WWE Hall Of Famer Beth Phoenix is the guest this week on Corey Graves’ “After The Bell” podcast.
Beth talked about her wrestling career, her transition into being a commentator on NXT, and her thoughts on the upcoming NXT TakeOver: XXX special.
Here are some highlights:
Beth talked about being in the men’s Royal Rumble in 2010: “Being in the men’s Royal Rumble, I think, is probably my career-defining, if there is one thing that put me in the category deserving of Hall of Fame, which I still wonder how the hell I even got there, but me, looking up to Chyna as a role model and a true trailblazer, somebody that was one of the first to knock the door down and deal with a lot of crap. Being a representative of something so different and so diverse among the women. My mind was blown when I saw her. I thought, this woman, she is the one that inspired me to lift weights and I was like, wow, you can be powerful and beautiful and there is equality in the future. To be able to walk in her footsteps 10 years later was the most special thing in the universe.”
Beth talked about retiring in 2012: “I was starting to get exhausted with the road schedule. It was 12 years that I was traveling as an indie wrestler and a pro wrestler and I missed a lot of stuff. At that stage, I had banged my head against the wall with WWE for so many years just wanting to change things. I hit some roadblocks. I hit some walls. I’m not going to lie. I shed tears over like, man, I hope I didn’t waste all this time and waste my life. I really wanted to make a change. I wanted to make a difference. I wanted to inspire other little girls like Chyna inspired me. I was afraid I wasted all of that and it didn’t matter. None of this mattered. At that point in my life, I met a very nice man. He and I were both in a state of mind. He was told he had to retire from wrestling and never doing it again. He was wrapping his head around that. I was wrapping my head around a lot of change in my life and I was like, we might be ready for a family. That’s mainly why I stepped away.”
Beth discussed what it is like watching the current scene in women’s wrestling: “For me, the big reward was that my initial feelings were that I didn’t make a difference. I didn’t matter. I was wrong. I did contribute to helping the next generation and the next group of girls getting more. Why that is so meaningful is I have 2 girls. I wanted to know that I put some tiny little cog in the wheel on the way to my daughter’s having more opportunities and seeing women in better positions and presented as role models and positive lights and successful alongside men instead of being put in the side show category. It was validation of my hope that I had helped along the way. I was so happy for them.”