Ronda Rousey’s grand entrance to the WWE was met with plenty of excitement, but not everyone is happy about how it turned out as she is now being accused of stealing the spotlight from Asuka, the first woman to win the Royal Rumble.
According to Wrestling Inc., pro wrestler Tazz was not happy at how the popular wrestling show introduced the former UFC champion to the audience considering that it was supposed to be Asuka’s moment.
“It kind of takes the spotlight away from Asuka’s victory,” he noted.
The 50-year-old professional wrestler hailing from Red Hook, New York further questioned the reason why Rousey was present in that moment, which was supposedly historical considering that it was the first time a woman was able to dominate the ring since it was established in 1988.
“But what did she win? I mean, you’re pointing, Ronda Rousey, I know how tough you are, but what did she earn? She didn’t beat anyone, she didn’t fight anybody here. I don’t get it.”
Based on a report from ESPN, Rousey is looking at a new career in WWE, revealing that her appearance was “not a publicity stunt.”
“This is my life now. First priority on my timeline for the next several years. This is not a smash-and-grab; this is not a publicity stunt,” she said.
“When I first met with [professional wrestler] Triple H, I told him, ‘There are other things I can do with my time that’ll make way more money, but I won’t enjoy nearly as much.'”
Meanwhile, BBC News revealed that Sunday’s Royal Rumble was supposedly a historic moment for female professional wrestlers since it was the first time a woman was victorious in the event. However, the outlet noted that Ronda Rousey’s big WWE entrance “overshadowed” the moment.
— WWE (@WWE) January 29, 2018
— ASUKA / 明日華 (@WWEAsuka) January 29, 2018
Speaking to the press, WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon said she was proud of all the women who participated in the event.
“Their sacrifices, their perseverance, and their incredible talent led to this moment. I’m in awe. Congrats ladies, you deserve it,” she said.
However, many wrestling fans took to social media to express their disappointment at how WWE handled the situation.
Not sure why WWE brought out Ronda Rousey during Asuka’s HUGE career moment but aye I don’t make the booking decisions here
— The Quintessential Stud Muffin (@DeionGottaSTFU) January 29, 2018
WWE just overshadowed the winner of the first ever women's Royal Rumble… with Ronda Rousey. What an absolute joke! Straight up disrespectful to Asuka and all the hardworking female WWE Superstars.
— Champ (@ChampChong) January 29, 2018
Still, Forbes believes that Ronda Rousey’s arrival in WWE will be beneficial for all the people involved in the business considering what she was able to do during her time in UFC. And with her massive fan base, the former MMA fighter is expected to shed more of the spotlight to female competitors in the ring.
“The former UFC star equals more exposure for WWE and its women’s division, which means more exposure, and ideally, more money for every female performer in WWE,” the outlet noted.
That is, of course, if the other WWE divas aren’t put off by how much attention the company gives her.
Forbes also likened Rousey’s effect to the women in WWE to how Brock Lesnar became one of the biggest draws in the industry, alongside John Cena.
As for herself, Ronda Rousey seemed to have become one step closer to her dream of becoming a WWE women’s champion as she had previously stated during an interview in 2015.
"If anybody's capable, I am." Over two years ago, @RondaRousey said she wanted to be the @wwe women's champ one day (at the time it was called the Divas division). Will she succeed in wrestling where she's succeeded in judo and MMA? #flashback #fromthearchives pic.twitter.com/1nYjhZwVyl
— MMAFighting.com (@MMAFighting) January 30, 2018