Mauro Ranallo has nothing but praise for Ronda Rousey. The veteran voice of NXT has followed Rousey from her early days of MMA as the lead commentator during her Strikeforce bouts.
Speaking Edge & Christian on the Pod of Awesomeness, Ranallo discussed why fans have taken to Rousey so quickly.
"She of course brings that element of danger. Authentic, real danger. Watching her -- even in her match against Alicia Fox, her first official on Raw. And looking at what she has done thus far. Looking at why she has connected so much, it's because she's legitimately a bad ass. We know what she accomplished in MMA."
MMA fighters transitioning to professional wrestling is nothing new. But most success stories involve males making the change. Rousey is the first female to be a bonafide superstar in MMA and walk away to pursue professional wrestling. Ranallo believes she won't be the last.
"She's opened the doors for people like Shayna Baszler and the entire Four Horsewomen. I think this is going to open the door for even more female mixed martial artists. Once they hang up the gloves in the cage or ring, there may be an opportunity to continue their career here in WWE."
Those who didn't like Rousey during her time in the UFC and were waiting for her to fail faced disappointment when Rousey turned in an exceptional performance at WrestleMania. Rousey could have taken her star power as one of the biggest box office draws in UFC history and gotten away with just about anything in WWE. But she's been praised by everyone for how she's handled herself upon entering the WWE.
"I had high expectations. Her commitment and talking to people down at the Performance Center, there was no 'diva attitude' or 'huge star attitude.' She's one of the most famous athletes on the planet and she came in, she wanted to learn, she put her nose to the grindstone, and I think she's exceeding expectations thus far."