Rousey to re­turn for ti­tle fight on Dec. 30

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Greg Beacham

Ronda Rousey will re­turn to the UFC on Dec. 30 in Las Ve­gas, fight­ing Amanda Nunes for the ban­tamweight ti­tle.

UFC Pres­i­dent Dana White con­firmed Wed­nes­day that Rousey will be in the main event of UFC 207 at T-Mo­bile Arena.

Rousey (12-1) hasn’t fought since Novem­ber 2015, when Holly Holm stunned the pre­vi­ously un­beaten cham­pion with a sec­ond-round knock­out at UFC 193 in Mel­bourne, Aus­tralia.

Rousey be­came one of the world’s most pop­u­lar fe­male ath­letes and the UFC’s big­gest main­stream star dur­ing her me­te­oric rise through mixed mar­tial arts. The for­mer Olympic judo com­peti­tor be­came the first UFC women’s cham­pion in late 2012, with her tal­ent com­pelling White to cre­ate a women’s ban­tamweight divi­sion in his pro­mo­tion.

Rousey kept the 135-pound belt through six de­fenses be­fore Holm’s dom­i­nant vic­tory, which was punc­tu­ated by a dra­matic head kick.

Be­fore los­ing to Holm, Rousey had beaten four con­tenders for her belt in a com­bined 130 sec­onds, in­clud­ing a 14-sec­ond stop­page of Cat Zingano and a 16-sec­ond vic­tory over Alexis Davis. Rousey had fin­ished ev­ery op­po­nent of her MMA ca­reer, beat­ing 10 of those 11 op­po­nents in the first round, be­fore her de­feat.

The ban­tamweight ti­tle has changed hands two more times since Rousey’s loss, with Miesha Tate beat­ing Holm and Nunes stop­ping Tate in the first round at UFC 200 on July 9. Holm has lost both of her fights since beat­ing Rousey.

Nunes (13-4), a Brazil­ian fight­ing out of Florida, has won four straight fights. Af­ter she took the ti­tle away from Tate, Nunes made it clear she would pre­fer to defend her belt against Rousey.

While Rousey ap­par­ently kept train­ing af­ter her loss, she took an ex­tended break from com­pe­ti­tion, work­ing as a model and ap­pear­ing in a hand­ful of films as an ac­tor.

Rousey was ar­guably the UFC’s big­gest star when she be­gan her break, and she ac­knowl­edged hav­ing sui­ci­dal thoughts af­ter her loss. White al­ways as­sumed Rousey would re­sume her fight­ing ca­reer when ready.


Ronda Rousey, left, will re­turn to the Oc­tagon for the first time since los­ing to Holly Holm on Dec. 30 to fight Amanda Nunes in UFC 193.

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