UFC bantamweight queen Ronda Rousey (pictured) has only competed once for the planet’s premier mixed martial arts promotion, yet she is arguably the biggest mainstream star the sport has to offer. Enjoy her skills inside the Octagon while you can, because it appears Rousey may soon be exiting stage left to become a Hollywood superstar.
With magazine covers and movie gigs stockpiling at a “Fast and Furious” pace – pun intended, as reports have surfaced Rousey is in talks to play a “major role” in the franchise’s seventh installment – it’s only a matter of time before the 26-year-old follows the big screen blueprint former Strikeforce star Gina Carano laid out not too long ago.
“I said from the beginning that I wok in quadrennials,” Rousey told MMAJunkie.com. “I do four-year cycles. I think I’ve got two years [of fighting] left in me, realistically, if I’m going to do this like an Olympic run.”
Rousey, who won a bronze medal in the 2008 Olympic Games for judo, launched her professional MMA career in 2011 and has hasn’t looked back. She owns an unblemished 7-0 mark inside the cage, with all of her wins coming in the first round courtesy of her trademark armbar.
Much like with her MMA bouts, Rousey’s fighting career also appears to be short-lived.
“I think one profession has a much longer shelf life than the other,” Rousey said in comparing fighting to movie making. “My last fight, I was kind of forced to face my mortality a little bit. I had an air of invincibility about me, and I was kind of forced to realize statistically there is a chance you could get permanently hurt or even die. There’s only so many times you can roll the dice.
“I am the best [expletive] fighter in the world, and I truly believe that, but you’re still rolling the dice no matter who you are, so I do have to kind of set up an exit strategy. That’s what I did wrong in judo. I followed it all the way until the end, and I didn’t put any thought into after.”
Like Gina Carano before her, it appears Rousey will use MMA as a springboard to catapult into bigger things. Unlike Carano, however, Rousey isn’t just another pretty face who fights. She’s a fighter with a pretty face.
There’s a significant difference.
Women’s MMA moved on from Carano. In fact, Rousey single-handedly took the sport to a whole new stratosphere after Carano left. Once the “Rowdy” one decides to put MMA in her rear-view mirror, the void she leaves behind might be too big to overcome.