Ronda Jean Rousey (/ˈrzi/;[11] born February 1, 1987) is an American professional wrestler, actress, author, and former mixed martial artist and judoka. She is currently signed to WWE, and on hiatus.[12] Her longstanding nickname, "Rowdy", was inherited from late professional wrestler Roddy Piper.[1]

Ronda Rousey
Rousey HOF 2018 (cropped).jpg
Rousey at the 2018 WWE Hall of Fame induction ceremony
Born
Ronda Jean Rousey

(1987-02-01) February 1, 1987 (age 32)
ResidenceVenice, California, U.S.
Other namesRowdy[1]
Ring name(s)Ronda Rousey
Billed height5 ft 7 in (170 cm)[2][3]
Billed weight134 lb (61 kg)[3]
Trained byBrian Kendrick[4]
Goldust[5]
Kurt Angle[6]
Natalya Neidhart[7]
WWE Performance Center[8]
DebutApril 8, 2018
Mixed martial arts career
DivisionFeatherweight (2010–2011)
Bantamweight (2012–2016)
Reach68 in (173 cm)[9]
StyleJudo
Fighting out ofSanta Monica, California, U.S.
Venice, California, U.S.
TeamGlendale Fighting Club
Gokor Hayastan Academy
SK Golden Boys
TrainerGrappling: Gene LeBell, Rener Gracie, Gokor Chivichyan, AnnMaria De Mars
Boxing: Edmond Tarverdyan
Rank6th dan black belt in Judo[10]
Years active2010–2016 (MMA)
Mixed martial arts record
Total14
Wins12
By knockout3
By submission9
Losses2
By knockout2
Amateur record
Total3
Wins3
By submission3
Losses0
Other information
Spouse
Travis Browne
(m. 2017)
Notable relativesAnnMaria De Mars (mother)
Websiterondarousey.com

After becoming the first American woman to earn an Olympic medal in judo by winning bronze at the 2008 Summer Olympics, Rousey began pursuing a career in mixed martial arts (MMA). She won her MMA debut for King of the Cage before going to Strikeforce, where she became the last-ever Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Champion before the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) bought Strikeforce in 2011.[13] She was their inaugural female champion when she was named UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion. Rousey took part in the first women's fight in UFC history when she successfully defended her title against Liz Carmouche at UFC 157. After setting the record for most UFC title defenses by a woman (6), Rousey had her first professional loss in MMA when she lost her title to Holly Holm.[14][15][16][17] In 2018, she became the first female fighter to be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame.[18]

In 2018, Rousey began a career in professional wrestling, signing a contract with WWE.[19] She debuted at WrestleMania 34, and later won the Raw Women's Championship, her first WWE and professional wrestling title, at SummerSlam. She then headlined the first-ever WWE all-women's pay-per-view event when she successfully defended her title at WWE Evolution. Rousey had her first WWE loss when she lost her title in the first-ever women's WrestleMania main-event to Becky Lynch in a triple threat match at WrestleMania 35; this left her reign as Raw Women's Champion as the longest in the title's history at 232 days.

Rousey has also enjoyed success as an actress and author, appearing in the films The Expendables 3 (2014),[20] Furious 7 (2015),[21] and Mile 22 (2018),[22] and releasing her autobiography My Fight / Your Fight in 2015.[23]

Rousey is widely considered to be one of the greatest and most influential female athletes ever. She is the only woman to win a championship in both the UFC and WWE, as well as the only woman to headline a pay-per-view event in both companies.[24] Rousey was voted the best female athlete of all-time in a 2015 ESPN fan poll, and Fox Sports described her as "one of the defining athletes of the 21st century."[25][26][27][28]

Early life

Ronda Jean Rousey was born in Riverside, California[29] on February 1, 1987, the youngest of three daughters of AnnMaria De Mars (née Waddell) and Ron Rousey,[30] after whom she was named.[31] Her mother, a decorated judoka, was the first American to win a World Judo Championship (in 1984). Rousey is of English, Polish, Trinidadian, and Venezuelan ancestry.[32] Her Venezuelan maternal grandfather was partly of Afro-Venezuelan descent and her Trinidadian maternal great-grandfather, Alfred E Waddell, was a doctor who emigrated to Canada and became one of the first black physicians in North America.[33][34][35] Her stepfather is an aerospace engineer.[36] Her biological father, after breaking his back sledding with his daughters and learning that he would be a paraplegic, committed suicide in 1995 when Rousey was eight.[31][37] AnnMaria pursued a Ph.D. in educational psychology at the University of California, Riverside as her daughters grew up.[31][38]

