It’s not easy to work within the limitations of the WWE. Once a professional wrestler signs from the indies, their creative freedom is either stripped down, or out the window altogether. Also, when the time comes to develop a character or gimmick, things become increasingly difficult considering they have a huge roster built up of some of the best stars in the industry. WWE possesses characters of all shapes and sizes, and the pickings are slim.
Just ask former Mae Young Classic competitor Zeda Zhang. Zhang is very accomplished outside of the WWE. She’s a former mixed martial artist who is practiced in disciplines such as boxing, jiu-jitsu, judo, muay thai, and more. Zhang is also a singer and model, which would really help her when it comes to developing a character. However, due to the fact that WWE already has an MMA, singer, and model character, Zhang had difficulty finding a gimmick she really related to.
She explained the difficulty during her appearance on the “Women’s Wrestling Weekly” podcast:
“I don’t have the freedom of what kind of character I want to be. I can’t really test it out. They tell you when you wrestle and when you get to try things out, and they just tell you, “be yourself”. But the thing is everything that makes me is my background – my modelling, singing, dancing, music and MMA – and me just being Chinese in general.
“That’s what I am but when I was there, I can’t do the MMA thing because someone else has it, I can’t do the singing thing because someone else has it, can’t do the dancing thing cause someone else has it, can’t do the modelling thing because someone else has it, so I’m left with nothing.
“I can’t be Chinese either, they told me, I wasn’t allowed to be billed from China because it’s not true so because of that I was left with this heart gimmick.”