Ronda Rousey Stats:
From: Riverside, California USA
Fights Out Of: Venice, California USA
Height: 5′ 7″ ( 170 cm )
Weight: 135 lb ( 61 kg )
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Ronda Rousey Biography
At 28 years old, UFC bantamweight champion “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey is currently considered to be the biggest star in the sport – a remarkable achievement given that just three years ago female fighters weren’t even competing in the sport’s leading promotion.
Rousey was born into the martial arts with her mother, Dr AnnMaria De Mars already a decorated Judo practitioner who had become the first U.S citizen ever to win a gold medal at the Judo World Championships in 1984.
It wasn’t long before Rousey followed in her footsteps and she proved to be a natural, qualifying for the 2004 Olympic games in Athens at the tender age of 17. Four years later she claimed Bronze at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, becoming the first ever American woman to claim a medal in Judo.
Early MMA Career
Almost exactly two years later, Rousey, now 23 years old and nicknamed ‘Rowdy’, transitioned to MMA. She quickly compiled a 3-0 amateur record, then in March of 2011 made her professional debut. By November, she had already won four pro bouts, all inside the first minute of the fight, all by armbar – a submission she was taught by her mother at a young age which was now becoming her trademark finish.
Such was the buzz now surrounding her that Strikeforce offered her a headline bantamweight title shot against recently crowned champion, Miesha Tate. Despite the step-up in competition and a heated rivalry with Tate pre-fight, the end result remained the same: first round victory by armbar. Rousey was now Strikeforce’s 135lb champion and cemented her place there with yet another armbar win over seasoned veteran, Sarah Kaufman.
Such was Rousey’s level of skill and success in the cage that UFC President Dana White admitted she had single-handedly changed his mind on bringing woman’s MMA to the UFC, and so she again made history by becoming the promotion’s first ever female signing.
Rousey’s was installed as champion in a newly formed woman’s 135lb division with her first defense coming against Liz Carmouche in the main event of UFC 157 in February of 2013, and despite expectations being higher than ever, ‘Rowdy’ didn’t disappoint with the almost inevitable conclusion being a first-round armbar finish.
A rematch with her rival Miesha Tate followed in December and this time, they fought until early in the third round where Rousey tapped out Tate in the same manner all of her previous fights to retain her title.
By this stage the other aspects of Rousey’s MMA game were beginning to evolve and that bore fruit in 2014 as ‘Rowdy’ first TKO’d former Olympic wrestling silver medalist Sara McMann with a knee to the liver in 66 seconds, then KO’d Alexis Davis with punches in just 16 seconds.
Rousey returned to her favored armbar submission in early 2015 to submit Cat Zingano in a mere 14 seconds before once again showing off her punching power to KO the outspoken Bethe Correia in her native Brazil in 34 seconds at UFC 190 in August.
The Biggest Sports Star in the World?
Rousey’s popularity is now at an all-time high with 900,000 fans reported to have watched her last fight on pay-per-view, while she won ‘Best Fighter’ at the 2015 EPSY’s and was named ‘Most Dominant Female Athlete Alive’ by both Sports Illustrated and Business Insider.
Next up comes a fight with former multiple time boxing champion Holly Holm which will take place at the 70,000 seat Etihad Stadium in Melbourne, Australia, with Rousey hoping to break another record for the highest attendance in UFC history.
In addition to her MMA career, Rousey is also becoming a star in Hollywood with appearance in movies like The Expendables 3, Furious 7 and Entourage, while she was recently cast as the lead in a remake of 80’s cult classic ‘Road House’ and in a movie based on her best-selling autobiography, ‘My Life/Your Life’.