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UFC champion Ronda Rousey cracks Forbes' 'World's Highest-Paid Female Athletes 2015' Top 10 list

Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Women's Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey is so money ... and she knows it. Company President Dana White is well aware, too.

In fact, "Rowdy" has emerged as the biggest superstar in mixed martial arts (MMA) today, with unrivaled mainstream cross-over appeal for sponsors, movie directors, book publishers and just about everything else imaginable. And it appears that all of her hard work inside and outside the Octagon is beginning to pay off in a big, big way.


Rousey was named among the Top 10 "World's Highest-Paid Female Athletes" in 2015 by "Forbes" magazine, which calculates salary, winnings, appearances, licensing and endorsements between June 1, 2014, and June 1, 2015.

Her estimated haul during that span? $6.5 million, which was nowhere near enough to unseat professional tennis star Maria Sharapova, who has reigned as the world's highest-paid female athlete for 11 consecutive years.

Here is how "Forbes" described Rousey's financial success:
"The mixed martial arts champion had a breakout year with roles in three big budget movies over the past 12 months, a best-selling autobiography and an appearance on the cover of Sports Illustrated (she also showed up in SI's swimsuit issue). Her endorsement portfolio includes Reebok, Metro PCS, Monster headphones, Buffalo David Bitton and Carl's Jr."

And here is how here income breaks down:

  • Total earnings: $6.5 million
  • Salary/Winnings: $3 million
  • Endorsements: $3.5 million

Just a quick glance at the list of Top 10 highest-paid females, who earned a collective $124 million, and it's pretty clear that female tennis players are very well paid, accounting for seven spots on the list. Rousey, as well as NASCAR's Danica Patrick and golf's Stacy Lewis are the only non-tennis players to make the cut.

But, at just 28 years old -- and seemingly only scratching the surface of her bottomless potential -- expect Rousey to climb this list, especially with lucrative movie deals already in place and possibly on the horizon, among other money-making endeavors.

For the sake of comparison check out the complete Top 10 list from "Forbes:"

1. Maria Sharapova, Tennis ($29.7 million)
2. Serena Williams, Tennis ($24.6 million)
3. Caroline Wozniacki, Tennis ($14.6 million)
4. Danica Patrick, NASCAR ($13.9 million)
5. Ana Ivanovic, Tennis ($8.3 million)
6. Petra Kvitova, Tennis ($7.7 million)
7. Simona Halep, Tennis ($6.8 million)
8. Ronda Rousey, MMA ($6.5 million)
9. Stacy Lewis, Golf ($6.4 million)
10. Agnieszka Radwanska, Tennis ($6 million)

Seems like even more motivation for "Cyborg" to hold out for more money.

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