WWE SummerSlam: Ronda Rousey's Road To Title Shot Vs. Alexa Bliss
WWE's second biggest pay-per-view event of the year, SummerSlam, is set to kick off tonight, August 19, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn featuring a card with more than 13 matches that is expected to run for over five hours. Needless to say, there are a lot of highly anticipated matches in store, but no match has more mainstream crossover than Ronda Rousey's SummerSlam debut.
Sure, you could argue Brock Lesnar's match against Roman Reigns for the Universal Championship will have equal mainstream appeal, though it's Rousey's chance to claim her first WWE Raw Women's championship that takes precedence. Having only been in the WWE for seven months, Rousey has already proven that she's on the fast track to the top of the women's division and tonight could mark a monumental moment in what figures to be a lengthy run with the WWE.
Ahead of her title match tonight against Raw Women's Champion Alexa Bliss, we take a look back at Rousey's timeline with the WWE from her Royal Rumble debut up until now.
Royal Rumble 2018, January, 28
The UFC Hall of Famer made her debut at the Royal Rumble on January 28, following the first ever women's Royal Rumble. Befor the Rumble winner, Asuka, could make her decision for which title she wanted to challenge for at Wrestlemania 34, she was interrupted by "The Baddest Woman on the Planet," officially confirming she had signed full-time with WWE.
Wrestlemania 34, April 8
Rousey's first feud as an official member of the WWE roster didn't come until months after her debut at the Royal Rumble, when she squared off against none other than Stephanie McMahon and her husband, Triple H.
Raw General Manager Kurt Angle teamed with Rousey at Wrestlemania 34 for a mixed tag-team match against the authority. Of course, the former UFC champ and the Olympic gold medalist walked out of New Orleans on top.
Raw Women's Champion Nia Jax Challenges Rousey, May 14
Having secured a victory in her first WWE match at Wrestlemania, Rousey shifted her focus towards a singles run - and she didn't have to wait long before earning a title shot.
During a joint E! News interview at the NBCUniversal Upfronts in May, then-Raw Women's champion Nia Jax challenged Rousey to a match at June's "Money In The Bank" pay-per-view. Naturally, Rousey obliged, setting the stage for yet another high-profile bout at one of WWE's biggest PPV events.
Money In The Bank, June 17
Things didn't go quite as planned for Rousey when she locked horns with "The Irresistible Force," Nia Jax, at the Money In The Bank PPV.
While she looked solid in the ring, both on the offensive and when taking bumps, her attempt at winning gold came up short when an opportunistic Alexa Bliss cashed in her "Money In The Bank" briefcase that she won earlier in the night. The briefcase contains a contract that guarantees the winner a match for a world championship at any time within the next year. Bliss merely waited hours before pouncing on the opportunity.
As Rousey applied her patented armbar on Jax, Bliss unexpectedly appeared in the ring and used her briefcase to neutralize the UFC Hall of Famer. Once Rousey was out of the way, she officially cashed in her contract and regained the WWE Raw Women's championship.
Monday Night Raw after Money In The Bank, June 18
One night after the timely cash-in, Rousey proved why she's "The Baddest Woman on the Planet" by brutalizing Bliss with the Money in the Bank briefcase and powerbombing her through a table.
Rousey even took out some of her frustration on Raw General Manager Kurt Angle, which resulted in a 30-day suspension.
Extreme Rules, July 2
Despite her 30-day suspension, Rousey was front and center in the crowd at the Extreme Rules PPV in July, as Nia Jax got her rematch against Alexa Bliss, who won the Raw Women's championship at Money In The Bank just weeks earlier.
During the title match, Rousey hopped over the barricade and attacked Bliss' partner in crime, Mickie James, before going after the champion. However, Bliss slipped through Rousey's grasp once again, and escaped with her title in-hand.
Monday Night Raw, July 16
Just days before she was officially eligible to return from suspension, Rousey unexpectedly appeared at the July 16th episode of Raw to attack Bliss and her sidekick, Mickie James. Although Rousey got closer to snapping Bliss' arm this time, she still was unable to inflict any damage on her hated foe.
As a result, Raw General Manager Kurt Angle added another week to her suspension. However, he added a stipulation that she'd be granted a title shot against Bliss at SummerSlam if she obliged.
Monday Night Raw, July 30
Upon Rousey's return from suspension on July 30, she accompanied her pal Natalya to the ring for a match against Alicia Fox, who utlimately came out on top thanks to some help from Alexa Bliss.
After the match, Rousey hit Fox with her signature move and once again gave chase to Bliss - but Fox recovered in time to make the save. The heels retreated with their hands raised as Rousey fumed in the ring.
Rousey's First Match on Monday Night Raw, August 6
As a result of the events that unfolded the week before, Ronda Rousey was given a match against Alicia Fox, which marked her first ever match on Monday Night Raw. Despite several distractions from Bliss, Rousey put a beatdown on Fox and ultimately got her to tap out to the arm bar.
A feeble attempt to blindside Rousey after the match didn't turn out as planned for the Raw Women's champ.
SummerSlam 2018, August 19
After months of cat-and-mouse, Rousey will finally get a chance to step in the ring with Alexa Bliss at SummerSlam tonight. The event, taking place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, will air on the WWE Network and is scheduled to get underway at 7pm ET.
Will Rousey ragdoll Bliss en route to her first ever Raw Women's championship? Or will the reigning champ find a way to escape with her title yet again?