Laila Ali has been a long-time defender of boxing, and an outspoken critic of Ronda Rousey. When Rousey was an undefeated -- and almost unhittable -- champion in the octagon, Ali's criticisms seemed a little half-baked.

But after Rousey's KO loss against Holly Holm -- the first of her MMA career -- Ali's comments have a little more merit. After previously suggesting that Rousey didn't have the neck movements or the rhythm to go toe-to-toe with a trained boxer, Ali told TMZ after the fight that Holm -- a boxer-turned-MMA fighter -- was the "obvious" superior Saturday night.

Laila Ali

"[Holly] didn't shock me, of course not. I'm familiar with Holly Holm, she's a talented boxer, she's a world champion, she's got MMA background, and obviously was no chump," Ali said. "So I'm excited for her, and hopefully she'll get the exposure she needs to take her career to the next level."

In the fight, Rousey appeared unprepared to deal with Holm's boxing game, and paid dearly. While some are calling it a massive upset, Ali thinks the fight went as it should have, because Rousey -- in her estimation -- never should have been revered as the best fighter in the world.

"I don't think I need to say that. It's obvious who the better fighter was," Ali said. "It's not even about [Rousey] at this point. I think she can watch the tape and see what she needs to work on.

"In order to be the best in the world, you definitely don't EVER get beat up like that in your prime, period."

It'll be a while before Rousey can respond to those comments in a fight. She's expected to take a long break until next summer.

More: Ronda Rousey: 'I'll Be Back'

Ronda Rousey: Outside The Octagon

Story continues below