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Firas Zahabi Says Tristar Doors Open to Ronda Rousey, Discusses How He’d Improve Star’s Game

Kelsey Mowatt

Ronda Rousey

A lot of fans and pundits believe Ronda Rousey should move to a big time gym, and the doors at Tristar will be open to her, if she decides to change camps.

We haven’t heard much from Rousey since she was taken out by Amanda Nunes at UFC 207, other than she plans to take some time to consider her future. After Rousey was KO’d by Holly Holm in 2015, the former bantamweight champ elected to stay with her current team and boxing coach Edmond Tarverdyan. But, now that she’s lost again, might Rousey decide to make a move?

Well, recently Tristar’s head coach Firas Zahabi discussed Rousey’s loss in his video podcast. During the episode, Zahabi also said this (quote via Bloody Elbow):

“If you ask me if I would recruit Rousey, absolutely. I would. The only admission to Tristar gym is of course, a good attitude,” he said. “I’m not saying Ronda Rousey has a bad attitude, but if she ever came and showed interest in training with me, I would definitely tell her that the number 1 criteria here is a good attitude. That’s what I would say to all my fighters and all my members…”

“I would definitely make her defensive skill a priority. Definitely,” Zahabi added. “If you look at Georges St-Pierre, especially in the (prime) of his career, he was hit very seldomly. Rory too, early on, he was hit very seldomly. I’m a big believer in defense. It is so important, especially when we’re dealing with 4 oz gloves…”

“Ronda Rousey’s defensive skill have always been poor,” he said. “Her judo has saved her every time. If you get close enough to hit her, she grabs on to you. But Amanda Nunes was close enough to hit her, but not close enough to be grabbed…”

Although a lot of people have written Rousey off, in terms of her being able to reclaim the 135 title, you have to question if that’s a wee bit premature. When you consider how dangerous Rousey is on the ground, and that she’s only 29, you have to wonder what kind of force she might be if she moved to a super gym and focused on nothing but training. We’ll see what happens.


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