For the first six years of her life, Rousey struggled with speech and could not form an intelligible sentence due to apraxia, a neurological childhood speech sound disorder.[39] This speech disorder was attributed to being born with her umbilical cord wrapped around her neck. When Rousey was three years old, her mother and father moved from Riverside, California, to Jamestown, North Dakota, to obtain intensive speech therapy with specialists at Minot State University.[40][41] Rousey dropped out of high school and later earned her GED.[42] She was raised between Jamestown and Southern California, retiring from her judo career at 21 and starting her MMA career at 22 when she realized that she did not want to spend her life in a conventional field of work.[43]

Olympic judo career

Rousey began judo with her mother at the age of 11. Rousey trained with her mother until she was 13, when she accidentally broke her mother's wrist.[44] At 17, Rousey was the youngest judoka to qualify for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. Rousey lost in her first match to silver medalist Claudia Heill in the 63 kg bracket. Also in 2004, Rousey won a gold medal at the World Junior Judo Championships in Budapest, Hungary.

In April 2006, she became the first female U.S. judoka in nearly 10 years to win an A-Level tournament as she went 5-0 to claim gold at the Birmingham World Cup in Great Britain. Later that year, the 19-year-old won the bronze medal at the Junior World Championships, becoming the first U.S. athlete to win two Junior World medals.[45]

In February 2007, Rousey moved up to 70 kg where she ranked as one of the top three women in the world. She won the silver medal at the 2007 World Judo Championships in the middleweight division and the gold medal at the 2007 Pan American Games.[46]

In August 2008, Rousey competed at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China. She lost her quarterfinal to the Dutch ex-world champion Edith Bosch but qualified for a bronze medal match through the repechage bracket. Rousey defeated Annett Boehm by Yuko to win a bronze medal (Judo offers two bronze medals per weight class.) With the victory, Rousey became the first American to win an Olympic medal in women's judo since its inception as an Olympic sport in 1992.[47][48]

Mixed martial arts career

Training

Rousey retired from judo at 21 after the Olympics. After winning her Olympic medal, Rousey shared a studio apartment with a roommate in Venice Beach, California and worked three jobs as a bartender and cocktail waitress to support herself and her dog.[49]

When Rousey started learning judo, her mother took her to judo clubs run by her old teammates. Rousey went to Hayastan MMA Academy, which was run by Gokor Chivichyan, where she trained with fellow future MMA fighters Manny Gamburyan and Karo Parisyan. According to Rousey, Hayastan practiced "a more brawling style of judo versus the more technical Japanese style." Rousey trained mostly with males bigger than she was and often got frustrated and cried when she got thrown and could not throw somebody. "Probably from 2002 to 2005 I cried every single night of training," Rousey remarked.[44]

Rousey trained closely with Gamburyan. After injuring her knee when she was 16, Gamburyan volunteered to open the gym every afternoon and work with her personally. Back in 2004, her teammates thought Rousey "would kill these girls" in MMA, but also thought she was "too pretty to get hit in the face" and should keep doing judo. While Gamburyan and Parisyan went into MMA, Rousey stuck with judo but remained in touch with MMA through them. The first MMA fight she took an interest in watching was Manny Gamburyan versus Nate Diaz in The Ultimate Fighter finale. Rousey stated she never got as excited watching judo or any other sport. After the 2008 Olympics the following year, she decided to start MMA through Team Hayastan.[44]

Rousey also trained at the Glendale Fighting Club, to which she was introduced by Gamburyan and other Hayastan teammates. She started training under her long-term MMA coach Edmond Tarverdyan at GFC.[50]

She trained in Jiu Jitsu at Dynamix MMA with Henry Akins from 2011 to 2014[51] and went on to train with Ryron Graice and Rener Gracie of Gracie Academy,[52] as well as BJ Penn of Art of Jiu Jitsu.[53]

Early career (2010–2011)

Rousey made her mixed martial arts debut as an amateur on August 6, 2010. She defeated Hayden Munoz by submission due to an armbar in 23 seconds.[54]

She entered the quarterfinals of the Tuff-N-Uff 145 lbs women's tournament on November 12, 2010, and submitted promotional veteran Autumn Richardson with an armbar in 57 seconds.[55]

Rousey faced Taylor Stratford in the Tuff-N-Uff tournament semi-finals on January 7, 2011, and won by technical submission due to an armbar in 24 seconds. She then announced plans to turn pro and was replaced in the tournament.[56] Rousey has a 3-0 record in amateur MMA competition, and the combined duration of all her amateur fights is under 2 minutes.[43]

Rousey made her professional mixed martial arts debut on March 27, 2011, at King of the Cage: Turning Point. She submitted Ediane Gomes with an armbar in 25 seconds.[54][57]

Rousey faced kickboxing champion Charmaine Tweet in an MMA bout at Hard Knocks Fighting Championship: School of Hard Knocks 12 on June 17, 2011, in Calgary, Canada.[58] She submitted Tweet with an armbar in 49 seconds.[59][60]

Strikeforce (2011–2012)

