Former undisputed UFC and Strikeforce bantamweight champion, Ronda Rousey has claimed that a potential future showdown with long-time rumored opponent, Gina Carano would likely draw her from her 2016 mixed martial arts retirement.
Ronda Rousey, who has since turned her hand to professional wrestling with the Vince McMahon-led, WWE – ended her professional mixed martial arts career back in 2016 following a UFC 207 knockout loss to former two-weight champion, Amanda Nunes.
Ending her professional run boasting a 12-2 record, Rousey, one of the most recognisable figures in the sport’s mainstream and a true pioneer amongst her weight class and peers, suffered consecutive losses to end her career following a span of 12 consecutive victories.
Entering the UFC back in February 2013 after her promotion to undisputed bantamweight champion following Strikeforce spoils, Ronda Rousey would defeat Liz Carmouche in her Octagon debut – before going on to secure five consecutive, successful defenses of the bantamweight throne to boot.
In the time since her pair of brutal knockout losses to former division champions, Holly Holm, and Amanda Nunes, Rousey has been linked with a rematch against the former, as well as a trilogy matchup with Miesha Tate – a long-rumored bout with the decorated, Cris Cyborg, and a pairing opposite undisputed bantamweight best, Julianna Pena.
Ronda Rousey heaps praise on fellow sport pioneer, Gina Carano
However, floating a potential return to professional mixed martial arts in the future, the 35-year-old, Rousey named fellow Strikeforce alum and pioneer, Carano as a opponent who could coax her from her retirement.
“I mean, I’ve said it a million times,” Ronda Rousey said on The Kurt Angle Podcast. “It’s not like it’s something new, but, for Gina, man. Gina Carano. She’s the reason why I got into fighting, she’s the reason why i knew it was a possibility. I will always be forever grateful… and if she ever was like, ‘Ronda, I wanna fight you tomorrow at 205lbs,’ like, whatever the hell she’d want – I’m not saying she’s 205lbs – if she wanted to come into my backyard and do the ‘Rocky’ thing or, you know ding, ding and we just do it in the backyard, I don’t care.”
“I will fight Gina wherever she wants and if she doesn’t want to forever, leave (that there),” Ronda Rousey explained. “It’s a respect thing, not like a, ‘F*ck you, I’m coming to get you.’ It’s just like, ‘Hey, if you ever wanna pull that card out, it’s there.’ I love her. Thank you, Gina, for everything you’ve done.” (Transcribed by BJPENN.com)
Over the course of her career, Rousey has defeated the likes of Julia Budd, Miesha Tate, Sarah Kaufman, Sara McMann, Alexis Davis, Cat Zingano, and Bethe Correia.
As for Carano, the 40-year-old ender her professional career with a 7-1 record, suffering a knockout loss to the aforenoted, Cyborg at a Strikeforce event in 2009.
Regarded as one the sport’s pioneers in the modern era, Carano, an alum of EliteXC, defeated the likes of Rosi Sexton, Julie Kedzie, Tonya Evinger, and Kaitlin Young during her four year career in mixed martial arts.