Miesha Tate seemed surprised more than anything by Edmond Tarverdyan’s interview with Ariel Helwani on Monday’s 400th episode of The MMA Hour.
On the show, Tarverdyan said he had one dream matchup left for Ronda Rousey, his star pupil. The coach wants to see her come back and fight Cris Cyborg.
Many were surprised by the wish and Tarverdyan’s confidence that Rousey would win. Rousey is coming off two straight knockout losses and Cyborg is the biggest knockout artist in the history of women’s MMA, who has not lost a fight since her pro debut in 2005. Cyborg herself brushed it off and Tate is glad she did.
“I’m gonna give Cyborg a round of applause, because she wouldn’t look more like a bully than if she took that fight with Ronda,” Tate said Wednesday on her SiriusXM radio show MMA Tonight. “That would be ridiculous. It’s just nonsense to even think about that. I cannot believe that Edmond would suggest something so asinine.
Tate and Rousey have a long history and perhaps the most significant rivalry ever in women’s MMA. The first fight between the two helped convince UFC president Dana White to bring women into the UFC and Rousey’s armbar victory made her a huge star. In their second meeting, Rousey won again and it helped her reach a level of mainstream attention that no one ever had before in the UFC.
Through all that, Rousey and Tate were enemies and exchanged many biting words toward one another. Even with all that, though, Tate has no interest in seeing her bitter rival face Cyborg.
“It’s just kind of silly,” Tate said. “I think Edmond just wants another payday so he can try to pay off his bankruptcy issues, because Jiminy Christmas. Poor Ronda. I’m not her biggest fan, but I wouldn’t even want to see that fight. I’m not her biggest fan, but I wouldn’t want to see her get slaughtered by Cyborg at this point in her career, either. It’s not appealing. That’s not what this sport is about. It’s about great competitive matchups and I just don’t feel like it’s even fair to ask for something like that. If you were looking out for your athlete, why would you do that?”
Tarverdyan said Monday that his situation with the IRS as cleared up. And he was genuinely very confident that a motivated and healthy Rousey would knock off Cyborg. Those two women have also had a strong rivalry over the years, though they never fought.
“If injuries weren’t there and everything was where it was, we would take that fight and I’m telling you she’s too slow for us,” Tarverdyan said. “And Ronda will beat her. Ronda needs a challenge that she really needs to be like this person is no good and I need to prove something to the whole world. That’s how Ronda works good.”
Tate, now retired herself, said she thinks the whole thing is “not realistic and not a “real topic of discussion.” She firmly believes Rousey will not fight again.
“Cyborg is still fighting and I am not and I don’t believe Ronda will,” Tate said. “She’s been very absent. She doesn’t even want people asking about her MMA career, so you’ve gotta wonder. She just got married and everything. I don’t see her coming back. I think she’s got a good deal with the WWE. She’s probably gonna want to start a family. I know she’s alluded to that earlier on.”