I know I speak in definitives a lot, but it has to be up there, right? We are talking about Ronda Rousey. The most famous female combat fighter in history. A woman who has made millions upon millions of dollars based on the idea that she's far and away the best amongst her peers. Like it or not, Ronda Rousey's popularity never stemmed from being the best female the UFC had to offer. If it was then how come not one of us knew the name of the champion that came before her? Her popularity was predicated on being THAT MUCH better than her competition. It was predicated on being one of the few women that could potentially compete in a male dominated profession. It was never, ever going to come to fruition, but her ability to link, albeit weakly, male and female athletics is what made her a household name.
Think about the questions you heard most regarding Ronda Rousey. Could she compete against the men in her field? Could she beat Floyd Mayweather Jr. in mixed martial arts? It was never about who she was actually fighting. Shit, I had to double check to find the name of the woman that just beat her. It was who would win in fictitious, inconceivable fights that never stood a chance of ever taking place given this country's problem with domestic abuse. The most important contributor to Rousey's rise to prominence wasn't her punching, kicking, or grappling ability, even though she remains superior at all those things, it was the unknown. Holly Holm didn't just knock out Ronda Rousey the person, she pulverized her aura of invincibility.
Now, I use the term "detrimental" in reference to her UFC career and nothing else. She has already abused her fame for all it's worth. She is in multiple upcoming movies, has a book out, has already done guest spots on nearly every television station you can possibly imagine. One loss in the octagon isn't going to leave her out on her ass. Far from it, obviously. However, that mystic of being unbeatable? That's gone, and it's never coming back. She's not going to be on the cover of anymore boxing magazines. No one is going to take her seriously when she claims she makes more money per second than the wealthiest boxer in history. The unknown is now known, and it's that Ronda Rousey is just a really good female UFC fighter and nothing more. There's no shame in that, but there's also no "larger than life" persona that leaves the sports world saying "what if?".
P.S. There is some chatter that this fight was fixed. Not saying that I totally believe, but it does make sense with how much time she will have to devote to her acting career. You don't want the belt held by someone that's currently out of the sport. Still, can't imagine anyone would willingly take a punch like this to face no matter what the payout is, and if she did take a fall she definitely did a disservice to women's sports.