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Former WWE and NXT Diva Karlee "Maxine" Perez joined The Rack Thursday Night. In a nearly 30 minute interview she talked about what got her interested in professional wrestling, her studies in criminology, how she felt when she got the call to be on NXT, what her time in FCW was like, who were her favorite people to work with, what was the driving force behind her leaving, if WWE Creative was receptive to hearing her ideas, her thoughts about NXT and where it ranked with other WWE programming, the infamous wrestling wedding she was involved with on NXT, her role in the upcoming film "Then the Night Comes", what she sees her ideal film role as, who her dream opponent would have been and much more.
How she felt when she got word she would be part of NXT: "You know, I was trying not to have my expectations too high. I had been down in FCW for quite a while, the longest out of the group of girls that did, the first season we did of NXT and at that point in time my mind's eye I felt I was as ready as I could be although realizing I still had a lot more growing to do and learning but I was pumped about it. I really wanted to bring something different that they didn't have from the females, at least at that moment and that's kinda what I concentrated on with NXT."
What it was like coming through FCW: "FCW was a big eye-opener for me; it was an experience. You end up with a family because we are together all the time, non-stop, always. Training together, driving together, eating together, it's just everyone is in your business and it just becomes really like a family. And, at the same time, it's a family that we're pretty much told that we need to claw your way to the top against each other, and sometimes you just don't want to; sometimes you actually grow to like the people you're around and you're pretty much telling me there's only one spot and I have to backstab this person to get it? You know, there were people that stood by your side and there were people who would watch you fall or at least try to."
Who were her favorite people to work with: "You I had people. I got along with Naomi really, really well. Me and her were always buddy-buddy. Down there, there was always the same crew that would drive down to the shows together; I've got to think of their new names now, their new work names. We had Damien Sandow; he and I were real close. He's hilarious and awesome; I think he's doing great too. Also, Sheamus when he was down there; we used to drive to shows together. It's amazing to see the difference in how much people grow in that business still. I'm very happy for those, the one that did and made it and experience such a good quality like they have. "
On the WWE trying to get away from the "model" style performer and more towards the worker type girl and if she sees herself coming back because of that: "You know, it's a tough question because I personally, in my opinion, think that WWE needs to just appreciate the women more at the end of the day, whether it's a model type or not. If someone has talent or can bring something to the table then I think it should be looked at, not looked over. That's kind of the problem these days with… I'm thankful for the great opportunity with them; I wanted to move on, and pursue other things but I know there a lot of good talent around there; a lot of women would die to be in my position, I just don't want all them to get overlooked. So, everyone should at least have the chance, you know, model or not; if they think they can pull it off, then let them try it. If not, then move on. You just never know, right? I never knew, I never thought I would get to where I was so you just don't know."
What was the driving force behind leaving the WWE: "Over time, it just starts to wear on you. Obviously, it's a massive company and it becomes overwhelming when you're up there and you have a million things going on and a million people telling me that you should do this or that, or be like that or this and I felt, for myself, the way I was was...