Ronda Rousey Shuts Door On UFC Return: “It’s No Longer A Priority In My Life”
By Ross Markey
Former UFC bantamweight champion, ‘Rowdy’ Ronda Rousey, has shut down any potential return to mixed-martial-arts in the future. The Riverside native last featured in the Octagon back in 2016 – in an ultimately unsuccessful bid to reclaim the bantamweight throne from Brazil’s, Amanda Nunes.
The Judo practitioner has since switched her focus to professional wrestling and signed a lucrative deal with Vince McMahon’s WWE in 2018. Rousey currently holds the record for most consecutive championship defenses amongst the female competition with six successful title retentions.
The 32-year-old dropped her first professional defeat to Holly Holm at UFC 193 in infamous fashion in Australia – ending a twelve fight win streak. During her professional career, Rousey managed highlight-reel and eye-catching wins over Miesha Tate (x2), Cat Zingano, Sara McMann, Alexis Davis, Bethe Correia, Liz Carmouche, Sarah Kaufmann, Charmaine Tweet, and Julia Budd.
Speaking in a twenty-five-minute video with entertainer, Steve-O, on her official YouTube channel, Rousey opened up about her struggles with the mixed-martial-arts media, the call for a return to the sport, and the help she’s received from her husband, former heavyweight contender, Travis ‘Hapa’ Browne.
“There’s not a day that goes by people are telling me to fight,” Rousey said. “I have to try and think of it as, would I rather be the greatest of all time, or have everybody think I’m the greatest of all time? It used to be so important to me to have both. But now it’s got to the point where I don’t want to sacrifice myself or my family to prove that anymore to a bunch of people that don’t give a s**t about me. I know, and the people who love me know. It’s no longer a priority in my life. All the people that tell you, ‘Come on, fight again, do this again,’ they would never do that for me.”
“It’s hard when everyone around you, the value they have for you is how you fight, and how they see you is how they fight. and they think the only thing that you have to offer is how you fight. It was actually my husband (Travis Browne) that taught me that I’m so much more than just a fighter. I don’t have to fight myself into the ground to prove that I’m the greatest of all time when I already know that I am.”
During her prime, Rousay was one of the most heralded talents the UFC had to offer and transcended the sport – as a hugely marketable asset for the company, featuring in some blockbuster movies in the process. The armbar specialist featured in cameo roles in action films such as The Expendables 3, Furious 7, and, Entourage – and before her defeat to Holm, was expected to play the lead role in a reboot of the 1989 action film, Roadhouse.