SmackDown Women’s Champion Carmella recently spoke with WWE.com to discuss how she went from a manager at NXT, to being called up the to main roster, to becoming Ms. Money in the Bank and capturing the SmackDown Women’s Title. Highlights of the interview below.
On standing on her own after WrestleMania 32: To be honest, I was super devastated. I didn’t know what was going to happen with my career now that I was separated from Cass & Enzo. They were on Raw, and all I ever knew in NXT was being with them. Triple H told me it was because he saw me on my own and I could be fine and successful on my own, but honestly, I was a little scared. I wasn’t sure what the next step would be for me, but I knew no matter what, I had to be successful and put in as much work as I possibly could to improve and get better and make it on my own, to prove to everyone that I was more than just a manager, that they made the right decision keeping me on my own.
On being the last pick during the 2016 WWE Draft: I love that I was the very last draft pick. A lot of fans and other people looked at it like “You’re excited? You’re the last draft pick, almost an afterthought.” In my mind, I was like “OK, I’ll show you who the afterthought is.” It lit a flame under me, just like when I didn’t go up with the boys. It was another motivating factor for me to do my very best and prove to everybody that I was going to do big things, become champion and do all the things they said I can’t do.
On the backlash she received after the first Women’s MITB Ladder Match: I pay it no mind. Everything I do is over the top. When I do something, I want everyone to be talking about it. And that’s what happened – I was trending on Twitter for like three days. I think my strategy worked just fine. I pay no mind to the haters and everyone that doubts me, everyone that was upset about it. I thrive off it. They’re still talking about me, whether they love me, hate me or love to hate me. I don’t care. I’m Carmella — the first-ever Women’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match winner.
On why she waited so long to cash in the MITB briefcase: People said Charlotte or Tamina or Natalya, whoever, was the most dangerous woman in the division, but having that briefcase and contract made me the most dangerous. I didn’t even have to be on TV; I could just sit in the locker room and wait for the perfect opportunity to cash it in. I loved it. I got in Naomi’s head, I got in Natalya’s head, but Charlotte was the perfect choice [to cash in on]. She broke Asuka’s streak; she did the impossible. That means she’s better than Asuka. I cashed in on Charlotte, so that means I’m better than her and I’m better than Asuka.
On winning the SmackDown Women’s Title: All of the hard work that I’ve put in over the last few years. Everything came full circle. I thought about being the last draft pick, not debuting with Cass & Enzo on the Raw after WrestleMania. I thought about everyone doubting me, telling me I’ll never be champion, that I’m just a hype girl. I thought about all of that and … the feeling I had was indescribable. I love proving people wrong. I love doing things that people say I can’t do. I started my journey in NXT four years ago, and now I’m champion. People can complain and say whatever they want, but I’m still the champion. I did it. I’ll never forget that feeling.
Carmella also discusses her feud with Nikki Bella, her time with James Ellsworth, and detractors on social media.
What did you think of the interview? Have you enjoyed Carmella’s journey What do you think is next in store for her? Let us know in the comments below!