Ronda Rousey is one of many MMA-wrestling crossover stars over the years, but one of the few who was at the top of both sports. Rousey was the biggest female draw in MMA history and reigned supreme over the WWE women's division for the better part of her year in the company.
Joining Steve-O on his Wild Ride podcast, Rousey discussed the differences between the two companies in terms of pay and treatment.
"I think it comes with the age of the sport. The older the sport is, the more athletes can come together and fight for what they think they deserve as a unified front. With WWE being old, they have developmental programs where they bring people in to live and train by the [Performance Center] in Orlando. They get a salary, unlimited access to doctors and physical therapists," she said.
Rousey mentioned that when she originally joined UFC, they didn't have medical insurance, but that it slowly got better during her time in the company.
As far as payment goes, Rousey preferred the way WWE handles things as there is less uncertainty.
"WWE, everyone is on salary. It's not like 'show up for a fight, get paid, show up, get paid.' I think in WWE, they are actually considered employees instead of independent contractors."
Steve-O corrected her, saying WWE superstars are classified as Independent contractors.
Rousey acknowledged the correction and continued, saying, "They're treated like employees. They are on a salary and it's much more secure. If people get injured and can't perform, they continue to pay them and pay for their medical treatment. They really try their best not to leave people high and dry. They really invest in talent and spend time in building and developing them. As soon as they hire people, they're on salary. It's the most secure and job-like."
A big complaint among fans when it comes to the structure in WWE and UFC is a lack of union. While Rousey would like for both companies to establish something like the Screen Actors Guild and pension plans for wrestlers and fighters, she is not hopeful it will happen.
"In individual sports like WWE, it's much easier to divide people and much harder for them to unite together because people at the very top are very well taken care of. It's harder for them to unionize and make sure everyone else is looked after to get the majority share in the profits," she said.
In the same interview, Rousey caused controversy by calling WWE fans ungrateful. You can find her full comments by clicking here.
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