Ronda Rousey in AEW would be an interesting development

Jan 29, 2022; St. Louis, MO, USA; Ronda Rousey during the Royal Rumble The Dome at America's Center. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 29, 2022; St. Louis, MO, USA; Ronda Rousey during the Royal Rumble The Dome at America's Center. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports /

Would Ronda Rousey join the AEW roster? That’s tough to answer but a thought that brings up several interesting questions. 

Ronda Rousey is a controversial figure in both combat sports and professional wrestling. There was a loud contingent of fans who were pleased when she announced that her time in wrestling was over, calling many to believe that she was retired. That didn’t last long, however, as she popped up in Wrestling Revolver to team with her longtime friend Marina Shafir. That presence and her in-ring involvement with AEW-contracted wrestlers have some wondering if she’d eventually pop up in All Elite Wrestling and whether that would be a partnership that could work.

Wrestling Revolver announced a big match as Rousey and Shafir will team up to take on ROH Women’s World Champion ATHENA and Billie Starkz on November 16 at the Unreal event.

Based in Des Moines, Iowa, Wrestling Revolver is an independent promotion that is run by Sami Callihan. Over the years, the company has had close ties to AEW, especially when it comes to the talent of the latter performing in the former’s ring. Individuals like Jon Moxley and Abadon recently made the jump, and Revolver held a women’s grand prix that was packed with talented performers from the AEW women’s division. (Another example of why there’s no excuse for AEW’s lackadaisical women’s booking, but that’s a piece for another day.)

Does Rousey appearing at a previous Revolver show and competing on the November card open the door for a potential return? It would be interesting to see her in AEW for a few reasons.

First, would she be enough of a catalyst to improve how Tony Khan books the women’s division? The AEW CEO and President has openly questioned the drawing power of women on the roster. He wouldn’t be able to do that so readily with one of the most important women’s athletes of this generation on the payroll. Rousey would be a draw, at least for the initial appearance as fans and media would be drawn to her involvement. It’s a longshot hope, however, as Khan has shown no interest in doing more such as multiple women’s matches on AEW Dynamite.

Second, how would Rousey acclimate to the AEW fanbase? AEW’s hardcore fanbase is much more passionate about the product than the fans in WWE. The criticisms she faced in WWE would be much louder if she showed up in AEW, and different at the same time. Rousey didn’t respond so well to those criticisms that came after her return during the Royal Rumble, and in the eyes of many that translated to her in-ring performances.

It would be interesting to see what a more “real” version of Rousey would look like in professional wrestling. How would she come across without the hovering involvement of WWE creative and production? If she was given the space to be more natural in her character, would that translate to an improved performer and character? Those are valuable questions to ask and watch if she was to step foot in the company.

Ronda Rousey will remain a controversial figure in professional wrestling and combat sports, regardless of how much she is disinterested in fan response. But she still loves wrestling as a fan and if she was to return under the AEW banner, it would be an interesting situation to watch for several reasons.

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