During a recent interview with Wrestling Observer Radio, Deonna Purrazzo commented on WWE not understanding her Virtuosa character, why she signed with Impact Wrestling, and more. You can check out some highlights from the interview below:
On pitching her Virtuosa character to WWE and the company not understanding it: “The Virtuosa persona really started at Ring of Honor back when I was there and building their women’s division and they just kind of needed someone other than Deonna Purrazzo is the way it was told to me. I really just wanted Virtuosa because I thought it was a nice word that tied in my Italian heritage and it was never meant to be anything more than that. Going into NXT right from Ring of Honor, I didn’t expect to need a character more than I was – ‘I’m a wrestler and I’m Italian!’ So, when I got that feedback, not that it was shocking but it was like I need to put some real work into this.
“I wrote up a character synopsis, I wrote up promo ideas, and I pitched to have a manager because I know promos aren’t necessarily my strongest thing. Then the feedback was ‘It’s too outlandish of a character and you need to be more real-life’ and I was like well, the Virtuosa is then a transformation – we saw me be an enhancement talent and now I’ve traveled the world and come into my own and here I am with this new outlook on wrestling. That fell on deaf ears because it was too real life, and then it was ‘We don’t understand what Virtuosa means’ and I just felt like there were so many excuses and I was the person where it didn’t matter what I said or did or changed, they had an opinion and that was that.”
On the decision to choose Impact Wrestling over other companies after he WWE release: “Madison Rayne is one of my very good friends and throughout my whole WWE tenure, she kind of knew what I was feeling and that I wanted to be able to do more, and so the minute it happened and I shared it with everyone that I was released, she kind of jumped on the train of like ‘I’m gonna put wheels in motion, you’re gonna be OK, and the minute you can be here I want you to be here’. So I was kind of instantly I knew Impact was for sure an option. Britt Baker is also one of my best friends, so Britt also knew all the feelings and what was happening – her and Chelsea Green were the first people I told after I got off the phone and she was like ‘OK, let’s see what we can do’ and I had talked to Cody Rhodes a couple times and I was like ‘I don’t really have a plan but just trying to feel it out and see what the interest is’ but I did put the feeler out there and we had a conversation or two, but Impact just worked out the best to be able to come in right away and win the championship right away and make a statement right away and do things the right way.
“I debuted the right way everyone imagines they will and really get that character development and put me on the screen week after week in a strong role. That was the biggest thing for me because that’s what I was lacking the most. I came from building a women’s division in Ring of Honor and getting to do a lot of my basic groundwork wrestling there where everyone knew I was a good wrestler, but then I went to WWE, and that all went away. It was just struggle after struggle and losing on TV consistently, I didn’t get to show much of myself. So, for Impact to be like here’s the vignettes we’re gonna play and here’s the package we’re gonna film, they just righted all those wrongs for me.”
(h/t – 411 Wrestling)