UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey was a part of WrestleMania 31 on Sunday, becoming involved in a segment that included some of the biggest stars in WWE history. While Rousey didn’t wrestle in an official match, the segment has fueled speculation that doing so could be in her future, perhaps at WrestleMania 32.
In between matches, The Rock made a surprise entrance, confronting Triple H and Stephanie McMahon. After McMahon slapped The Rock, he brought Rousey into the ring, as the champ had been watching the show from ringside. After Rousey and McMahon exchanged words, The Rock attacked Triple H, and Rousey tossed both him and his wife out of the ring.
It’s possible that Rousey’s appearance won’t lead to anything else, but the nature of the fight has led many to believe that she’s not done working with WWE. Her agent, Brad Slater, would not rule out any further involvement with the company, telling MMAFighting.com’s Ariel Helwani that it’s unclear whether or not there is a WWE match in Rousey’s future.
Rousey’s WrestleMania appearance was surprising to many, considering she’s still a UFC fighter. An initial tweet by UFC President Dana White led some to believe that he was unaware Rousey would be a part of the event, but that wasn’t the case.
"I've told you many times how I work with Dana [White]," Slater told Helwani. "I always, always call him and make sure he is OK with anything we ever do in movies, television and otherwise."
Competing in a WWE match while still under contract with UFC would be unprecedented. Brock Lesnar entered WrestleMania 31 as the WWE World Heavyweight Champion, and he was the UFC Heavyweight Champion for nearly two years. But he’s kept his stints in WWE and UFC separate. A week before WrestleMania 31, Lesnar signed a new contract with WWE, effectively ending his MMA career.
Rousey is UFC’s most dominant fighter, going 11-0 and winning her last three fights in a combined 96 seconds. Just days before WrestleMania 31, the 28-year-old announced that she signed a new contract with UFC.
"I'm a UFC fighter,” Rousey said on ESPN’s "First Take." "I just renegotiated. I have a lot of fights that I have in the UFC before I would be able to go do anything else."
Rousey’s mainstream appeal has allowed her to pursue ventures away from the world of MMA. She played a role in “The Expendables 3” last year, and she’ll appear in “Furious 7” and “Entourage,” both of which will open in theaters before the summer.
With WrestleMania 32 set to take place in Dallas next year, WWE could look to add Rousey to the card, as the company tries to fill over 100,000 fans into the stadium. She is arguably the biggest star in UFC, and putting her in a match would give the event more mainstream appeal.
While an active UFC fighter has never fought at WrestleMania, an active boxer has gotten into the ring for a WWE match. Floyd Maywather defeated Big Show at WrestleMania 24, less than four months after defeating Ricky Hatton to retain his welterweight title.
At UFC 190 on Aug. 1, Rousey will put her title on the line against Bethe Correia.