This promo video for the upcoming Miesha Tate vs. Ronda Rousey Strikeforce fight on Showtime is making the rounds today in MMA cyberdom. No, really, these two can fight. Rousey even won a bronze medal in judo in the Beijing Olympics.
But let's look past the video, yes? In March 2011, the UFC purchased Strikeforce, which was interesting not only from a business perspective (the UFC would soon be fending off an FTC antitrust investigation (successfully) but also from the Susan B. Anthony angle: UFC president Dana White had long said that women would never fight in his organization. And Strikeforce had organized plenty of women's fights, making stars out of Gina Carano and Cyborg Santos.
To date, White has been true to his word: the UFC has never had a women's fight on a card. To be fair, however, this isn't so much because White has something against women fighting professionally. It's more because he feels it doesn't make economic sense for women to fight in the UFC. Not enough star power, he says. Not a deep enough division to create enough entertaining fights.
So the women continue to throw down in Strikeforce, which exists as an adjunct promotion to the UFC, at least for another two years. Tate vs. Rousey will be the first women's fight to headline a Strikeforce card since the UFC bought the promotion. And the MMA wonks believe the high production quality of this video might indicate that the UFC's marketing team has stepped in to promote. In a way, White now gets to have his women's fights without having them. Clever.