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Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey Aftermath Pt. 1 — Going for Broke

(Get it?) 

Heading into arguably the most anticipated women’s MMA match of all time (that’s right, I said women’s), former Olympic bronze medalist Ronda Rousey had a mountain of claims to back up, a mountain only made higher by the fact that her meteoric run to a bantamweight title shot had left the general public with more questions than answers in regards to her skill set. In her four fight career, the woman had never seen what the second round, let alone the second minute, of a MMA contest looked like. So we were left to ponder: how would her striking, stamina, and suffocating Jiu-Jitsu attack hold up against the more experienced champ in Meisha Tate?

Well, as it turns out, we still don’t know much about the newly crowned women’s 135 lb. champion, and that may just be the scariest thing about her. Tate tried to answer a couple of these questions early, coming out throwing wild haymakers with ill intentions. Rousey was able to ride out the storm and secure a takedown, drawing an ominous “Oh shit!” reaction from the viewing audience, at least where I was. That statement was echoed tenfold when Rousey managed to secure her first armbar, which I’m still pretty positive did most of the damage to Tate’s arm. However, where referee Herb Dean would have let out his own, “Oh shit!” before stopping the fight right there, referee Mark Matheny was determined not to find himself in the middle of a Steve Mazagatti/Sarah D’Alelio controversy, adhering to a strict “snap then tap” policy for Ms. Tate. That policy would come into effect just a couple minutes later, when Rousey managed to secure the fight ending armbar that can only be described as “Palharesian.”

And so, Ronda Rousey became the women’s 135 pound champion by securing her fifth consecutive first round armbar. We still don’t really know where her striking is at, and we still don’t know how well she will hold up if she makes it to the second round. But that is a huge “if,” ladies and gentlemen. A tip of the hat is due to Tate, for managing to delay the inevitable longer than Rousey’s four previous opponents combined. Hopefully that sentiment will help Tate sleep at night while recovering from such a gruesome injury, for her sacrifice served as a permanent reminder to all future challengers in the bantamweight division: just fucking tap.

Speaking of future title challengers, the Strikeforce commentating team seemed content to declare that Josh Thomspon was destined to complete his trilogy with lightweight champ Gilbert Melendez following his unanimous decision over K.J. Noons. As much as I’d like like to agree with that notion, being that Thompson and Melendez have had some classic battles in the past, there was absolutely nothing about Thompson’s performance that warranted a title shot. Nothing. Then again, it’s only a matter of time until the UFC calls Melendez over, so why not have these two square off once again, for old time’s sake? It’s not like a Strikeforce belt really matters to anyone but the women’s division at this point anyway.

Now, I’m going to leave the rest of the of the night’s action for Seth to recap, but I feel I must comment on what was likely Scott Smith‘s last performance under the Strikeforce banner. As a huge fan of “Hands of Steel,”  my disappointment in his return to middleweight was greater than most, as his performance against Lumumba Sayers showed absolutely zero of the fire that had made him such a commodity in the promotion. His “guillotine” attempt looked amateur at best, and his guillotine “defense” was simply atrocious for someone who has been in the game as long as he has. Simply put, Smith needs a new mindset, and a new training camp, if he ever wants to become anything but a one dimensional brawler with a big heart. Following his third round submission loss to Nick Diaz back in June of 2009, Diaz offered to train with Smith should he ever decide to leave his gym in Elk Grove, California. It’s safe to say that the time is now, Scott, and I say this as a fan. Because you’re a “go for broke” kind of fighter, and your recent performances have left you all but penniless.

-J. Jones

Cagepotato Comments

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rophelius- March 5, 2012 at 8:49 am
Nice, well-written article. Thank you to the writer.
Crazy Croat- March 5, 2012 at 1:36 am
i made a tribute to "mike tyson of mma" mirko cro cop...if you wanna watch - cheers
Mofo- March 4, 2012 at 9:53 pm
@Danga - May seem odd but Rousey doesn't have a "Jiu-Jitsu attack". Arm bars are part of Judo. Also part of Sambo. Rousey and Fedor do arm bars but they don't do jiu jitsu. She talks about that in the Rogan interview, which I highly recommend. I'm convinced everyone in the room was stoned for that interview. Eddie Bravo asks her "how long you been doing jiu jitsu" and she says "I don't do jiu jitsu, I do judo".
Spitting into the wind- March 4, 2012 at 6:17 pm
Rousey gives me a scared boner. Almost feel like I have to ask permission to get hard. Almost.
GilaMonsta216- March 4, 2012 at 2:12 pm
that ref is horrible, anyone whos every fought in ohio knows that mark mefeenie is a horrible ref

they sanction this sport, officials put money in their pockets, and guys who have never trained, fought, etc get to judge and ref fights

truly terrifying watching a girls arm break, and the ref out of ignorance is paralyzed while a professional athlete suffers a potentially career altering injury due to profanely pathetic reffing.
the glza- March 4, 2012 at 2:03 pm
"palharesian" is AWESOME. as a dude with an english degree i hereby declare this word coined.
Frank Mur- March 4, 2012 at 11:17 am
I'm afraid of that woman....
Ryan_Johnson- March 4, 2012 at 11:11 am
Here's a lengthy conversation with Rousey from the Rogan Podcast.
bootystar- March 4, 2012 at 10:13 am
I'm pretty sure cyborg is coming back stronger than ever, her ban will be lifted early & the ban will be pulled of her record
Payday- March 4, 2012 at 10:11 am
Poor fucking ref...what the fuck are they to do? Stop the fight before a tap and people bitch it was stopped too early. Stop the fight after a break and you catch hell. If a fighter is too stupid and/or proud to tap, how is that the refs job to protect them from their own stupidity? I didn't hear anyone bitching about the ref not stopping Big Nog from getting his arm shattered. All I heard was people saying how much of a "warrior" Big Nog was. If you want to go out with that warrior spirit that is not the refs responsibility.
dranokills- March 4, 2012 at 10:02 am
I'd like to see ronda try to armbar cyborg.
she pisses me off with that bullshit.
J. Jones- March 4, 2012 at 9:54 am
Tough love is often the most effective form. Just ask Bing Crosby.
ThePeoplesTroll- March 4, 2012 at 9:51 am
Lol @ danga for just destroying whats left of scott smith in that last line
Joedirt- March 4, 2012 at 9:48 am
Judo. The original BJJ.