Recently on The Steve Austin Show, WWE Hall Of Famer Steve Austin shared his thoughts on WWE WrestleMania 34 including the strong in-ring debut of former mixed martial artist Ronda Rousey. Austin praised the mixed tag team match with WWE Hall Of Famer Kurt Angle as Rousey’s partner against WWE’s power couple of Stephanie McMahon and Triple H.
According to Austin, he “absolutely loved” the tag match, which saw the Olympians pick up a submission victory over Mr. & Mrs. H.
“This was such an entertaining match and I was really wondering how Ronda would handle the moment. Some people have questioned some of her interview skills, and she’s not used to being on an RF mic in front of 20,000 people in these arenas. Mostly it’s trash-talk, and soundbites, and stuff like that and a shoot aspect, and not following storyline stuff, I was wondering, ‘would the moment be too great for her?’ And this match was so damn entertaining.” Austin continued, “there were so many twists and turns, and submission-type moves, and right when you thought, ‘well, here’s the finish,’ they extended it – that wasn’t the finish. And the crowd bought into this. It started off a tad slow. People were wondering, I think, just like I did, but boom! They set the hook there, mister. And, damn near from the bell, it was on. That crowd, everybody there was into that match.”
Although Rousey smiling during her WrestleMania entrance was a bit awkward to ‘Stone Cold’, he appreciated the rationale for a more “accessible” presentation of ‘The Baddest Woman On The Planet’.
“When she came out smiling, she looked like a million bucks.” Austin recalled, “I liked the plaid skirt and she came out. She had her gear on and then it was time. She got her game face on at the point, but I know where that came from. I’ll guarantee you that was straight out of the old man. ‘Go out there and smile’ because we know she’s a badass. We know she [has] got that mean mug face when it’s time to go out there and do business. And there were plenty of opportunities, and that did happen during the course of the match, but it felt a little weird to me, too, but, I think that he wanted her to smile just to be accessible, maybe to calm the nerves or maybe she’s more free when she’s focused, that laser-focus that she has. But I didn’t expect her to smile. But it was her first big performance in front of 78,000 people. Some people were knocking her on it. I could go either way on it, but I do know that when the bell rang, I was watching her body language and hang onto that tag rope.”
Also during the podcast, Austin suggested that WWE put Rousey in a position to succeed on ‘The Grandest Stage Of Them All’ and masterfully executed its gameplan. While Austin hinted that ‘Rowdy’ has more work to do to carry her own weight, ‘The Rattlesnake’ gave the WrestleMania match and Rousey’s performance the grade of A+.
“Obviously, they put a lot of time into this, she’s obviously a very talented person, and you had three hands in there with Kurt, Steph, and Triple H being able to go out there and help along with the referee,” Austin explained. “So all of the pieces were set in place for this thing to be, and this thing was built to make all of them shine, but specifically Ronda and help get her over. And yeah, this one, I thought they knocked a grand slam, the bases were loaded, and they knocked it out of the park. And so, we’ll see what happens in the future when she starts moving into single’s endeavors, tag team endeavors. Yeah, this was great and they pulled it off. So she still has work to do, but as far as her performance goes, I give her an A+. And I give the match an A+ because that’s how entertained I was by it.”