Last week, it was revealed that both Ronda Rousey and Cain Velasquez met with officials at WWE Headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut. The reason why they both showed up may be up for debate, but some are speculating that the likely reason is to discuss the return to the ring for both stars.
Rousey hasn't been seen since losing the RAW Women's title to Becky Lynch at WrestleMania 35 last year in the triple threat main event. As for Velasquez, his last appearance for WWE was in a losing effort against Brock Lesnar at Crown Jewel at the end of October 2019.
Both had been dealing with injuries as Rousey suffered a hand injury in 2019 while Velasquez nursed a knee injury. Each performer is apparently healthy and could conceivably return to the fold at any time.
The timing is a bit off due to the build to WrestleMania having already begun. Rousey could feasibly slate back in easier due to already having over a year of action under her belt. But who would be the best opponent for her return? Here are five people that the former UFC Bantamweight Champ should face when and if she does return soon.
#5 Rhea Ripley
It appears that the WWE/NXT Universe isn't the only audience that has been impressed with the meteoric rise of Rhea Ripley over the last six months. During an appearance with Corey Graves on his After the Bell podcast, the former RAW Women's Champion revealed that she avidly watches NXT and "would love to get in the ring with her (Ripley)."
That's not a surprise as more exposure for the NXT Women's Champion obviously means that more people would like to tangle with her. While Ripley is likely sticking around on the yellow and black brand for at least the next year, it wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility for Rousey to battle the Nightmare one day. Charlotte Flair used her Royal Rumble win to "challenge" Ripley for the NXT Women's Championship. Flair had already wrestled both current Champs - Becky Lynch and Bayley - so many times that creative needed a new direction for the Queen since she was booked to win.
Rousey has tangled with women who were a little bigger than her, like Nia Jax, so the physical match alone would make sense. Both women also pride themselves on being tough so it wouldn't be hard to write a potential feud.