Jim Ross thinks mixed-martial-arts has had a positive influence on professional wrestling, and points at Ronda Rousey as a key.
In an exclusive interview with Fightful, Ross was asked about the relationship between mixed-martial-arts and professional wrestling. He said they both originated from the same source but went further in his drawing of connections. He specified Ronda Rousey as an influence individually, especially on WWE.
"I think a couple things of MMA, I think number one the Ronda Rousey effect has been a very positive influence in how WWE position their women, the fact Ronda Rousey has created, becuase of her performance and abilities and her charisma etcetera etcetera, a tremendous marketing landscape. I'm a big Rhonda Rousey fan without question," said Ross. "I think Ronda Rousey has been a very positive influence on WWE's vision of these attractive athletic women, who have raised their game a degree as far as the athleticism is concerned," added Ross.
Rousey appeared at Wrestlemania 31 with Stephanie McMahon, who has spear headed the advancement of WWE's women division. Ross went onto say, the product of mixed-martial-arts as a whole influences the fan and promoters perceptions of what a wrestler looks like.
"The other thing MMA has done, you've seen some badass guys that are not 200 pounds in MMA," said Ross. "Size is not the only determining factor of what makes a star. It's an amalgamation of things, size is one of them, I think being an athlete is more important than size and being in athletic condition is more important than being a body builder, and that's just my personal philosophy," added Ross.
Submissions are another thing Ross sees as an influence from fighting. He said he does not remember a time when so many submissions finished "babyfaces", he attributed this to the abundance of fights on television.
The rest of the interview can be heard above.
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