UFC 184 - Five things we learnt: Ronda Rousey destroys Cat Zingano, Brock Lesnar looks to return to the Octagon

Analysis from the Los Angeles

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The Independent Online

Rousey a class apart

What is there left to say about Ronda Rousey? She is quite simply the most dominant champion of any weightclass, male or female. Cat Zingano was supposed to offer Rousey her toughest challenge to date, with a 9-0 record and a similar list of challengers conquered. While still the heavy underdog, Zingano was fancied to push Rousey all the way, with a skillset that the reigning UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion would find difficult to adapt to and defeat.

14 seconds into the fight, Rousey had the tap out.

Rousey claimed in her post-fight interview that they had prepared for Zingano to star with a flying attack and the training paid off, with Rousey flawlessly transitioning into a variation of her famed armbar for the submission win. She has now beaten every single challenger in the top 5 that UFC has to offer, with only Miesha Tate pushing her to a second round. With the fight that many expected with Cris Cyborg not being mentioned at all in the post-fight, Rousey instead chose to name Holly Holm and Bethe Correia as future bouts she is interested in. While negotiations will continue once Rousey finishes starring in her latest movie role, let’s all appreciate Rousey for what she has become – the dominant mixed martial artist on the planet.

Holm victorious in shaky start

Holly Holm couldn’t wait to get into the octagon for her first appearance under the UFC banner against Raquel Pennington. The much fancied former boxing champion is tipped for big things in MMA, and faced a tougher challenge than expected in TUF alumni Raquel Pennington. While never seriously threatened, Holm didn’t do too much to impress on the road to a split decision victory, a decision the Los Angeles crowd didn’t agree with. With her debut done and dusted and with a win behind her, Holm can now refocus on what she does best before her next bout as the target on her back grows bigger with each bout.

Koscheck done and dusted

Josh Koscheck will always be a name UFC fans remember, from ultra-villain in the first series of The Ultimate Fighter (his actions on that show could even be linked to the UFC’s upswing in business) to the man who pushed George St Pierre all the way in their clash in December 2010. Sadly for him those days are well passed him, as he was dispatched in convincing fashion by Jake Ellenburger in two rounds. It’s never nice to see a fighter well past his prime continue to fight on and get beat handily, and it is definitely the time for Koscheck to hang up the gloves. That his last actions in UFC could possibly be a close up of him frothing from the mouth on the way to being choked out make it all the more depressing.

It’s hard to like Alan Jouban

Fighting in front of an adoring home crowd, Alan Jouban made quick work of tough Aussie Richard Walsh, flooring him with an elbow to the temple and following up with a flurry of punches before the bout was stopped in the first round. Not only is this man a skilled martial artist, but also possesses the good looks requisite to model in his spare time. Highly thought of in MMA circles, Jouban could easily become a man people will pay to see take a good old fashioned hiding.

Brock Lesnar sets tongues wagging

Despite UFC President Dana White trying to pass off Brock Lesnar’s appearance at cageside as just Brock coming along to enjoy some fights, it was clear what Brock was there to do – talk business. Following a reported falling out with WWE owner Vince McMahon which lead to the cancellation of a planned appearance at WWE’s Monday Night Raw event this week, Lesnar showed up at UFC 184 looking sharp and being placed front and centre, as well as appearing on camera. With Frank Mir publically calling out the former UFC Heavyweight Champion to complete their trilogy of fights, all signs appear to Lesnar returning to the octagon once his WWE contract is up the day after this year’s Wrestlemania. As the single biggest PPV draw in UFC history, this will certainly be music to White’s ears.