Ronda Rousey has experienced almost everything combat sports has to offer and the former UFC women’s bantamweight champion has learned over the years that most mixed martial arts (MMA) fans suck.
While Rousey didn’t say those exact words the current World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) standout more or less hinted at it earlier this week during a YouTube stream. Rousey claimed that MMA fans don’t care about fighters the same way WWE fanatics revere legendary athletes or aging veterans. She went as far as calling UFC fans “bandwagon” jumpers who lose respect for the fighters competing.
“WWE fans care more about the wrestlers than the UFC fans care about the fighters,” said Rousey (via Wrestling Inc). “UFC fans have, like, much less respect for their veterans and the legends of the sport than WWE fans do.”
“A lot of UFC fans are kind of like bandwagon fans in that way. It’s like, the second you’re not on top, you’re dead to them. Whereas WWE fans are like, ‘This is the guy that, you know, did this 20 years ago,’ and they’re still really excited about that.”
Rousey, who stepped away from MMA following her knockout loss to Amanda Nunes back at UFC 207 in 2016, has been competing as a member of the WWE roster in one way or another since the beginning of 2018. She has had enough time to experience both sides of combat sports to determine which fanbase is better.
But is she accurate in her depiction of MMA fans?
While WWE fans may have more passion for legendary fighters and veterans of the entertainment business it’s a completely different landscape than MMA. Aging athletes can continue to compete in scripted WWE matches that may or may not result in them winning and prolonging their careers. This never happens in MMA as older fighters are usually pushed out by younger and more capable athletes. It’s a major reason why MMA fans hang on each win and loss more than a WWE fan would.
That said, there are plenty of MMA fans who stick with a fighter until the wheels blow off. Guys like Tony Ferguson, Donald Cerrone, and even Conor McGregor haven’t won all that much over the years, yet remain some of the biggest names in in the sport.