Early success

Rousey was scheduled to make her Strikeforce debut against Sarah D'Alelio on July 30, 2011, at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Henderson in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.[61] The fight was postponed and eventually took place on the Strikeforce Challengers 18 main card on August 12, 2011, in Las Vegas, Nevada.[62] Rousey defeated D'Alelio by technical submission due to an armbar early in the first round. The victory was controversial. Rousey claimed that D'Alelio yelled "tap" more than once and that D'Alelio denied this and claimed to have yelled "Aaaahhh". According to the unified rules of mixed martial arts, either one of these utterances would still be a verbal submission.[63]

Rousey faced Julia Budd at Strikeforce Challengers 20 on November 18, 2011, in Las Vegas.[64] She won via submission due to an armbar in the first round, dislocating Budd's elbow in the process. Following the fight, she announced plans to move down to 135 pounds to challenge Miesha Tate, the Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Champion at the time, with whom she had developed a much-publicized rivalry.[65][66]

During his appearance on The Joe Rogan Experience, Rousey's trainer Edmond Tarverdyan said that Rousey started her MMA career in the 145 lb division because she had to be able to make weight at short notice, due to the difficulty of finding willing opponents.[67]

Women's Bantamweight Champion

Rousey challenged Tate for her Strikeforce title on March 3, 2012, in Columbus, Ohio. She defeated Tate by submission due to an armbar in the first round, again dislocating her opponent's elbow, to become the new Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Champion.[68][69]

Rousey appeared in All Access: Ronda Rousey on Showtime. The half-hour special debuted on August 8, 2012.[70] UFC President Dana White revealed during the program that "In the next 10 years, if there's a woman in the octagon, it's probably going to be Ronda Rousey."[71] The second installment of the special aired on August 15, 2012.[72] Rousey also appeared on Conan.[73]

Rousey defended her Strikeforce title against Sarah Kaufman at Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman on August 18, 2012, in San Diego, California.[74] Rousey said that she would throw Kaufman's arm at her corner after ripping it off with an armbar, and threatened to choke or pound Kaufman's face to death.[75] During the fight, Rousey quickly took Kaufman down and submitted her with an armbar in 54 seconds to retain the Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Championship. After the fight, Rousey announced that if former Strikeforce Women's Featherweight Champion Cristiane "Cyborg" Santos wanted to fight her, it would have to take place at bantamweight.[76][77][78]

Ultimate Fighting Championship (2012–2016)

First female UFC Champion

 
Rousey in 2012

In November 2012, the Ultimate Fighting Championship announced that Rousey had become the first female fighter to sign with the UFC.[13][79] UFC President Dana White officially announced at the UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Diaz pre-fight press conference that Rousey was the first UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion.

Rousey originally opposed using the nickname her friends gave her, "Rowdy", feeling it would be disrespectful to professional wrestler "Rowdy" Roddy Piper. After meeting Piper (circa 2012 or 2013) through Gene LeBell, who helped train both of them, Piper personally gave his approval.[1]

Rousey defended her title against Liz Carmouche on February 23, 2013, at UFC 157. Despite being caught in an early standing neck crank attempt from Carmouche, Rousey went on to successfully defend her Bantamweight Championship title, winning the fight at 4:49 into the first round by submission due to an armbar.[80] Carmouche dislocated Ronda Rousey's jaw during the fight.[81][82]

After Cat Zingano defeated Miesha Tate at The Ultimate Fighter: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen Finale, Dana White announced that Zingano would be a coach of The Ultimate Fighter 18 against Rousey. On May 28, Zingano having suffered a knee injury, it was announced Miesha Tate would coach The Ultimate Fighter 18 against Rousey.[83]

Rousey faced Miesha Tate, in a rematch from Strikeforce, at UFC 168 on December 28, 2013. After going past the first two rounds, with Tate surviving an armbar attempt and a triangle attempt, Rousey finally submitted Tate via armbar in the third round to retain her Bantamweight Championship.[84] In an interview with Los Angeles Daily News, Rousey said she had lost muscle during her film commitments and not been able to regain her full strength for the Tate fight.[85]

Record-setting championship reign

It was announced at the UFC 168 post-fight press conference that Rousey would defend the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship against fellow Olympic medalist and undefeated fighter Sara McMann in the main event at UFC 170 on February 22, 2014. Rousey won the fight by TKO after knocking down McMann with a knee to the body just over a minute into the first round. This marked Rousey's first career win via a method other than armbar. The stoppage led to controversy, with some sports writers and attendants finding it premature.[86][87][88]

In 2014, Rousey was named one of espnW's Impact 25.[89]

On April 11, 2014, it was announced that Rousey would defend the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship against Alexis Davis in the co-main event at UFC 175 on July 5, 2014. She won the fight via knockout 16 seconds into the first round. Rousey broke her thumb during the fight.[90] The emphatic win also earned Rousey her second Performance of the Night bonus award.[91]

