The comments dominated social media, sports talk radio, SportsCenter and sports bar chat.
“In a no-rules fight, I believe I can beat anyone on this planet,” UFC champion Ronda Rousey proclaimed Monday during a Reddit “ask me anything” chat.
But Rousey wasn’t talking about “anyone” – her comments were aimed at undefeated boxing champ Floyd Mayweather, with whom she has feuded since last summer.
“Do I think I would beat Floyd in a rule-less fight? … He would definitely beat me in a boxing match. … ” Rousey said. “But you said rule-less fight, and that’s my honest answer.”
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In their feud, Mayweather fired the first jab when asked about Rousey in July 2014: “I don’t even know who he is.”
In May, while promoting her role in the movie “Entourage,” Rousey landed a low blow while responding to a question on Access Hollywood: “I don’t think me and him would ever fight – unless we ended up dating.”
Then when Rousey won an ESPY award for best fighter over Mayweather and others, she fired back: “I wonder how Floyd feels about being beaten by a woman for once. I’d like to see you pretend to not know who I am now.”
All that talk makes for good ratings and plenty of retweets, but Rousey vs. Mayweather isn’t Billie Jean King vs. Bobby Riggs. King and Riggs played tennis – not to be confused with “no-rules” fighting – and King was 29, 26 years younger than Riggs, when she whipped him in straight sets in the “Battle of the Sexes II” in 1973.
Lots of folks say they would like to see Mayweather beaten by a woman, given his history with domestic violence, but everyone who thinks that is wasting their time.
Rousey and Mayweather will never get into the octagon (or ring) together. Rousey has said “there’s no setting in which we should condone a man hitting a woman,” and no sanctioning body would approve.
Besides, is that really what boxing and MMA fans want – a man and a woman attacking each other in the name of sport?
- WHAT TO WATCH: NFL, St. Louis at Raiders, 7 p.m., Ch. 58: Sure, it’s the preseason, but it’s the first chance for Raiders fans to see their team play for coach Jack Del Rio.
- TWITTER CHATTER: “Ronda Rousey said the Jets’ locker room fight was way too long.” – @mikefreemanNFL
- ON THIS DATE: On Aug. 14, 1994, Nick Price won the PGA Championship with an 11-under-par 269, six strokes ahead of Corey Pavin. It was the lowest stroke total in an American major championship.