already a better all around striker and by account of her extremely fast learning curve she will probable have great ground defense soon.

  2. Profile photo of griffin

    griffin

    April 12, 2014 at 9:27 am

    I would prefer a non title fight like ellenberger lawler than a non competitive title fight like this. Really didn't need the star power with machida vs weidman as main event

  3. Profile photo of Entity

    Entity

    April 12, 2014 at 12:15 pm

    Alexis is on a winning streak, she's beat Akano, Baszler,Sexton,Caramouche and Jessica's Eye. She deserves it more than anyone else right now.

  4. Profile photo of dirt

    dirt

    April 12, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    I understand that womens MMA is still new and the division is shallow but I am still unimpressed with the title fights that rhonda gets. cyborg would DESTROY davis. dana saying that cyborg needs a few fights at 135 before a title shot is ridiculous. if she fought 3 times in the UFC she would have the entire division cleared besides fighting Rhonda. Fact of the matter is, we'll see the fight eventually because rhonda is 2 fights away from clearing the division herself. I won't be surprised when rhonda gets hurt during her camp against cyborg. go ahead and weak me, I'll copy and paste this message to the comments when it happens.

    • Profile photo of Zip

      Zip

      April 12, 2014 at 1:06 pm

      Jeez dirt, since when has Ronda faked an injury to duck an opponent? I'll copy and paste it too and send you a friendly reminder when it happens. One 'weak' on it's way :)

    • Profile photo of movescamp

      movescamp

      April 12, 2014 at 2:49 pm

      Have you seen cyborgs fights? She has one solid win in her whole career as far as I am concerned when she won the strike force belt. She was important for the sport but I think will end up like Royce gracie, to late to teach an old dog new tricks. Ronda is already far ahead of her in MMA skills. Ground, clentch, transitions, speed, gameplan, etc.

  5. Profile photo of ripstic5021

    ripstic5021

    April 12, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    Did you really just call ronda rousey ufc's biggest star? You sicken me.

    This women's division is straight garbage… Even having a women's champion is stupid. This is equivalent to if the NFL crowned a super bowl champion and had a league of only 4 teams.

  6. Profile photo of Brasil

    Brasil

    April 12, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    Movescamp is on crack.

  7. Profile photo of Cookie77

    Cookie77

    April 12, 2014 at 4:21 pm

    I have to say gentlemen and ladies that the picture of Rowdy is so unsexy. I'm not saying she should smile or anything like that but that pic just gives me the creeps… She looks like a girl that is obsess about you and is looking at you from a far….LOL

  8. Profile photo of Brasil

    Brasil

    April 13, 2014 at 8:46 am

    On the purple belt level comment from Movescamp: Cyborg is world champ purple belt isn't she? Tha is sinister ground game..I have rolled with world a top 3 purple belt in the world and also with black belts….not a lot of difference I have to say…just time in the mat not necessarily skill.

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