Women make their Ultimate Fighting Championship debut Saturday when bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey defends against Liz Carmouche in UFC 157.
It’s too bad that boxing slept on women’s prizefighting. Not UFC, they saw that Rousey can fight and immediately noticed that she attracted tons of fans.
You got to hand it to UFC’s Dana White. He’s sharp.
Despite a lack of parity in women’s MMA, Rousey’s (6-0) popularity is sure to inspire young women when she fights Carmouche (7-2) at the Honda Center in Anaheim. It will be televised on pay-per-view television.
Several boxing champions appreciate that Rousey is going to headline the UFC event, including Mia St. John and Gennady Golovkin, who both announced they are attending the debut of Rousey on UFC.
Gennady, the WBA middleweight world champion, met Rousey in Big Bear Lake where she trained in their facility. He said in a press release that he would attend.
St. John, one of the most popular female boxers in the last 15 years, will be attending with publicist Claudia Ollis, who is one of the top proponents of female prizefighting. Both want to witness the historic event. St. John had one MMA fight and won but returned to boxing. She wants to support Rousey and women prizefighting in general.
Ollis has been working with Jeff Wald, famed for producing the Contender reality television show. Both are working together on a new project.
Other fight chatter
Basilio Nieves (15-1, 3 Kos) meets Juanito Rubillar (48-19-7, 23 Kos) in the main event on Thursday Feb. 21, at the Four Points Sheraton in San Diego. The flyweight event is set for six rounds. The co-main event features Eduardo Rivera (9-0-1, 3 Kos) facing Aldolfo Landeros (22-29-2, 10 Kos) in a lightweight clash.
Gianluca Branco (46-3-1, 23 Kos) meets Poland’s Lukasz Maciec (17-1-1, 3 Kos) for the EBU welterweight regional title in Lazio, Italy. Their title bout will take place on Friday Feb. 22. Branco, 42, is making his first defense of the belt.
Undefeated Art Hovhannisyan (15-0-2, 8 Kos) faces Alejandro Perez (16-3-1, 11 Kos) in the main event at Morongo Casino on Friday Feb. 22. The junior welterweight main event is set for 10 rounds and is promoted by Gary Shaw Productions. Showtime will televise.
Undefeated Roman Morales (14-0, 7 Kos) and undefeated Juan “Pollo” Hernandez (10-0-3, 2 Kos) face each other on Friday Feb. 22, in Washington D.C. Both are California-based junior featherweight prizefighters but will be fighting in the East Coast. ESPN will televise.
Former flyweight world champion Giovanni Segura (28-2-1, 24 Kos) steps back in the ring after a 14-month layoff following a devastating knockout loss to current champion Brian Viloria. Mexico’s Segura will fight Omar Salado (23-5-2, 14 Kos) on Saturday Feb. 23, in Hermosillo, Mexico.
Former featherweight world champion Jhonny Gonzalez (52-8, 45 Kos) faces Eusebio Osejo (21-12-2, 7 Kos) on Saturday Feb. 23, in Ixtapa, Mexico. It’s Gonzalez’s first fight since losing the title by technical decision to Daniel Ponce De Leon. On the same card Irma Sanchez (25-5-1, 7 Kos) fights Jessica Chavez (16-3-2) in a junior flyweight title bout.
United Kingdom’s David Price (15-0, 13 Kos) fights American Tony Thompson (36-3, 24 Kos) in a heavyweight clash set for 12 rounds. The battle takes place in Liverpool on Saturday Feb. 23. It will only be televised in Europe.
IBF junior middleweight titleholder Cornelius Bundrage (32-4, 19 Kos) defends the title against Ishe Smith (24-5, 11 Kos) on Saturday Feb. 23. The match will be held in Detroit, Michigan. Golden Boy Promotions is presenting the fight card that also has J’Leon Love (14-0, 8 Kos) fighting Derrick Findley (20-8, 13 Kos) in a middleweight scrap.
Undefeated heavyweights clash when Malik Scott (35-0, 12 Kos) fights Vyacheslav Glazkov (14-0, 10 Kos) on Saturday Feb. 23 in Huntington, New York. Also, Chris Algieri (15-0, 7 Kos) faces Jose Alejo (10-1, 6 Kos) in a welterweight scrap.
Amanda Serrano (17-1-1, 12 Kos) knocked out Dominican Republic’s Wanda Ozuna (8-5) in one round to win the vacant WIBA female featherweight world title on Saturday Feb. 16. The match was held in Dominican Republic. Serrano fights out of New York.
Jonathan “Momo” Romero (23-0, 12 Kos) defeated Mexico’s Alejandro Lopez (24-3) by split decision after 12 rounds this past Saturday. The title fight took place in Tijuana, Mexico. Colombia’s Romero is promoted by Thompson Boxing Promotions and is their third world champion.
Riverside’s Saul Rodriguez (9-0-1, 6 Kos) knocked out Luis Viedas (7-8-1) at 2:06 of the second round of a featherweight bout in Mexico on Saturday. Rodriguez, 19, is a former Riverside Poly High graduate who is taught by world class trainer Eduardo Garcia.
Brunet Zamora (24-1-2, 10 Kos) defeated Poland’s Krzysztof Szot (17-5-1) by majority decision to win the vacant EBU lightweight title on Friday Feb. 15. The match was held in Trieste, Italy. Zamora is a Cuban expatriate now living in Italy.
Knockout legend Yory Boy Campas (101-17-1, 79 Kos) defeated Gabriel Martinez (27-6-1) by split decision on Friday Feb. 15, in Sonora, Mexico. Campas, 41, is a former welterweight and junior middleweight world champion.
Delvin Rodriguez (27-6-3, 15 Kos) handed George “Comanche Boy” Tahdooahnippah (31-1-1, 23 Kos) his first pro loss on Friday Feb. 15. Their fight took place in Atlantic City. Rodriguez stopped the challenger in round six of their junior middleweight contest.