Shotzi Blackheart spoke with Sports Illustrated about Wednesday’s tag match, her style, and what she hopes to accomplish every time she steps in the ring. Check out the highlights below.
On her Tag Team title match:
The first thing in my mind were the amazing matches that Bayley and Sasha put on together against each other. They broke ground for women’s wrestling at [the first Brooklyn] TakeOver. I’ve always been a big fan of theirs. Bayley is from San Jose and I was born in San Jose. It’s all just really cool and really insane to me that this is happening.
I’m very aware that this is the biggest match of my life so far, and it’s against two amazing women that give it their all in the ring. There’s going to be a lot of chemistry, and I’m just excited to get in there with two girls that are just as passionate as I am.
On her wrestling style:
I like to go into a match balls to the wall, so that’s what I’m going to do. I like taking risks. I like to sling my body everywhere and just run wild.
On how the indies helped her career:
I got a lot of time on the indies to find myself as a wrestler and as a performer, and I’m really thankful for that. It gave me a lot of independence, and I’m a really well-rounded businesswoman because of it. Essentially, as an independent wrestler, you run your own business and you are your own business. I loved that. It was a lot of fun, it was silly at times, and it shows you how much heart you need to make it.
On why she signed with NXT:
It was always my dream to come to WWE. I didn’t really know about the indies or anything else, I just slowly fell in love with it. I love working here, I love the environment, the people I’m surrounded by, and how much I’m pushed. There is nowhere I’d rather be.
On whether she thought they would change her name and gimmick:
Deep down, within me, I had a feeling they weren’t going to rebrand me. I feel like, you just can’t. I’m just too loud. You can’t contain me too much. I did get told by a lot of people, ‘Oh man, you’re going to have to change your name, you’re going to have to change your gimmick. You won’t be able to do this or do that.’ So it was great to come here and learn that everyone was on-board with what I already had going on. I’d already done it on the indies, and it was working, so why mess with it?