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Corey Graves: Billie Kay took the ball and ran with it but “I don’t know who Peyton Royce is anymore”

On the latest “After The Bell” podcast, Corey Graves spoke about her emotional segment on WWE Raw Talk on Monday night where she broke down about her frustrations in WWE. You can click here to see her Raw Talk segment.

Graves said the following about Royce:

“I was a huge fan of The Iconics and everything that she and Billie did together. I genuinely enjoyed all those interactions. Anytime they were on my screen, I was tickled. It made me laugh. They were very entertaining. I respect her and everything she’s done. I know she’s an incredibly hard worker.  What I loved most was The Iconics. When they split, when they went their separate ways, I don’t think I’m speaking out of line by saying, everyone and their mother saw Peyton as the breakout star. I think everybody said, ‘Ok, Billie is the sidekick.’

If we are gauging television time as success, Billie took the ball and ran with it. Billie has been on SmackDown practically every Friday. She’s incredibly entertaining. Billie has been doing her thing, whereas Peyton has sort of been floundering. That’s not for lack of talent, not for lack of ability, and definitely not for a lack of passion. To me, as a fan, to try to look at this objectively, I don’t know who Peyton Royce is anymore. I know who Billie Kay is.  Billie Kay has the resume. She’s silly. She’s funny. Peyton is a good looking girl who is good at wrestling, to me, right now, looking at it objectively. I like to hold everybody to a standard. If you’re flipping through the channels, or my friend who doesn’t watch wrestling, comes in and sits down, do they know who you are? If the guy who was feeding Vic five shots at the bar turns the TV on, having never watched WWE, can that person look and say, ‘I know what that person is about. I get that person. I understand it.’ That’s what I’m not getting from Peyton. That’s not to say she’s not capable of it, I just don’t know beyond what I just described who she is.

Why do I want to see her face Asuka? I say, in this business, in this company in particular, and this will tie all the way back to The Miz and what Miz said last night to kick off RAW. He’s never had sick days. He’s never injured. He is just consistent and every time Miz has gotten the opportunity, no matter how stupid it may sound, ‘We want you to go out there and have your suit stripped off and run out of the arena in your underwear’, guess who does it to the best of his ability? The Miz. There’s a reason Miz has been here as long as he has and how he was WWE Champion a few weeks ago because every opportunity, and this goes to anybody in this business, in this company, and this is something I truly believe in and I’ve had this conversation with many people.

In WWE, you may not get many opportunities so you have to make sure that when you’re given any opportunity, you hit a home run. Period. If you don’t hit a home run, maybe you only hit a single, that’s ok. You’ll probably get another opportunity, but they are not putting you in the cleanup spot. You’re not getting that third spot in the batting order. That’s for Roman Reigns. That’s for The Miz. That’s for Brawn Strowman. When you get a momentary opportunity, the old wrestling cliche, making chicken salad out of chicken you know what, that is the most valuable thing. Does that mean Peyton has gotten as many opportunities as maybe she deserves? I don’t know. Maybe she does deserve more opportunities, but, what she did on RAW Talk was masterful. You know why? Because it got the whole world talking about Peyton Royce.”

Bayley joined the show. She talked about wrestling in front of no crowds and that how that helped her facilitate her heel turn:

“Recently I realized that not having a crowd is what helped me the most because, for one, I was having trouble trying to make the crowd believe, trying to make the fans believe that this is me now. I was Bayley with the ponytail and a hugger for so long. It was hard for them to see me in this different character. They had like a weird, not reacting, don’t believe it, they weren’t buying into it. Then when we got to the PC, I thought it was going to be a one night thing, and the more that we did it and did it without fans, it was like, ok, you know what? I don’t have to worry about them. I can just play off my opponents. I can play off Sasha who’s my tag partner. What else can I do? I can be loud and hear the echo in the PC and I thought it was hilarious…I think that’s what helped me find what kind of annoying bad guy I want to be. That’s also part of who I am personally. That’s how I am with my friends.  I’m the annoying person who pushes too many buttons and goes too far. Then every opponent added different layers to me. Every time I got in there with Sasha, I would play off that and that added layers to me.”

The entire interview with Bayley and additional thoughts from Graves on the current wrestling scene are up now via every podcast streaming app on iOS and Android.

If you use any portion of the quotes from this article please credit After The Bell with Corey Graves with a h/t to WrestlingNews.co for the transcription


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