A match between Rousey and Cat Zingano was scheduled to take place at UFC 182 for the women's bantamweight title.[92] However, the fight was moved to February 28, 2015, at UFC 184.[93] Rousey defeated Zingano with an armbar in 14 seconds, the shortest match in UFC championship history.[94]

Rousey fought Bethe Correia on August 1, 2015, in Brazil, at UFC 190, winning the bout by knockout 34 seconds into the first round.[95] Rousey dedicated the match to "Rowdy" Roddy Piper, who died the day before, commenting that Piper was one of her inspirations and had endorsed her use of his nickname.[96]

The bout was Rousey's sixth with the UFC, all of which had been victories. She spent 1077 seconds in the octagon to attain all six and accumulated $1,080,000 in prize money; this equated to nearly $1002.79 for every second spent fighting.[97][98] Her average time of 2 minutes and 59 seconds was less than the average time of a single match in every UFC weight class, the fastest of which was the Heavyweight division with a time of 7 minutes and 59 seconds.[99]

Title loss and subsequent retirement

In her seventh title defense, Rousey faced Holly Holm in the main event at UFC 193 on November 15, 2015.[100] Despite being a heavy betting favorite, Rousey was unable to get Holm to the ground and had no answer for Holm's superior striking. Early in the second round, Holm knocked Rousey out with a high kick to the neck, ending Rousey's three-year reign as champion. It was also her first loss. After the fight, Rousey and Holm were each awarded a Fight of the Night bonus of $50,000.[101] She was also medically suspended by UFC on November 18, 2015, which included a no-contact suspension for 45 days, and no fights for 60 days, and would have to depend on CT scan results to have the suspension reduced.[102] She was medically cleared on December 9, 2015.[103]

After over a year away from the sport, Rousey returned to face current champion Amanda Nunes on December 30, 2016, in the main event at UFC 207.[104] She lost the fight via TKO due to punches at just 48 seconds into the first round.[105]

Although she did not formally announce her retirement, when asked if she would fight MMA again by Ellen DeGeneres in 2018, Rousey replied, "I think it's just as likely as me going back to another Olympics for judo."[106] She was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in July 2018.

UFC pay-per-views

(main event and co-main event)

Date Fight Event Buys
February 23, 2013 Ronda Rousey vs. Liz Carmouche UFC 157 450,000
December 28, 2013 Ronda Rousey vs. Miesha Tate (co) UFC 168 1,025,000
February 22, 2014 Ronda Rousey vs. Sara McMann UFC 170 375,000
July 5, 2014 Ronda Rousey vs. Alexis Davis (co) UFC 175 545,000
February 28, 2015 Ronda Rousey vs. Cat Zingano UFC 184 600,000
August 1, 2015 Ronda Rousey vs. Bethe Correia UFC 190 900,000
November 15, 2015 Ronda Rousey vs. Holly Holm UFC 193 1,100,000
December 30, 2016 Amanda Nunes vs. Ronda Rousey UFC 207 1,100,000
Total sales 6,095,000

Mixed martial arts fighting style

While some fighters strike an impassive pose … Rousey is nothing if not expressive. She smiles often, squinting so tightly that her eyes disappear. She cries easily, a girlhood habit she never outgrew. And before each fight she glares at her opponent as if she were getting ready to put a permanent end to a lifelong feud. After the fight, she is all smiles again, and usually unblemished.

- The New Yorker, 2014[42]

In a 2012 interview[107] before her first match with Miesha Tate, Ronda Rousey said "When I was doing judo my main advantage was my conditioning and my pace; I used to wear people out." She had taken to heart a quote from Ryoko Tani to fight every five seconds as if it was the last five seconds of the match.

A decorated judoka, Rousey typically grounds an opponent with hip throws and sweeps, then seeks to finish with strikes or submissions.[108][109] From top position, she usually attacks with punches from side control; in rear position, she often secures a back mount and attacks with head strikes.[110][111][112] Rousey is right-handed, but is a left-handed judoka fighting in an orthodox stance as a striker.[113]

Rousey's favorite MMA fighter is Fedor Emelianenko, whose fighting style she works to emulate.[114]

Rousey is well known for her skill in grappling and is particularly noted for her string of victories by armbar. Against accomplished strikers, such as Julia Budd and Sarah Kaufman, Rousey has typically brought the fight down and sought a quick submission.[109][115] Only powerful grapplers, such as Miesha Tate and Liz Carmouche, have been competitive with Rousey on the ground.[108][110]

During early fights in her MMA career, Rousey mainly used striking to set up judo. She became a more proficient striker following her UFC debut, leading to her first wins by way of stoppage. While standing, Rousey normally uses jabs, knees, and overhand rights.[116][117] She seldom stood side on with a set boxing stance, but would square up to the opponent, while still generating strong striking power, especially when near the fence, or clinching opponents with the left hand to close the distance.[118]

