Ronda makes history
If you ever doubted Ronda Rousey’s significance to combat sports, you may be convinced now that she is set to be part of the first women’s match to headline a Wrestlemania event. Wrestlemania, if you didn’t know, is WWE’s biggest show each year and will take place on April 7 from East Rutherford, New Jersey. Rousey will defend her Raw women’s championship against Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch in a three-woman match to close the show.
While the significance of being in a Wrestlemania “main event” has diminished over the years (with multiple world championships across various brands, most years multiple matches, including even the show opener, have received “main event” branding) this is still an important milestone for women’s wrestling and for the company. Women’s matches have headlined major WWE events in the past, but Rousey’s match is the match that has the most public interest going in and is deserving of the spot.
Rousey first signed with WWE last January and made her in-ring debut at Wrestlemania 34 from New Orleans. Rousey immediately impressed fans and critics with how quickly she took to her new endeavor. She has been Raw women’s champion since August’s Summerslam event, and by the time of the event will be the longest serving Raw women’s champion since that version of the title was introduced in 2014.
Joining Rousey on the Wrestlemania card is former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar, who will defend his Universal Championship against Seth Rollins.
Rousey was the first woman to headline a UFC pay-per-view and now she can add Wrestlemania main eventer to her resume. For more on Rousey and Wrestlemania, be sure to visit PWTorch.com.
Who’s next? Who’s left?
Jordan Espinosa opened Saturday’s UFC Nashville card with a unanimous decision win over Eric Shelton, earning notice in UFC’s flyweight division, such as it is. Espinosa is undefeated at flyweight but is resigned to the fact that he will likely have to continue at bantamweight if he wants to stick around the UFC. The future of the flyweight division has been very much up in the air since the departure of former champion Demetrious Johnson and Henry Cejudo’s defeat of former bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw.
Espinosa would be happy to continue at flyweight, but if he had to call someone out, he’s not sure who would be available.
“I’m not even sure who is still in the flyweight division honestly,” Espinosa said (via MMAJunkie). “So, no. No particular name. If this was six months ago I would probably have some names, but I don’t even know if those guys are still in the UFC.”
Regardless of the status of the division, Espinosa may be best served to continue at 135 considering how much weight he said he had to cut.
“I’m a big flyweight and after my last fight I got up to about 158 (pounds). I cut a lot of weight to get down to flyweight, but about half of my fights through amateurs and pros have been at bantamweight.”
-Henry Cejudo told Ariel Helwani on his ESPN talk show that he would like to fight Marlon Moraes for the bantamweight championship at UFC 238 on June 8 from Chicago.
-Makwan Amirkhani vs. Chris Fishgold is set for UFC Stockholm on June 1.