Carmella Comments on the Royal Rumble, Proving Herself in WWE, More


During a recent interview with Newsweek, Carmella commented on Sunday’s WWE Royal Rumble 2020 pay-per-view event, if she’s proven that she belongs in WWE, and more. You can check out some highlights from the interview below:

On what makes this Royal Rumble different: “I’m hoping to be a part of it. I’m hoping to be announced for the Rumble, but I have no idea. The cool thing about this year is that they barely announced anyone for this match, so that part, I think it’s exciting. So that is good, but also bad. Because before you used to know who would be in it and have a chance to prepare. Like last year I went in as #30, so I had a big advantage over everyone. This year I have no idea, so your guess is as good as mine.”

On seeing how NXT has come up since she first out there: “I think it’s so exciting. When I was in NXT we were just starting out from the ground up, so I knew in the locker room the women were rallying together, supporting each other no matter who you were in a story or on TV with. Because we wanted to succeed so badly, and we are all in it together. And I think that’s the vibe the NXT girls give off now as well. Even though it’s a third brand, now they have something to prove. They are a third brand, they are not developmental anymore, so you can see and feel that from the girls, which I love. I thought it was very cool. They came together, they wanted to kick some butt with a y’all better watch out [attitude] and I loved that.”

On how she’s handling being off TV and not confirmed for the Rumble: “I think you have to take a step back and be like, ‘Man I’ve been booked week after week, and I’ve been on TV since I’ve debuted.’ I’ve been involved in a story, and this is the first time that I haven’t been involved in a story, and it’s OK. Obviously, it’s social media and I’m playing it up, I’m joking around. When you see ‘We want Carmella,’ I have to joke around with them. Would it be nice to be in a story? Yes. But I also don’t want to be thrown in a story that doesn’t make sense. I want to make it impactful, so I have to remember that. You know, you also don’t want to be shoved down the fans’ throats either. The fans are smart and they realize “they want us to like this person, so we’ll rebel against that.” So it’s more about making it organic and making it work and fit. And right now it’s just not my time, but it will be again. I’m not worried about that. I just have to take a step back and enjoy the breaks that we rarely ever get. That part I’m enjoying.”

On her experience helping her handle being off TV: “Absolutely. I know that any opportunity they give me, I make the most of it. I’ve taken everything they’ve given me and ran with it, and I know they know that too. I’ve made history, I had a great feud with Nikki Bella, I was the first Ms. Money in the Bank. I cashed in my Money in the Bank briefcase to beat Charlotte, I’ve defeated Asuka. I was champion for way longer than anyone expected. I had this amazing run with R-Truth. Man, I was so lucky. Even if I don’t do anything else with my career, I’ve done so much. So I’m very very lucky and right now, it’s ok to chill. When the time is right, strike while the iron is hot.”

On her 2019 run with R-Truth: “It just happened so naturally. It wasn’t planned, it wasn’t supposed to be a thing between me and R-Truth. I feel so lucky because I lost the championship at SummerSlam in 2018, and I was like “man, what am I going to do?” went right into the R-Truth story, and I was going from being booed out of the building and being one of the most hated people on the roster, not just women but in general, and two-three weeks later, people are cheering me. It was so bananas. And there was no plan to make Carmella a good guy or anything like that. It just happened. The chemistry R-Truth and I have, you can’t teach that. It can’t be taught. It was so natural, and he’s one of my genuine close friends because of what we went through in the last year. 2019 was really cool, and it was fun to find different sides to my character. Going from this in-your-face, crass, talking brat to doing a dance break, being silly, running around with Truth, wearing costumes… It’s just cool. Not many characters in WWE get to do that and have the best of both worlds. I feel very lucky for that.”

On how it’s easier being a heel: “It’s so much easier to be a bad guy. It’s just so much more fun, and it’s a lot easier [for a crowd] to hate you than to get them to like you. I remember when they first started pairing me with Truth, and I’m talking to Mr. McMahon and I’m like, “should I be nicer? What do I do now that I’m with Truth?” and he said “don’t do anything. Just be you.” And that’s what I kept doing, and people started liking me for me even when I was still like this trash-talking brat. But because I was associated with Truth, for some reason, they liked me.”

On her heel run as champion: “People can say what they want about my in-ring ability, but back when I was a bad guy and a champion, they legitimately hated me. They thought I sucked in the ring, I was a bad champion. They couldn’t believe I could beat someone like Asuka and Charlotte. But what I was doing was working. So that’s when I finally said I’m going to step up my game, because I knew what I was capable of. But at the same time it’s not my job to get people to say, “oh she’s cool, she can do cool things.” I wanted people to genuinely hate me. In that match I felt there was an opportunity to show what I can do, and I felt like I opened a lot of people’s eyes, and I felt that I can start showing a little bit more. I’m excited that people can finally see that I’m not terrible. I’m not this in-ring technician, I will never claim to be. But I’m more about the character and the performance than the moves themselves. When it’s time, I can pull out some moves if I need to.”

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