While discussing her signature armbar in an interview, Rousey noted that her judoka mother jumped on her every morning to wake her up with armbars.[119]

Rousey is notable for introducing trash talking to women's MMA. In many interviews Rousey has used harsh language and openly downplayed the abilities of her opponents, which she explains as a way to generate more publicity for the sport.[120][121]

Professional wrestling career

Background

Rousey is a professional wrestling fan. She, Shayna Baszler, Jessamyn Duke and Marina Shafir have dubbed themselves "The Four Horsewomen," a play on The Four Horsemen professional wrestling stable, with the blessing of members Ric Flair and Arn Anderson.[122]

WWE

Sporadic appearances (2014–2017)

 
Rousey with The Rock at WrestleMania 31

The Four Horsewomen were acknowledged on camera and commentary as such, in the front row at WWE's SummerSlam event in August 2014. The group also went backstage during the event, meeting Paul Heyman, among others.[123] Rousey was interviewed by WWE.com that night; when asked if she, like Brock Lesnar, would cross over to wrestling, she replied "You never know."[124]

At WrestleMania 31 in March 2015, the Four Horsewomen were seated in the front row. During an in-ring argument between The Rock and The Authority (Stephanie McMahon and Triple H), McMahon slapped the Rock and ordered him to leave "her ring". She taunted him, saying he would not hit a woman. He left, paused and walked over to Rousey to a loud ovation. He then helped her into the ring and said that she would be happy to hit McMahon for him. After a staredown, The Rock attacked Triple H. When he stumbled toward Rousey, she tossed him out of the ring. McMahon tried to slap her, was blocked and Rousey grabbed her arm, teasing an armbar, before throwing her out of the ring. Rousey and the Rock celebrated in the ring, while the Authority retreated with the implication of revenge.[125] The segment was replayed and discussed throughout the next night's Raw with the commentators hyping a tweet Rousey made earlier that day, in which she implied a return to WWE with "We're just gettin' started...".[126]

On July 13, 14, and September 12, 2017, the Horsewomen appeared in the audience of the Mae Young Classic to support their compatriot Shayna Baszler, who was making her WWE debut in the tournament. Additionally during the event, all four Horsewomen had a face-off with Charlotte Flair, Becky Lynch, and Bayley, who, in WWE together with Sasha Banks, are also known as the Four Horsewomen, hinting at a possible future feud between the two groups.[127][128][129]

It was reported in 2017 that Rousey had signed with the WWE on a full-time basis and had been training at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando.

Raw Women's Champion (2018–2019)

Rousey made a surprise appearance at Royal Rumble on January 28, 2018, confronting Raw Women's Champion Alexa Bliss, SmackDown Women's Champion Charlotte Flair, and Asuka, who had just won the inaugural women's Royal Rumble match. ESPN immediately revealed during the segment that she had signed a full–time contract with WWE.[19][130][131] The jacket which Rousey wore during this appearance belonged to "Rowdy" Roddy Piper, given to her by his son.[132] On February 25 at the Elimination Chamber pay–per–view, Rousey was involved in an in–ring altercation with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, after which she signed her contract (in storyline), thus making her a part of the Raw brand.[133][134]

On the March 5 episode of Raw, it was announced that Rousey will make her in–ring debut WrestleMania 34, WWE's flagship event, in a mixed tag team match pitting Rousey and Kurt Angle as her partner against Stephanie McMahon and Triple H.[135][136] At the event, Rousey submitted McMahon with her trademark armbar submission hold to secure the win for her team.[137] Her debut performance was widely praised by both fans and wrestling critics, with Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer noting that she "at no point looked out of her element, she was crisp in just about everything", calling her performance "one of the better pro wrestling debuts I've ever seen".[138][139][140] The Washington Post noted the positive fan reaction, stating "The match exceeded expectations, with fans firmly behind Rousey" and "[fans were] surprised [at her] high–level coordination and quality of wrestling. Even those who were not agreed the match was entertaining."[141]

In May, after she was challenged by then–champion Nia Jax, it was announced that Rousey would get her first opportunity at the Raw Women's Championship at the next pay–per–view, Money in the Bank.[142] At the event, Rousey went on to win the match by disqualification after an interference by Alexa Bliss, who attacked both Rousey and Jax and cashed in her Money in the Bank contract (which she won earlier that night) to win the title instead.[143][144] For her first singles match and title opportunity, she was once again praised by fans and critics for her performance, with CNET stating "For the first time, [WWE's] biggest mainstream star is a woman."[145][146] They believed that despite "worry was that the match would expose Rousey's own inexperience, which would greatly damage her aura and star power", she "came across as a formidable, believable star wrestler. The match was good, but she was awesome".[145] Throughout the next two months, Rousey would start her first feud as part of WWE with Alexa Bliss over the title, which included a suspension (again in kayfabe) after Rousey attacked Bliss, Kurt Angle and multiple officials.[147][148] After honouring her suspension from in–ring competition, Rousey received a Raw Women's Championship match by Raw General Manager Kurt Angle against Bliss at SummerSlam.[149] At the event on August 19, Rousey squashed Bliss to win the title, her first championship win in WWE.[150] In a rematch between the two that took place a month later on September 16 at Hell in a Cell, Rousey once again submitted Bliss.[151]

