Former WWE Diva, Layla, made a huge impact on women’s wrestling fans as she had a very successful near-decade long career in the wrestling industry. She made the most of her time in WWE and it all started as a winner of the Diva Search in 2006.
She goes down in the history books as not just a Divas Champion but the last-ever woman to hold the classic Women’s Championship. Her partnership with Michelle McCool has solidified her as one of the most popular women’s tag teams in WWE history – LayCool.
For her first interview in five years since her retirement, DS Shin of Ring the Belle sat down with Layla to count down the Top 5 fan voted moments and catch up with the legend herself.
The top five moments selected were as follows:
5. Layla wins Diva Search 2006
3. Layla vs. Michelle McCool – Extreme Rules 2011
No DQ/No Count-Out Loser Leaves WWE
2. Layla wins Women’s Championship
1.Layla wins Divas Championship
While going over Layla’s accomplishments, she did discuss the moment that she won the Women’s Championship. It was a two-on-one handicap match alongside McCool facing the then-champion Beth Phoenix. Layla would end up getting the pin and the two would move forward as co-champions. This made her the first British woman to ever hold the title.
“When I won the title, I’m not kidding you, you could’ve heard crickets. They couldn’t believe it, and it was in Beth Phoenix’s hometown. I didn’t know what to expect going out there. When I got told I was gonna win the title that night, everyone was like, “come on, like what?” I was still new and stuff like that. It was just a great night, and I wasn’t even upset that the crowd didn’t react. I was just more grateful, humbled.”
One of the most memorable matches in Layla’s career was actually McCool’s partner in a Loser Leaves WWE match. She reveals that she was actually injured in that match and didn’t know it. She knew something was wrong but no one, including herself, knew it was her ACL and MCL.
“I don’t think I ever told anybody this, but I wrestled this match with a torn ACL and torn MCL. Yeah, but we didn’t know what was wrong with me. I knew my knee felt funny that I knew I’ve done something prior to that day, but I didn’t know what it was. I just iced it, and went out there. Yeah, I wrestled that match with torn ACL and MCL, but I love that match, I love it. I can’t watch it too much cuz I cry.”
Layla explains her retirement and why she decided to leave when she did.
“I think I had a great career. I was very privileged. I explored everything I could explore in WWE, like what else more could I have possibly done? I got to be around great people, and I got to travel the world. I was able to get a great fan base behind me. And it was just time. I didn’t want to age too much on TV. The older we get we’re more prone to injuries. It was just time.”
On if she would want to face The IIconics – “Well haven’t they broken up? They’re not together anymore, so would they come back together? I don’t know.”
The last and all-important question – would Layla ever return to the WWE?
There has been much hype over wanting a LayCool reunion. Michelle has had a few showings in recent years by being part of the first-ever women’s Royal Rumble and being a part of the Evolution event in 2018. What is on everyone’s mind though is if she would return and reform the team to go after the Women’s Tag Team Championships.
“I just feel that I had a very fruitful long career, and I attained everything I possibly could have attained in WWE, and I was given every opportunity. That door is closed, and I’m okay with that. And I feel just happy that I was able to have that. I look at my past, and I’m like, ‘wow I did all that stuff,’ and that’s just how I’d like to keep it.”
What are some of your favorite Layla moments? Thanks to DS and Ring the Belle for catching up with Layla for all the fans to see.