Ronda Rousey to be first woman inducted into UFC Hall of Fame
LAS VEGAS – UFC today announced that former UFC and Strikeforce women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey will be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame’s Modern Wing as a member of the Class of 2018. The 2018 UFC Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place on Thursday, July 5, at The Pearl at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. The event will be streamed live and exclusively on UFC Fight Pass.
“There would be no women in UFC without Ronda Rousey,” UFC President Dana White said. “Ronda is an absolute pioneer who helped me personally, and a lot of other people, look at women in combat sports differently. She accomplished everything she set out to do with UFC and became a global icon and role model in the process. Today, the women’s divisions are packed with incredibly talented fighters, and they produce some of the best fights you’ll ever see. We’re proud to announce her as the final inductee of the 2018 UFC Hall of Fame Class.”
Rousey, who will make history as the first woman inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame, will enter as a member of the Modern Wing, joining Forrest Griffin, BJ Penn and Urijah Faber as the only members of this distinguished category. Rousey also joins Faber as only the second athlete inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame from the bantamweight division. The Modern Era category includes athletes who turned pro on or after Nov. 17, 2000, is a minimum age of 35 or has been retired for one year or more.
“This is an immense honor, to not only take part in bringing women to the forefront of this sport, but now the UFC Hall of Fame,” Rousey said. “May I be the first of many.”
As the first female fighter signed to UFC following the global brand’s purchase of Strikeforce, Rousey debuted inside the world-famous Octagon at UFC 157, on Feb. 23, 2013, at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. Ronda defeated Liz Carmouche in the first round via armbar, becoming UFC’s first-ever women’s bantamweight champion and the first woman to win a UFC bout.
A veteran of 14 professional fights during her five-year career, Rousey compiled a record of 12-2, setting numerous records, highlighted by her six consecutive title defenses, the most by any female champion in UFC history. During her tenure in UFC and Strikeforce, Ronda secured seven submission victories via armbar, tying UFC Hall of Famer Minotauro Nogueria for most armbar submissions under the Zuffa banner (UFC, Strikeforce, WEC).
A prolific finisher, Rousey owns records for four of the five fastest finishes in UFC women’s bantamweight history, while her three wins by KO/TKO rank as the second-most in UFC women’s bantamweight history. No other fighter in UFC history owns more than two of the five fastest finishes in their respective division.
Rousey’s average cumulative UFC fight time of 3:06 ranks as the fourth shortest in UFC history (min. five fights), and her collective Strikeforce fight time of 1:36 ranked as the shortest in company history (min. three fights). Ronda’s 14-second armbar submission victory over Cat Zingano at UFC 184 was the fastest of the Modern Era and of any title fight in UFC history. Rousey also holds the record for fastest submission in Strikeforce history with her 25-second victory over Sarah D’Alelio during her debut at Strikeforce Challengers: Gurgel vs. Duarte on Aug. 12, 2011.
As one of the most complete mixed martial artists in combat sports history, Ronda also holds numerous records for finishing her opponents via knockout. Her 16-second knockout of Alexis Davis at UFC 175 ranks as the third-fastest knockout in a title fight in UFC history. Lastly, her 34-second knockout of Bethe Correia at UFC 190 and 1:06 knockout of Sara McMann at UFC 170 are the second- and fourth-fastest knockouts in UFC women’s bantamweight history, respectively.
Ronda headlined six UFC events during her career, including UFC 193, which was held at Etihad Stadium in Melbourne, Australia on Nov. 15, 2015. UFC 193 recorded a total attendance of 56,214 fight fans, which is the largest-attended event in UFC history.
Outside the Octagon, Rousey’s global popularity continued to rise as she was recognized by both her peers and media with some of the most highly-acclaimed awards in sports.
Ronda became the first mixed martial artist to win an ESPY award in 2012, when ESPN recognized her victory against Miesha Tate, in which she became the Strikeforce women’s bantamweight champion, as “Submission of the Year.” Rousey was also acknowledged by ESPN with the ESPY for “Best Female Athlete” in 2014 and 2015 in conjunction with capturing the award for “Best Fighter” in 2015.
In 2015, Sports Illustrated recognized Ronda as “World’s Most Dominant Athlete” when she graced the cover of the May 18 issue. Later that month, Rousey also became a published author with the release of her autobiography entitled, “My Fight, Your Fight,” which chronicled her inspiring path from Olympic judo medalist to Hollywood star.
In November of 2015, Ronda became Electronic Arts’ first female global cover athlete with the release of EA Sports UFC 2 and made history as the first woman to be featured on the cover of Men’s Fitness Australia.
Rousey also became a global star on the silver screen, appearing in films such as The Expendables 3, Furious 7 and Entourage, which grossed more than $1.8 billion dollars combined in worldwide sales. She has also headlined popular television shows and series in primetime, hosting Saturday Night Live in 2016 and making a cameo appearance on Blindspot in 2017. Later this year, she will co-star in “Mile 22” with Mark Wahlberg and Academy Award-nominated actor John Malkovich.
Today, Rousey is a WWE Superstar where she performs weekly on Monday Night Raw. She made her WWE in-ring debut at WrestleMania earlier this year, where she teamed up with Olympic Gold Medalist Kurt Angle to defeat Triple H and Stephanie McMahon.
A native of Riverside, Calif., Rousey’s martial arts career began at age 11, when she started training judo with her mother, AnnMaria, a highly-decorated judoka who became the first American to capture a World Judo Championship in 1984. In 2004, at the age of 17, Ronda won the Gold Medal at the World Junior Judo Championships. That same year, she qualified for the 2004 Olympic Games, becoming the youngest judoka to compete in the games that year. In 2006, Rousey won the Bronze Medal at the World Junior Judo Championships, becoming the first U.S. athlete to capture two medals at the event. Her ascent as a judoka continued in 2007, as she won the Gold Medal at the Pan American Games and Silver at the World Judo Championships. In 2008, Ronda captured the Bronze Medal at the Olympic Games, making history as the first American to win an Olympic Medal in women’s judo since the sport joined Olympic competition in 1992. Overall, Ronda won more than 30 medals and represented the U.S. Judo team in over a dozen international tournaments. She currently resides in California with her husband, UFC heavyweight Travis Browne.