Throughout her championship reign, Rousey went on to fend off title contenders such as Nikki Bella (in the main event of the first all women's pay–per–view Evolution),[152][153][154] Mickie James,[155] Nia Jax,[156][157] Natalya[158][159] and Sasha Banks.[160][161][162][163] In November, Rousey was supposed to face Becky Lynch at the Survivor Series pay–per–view in an interbrand champion vs. champion match, however, Lynch was legitimately injured during an invasion angle just minutes after she attacked Rousey backstage.[164] At the event, Rousey faced Charlotte Flair instead, and won via disqualification after Flair attacked her with a kendo stick and steel chairs.[165] A month later, on December 16, at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, Rousey gained revenge against both Flair and Lynch as she pushed them off a ladder during their match, also helping Asuka win the SmackDown Women's Championship.[166] Shortly after she retained her title against Bayley, on the January 28, 2019, episode of Raw, Rousey continued her feud with Becky Lynch (who had won the Royal Rumble match) after the latter chose to challenge her in a title match at WrestleMania 35.[167][168][169][170] On the February 11 episode of Raw, Vince McMahon suspended Lynch for 60 days in storyline and announced Charlotte Flair replaced Lynch as Rousey's WrestleMania opponent.[171] On the March 4 episode of Raw, Rousey turned heel for the first time in her career when she cut a promo on fans and attacked both Flair and Lynch.[172] At Fastlane, Lynch faced Flair in a match where if Lynch won, she would be inserted back into the Raw Women's Championship match at WrestleMania. Rousey attacked Lynch during the match, giving Lynch the disqualification victory and thus the WrestleMania triple-threat match between Rousey, Flair and Lynch was made official. On March 25, WWE announced Rousey's title defense against Lynch and Flair would be the main event of WrestleMania 35, making it the first women's match to close WrestleMania.[173] At the event, in what was changed to a Winner takes all for Rousey's Raw and Flair's SmackDown Women's Championships, Lynch controversially pinned Rousey to win both titles. The commentary and production team commented that Rousey was in the ring saying her shoulders were not down for the full three-count and showed a replay of the ending pin-pointing this fact. Many fans and media were left wondering if this was a legitimate botched finish or if it was booked to end that way.[174][175] Nonetheless, this gave Rousey her first loss in WWE and ended her championship reign at 232 days, making her the current longest-reigning Raw Women's Champion.[176]

Other work

Rousey appeared nude on the cover of ESPN The Magazine's 2012 Body Issue and in a pictorial therein.[177] In May 2013, Rousey was ranked 29 on the Maxim Hot 100.[178] She also appeared on the cover and in a pictorial of the September 2013 issue. During her Maxim interview she stated that she is unbelievably ticklish and goes ninja when people try to tickle her. Also, sharing that she used to be pinned down, tickled by friends and siblings when she was younger. Previously, while on Conan O'Brien, showing off her ESPN cover and going over MMA rules, being playful, she mentioned her weakness, that she is extremely ticklish.

 
Rousey (center, middle row) alongside other actors at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival

Rousey co-starred in The Expendables 3 (2014), marking her first role in a major motion picture.[20] In 2015, she appeared in the film Furious 7, and played herself in the film Entourage.[21][179]

In 2015, Rousey became the first woman featured on the cover of Australian Men's Fitness, appearing on their November edition.[180]

In October 2015, Rousey became the first female athlete to guest host ESPN's SportsCenter.[181]

Rousey was on the cover of the January 2016 issue for The Ring magazine. She became the first mixed martial artist to ever appear on the cover of the boxing magazine and the second woman as well, after Cathy Davis in 1978.[182] In February 2016 she appeared in body paint as one of three cover athletes on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.[183]

Rousey has had a range of commercial partnerships, including mobile network operator MetroPCS,[184] insurance agency Insureon,[185] Reebok,[186] and Carl's Jr.[187]

Rousey hosted the January 23, 2016, episode of the late night variety show Saturday Night Live, with musical guest Selena Gomez.[188][189]

Rousey appeared in the Season 2, Episode 20 episode of Blindspot playing the role of Devon Penberthy, a prison inmate serving time for transporting weapons across state lines.[190]

