During an appearance on “The New Day: Feel The Power” podcast, Bayley has described her change of character as “the scariest and best decision that i ever made.”
Throughout her time in NXT and her initial run on the main roster, Bayley appeared as something of a super-babyface. Her happy-go-lucky charm and chase for the NXT Women’s Title won her legions of fans, while the match in which she won the title, stands as one of the best women’s matches of all time.
Even after her call up to the main roster her character remained pretty much unchanged, but all of that flipped on its head with one swing of a steel chair in 2019, as Bayley explains.
“I started as a super bubbly babyface and just in awe of being there, like a kid with a ponytail. But then, when I felt myself growing up having these championship matches at NXT, winning the title in Brooklyn to being the leader of the locker room when Sasha, Charlotte and Becky were called up. It was a gradual growth, a real life thing. Once it took a couple of years, I kept seeing that it was time for a change and just didn’t want to be the same character or the same person for the rest of my career. I felt like I had more to give. I didn’t think they would give me that chance until I had this random thing where I hit Becky with the chair and I cried when I lost the title at Hell In A Cell like, ‘I can’t go back to being the same person.’ So I really fought for the change and for everything to kind of take my career in a different direction,”
This change in direction, proceeded to elevate her career to a whole new level. The switch in character lead to her winning the SmackDown Women’s Title against Charlotte Flair, and enjoying the longest title reign in the belt’s history. While Bayley feels the change in character was needed, she admits it was still a scary jump to take.
“Honestly, it’s been the scariest decision and the best decision I ever made and I’m so happy that they allowed me to do that. I just feel like the first seven years of my WWE career, I dedicated it to the fans and give back to the little kid me and how I wanted to be like a hero to those kids. But I feel like this end of my career is now just about me and now I need to do what I need to get to that next level… I don’t have to pay attention to them. It was a focus on me and no one else in the arena. I can focus on my opponent and my character, so it felt like the perfect time for me and it worked out this year where I can focus on what I need to do to become a different performer but also make sure I’m at that level and people see me in that light,”