A few months ago, Ronda Rousey was everybody’s darling. She was a role model and and inspiration, especially to women and girls. So why was everyone so thrilled to see her lose this past weekend?
Because Dana White, UFC, and Ronda wanted you to want her to lose.
Dana White knows how to sell a pay-per-view, and he does it the same way the legendary promoters of the old wrestling territories did: with heels, baby faces, and a good story.
Babyface Ronda wasn’t the draw she once was, not after the fight in Brazil.
Ronda’s days in UFC are also likely numbered. Hollywood is calling. So is WWE.
How do you keep interest in women’s MMA from waning?
You turn Ronda heel.
You create an exciting new babyface when the upset occurs.
The result: UFC has a multi-million dollar rematch to sell and a popular new face in the “Preacher’s Daughter.”
Yes, I know, the fights are supposed to be real. But step back and see the big picture. Everything else – the press conferences, the personas, the promos, it’s all a work.
It wasn’t cockiness that kept Ronda from bumping gloves. It was the plan all along. Ronda worked the UFC fans like an old school wrestling heel. That’s why everyone is booing her and cheering Holly Holm.
Kayfabe still works, even in 2015.