At WWE's 2018 edition of Money in the Bank, former UFC fighter Ronda Rousey fought for the Raw women's championship. Did she take home the gold? Before her surprise arrival in WWE at January's Royal Rumble event, Rousey of course became one of the most famous female athletes in the world via a dominant run as UFC's women's bantamweight champion. Lots of people like to focus these days on how she eventually left MMA behind after two consecutive crushing losses, but the reality is that her tenure in UFC helped establish women's MMA competition as a viable pay-per-view draw.
With her UFC days behind her, Rousey now embarks on a career in professional wrestling, a genre of entertainment that the former octagon brawler has long professed a love for. One need only to look at her longtime nickname of "Rowdy" Ronda Rousey for illustration of her WWE fandom, as she went to the trouble of obtaining legendary wrestler "Rowdy" Roddy Piper's blessing to use the moniker he made famous.
Going into Money in the Bank, Rousey had only participated in one televised WWE match, that being the big mixed tag team affair pitting her and Kurt Angle vs. Triple H and Stephanie McMahon at WrestleMania in April. While most were impressed with how quickly she seemed to take to the squared circle, a featured singles match on pay-per-view is an entirely different ballgame for a rookie, especially one with Nia Jax's Raw women's championship on the line. Many fans initially balked at the idea of Rousey getting a title shot this soon, and it was very much up to her to prove to wrestling watchers that WWE's apparent faith in her was well founded.
In a result likely to surprise her detractors, Rousey's performance against Jax was quite impressive, both in the sense of how the match was booked and how she performed as an athlete. The match told a story revolving around Rousey's ability to overwhelm Jax with strikes, only to eventually get caught and slammed down with big power moves by the much larger Jax, essentially getting sent back to square one.
However, it's safe to say that no fan watching could have anticipated exactly how Ronda Rousey's pay-per-view singles debut would ultimately turn out. Jax looked to be about to tap out to Rousey's trademark armbar submission hold, only for Alexa Bliss - winner of the women's Money in the Bank ladder match earlier in the show - to interfere, and take out both participants with her briefcase. After disposing of Rousey, Bliss cashed in her contract, defeating a clearly far from 100 percent Jax to win her third Raw women's championship and fifth overall women's championship in WWE. So in the end, Rousey technically won, but via disqualification due to being the first person Alexa hit, and failed to leave with the gold around her waist.
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