Kenny Florian and Daniel Cormier, co-hosts of “UFC Tonight,” recently discussed Saturday night’s UFC 184 main event between Ronda Rousey and Cat Zingano.
The fighters will collide for the UFC female bantamweight belt on pay-per-view from Los Angeles.
Florian, a multi-time title contender, believes the first few minutes could reveal what goes down inside the Octagon.
“If I’m Ronda Rousey, I know Cat starts off slow and I’m going to go hard and fast,” he said. “I believe she has a speed advantage. She has to land her hands on Cat, get in the clinch and bring the heat. But Cat is bigger than Ronda and has to use that size. She has to use it as a counter to Ronda’s judo clinch.”
As for the keys to the bout, Florian pointed to Rousey’s Olympic background in judo.
“She has world class judo, but it’s the development of her striking that’s changed this. She has knockout power. Ronda needs to get Cat to the clinch, land the takedown, and look for the finish. She can finish it with striking or with the armbar.
“I believe she gets it done on Saturday night.”
Cormier, meanwhile, wants to see what kind of tempo the champion tries to set from the start.
“For Ronda, she has to be Ronda Rousey. She has to move forward and look the armbar or for the finish. She’s so opportunistic. She can do so much more than grapple now. I think Ronda has a good chance to get a finish in this fight,” he said. “But Cat has a great Muay Thai clinch, and gets off brutal damage when she uses it. She gets a front head lock, which is a wrestling position, and from that, she land’s nasty knees, and controls her opponent and makes them tired.
“But that might be inviting Ronda into her most dominant position, the clinch, and it sets herself up for Ronda’s throws and takedowns.”
He continued, stating Zingano needs to make sure to avoid going to the ground with “Rowdy.”
“Cat Zingano was supposed to have this title shot a long time ago. She’s made improvements with her striking. She needs to keep it standing,” he said. “She can’t win a grappling match. She also needs to keep the distance and keep striking. She needs to stop the takedowns and control the clinch. And she needs to establish top control.
“All of Ronda’s finishes come from top position, so Cat needs to keep her from getting that top control.”