Ronda Rousey is good. She’s REALLY good. She’s so good that people no longer speculate if her opponents have a shot at taking her title, they talk about which of her opponents has the best chance of making it out of the first round with their limbs still attached to their bodies.
In the co-main event of UFC 168 former Strikeforce Champ Miehsa Tate became the first woman to survive a full round with Ronda. Some people took this as an indicator of Miesha’s ever improving skills, but aside from 1 take down and a few sloppy punches there was no point in time where Ronda was losing. She dominated practically facet of the fight. Her striking was tighter, she showed more patience and is integrating her judo into her game more seamlessly. She took everything Miesha had.
As soon as the first round was over, commentators and fight fans everywhere gushed about the moral victory Meisha gained by surviving a full round. This is a confusing concept to me. She still lost. She lost the same way she lost their first fight. I don’t want you all to think I’m fighter bashing. I’m a Meisha Tate fan, I’ve enjoyed watching her fight for years. I appreciate her experience and toughness but I don’t see the glory in a moral victory.
I’m not a fighter, or even an athlete. But I imagine that a loss feels like a loss. Moral victories, in large part seem to be strictly for the fans of the losing party. “Moral” victors don’t get a belt. They don’t get a win bonus. They lose.