UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey has been so utterly dominant in dispatching all comers in her division that fans have had to get creative when imagining potential future opponents.
Hardcore mixed martial arts fans are salivating at a potential bout between Rousey and Cris ‘Cyborg” Justino, who has long ruled the women’s MMA scene outside of the UFC.
But most average sports fans are probably still unaware of Justino, who has never garnered much mainstream attention until very recently.
For them, a dream matchup that has sparked much debate the last year on social media would pit Rousey against boxing star Floyd Mayweather Jr.
There’s a whole lot of storylines there. The battle of the sexes angle is obvious and is only enhanced by the fact Mayweather has a history of domestic violence.
Another topic of conversation would surely be how the pure striking brilliance of the world’s best boxer would match up against the more diverse attack of Rousey, who would have a decided edge should the fight hit the mat.
There has also been a simmering war of words between the two. Mayweather said last year he had never heard of Rousey, who replied after beating out Mayweather for fighter of the year at the ESPYs last month that it must be different for Mayweather to be “beat by a woman for once.”
So there is plenty of intrigue and opinions on both sides of who would emerge victorious should the fight ever happen.
But who would actually win?
Mayweather wouldn’t really take the bait when asked about it on Thursday at a news conference in Los Angeles.
Instead, he made a joke about how much of a pay cut he would have to take to compete in the UFC instead of boxing.
Rousey, however, addressed the debate head on during a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” session with fans on Monday night.
When asked who would win a no-holds barred fight between the superstars, Rousey expressed confidence in her abilities.
“Floyd is one of the best boxers of all time. He would definitely beat me in a boxing match. I unfortunately don’t get into ‘matches.’ I fight for a living,” she replied. “In a no-rules fight, I believe I can beat anyone on this planet. Boxing is a sweet science with strict rules that I respect very much and aspire every day to improve at.
“But you said ruleless fight, and that’s my honest answer.”
This is a debate that is almost assuredly going to have to remain on the internet. Even if all the contractual issues weren’t an obstacle, there is no athletic commission on the planet that would actually sanction such a fight in its jurisdiction.
Contact reporter Adam Hill at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-224-5509. Follow him on Twitter: @adamhilllvrj.