Ronda Rousey Is Returning to the U.F.C. Cage. Can She Dominate Again ?

When the seemingly unbeatable Ronda Rousey lost her Ultimate Fighting Championship title to Holly Holm in November 2015, it was an epic shock. It also seemed to set up the opportunity for a quick comeback story.
But Rousey is only now re-entering the Octagon after a sometimes troubled 13 months during which her star has dimmed and many fans have moved on to other idols. And it is not a sure thing who will turn up: the mixed martial arts fighter who won her matches in a matter of seconds or the one who was felled by a kick to the head in Melbourne, Australia.
In February, on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” Rousey said tearfully that in the immediate aftermath of her loss she had thought to herself, “What am I anymore?” and that she briefly contemplated suicide.
The news media seized on that interview and has been selling, and perhaps overselling, the fight Friday night in Las Vegas not as Rousey against Amanda Nunes, but as Rousey against her demons.
In a return appearance with DeGeneres in November, Rousey, 29, was more upbeat. But she also alluded to retirement. “I’m wrapping it up,” she said. “This is definitely one of my last fights.”
Since her loss, Rousey has been called “not a nice person” by President-elect Donald J. Trump, has hosted “Saturday Night Live” and has appeared in a Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. She has also been involved in film projects and continues to endorse many products, though she seems to have lowered her profile.
Rousey has often been likened to Mike Tyson, another fighter who made short work of his opponents for years. After the undefeated Tyson was stunned by Buster Douglas in 1990, he returned to win eight straight fights. But he never again captured the terrifying, unbeatable persona he established in the first part of his career.
Rousey will be hoping to quickly prove that the Holm fight was a fluke, not the beginning of the end.