UFC color commentator Joe Rogan has let slip that a major announcement regarding woman’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey’s next opponent is in the pipeline.
During an interview on K-Rock radio, Rogan was asked about the apparent lack of suitable contenders to face Rousey, which he denied was the case given his knowledge of what’s going on behind the scenes.
“Oh, you are so incorrect,” Rogan said. “I wish I could tell you what I know. I know some secret stuff.”
When pressed for more details Rogan started to clam up, but did confirm that big news is apparently on the way.
“Within the next, probably week or so, a huge announcement will come about woman’s fighting,” he teased, adding, “It’s going to be crazy.”
So, who is Rogan referring to? At this stage it’s only speculation, but realistically there’s only a few possible opponents out there for Rousey that would fit the bill.
The most obvious option would be that the UFC have decided to bring Cris ‘Cyborg’ into the fold. However, while that would certainly qualify as a “huge announcement”, it would also go against pretty much everything that Dana White has been saying over the past week.
He’s been telling the media that the former Strikeforce champion would have to fight a few times outside of the promotion at 135lbs to prove that she can make the weight and stay drug-free, so unless he’s done a complete u-turn then that would seem to rule her out of the equation.
Decorated boxing world champion and kickboxer turned MMA fighter Holly Holm has been making quite a splash recently outside of the UFC with a perfect 6-0 record that includes five stoppages by way of knockout, so she’d make an interesting stylistic match-up for Rousey.
Holm’s currently scheduled to fight in the Legacy FC promotion in April though, so that doesn’t tie in with Rogan’s information about the fight being announced in the next week or so.
Looking at fighters already in the UFC, the only option would be Cat Zingano. She’s been through an incredibly tough time since beating Miesha Tate in her UFC debut last year. She’s since suffered multiple injury setbacks that forced her out of coaching TUF 18 and a title shot, while she suffered another hammer-blow when her husband and coach committed suicide earlier this year.
Nevertheless, Zingano’s team have indicated that she is now well on the road to recovery and could be able to fight as early as June, and Dana White told reporters not so long ago that Zingano is next in line for the belt.
That being said, meaning no disrespect to Zingano who’s a talented fighter and someone that everyone will be glad to see back competing again, a fight between her and Rousey doesn’t immediately stand out as a “huge announcement.”
The only other fighter in woman’s MMA who could live up to expectations here is someone who hasn’t even fought in the cage for five years: Gina Carano.
The media interest in a fight between the former and current ‘face of woman’s MMA’ would be enormous, especially since both women are now making a name for themselves as Hollywood stars too.
Still, while it’d certainly be a money-spinner it’s hard to believe that Carano would agree to this fight with the odds being so heavily stacked against her.
Take a listen to Rogan’s comments below.