"Rowdy" Ronda is looking to climb her way to the top of the sports-entertainment mountain.
The newest signee to the Monday Night RAW brand is not looking for any handouts, as she wants to work her way to the top of WWE's women's division. Following the WrestleMania 35 press conference, Ronda Rousey was interviewed by Postmedia News as she dug deep into her childhood, talked expectations for herself in WWE, reflected on her MMA career and more.
AnnMaria De Mars; the first American to win gold at the Judo World Championships and the mother of Ronda Rousey did not want Ronda competing in Judo at a young age, mainly because of the expectations that would fall onto her daughters' shoulders.
"She didn’t want me to do judo at first because she felt like people would expect too much of me because I’m her daughter,” Rousey said. “Her old teammates, who had opened up clubs of their own at that pointcwere like, ‘Nobody remembers you, don’t you worry about it, let her do it."
Rousey would then continue showing respect to her mother for molding her into a woman, competitor and a champion.
"If anyone would profess to have the best tools possible to mold a young mind into being a fighter and a competitor and a champion, it’s my mother,” Rousey said. “I owe everything to her. I tell stories about how she was tough on me as a kid, but I remember those stories with fondness. I’m not complaining. I’m kind of laughing at how dramatic I was as a kid. My first injury was I broke my big toe. I was 11 and my mom made me run laps around the mats the whole night. I was crying, running laps and saying, ‘Mom you’re so mean’, ‘Normal moms don’t do this’ and ‘This is terrible’. She looked at me as I was crying and she said, ‘Hey, what are you going to do if you break it at the Olympics? You need to know that you can still fight and your body listens to you, you don’t listen to your body.’”
Although the former UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion has been training for months behind the scenes, she shared that the transition to the squared circle is not as smooth as most think. Rousey stated that she is amazed at how the sport of pro wrestling comes together as a whole.
"I’m completely amazed at what these athletes are really able to do; not just physically, but mentally. They can make up these entire matches by just talking to each other about it for five minutes and they barely do anything physical to each other and then they just walk out and put on these incredible matches. If we were to film the exact same thing for a movie, it would have to have been drilled for six weeks straight and probably have taken about three different takes before we even got one good one. I’m just blown away every day at what everybody in this business is capable of.”
Prior to Rousey's amazing accomplishments in the world of MMA, she referred to herself as a "punk kid" when detailing how she came across the blessing of being able to use "Rowdy" in her name; approaching WWE Hall Of Famer "Rowdy" Roddy Piper and getting the "Ok" to use his signature nickname.
"I was a little punk kid who wanted to start doing MMA, my first amateur fight was coming up and I met him and I asked him, ‘Hey, is it OK if I use the name Rowdy? And he was like, ‘Yeah, sure kid, whatever.’ He probably didn’t think it would turn into this,” Rousey said. "Even though he didn’t think much of it at the time, it really meant the whole world to me and it made a huge difference to me and when things started really picking up and taking off. I just wanted his family to feel like him entrusting his name to me was one of the best decisions that he made. I really want to make them proud and I want to do the name justice and every single time I walk out there, I want people to remember him and the great man that he was and what he did not just for the sports entertainment industry, but for all of sports.”
At WrestleMania 34, Ronda Rousey will have her first sanctioned pro wrestling match as she teams up with current RAW GM Kurt Angle to take on Stephanie McMahon & Triple H. Rousey says that if she pours every bit of energy she has into making this match a success, along with the support of those involved; then she will have no choice but to make everyone proud who has believed in her.
"If I’m pouring every ounce of energy I have into this being a success and they’re doing everything they can to set me up for success, all I can do is go out there and prove them right for believing in me. Yeah, it’s a lot of pressure and probably a crazy and unrealistic amount of pressure to put on someone for their first match ever, but you know what, if anyone in the world can handle it, I believe it can be me. Success after all, is earned."
Rousey would further dive into her MMA career and discussed tons more. To read more from the "Rowdy" One, head over to Postmedia News for the full interview.