Rhea Ripley speaks on the progression of women's wrestling.
At the 2023 WWE Royal Rumble event, Rhea Ripley made history with her Royal Rumble victory, setting a new record for the longest time spent in a women's Royal Rumble and becoming the first woman to start the match and go wire-to-wire.
This year, the men's Royal Rumble opened the show. When asked about the friendly competition between the men and the women in WWE, Ripley noted that it's usually the women opening the show and telling the men, "follow that." However, she believes that the women getting the chance to go on later in the show is proof of the progression of women's wrestling in WWE.
"So I've watched bits and pieces of [the Men's Royal Rumble]. Obviously, I was out there for a little bit as well. I got Speared on the concrete. Thank you, Beth [Phoenix]. But you know, I got up, and I won. So it doesn't matter," she said to Ariel Helwani of BT Sport. "There's always competition between us and the men. Normally, the women were always on first, so the thing that we say is 'follow that,' but we were on second this time, so obviously, we've been doing it right the last few years because we've made it down the card. We got to go on semi-main, really put on a show, and get the time and just go out there and show everyone what the women can do."
Rhea Ripley had previously noted during a post-show press conference that she dislocated her knee early in the match. However, her knee quickly popped back into place as she said she'd had knee issues throughout her time as an athlete.
"I just have knee problems. I've always had them growing up playing soccer. My kneecap just sometimes slides out of place, and it sort of goes to the side. Sometimes it will go to the very back of my knee, and then I just have to straighten it, and it goes back. It hasn't done it for years. So I don't know what made it do it. I guess I haven't drank enough water today or eaten enough. Yeah, it slid out for a little bit, but I popped it back in straight away," she said.
Bayley, who had her Steel Cage Match against Becky Lynch cut for time during WWE Raw XXX, also commented on the state of women's wrestling in WWE recently, stating that she doesn't want wrestling fans to think that women's wrestling in WWE is regressing. Fans can read her comments here.
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