Ronda Rousey Officially Joins WWE, Makes First Appearance at Royal Rumble

January 28, 2018

Ronda Rousey has officially kicked off her new career with World Wrestling Entertainment.

On Sunday night in front of more than 17,000 fans in Philadelphia, the former UFC women’s bantamweight champion made her first appearance in WWE at the close of the Royal Rumble match.

There has been speculation for months that Rousey was going to join the WWE roster, but it’s now official, as she has inked a deal to join the professional wrestling promotion. According to a separate report from ESPN, Rousey has signed a full-time contract to join WWE.

Ronda Rousey to WWE is Not a ‘Smash-and-Grab’

“This is my life now. First priority on my timeline for the next several years. This is not a smash-and-grab; this is not a publicity stunt,” Rousey said.

Ronda Rousey“When I first met with Triple H, I told him, ‘There are other things I can do with my time that’ll make way more money, but I won’t enjoy nearly as much.'”

Leading up to the first ever women’s Royal Rumble match on Sunday night, many wondered if Rousey would make an appearance and enter the fray with a chance to then go onto perform at WrestleMania. Instead, Rousey waited until after the match was already over as her signature music “Bad Reputation” from Joan Jett hit the loudspeakers and she made her walk to the ring.

Rousey didn’t say anything on the microphone, but instead she confronted the three women standing in the ring — WWE champions Charlotte Flair and Alexa Bliss, as well as Royal Rumble winner Asuka — before pointing towards a sign for WrestleMania, which is the promotion’s biggest annual event. 

ESPN reporter Ramona Shelburne later reported that the leather jacket that Rousey was wearing to the ring was given to her by “Rowdy” Roddy Piper’s son as gift for her first appearance. Rousey got her nickname from the famed pro wrestler who passed away in 2015.

While Rousey’s UFC career has seemingly been done since her loss to Amanda Nunes in 2016, the new deal with WWE all but signifies that her time in fighting is likely finished.

Now Rousey will embark on a new career with WWE after making her shocking first appearance on Sunday night.