UFC bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey has let it be known that she respects her opponent Saturday night, Liz Carmouche, in just about every interview conducted since the bout was signed. The two will collide in the first-ever female fight at UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche.
However, the former Olympian is also impressed with another aspect of Carmouche: that she is an openly gay fighter. And, as Rousey recently told UFC Tonight, that took a lot of courage to do.
“In MMA, we have a reputation for being homophobic, where I really don’t think that’s so,” Rousey said. “If you ever come to the weigh-ins and see some of the things the guys wear, and the fans are going nuts. You know they’re not homophobic. The fans love it. It takes a lot of strength to do and she has my utmost respect for that.”
One fellow fighter that Rousey doesn’t share a level of respect for is Cris Cyborg. The former Strikeforce champion recently signed with Invicta FC, ending any hope of a super-fight between the two in the near future.
Cyborg and her manager, Tito Ortiz, conducted a press conference last week. While Rousey said she didn’t watch the press conference, she definitely heard about it.
“I heard that Tito spoke eloquently,” Rousey stated, “and Cyborg was very fashionable.”