Khabib who? Ronda Rousey was the first to savagely slam UFC ring girls

UFC veteran Ronda Rousey had a much harsher opinion of ring girls than Khabib Nurmagomedov yet you’ll hear MMA fans talk about his a lot more often.

Khabib infamously questioned the utility of ring girls and offered up his opinion saying:

“These [women] are passing by and showing people that it is the second round but no one looks at the [card],” Nurmagomedov said.

“I feel uncomfortable with my father.”

He continued: “I am not against it but if you want to do it, don’t impose it to me, do it aside. There are designated places for it.

“I think we must not mix all of it. This is my private opinion. We develop sport there, first of all. There should be some show elements, for sure. People want to come and watch, it is interesting for them. I think to mix it is incorrect.”

These attitudes resemble those of UFC veteran Uriah Hall who recently question why the ring girls are outearning UFC athletes – all while dodging the  damage and risk MMA entails.

Ronda Rousey’s diss targeting ring girls predates both of these but it has a similar point. UFC’s first superstar previously said:

“Ring girls are the most useless people in martial arts.” Rousey said.

“I never think about if someone likes this or not. I know all the time I say strange things too, but I don’t care if this is my opinion. I was born with this, I grew up with this. People don’t like when they agree with this but who cares?”

“I don’t care because I know I’m right in my mind. I never watch what people think about it. If I have an opinion, I just say it. That’s it.” Rousey added.

Rousey received a backlash following this comment. But didn’t change her mind..

“What did I say that makes me a bully? I said that the fighters should get paid more than the ring girls.” Rousey said.

” Yeah. Doesn’t make me a bully. That makes you right. Sorry, but she wouldn’t have a job if it wasn’t for the fighters. She wouldn’t. Do you think her walking in circles around the two guys or two girls out there, like fighting for their lives, is worth more.”

“I think she works harder than they do. I didn’t say that she needed a pay cut. I said either the ring card girls are paid too much or the fighters aren’t paid enough for her to take that personally. You know what? The best thing for her to say? ‘Oh, my God. You know these fighters, we work so hard and I wouldn’t have a job if wasn’t for them’.”

“‘And I just admire them so much. And yeah, I definitely think that they should get paid more than anybody in that arena tonight. ‘ They got this PR lesson for her. Sorry, but I’m not impressed with the job in itself.”


Fans were quick to point out that Nurmagomedov faced a lot more scrutiny for similar attitudes. Of course, this is in part due to Nurmagomedov keeping strictly to tenants of his faith and not wanting women to do MMA as evidenced by the fact that one of his first moves as an MMA promoter was to disband the female division and release the champion of what’s now known as Eagle FC.