A number of starring film roles have been developed for Rousey, including an adaptation of her autobiography My Fight / Your Fight at Paramount,[191] The Athena Project at Warner Bros.,[191] the Peter Berg-directed action film Mile 22.[192] Rousey was scheduled to star in a remake of the 1989 Patrick Swayze action drama Road House. Road House would have marked her biggest acting job to date. According to Variety, Rousey reached out to Swayze's widow, Lisa Niemi, to ask for her blessing, which Niemi gave.[193] However, the Road House project was cancelled in 2016.[194]

On July 9, 2018, Rousey was confirmed as one of the two pre-order bonus characters for the video game WWE 2K19 (the other being wrestling veteran Rey Mysterio).[195][196] She previously appeared in EA Sports UFC, EA Sports UFC 2 and EA Sports UFC 3.[197]

On January 17, 2019, it was confirmed that Rousey would be voicing Sonya Blade in the video game Mortal Kombat 11.[198]

On August 18, 2019, it was revealed that Rousey is appearing as a recurring character Lena Bosko in the third season of FOX's 9-1-1 series.[199] During her first day of shooting, she injured two fingers after her left hand was jammed in a boat door. The tip of her ring finger was fractured while her middle finger was broken with the tendon nearly severed. Rousey was rushed to the hospital, where her middle finger was mended with a metal plate and screws.[200]

Personal life

 
Rousey posing with a United States Air Force Thunderbirds plane with her name on it

As of 2017, Rousey lives in Venice, California.[201]

Rousey became a vegan after Beijing 2008,[202][203] but in 2012 described her diet as "kind of a mix between a Paleo and a Warrior diet", trying to eat everything organic.[204]

Rousey has discussed how she struggled with her body image in the past. She explained, "When I was in school, martial arts made you a dork, and I became self-conscious that I was too masculine. I was a 16-year-old girl with ringworm and cauliflower ears. People made fun of my arms and called me 'Miss Man'. It wasn't until I got older that I realized: these people are idiots. I'm fabulous."[205]

Rousey is an avid fan of Dragon Ball Z and Pokémon. Her favorite Pokémon is Mew and she had a childhood crush on Vegeta.[206] Christopher Sabat, the English voice actor of Vegeta, jokingly replied in an interview, "She has seen my power level for what it is… She also scares me."[207] She also plays World of Warcraft, primarily as a night elf hunter.[208]

In 2015, she raised money by auctioning signed T-shirts for the Black Jaguar-White Tiger Foundation, whose goal is to save big cats from circuses and zoos and provide them with the best lifestyle.[209]

In April 2015, Rousey visited Yerevan, Armenia for the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. While in Yerevan, she visited the Tsitsernakaberd Armenian Genocide memorial.[210]

Rousey endorsed Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign in the 2016 United States presidential election.[211][212]

In February 2016, in an interview with Ellen DeGeneres Rousey admitted that suicidal thoughts went through her mind in the aftermath of her knockout loss to Holly Holm in November 2015.[213]

Relationships

Rousey once dated fellow UFC fighter Brendan Schaub.[214] In August 2015, Rousey was rumored to be in a relationship with UFC fighter Travis Browne, who knocked out Schaub in a bout the previous year, after a picture of the two together appeared on Twitter and Browne's estranged wife Jenna Renee Webb accused the two of seeing one another. Browne was at the time still married and under investigation by the UFC after Webb publicly accused him of domestic violence back in July.[215] Browne confirmed he and Rousey were together in October 2015.[216] The next day, Rousey revealed that she was dating Browne.[217] Rousey and Browne got engaged on April 20, 2017, in New Zealand[218] and married on August 28, 2017 in Browne's home state of Hawaii.[219] She is a Stepmother to Browne's two sons.

In her autobiography, My Fight, Your Fight, Rousey wrote of an incident with an ex-boyfriend she dubbed "Snappers McCreepy" after she discovered that he had taken nude photos of her without her consent or knowledge, two weeks before her first fight with Miesha Tate. When a seething Rousey met him, she "slapped him across the face so hard [her] hand hurt." According to Rousey, he then refused to let her leave as he was trying to explain, so she attacked his face with two punches, one more slap, one knee, then "tossed him aside on the kitchen floor." She went to her car and he followed, grabbing the steering wheel, so she "dragged him out onto the sidewalk, and left him writhing there". Rousey deleted the photos and erased his hard drive, however fear that the pictures may still be out there influenced her to pose for ESPN magazine's Body Issue so that nude pictures of her would be seen on her own terms.[220][221][222][223] Rousey faced some criticism that she had committed domestic abuse.[224]

