It may just be a video game, but a recent poll might be a good indicator of a changing perspective on UFC women’s champ Ronda Rousey.
Rousey is one of the UFC’s most recognizable figures right now, and is more or less responsible for putting female MMA on the map.
It makes sense then that she was included in EA Sports’ recent poll, asking MMA fans which fighter should join Jon Jones on the cover of the upcoming UFC video game. The poll paired fighters up against each other in a single elimination bracket to determine who was the most popular.
In the opening round, Rousey was up against none other than her arch-rival Miesha Tate. It should be a pretty clear choice from an objective standpoint. Rousey is an undefeated champion. Tate lost her last fight, and is generally not ranked inside of the top five in the division.
The poll isn’t about stats though, it’s about how much fans like a particular fighter, and Tate managed to spoil Rousey’s chances at a cover spot.
According to the official UFC Twitter account, Rousey was ahead in voting with just one hour to go, only to have Tate surge ahead in the closing minutes.
The other results were a little less dramatic.
Anthony Pettis beat Demetrious Johnson, Johny Hendricks defeated Dominick Cruz, Michael Bisping topped Urijah Faber, Georges-St Pierre edged out Chris Weidman, Alexander Gustafsson overcame Daniel Cormier, Chael Sonnen took the spot over Junior Dos Santos, and Jose Aldo was voted over Benson Henderson.
The following is the second round pairings, with voting continuing through November 17:
• St-Pierre vs. Hendricks
• Pettis vs. Aldo
• Sonnen vs. Bisping
• Gustafsson vs. Tate
You can cast your own vote at www.ufc.com/covervote.