Thank you for the name…. And so much more…. Will do it justice and do you proud tomorrow…. This one’s for you Roddy….
That’s what UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey wrote on Instagram alongside a picture of ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper, dedicating Saturday’s UFC 190 fight with challenger Bethe Correia to the WWE Hall of Famer who tragically passed away on Friday at age 61.
The connections between Rousey and Piper run deep. Rousey was trained by “Judo” Gene LeBell, who also trained Piper in wrestling and judo from when he was a teenager. Rousey uses the ‘Rowdy’ nickname as a tribute to Rowdy Roddy, and even called him on the phone to ask permission.
“She called me and asked permission,” said Piper. “She was so sweet. She said, ‘I promise I won’t let you down. I’ll keep the name in the esteem that it’s supposed to be.’”
The undefeated, 11-0 Rousey defends her title against the 9-0 Correia on Saturday night in Rio de Janeiro, on the Brazilian challenger’s home turf. Corriea has already pulled some ridiculous theatrics during the weigh-ins, so here’s hoping Rousey counters with a kilt and bagpipes as her walkout music.