Filmography

Year Title Role Notes
2011 Honoo-no Taiiku-kai TV Herself TV show
2014 The Expendables 3 Luna
2015 Furious 7 Kara
2015 Entourage Herself
2016 Fighter in the Sky Jess
2016 Drunk History Gallus Mag Episode: "Scoundrels"
2017 Blindspot Devon Penberthy Episode: "In Words, Drown I"
2018 Mile 22 Sam Snow
2019 9-1-1 Lena Bosko Recurring role
2019 Total Divas Herself Guest (season 8)
Main (season 9)

Video games

Year Title Voice role Notes
2014 EA Sports UFC Herself
2016 EA Sports UFC 2 Herself Cover athlete
2018 EA Sports UFC 3 Herself
2018 WWE 2K19 Herself Pre-order bonus
2019 Mortal Kombat 11 Sonya Blade

Bibliography

  • Rousey, Ronda; with Maria Burns Ortiz (2015). My Fight/Your Fight. New York: Regan Arts. ISBN 978-1-941-39326-0. OCLC 892041615.

Championships and accomplishments

Judo

Other accomplishments

  • International Sports Hall of Fame (Class of 2018)[225]

Mixed martial arts

Professional wrestling

Mixed martial arts record

Professional record breakdown
14 matches 12 wins 2 losses
By knockout 3 2
By submission 9 0
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 12–2 Amanda Nunes TKO (punches) UFC 207 December 30, 2016 1 0:48 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States For the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship.
Loss 12–1 Holly Holm KO (head kick and punches) UFC 193 November 15, 2015 2 0:59 Melbourne, Australia Lost the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship. Fight of the Night.
Win 12–0 Bethe Correia KO (punch) UFC 190 August 1, 2015 1 0:34 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Defended the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship. Performance of the Night.
Win 11–0 Cat Zingano Submission (straight armbar) UFC 184 February 28, 2015 1 0:14 Los Angeles, California, United States Defended the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship. Performance of the Night.
Win 10–0 Alexis Davis KO (punches) UFC 175 July 5, 2014 1 0:16 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Defended the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship. Performance of the Night.
Win 9–0 Sara McMann TKO (knee to the body) UFC 170 February 22, 2014 1 1:06 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Defended the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship. Performance of the Night.
Win 8–0 Miesha Tate Submission (armbar) UFC 168 December 28, 2013 3 0:58 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Defended the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship. Submission of the Night. Fight of the Night.
Win 7–0 Liz Carmouche Submission (armbar) UFC 157 February 23, 2013 1 4:49 Anaheim, California, United States Defended the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship.
Win 6–0 Sarah Kaufman Submission (armbar) Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman August 18, 2012 1 0:54 San Diego, California, United States Defended the Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Championship; Later promoted to UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion.
Win 5–0 Miesha Tate Technical Submission (armbar) Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey March 3, 2012 1 4:27 Columbus, Ohio, United States Bantamweight debut. Won the Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Championship.
Win 4–0 Julia Budd Submission (armbar) Strikeforce Challengers: Britt vs. Sayers November 18, 2011 1 0:39 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 3–0 Sarah D'Alelio Technical Submission (armbar) Strikeforce Challengers: Gurgel vs. Duarte August 12, 2011 1 0:25 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 2–0 Charmaine Tweet Submission (armbar) HKFC: School of Hard Knocks 12 June 17, 2011 1 0:49 Calgary, Alberta, Canada Catchweight (150 lbs) bout.
Win 1–0 Ediane Gomes Submission (armbar) KOTC: Turning Point March 27, 2011 1 0:25 Tarzana, California, United States
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 3–0 Taylor Stratford Submission (armbar) Tuff-N-Uff - Las Vegas vs. 10th Planet Riverside January 7, 2011 1 0:24 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 2–0 Autumn King Submission (armbar) Tuff-N-Uff - Future Stars of MMA November 12, 2010 1 0:57 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 1–0 Hayden Munoz Submission (armbar) CFL - Ground Zero August 6, 2010 1 0:23 Oxnard, California, United States

Judo Olympic Games record

Result Rec. Opponent Score Event Division Date Location
Win 6–3   Annett Böhm 0010–0001 2008 Olympic Games -70 kg August 13, 2008   Beijing
Win 5–3   Anett Meszaros 1010–0000
Win 4–3   Rachida Ouerdane 1001–0000
Loss 3–3   Edith Bosch 0000–1000
Win 3–2   Katarzyna Pilocik 1000–0000
Win 2–2   Nasiba Surkieva 1010–0000
Loss 1–2   Hong Ok-song 0001–0010 2004 Olympic Games –63 kg August 17, 2004   Athens
Win 1–1   Sarah Clark 1000–0001
Loss 0–1   Claudia Heill 0000–0010

See also

References

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External links

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Miesha Tate
4th and final Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Champion
March 3, 2012 – December 6, 2012
Vacant
Became UFC Champion
New championship 1st UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion
December 6, 2012 – November 15, 2015
Succeeded by
Holly Holm