UFC bantamweight champion Holly Holm wants to give former champ Ronda Rousey a chance to win back her title, but it doesn’t mean she’s willing to hand over the belt. Holm said she knows Rousey will come back in any rematch “with a vengeance,” so she plans to train harder than ever to beat her again.
Even though Holm, 34, was able to hand Rousey, 28, her first loss in UFC competition in Melbourne, Australia, last Sunday, she doesn’t underestimate the former Olympian. “She’s a very dominant athlete, a very hard-working athlete, so I know she’ll be coming back with a vengeance, and I’ll have to be ready,” Holm told Extra co-host Mario Lopez Thursday night. “I’ll train just as hard, I’ll train twice as hard for the rematch, because anyone who has been as successful as Ronda has obviously been a champion for a reason.”
A rematch between Rousey and Holm has not been confirmed, but UFC President Dana White said it would make sense. “I think the rematch is what people would want to see,” he said at a post-fight press conference in Melbourne.
Holm’s respect for Rousey is clear. She even took a page out of boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s book and surprisingly came to her defense against critics, such as Lady Gaga, 50 Cent and those pesky Internet trolls. “I think people can be pretty brutal,” Holm told TMZ Sports. “When you’re in the spot she’s in, there are people that are just going to jump ship, and I don’t ever wish for that.”
As willing as Holm is to take on Rousey in the octagon, the rematch may not happen for some time. The former champ announced a break from the UFC before her brutal loss to Holm so she could focus on two feature films. Rousey is set to star in “Road House,” a remake of the Patrick Swayze classic, and “Mile 22.” She previously appeared in the “Entourage” movie, “Furious 7” and “The Expendables 3.”
Another thing to note is that it’s unclear whether Rousey wants a rematch. She has made only one statement since Holm tarnished her record. “I just wanted to thank everyone for the love and support,” Rousey wrote on Instagram Sunday. “I appreciate the concerns about my health, but I’m fine. As I had mentioned before, I’m going to take a little bit of time, but I’ll be back.”
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