What a lovely gesture! Before she steps into the ring with Bethe Correia, Ronda Rousey has dedicated her Aug. 1 UFC 190 fight to wrestling icon ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper, who sadly passed away on July 31.
She’s been feeling confident before her big UFC 190 battle, and now Ronda Rousey, 28, is dedicating her Aug. 1 fight with Bethe Correia, 32, to the late “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, who tragically passed away due to cardiac arrest on Friday, July 31, at the age of 61.
The mixed martial-arts star shares the same nickname as the former professional wrestler, as well as the same coach, and she was quick to acknowledge the tragic loss on her Instagram. Posting a picture of “Rowdy” Roddy in his prime, she captioned the photo, “Thank you for the name…. And so much more…. Will do it justice and do you proud tomorrow…. This one’s for you Roddy….”
And here’s how Ronda and Roddy became acquainted. As she progressed through the fighting ranks ranks, Ronda adopted the services of trainer, Gene LeBell, who incidentally trained Piper in the 1970s. Realizing Ronda’s star potential, Gene rang up his pal Piper when she decided to go professional and asked his former protegé if he minded the young starlet adopting his “Rowdy” moniker. Roddy was thrilled!
“Ronda and Gene called me. She was so, so excited and so beautiful, saying, ‘Would you mind? I’ll make you proud, and I’m giving it everything you got.’ And I said, “You go, gal. You go!” Roddy said in a 2014 interview with Vice. “Somebody asked me, ‘What would you think if ‘Rowdy’ Ronda Rousey would become the face of the UFC?’ he continued. “I said I think it would be great. I think it would be a really great thing.”
Ronda Rousey: How She Conquered Her Brave Battle With Bulimia
Ronda was recently crowned Best Athlete and Best Female Fighter at the 2015 ESPY Awards on July 15, but perhaps her biggest battle was overcoming bulimia. “I would do all kinds of crazy stuff; I struggled with bulimia and all these things for years,” Ronda revealed to Yahoo Beauty, explaining the measures she would take to achieve what she thought was her dream body.
Considering her physically demanding lifestyle, it’s almost unbelievable that the now-healthy sports star once abused her body. “I was unhappy,” she explained. “I had to attend to all of the other things in my life, like my career and my training, to get to a point where I trained just because I loved it. I didn’t even know that was what I wanted, but I made myself happy first and then got the ‘oh wow’ body.”
HollywoodLifers, do you think Ronda will win her big UFC fight? Let us know!
— Jon Boon