5 Things You Didn’t Know About Naomi

Naomi 5 things you didn't know

At 34-years-old, Naomi has already achieved so much throughout her tenured WWE career. First appearing through the third season of NXT in September 2010, the Sanford, Florida native has previously held both the SmackDown Women’s and Women’s Tag Team Championships, alongside winning the 2018 WrestleMania Women’s Battle Royal.

For someone who has admitted to not being a fan of professional wrestling when growing up, the real-life Trinity McCray has been a notable example of pro athletes making the jump to the squared circle and excelling between the ropes. Her dance background helped her profusely, of course, with the agility and athleticism she developed there allowing her to flourish in the world of sports entertainment.

Speaking with Kenny McIntosh for issue 21 of Inside The Ropes Magazine, Naomi noted that she “started out as a dancer” and “probably would have dove into that” had it not been for her signing with WWE.

Currently serving an unpaid indefinite suspension from WWE following her and Sasha Banks’ walkout from the company, Naomi is one of the most talked-about wrestlers right now, but how well do you know her? Time to find out!

Naomi’s wrestling idols are Lita and Melina

Lita Melina

Although Naomi confessed to never being a wrestling fan growing up, she quickly became engrossed in the sport once she discovered her love for it. Part of that reason can be attributed to Lita and Melina. Between them, the duo have amassed a total of nine WWE championships; Lita held the Women’s Championship four times, while Melina achieved three reigns with that title, alongside two with the Divas Championship.

Naomi named them as her idols while chatting to Kenny McIntosh for a recent issue of Inside The Ropes Magazine, citing their unique individuality as the reason why:

“I really didn’t know about wrestling when I was growing up, but once I got into it Melina and Lita really stuck out to me. Just their uniqueness and their style, and I just feel like they just did things different.”

Naomi has previously stated that she would’ve liked to have faced Melina at WWE’s Evolution pay-per-view in October 2018. The former WWE Women’s Tag Team Champion confirmed the dream match to Cathy Kelly when questioned at the 2018 Teen Choice Awards. Melina, who had left WWE seven years prior, responded by deeming such a match as “insanely magical”:

Naomi was the inaugural FCW Divas Champion

FCW Quiz

Long before Naomi won the SmackDown Women’s Championship at WrestleMania in her home state, she was a flourishing prospect in WWE’s then-developmental system, Florida Championship Wrestling. It was there that, under the slightly modified moniker of Naomi Night, she was crowned the inaugural FCW Florida Divas Champion, besting now-AEW star Serena in the June 2010 tournament finals.

Naomi reigned with the championship for 189 days, the second-longest in history, behind only Raquel Diaz at 197 days. AJ Lee would usurp Naomi as the champion in December, with the ex-WWE Superstar having forged something of a rivalry with Naomi over the championship.

Established as the second women’s championship for Florida Championship Wrestling (the first being the Queen of FCW Championship, incarnated a year prior), the FCW Florida Divas Championship would have four other champions alongside the aforementioned Naomi and AJ Lee, as Aksana, Audrey Marie, Raquel Diaz, and Caylee Turner also came into legal possession of the championship. It was retired in August 2012 as NXT replaced FCW as WWE’s developmental territory.

Naomi’s favourite wrestler is Manami Toyota

Manami Toyota

To reiterate, Naomi was never a fan of pro wrestling as a young Trinity McCray. It wasn’t until later in life that she developed an interest in the sport, so it’s impressive how deep her knowledge of the business is. She’s taken inspiration from a variety of female WWE Superstars, as is evidenced in her in-ring style, but Naomi has claimed that she adores no one more than the legendary Manami Toyota!

During an interview with the Bleacher Report’s Jonathan Snowden, Naomi stated her love for the acclaimed Japanese star:

“My favourite Japanese wrestler was Manami Toyota. I watch her matches and I’m in awe.”

Although Naomi’s offence isn’t quite as defined and intense as that of the former All Japan Women’s Pro-Wrestling Champion, there are elements of Toyota’s influence within her. The former Funkadactyl has labelled herself as a high-flyer with the intention being to “make the crowd pop”, but she’s continuing to learn and evolve, with Manami Toyota being a driving force behind this:

“I consider myself a high-flyer and I like doing things to make the crowd pop and to stand out from the other girls, but when I watch her I’m really amazed by what she does. There are things she can do that to this day I’m still trying to learn how to do.”

Manami Toyota is a veteran of just over thirty years, debuting in August 1987 and retiring in November 2017 against a hand-picked adversary of Tsukasa Fujimoto. A legendary grappler, Toyota is regarded as one of the best to ever lace a pair of boots; she holds two Match of the Year awards from the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (1993 and 1995) and was the Newsletter’s Most Outstanding Wrestler of the Year for 1995.

Naomi is an acclaimed dancer and singer

The Funkadactyls Naomi Cameron

Perhaps this entry isn’t too surprising; remember, Naomi started on WWE’s main roster as a backup dancer for ‘The Funkasaurus’ Brodus Clay alongside fellow Funkadactyl Cameron! Her background in dance stretches back further, however, as the Floridian has previously been a dancer for the Orlando Magic, a role she stayed in for two years.

Needless to say, this was almost entirely different compared to the dancing she and Cameron would perform alongside the now-Tyrus, but performing in front of swathes of basketball fans under the brights of the National Basketball Association gave her the confidence and experience needed to succeed in WWE. Naomi would have perhaps floundered in Vince McMahon’s sports entertainment giant without it.

Alongside being a backup dancer for Flo Rida as well, Naomi has proven her skills as a singer, too! She released her debut single, Dance All Night, in 2014, the music video for which was released across WWE’s social media platforms, while Naomi’s experience releasing her first piece of music was detailed through the second season of Total Divas.

Naomi reportedly tried to get fired in 2019

Naomi Jimmy Uso

At present, both Naomi and Sasha Banks are absent from WWE programming. They walked out of the company on their own accord on Monday, 16 May, giving up their WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships in the process as well as, possibly, their WWE careers as a whole.

The trials and tribulations of Sasha Banks post-WrestleMania 35 have been well documented over the last three years, with ‘The Legit Boss’ reportedly being close to leaving the company as a whole before resurfacing following that August’s SummerSlam pay-per-view. However, it’s alleged that Naomi was also close to leaving WWE in 2019 following Jimmy Uso’s February arrest.

A report from FOX News stated that both Naomi and Jimmy Uso – the latter of whom was on the verge of capturing the SmackDown Tag Team Championships from The Miz and Shane McMahon at that month’s Elimination Chamber event – were both eyeing up dismissal from WWE (h/t Bodyslam):

β€œUso and his wife want to get fired by the WWE, so this arrest just might be the shoe that drops.”

Jimmy Uso reportedly “became more upset” while police officers were speaking with Naomi outside of their car, including an incident where he “squared up” to the officers in question. Ultimately, neither Naomi nor Jimmy were let go from WWE, with Jimmy and Jey Uso going on to capture the SmackDown Tag Team Championships mere days later.

Naomi, meanwhile, participated in the inaugural Women’s Tag Team Championships Elimination Chamber match alongside Carmella.