It was a fight no one else stepped up for, nor wanted. But the fighter mentality deeply ingrained into everything she’s ever accomplished in life wouldn’t stop Liz Carmouche (8-2, MMA) from asking to square off with the most dangerous woman on the planet, UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey (6-0, MMA). At UFC 157 this Saturday, Carmouche knows nothing will come easily once the Octagon doors shut, but adversity is what’s fueled Carmouche throughout her entire life. In her quest to upset Rousey and wrap a gold strap around her waist, Liz wants everyone to know, she’s no pushover.
A deadly assassin who’s collected more opponents limbs than any other fighter in MMA history, Rousey has earned all of her MMA wins, amateur and pro, via round one armbar. With the odds stacked against her, it’s an understatement to call Liz Carmouche an underdog. Still, Liz isn’t letting the champ’s resume, which includes an Olympic bronze medal in Judo, intimidate her.
“I’m preparing for this fight just like I do for every other fight. I’m not really treating it different than any other one. I train all year round, so it’s really just changing the face of the opponent is really the only thing that changes for me.”
As far as getting ready to fend off Ronda’s signature armbar, Carmouche feels her training has her ready to encounter anything come fight night.
“If the only thing that I’m preparing for on this fight is the defensive, then it doesn’t give me an opportunity to implement my own gameplan. You have to both prepare for defensive action and having your awareness for certain submissions, as well as being able to implement your own gameplan and be on the offensive.”
With all of the hype surrounding the first ever women’s title fight, Liz believes the expectations Ronda has to live up to, with a bar set so high, means the champ has more to lose than she does.
“I really feel like there’s more pressure on her. I’m coming in as the underdog, nobody expects for me to stand a chance. The pressure is on her to follow through with everything that she’s done so far and to stick with her gameplan, to implement her gameplan. So for me, anything I do is just amazing and it’s beyond what anybody expected.”
Confident as ever, Liz is ready to prove that Rousey is not indestructible. Carmouche believes that she can spoil the champ’s plan of coasting to victory come Saturday night, no matter who may think otherwise.
“I’m okay with people seeing me as an underdog and I’m okay with people underrating me because it gives me just that much more of an opportunity to blow everybody’s mind and come out with a bang.”