Rousey was determined to win over White
Before Rousey, a 2008 Olympic bronze medalist in Judo, ever stepped into the cage as a professional fighter, she made it her mission to convert UFC president Dana White into a women’s MMA fan.
“It was a goal of mine from the very beginning actually,” Rousey said. “I just refused to be ignored pretty much. I said to myself, ‘What would work?’ I just thought, ‘I’m going to make myself so impossible to ignore and make myself into something that they didn’t even know that they needed.’
“Before I became a pro I was saying that, so when I was training for my pro debut at King of the Cage is when I first said it on camera. I said, ‘This guy is going to love me and there’s nothing he can do about it.’ I was so sure. You know, I never doubted it.”
Rousey, who will be part of the first women’s fight in UFC history when she faces Liz Carmouche in the main event of UFC 157 on Feb. 23 at Honda Center, has been winning over fans every time she fights. She is 6-0 with six victories via armbar submission. Only one fighter has made it out of the first minute with her.
“Gaining the respect of men who didn’t think women belong in a gym is something that I’ve become very good at over the years,” Rousey said. “He (White) wasn’t the first person to doubt me before he met me. I’m used to changing people’s minds. If you are a woman and you are training, every single time you go into a new environment you have to prove yourself all over again.