By Francisco Salzar
Mixed martial arts fighter Ronda Rousey is never one to shy away from a fight. She has proven it in the cage as she lands elbows, roundhouse kicks, or when she applies her signature arm-bar submission move.
However, the attractive 26 year old has a vested interest in the boxing game, especially when someone she trains with is involved in a big fight.
Unbeaten super featherweight Art Hovhannisyan, who trains alongside Rousey, will fight Alejandro Perez in a scheduled 10 round bout on Friday night at the Morongo Casino Resort and Spa in Cabazon, CA.
The bout will headline a “ShoBox: The New Generation” card, presented by Gary Shaw Productions.
One night after Hovhannisyan faces off against Perez, Rousey will fight Liz Carmouche at the Honda Center in Anaheim, CA on Saturday night.
Both combatants usually train at the Glendale Fighting Club in Southern California, but trained up in the Big Bear Mountains in preparation for their respective bouts.
Both Hovhannisyan (15-0-2, 8 KOs) and Rousey share the services of trainer Edmond Tarverdyan. While both put in long hours of training and conditioning, it is not uncommon for both to show their competitive spirit against one another. Because of that, Rousey appreciates and respects the road towards a big fight or a world title opportunity that Hovhannisyan is traveling.
“Art is the hardest worker I know and since I’m competitive, I have to match as much as does in the gym,” Rousey told Boxingscene.com over the phone on Tuesday night. “We really push each other every single day.”
Rousey has sat at ringside for Hovhannisyan’s bouts, cheering on or even shouting instructions to the Armenian-born fighter. Rousey sat nervously at ringside during Hovhannisyan’s last bout, a wild 10 round split decision over Miguel Acosta on July 20th.
Rousey, who won a bronze medalist in judo in the 2008 Olympics, is eager to see what mixed martial arts will bring. However, Rousey admitted that she is fascinated with the sport of boxing. She often stays after her gym sessions are over to watch Hovhannisyan or other fighters spar in the gym.
While women’s boxing could get a shot in the arm if Rousey decides to pick up the sport, it will not be for a while.
“We’ve talked about boxing after I’m done with MMA. If I still have the energy and ambition to do it, I could give boxing a go. I went from the Olympics to MMA, so it depends if I still have the energy to go into boxing. However, I don’t even have a clue what I’m doing a month from now.”
Although it is highly unlikely Rousey will be ringside for Hovhannisyan’s bout against Perez on Friday night, you can count on her watching him on television.
Rousey may not pick up the sport of boxing when she is done with her mixed martial arts career. However, she will be connected with boxing so long as Hovhannisyan keeps fighting and winning.
Just like Hovhannisyan is serious about becoming the top dog at 130 pounds, Rousey is equally as serious to be the best mixed martial arts fighter.
It is just their nature to never shy away from anything. Regardless of the sport they are in.