Jon Jones has lent his support to Ronda Rousey following her devastating loss to Amanda Nunes last week.
The former Light Heavyweight Champion disagreed with the notion that Rousey is overrated and instead believes her fall is more a matter of evolution within the sport. “I don’t agree with [Rousey being overrated]” Jones told TMZ. “I think the sport is kind of catching up with her talent level and people are realizing she’s not as good a striker as she is a ground specialist”.
He said that it was the fight with Holly Holm that gave other fighters in the division the recipe to defeat Rousey and that she failed to evolve before her fight with Nunes. “I think Holly Holm kind of laid out a blueprint of how to beat Ronda, and it works,” Jones said. “One thing about martial arts is none of us are invincible. The lesson you learn in Ronda’s situation is to always evolve.”
On whether or not he thinks she should retire, Jones said Rousey could still defeat the majority of fighters in the division and would like to see her return to cement her legacy. “I think it’d be great to see her come back, absolutely,” he said. “I think it would be important for her legacy – it would show people her courage and her strength and her resilience. I think she needs to stick to fighting. I believe she still beats 90 percent of the division. Maybe she’s not going to be the invincible, unbeaten person people thought she was. But whether she fights again or not, she’s still going to go down as an absolute legend. I do believe she could regain the belt and beat any of the other girls [in the division] at any given time.”
Cervantes Analysis: Given how the last two fights went, I don’t know that Rousey could be lured back. Her losses were devastating and really showed the holes in her striking game and her decision not to switch coaches or at least work with a more renowned striking coach was her downfall. Jones was right in saying that fighters need to evolve and that the sport caught up with Rousey. Her success was based on the fact that no one could compete with her Judo, but once her striking was exposed no one needed to worry about the ground as long as they could avoid her take downs early and engage her on the feet. I think her pride and arrogance also played into her downfall because fighters need to be able to admit their weaknesses and work on them or at least minimize the risk involved with engaging in those areas. As much as I’d like to see her come back and redeem herself, I don’t think it’s gonna happen.
SATURDAY NOTEBOOK ITEMS…
-Cat Zingano called Amanda Nunes a “disrespectful a-hole” for the way she talked about Ronda Rousey following their fight, according to MMA Fighting.
-On an episode of the MMA Hour, Khabib Nurmagomedov said “I want to beat Tony Ferguson, take the interim bullsh*t belt, and I will fight with Conor for real belt” in 2017.
-Rafael Dos Anjos told MMA Fighting he wants to move to Welterweight.
NOW CHECK OUT YESTERDAY’S UPDATE: FRIDAY NEWS DIGEST 1/6: Trash-talking starts for potential Bisping vs. Woodley catchweight fight (w/Cervantes Analysis)