Despite her ground-breaking success in professional wrestling, which saw her become the first woman to headline WrestleMania, former UFC champion Ronda Rousey still possesses a MMA career that ended in devastating fashion.
Rousey, 32, is widely regarded as one of the best female fighters to ever step inside of the UFC’s Octagon. Her early UFC success, which included title defenses over Miesha Tate, Cat Zingano, Alexis Davis, and Sara McMann, helped blaze the trail for women’s MMA today. Without Rousey, the sport simply wouldn’t be as diverse as it is.
That said, Rousey’s success came to an abrupt stop back in 2015 when she was knocked out by Holly Holm in one of the biggest upsets in UFC history. After that loss, Rousey returned to action 13 months later only to get sparked by current UFC women’s bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes in just 48 seconds. Those two losses essentially ended Rousey’s professional fighting career and left her to sign with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in 2018.
With her MMA career in the rear view (for now), some have wondered what Rousey feels about her UFC legacy. Unfortunately, “Rowdy” recently revealed that she doesn’t believe fight fans deserve to hear her take. That obviously doesn’t sit well with some in the MMA community, especially when it comes to Rousey’s former rival, Miesha Tate.
“It’s very Ronda-esque,” Tate told SiriusXM about Rousey’s comment on her own legacy. “Look, she’s not wrong even though it’s a bit arrogant, but that’s the style that people have appreciated about Ronda. It’s not necessarily something I appreciate about Ronda, but when you talk about her legacy this does sum it up in one quote, really. It’s that she knows she has value and interest but she also doesn’t really give a sh*t what anybody else wants to hear.
“She’s not entirely an open book. She’s not there entirely for the fans, selflessly. Ronda has always been about Ronda so it doesn’t surprise me. She’s continuing to be exactly how she’s always been. Again, not wrong, but when I listen to this, she almost sounds emotional. I don’t think she’s entirely happy with her legacy. The point that Ronda makes about us not deserving to hear it and about the vulnerability, I think that it speaks again to point that she left the sport worse than she entered it.”
Tate, who is currently retired from MMA, lost to Rousey twice in her professional career. The first time came under the Strikeforce banner back in 2012 in which Rousey broke Tate’s arm via armbar to win the 135-pound title. The rematch then occurred nearly two years later under the UFC banner in which Rousey again submitted “Cupcake” via armbar, this time to retain her UFC title.
If any opponent knows the inner workings of “Rowdy” it’s Tate, who believes Rousey isn’t confident enough in her own legacy to openly talk about it.
“She has that inflated ego, she does have all of those things,” Tate continued. “I talk about myself and we’re polar opposites, that’s why we never really got along. I started my career off a loss. I started my career with the humble approach, so I’m a very open book. I’ve got nothing to hide. I win some, I’ve lost some, I don’t have the need to put myself on a pedestal or not be an open book. I enjoy being transparent because I hope that somebody can take something away from my gains and my losses. I’ve lost horribly in front of the entire world and so did Ronda.
“She has a chance here to open up and to give some insight and perspective and motivation but she’s obviously not at that point where she feels good enough about her own legacy to be vulnerable and to reflect and give back. She’s obviously not in a good place with it. That’s my takeaway when I see this, that she’s not prepared to be vulnerable in front of us.”
For now, Rousey will step away from WWE to focus on starting a family. Maybe in the future she’ll feel more comfortable discussing her MMA past and how the ups and downs of fighting helped mold her into who she is today.
“She wants to be the hard Ronda Rousey, the one that was back in 2014,” Tate concluded. “I always said winning is easy. You don’t have to make any adjustments. You don’t have to make any changes. You’re on the top of the world, you’re doing great. When you lose, that’s when you see what you’re really made of.”