Two more matches were added to WWE Fast Lane on the Feb. 19 edition of “SmackDown,” making seven matches on the card. The WWE Divas Championship will be on the line, as Paige challenges Nikki Bella for the title.
No matter the result at Sunday’s pay-per-view, it would be hard to call Paige’s first year in WWE anything less than a success. She won the title from AJ Lee in her debut, appearing on “Monday Night Raw” the day after WrestleMania 30. In a little less than 11 months, Paige held the title for nearly 120 days, joined the cast of “Total Divas,” and became one of the most popular Divas on the roster.
Before trying to win the belt for a third time at Fast Lane, Paige spoke to International Business Times about her first year in WWE, the other Divas on the roster, NXT and more.
What would it mean for you to beat Nikki Bella at Fast Lane and take the WWE Divas Championship into WrestleMania 31?
It’ll be my first WrestleMania. I think it would blow my mind just because this whole year has been absolutely incredible for me, so to make more history and become a three-time WWE Divas champion would be absolutely incredible. And then to take it into WrestleMania would be the cherry on top. So if I could do that, it would be my dream come true, basically.
Were you surprised you were winning the WWE Divas Championship when you debuted last year, and did you think you were ready to hold the title?
I have been wrestling for many years, and then I was in developmental for like 2.5 years, but nothing can prepare you for that kind of debut. I didn’t know how it was going to be, how it was going to turn out. I didn’t know if I was ready or not, but it went fine and I came out WWE Divas champion. So I feel so happy, and WWE is great and they have a lot of trust in me. It was absolutely incredible and I couldn’t believe it. All my dreams came true. That was such a huge goal of mine for my whole wrestling career, and it all came true in that one day, so it blew my mind.
Have you liked the way your character has changed in the last year?
I like to keep changing and evolving character-wise, so it’s always nice to change it up. When I first came up I was like “Oh man, I can’t be this little, prissy babyface,” so it was kind of weird. And then turning heel was a blessing. I love it. I love being the bad guy. And I still get to act the same, but they cheer me now, so I like that. It kind of reminds me of Stone Cold, in that he could kind of keep his character and he could be either a heel or babyface, and that’s kind of what I’m trying to do right now. So I was a heel, and now I’m basically a heel that gets cheered.
Was it difficult to fit in the locker room since you won the title as soon as you joined the roster?
The Bella’s were actually really great about it. There was a handful of girls that didn't appreciate it because they've been working their butts off all year round and for the last couple of years, and then you got this new girl coming up and you get (the title) right away. I just (thought) “C’mon, I’ve been wrestling even longer than them, just not here.” So it was just like, “Be happy. Just be happy you work here. Just be happy you’re here.” I try to be very positive. I surround myself with positive people and the negative people can leave.
Who has been your favorite Diva to work with?
AJ was great. The Bella’s are great. Me and Summer (Rae) had such a fun time in NXT, and she was like the best heel down there. She was just incredible. I’d love to do something with her or Emma, because me and Emma had a good couple of matches in NXT on the PPVs, and I just miss her. I would love to do some storylines with her, or Sasha Banks, who’s one of the biggest heels and I love her.
Why do you think NXT is so popular?
It’s a short show, and with the women, they get so much time. And they basically wrestle like the guys, but sometimes even better. So a lot of people tune in just for the girls sometimes. They completely kick ass. I absolutely miss being on the shows. And the guys are a lot of independent wrestlers. So you get all the fans that go on the independent scene to watch all their favorite wrestlers, but then WWE signs them and brings them in and they just kill it.
What do you think about Charlotte and the possibility of her being called up to WWE soon?
She’s good. She’s still new, so I feel like at one point people want to see her, but they’re kind of rushing it. I think she could do with some more time, but I still think Sasha Banks is the one that I personally want to come up and who I think is completely ready and the full package, boxed up and ready to go. I feel like she’d be absolutely perfect up here. Charlotte is good, but (needs) some more time.