The UFC, particularly its overly outspoken president Dana White, have made their fair share of mistakes of late. At least they’re viewed as mistakes.

Maybe ‘Stitch’ Duran spoke out of turn and should have been let go. It does happen in the corporate world, and let’s not kid around, big-name sports is a business. The fans spewed venom but that reaction was reactionary, and I’m sure much it, was just the proverbial last straw on the heels of the entire Reebok mud puddle.

But the mistake they made on Saturday was one of matchmaking. Or at least potential matchmaking. It is entirely based on the premise that Ronda Rousey beats Bethe Correia this coming Saturday to retain her woman’s bantamweight title.

If (or when depending on how you’re thinking goes) Rousey gets past Correia, her next opponent will be Miesha Tate. If you’ve heard this story before, close your ears like I have. If you haven’t heard it before, just press rewind … twice.

Just prior to Tate’s matchup against Jessica Eye this past weekend it was announced that the winner would be the next opponent for the Rousey/Correia winner.

It was a big blunder. There was no need to announce it before the fight.

If Eye won, then it makes sense as the hottest challenger.

If Tate won, then it would mean yet another Tate/Rousey meeting – the third of its kind with absolutely no one clamoring for a trilogy meeting.

Tate did win, and actually looked quite good after overcoming a slow start to promptly beat on Eye for the next 10 minutes.

But by promising the winner a title shot prior to the fight, the UFC made a big error. Nearly everyone with a worthwhile thought on MMA expected the more-experienced Tate to win, and almost all of those same people are prognosticating that Rousey will defeat Correia.

That means it’s Tate vs. Rousey 3.

What do you do with that fight?

Put it on PPV? If the UFC thinks that fight is a main event that will get fans shelling out $60, that a huge misfire. Even as a co-main event to, for example, a Conor McGregor/Jose Aldo tilt, the ladies’ bout is not the one we’re paying to see.

Put it on mainstream TV? If I’m FOX, I guess I’ll take this fight because the action of the fight will blend seamlessly with the overload of ads with Rousey shilling for Metro PCS.

But this fight isn’t what the fans want. It just makes no sense for Tate to face Rousey again. Tate might be the No. 1 or 2 challenger, yet she’s faced Rousey twice and been beaten twice. She lasted 54 seconds in their first meeting when Rousey had only four fights under her belt.

They fought again a year later and Tate held on till early in the third. Rousey has gotten better since, whipping Sara McMann, Alexis Davis, and Cat Zingano in a combined 1:38.

Tate has won four in a row since losing the second time Rousey – a fight that only came about since Zingano was injured in time after blasting Tate to a bloody mess. Tate’s wins since have all been via decision.

This just isn’t a sellable, good fight, but the fans might just get stuck with it. Should Rousey get by Correia, there’s only one moneymaker fight left for her at this time – the long-awaited, much ballyhooed showdown with Cristian “Cyborg” Justino.

Maybe, just maybe, Correia throws a monkey wrench into the whole thing. The UFC won’t like it if their most mainstream celebrity fight falls for the first time. Yet it might be the best thing for the division as a whole.

About The Author

Scott Zerr
Staff Writer

Scott joins The MMA Corner having spent the last 14 years in mixed martial arts as Director of Media & Fighter Relations for the Maximum Fighting Championship. He will provide The MMA Corner with insight on breaking news in the sport, plus an insider's perspective on business developments, matchmaking, fighter signings, and much more. In addition to his longtime work in MMA, Scott was a sports reporter before moving into media relations and marketing. After growing up and working in Edmonton, Alberta, Scott has since moved to Bakersfield, California to be with his wife Christina (an avid fight fan, thank goodness) and kids.