After competing in the Women’s Money In The Bank Ladder Match in May of 2020 Carmella disappeared from WWE television.
The former SmackDown Women’s Champion was absent until she revealed herself as the mystery woman who had been appearing in vignettes for the past month in October. With a new entrance, new ring attire and new attitude, Carmella set her sights on reigning SmackDown Women’s Champion Sasha Banks.
Appearing on The Bellas Podcast with Nikki and Brie Bella, Carmella reflected on her time out of the ring, saying she was just “twiddling her thumbs” at home.
“For people that don’t work here, it’s hard to explain. Because of course, I’m grateful I have a job. I’m grateful that I’m working for this amazing company. Last summer, I was off TV for four or five months, twiddling my thumbs. There was no rhyme or reason for why I was at home. I was just told we’re going to wait to bring you back and do a different story. Then, I kind of revamped my character a little bit. Which is cool, it’s nice to get a new coat of paint.”
Upon her return, Carmella entered a feud with Sasha Banks that would result in multiple matches between the pair. At the 2021 Royal Rumble the pair met once more, with Carmella hitting a scary-looking dive to the outside. Looking back on the match, Carmella explained that she injured her back during the spot, putting her on the injured list. However, she expressed her frustration at being removed from television altogether, as she felt she could have still been used in a storyline.
“Then I came back and had this awesome story with Sasha. I felt like I totally delivered. We had great matches, great promos. I just felt very happy. I felt like I proved myself and then it’s like nothing. So, there’s really no reason. Well, I actually was not cleared for a little while after our match at the Royal Rumble. I dove out of the ring… and I just kind of jacked my back up. So, I wasn’t cleared for physicality, but I could still be in a storyline but it just didn’t work out and I just kind of sat around after having what I thought was a great feud. You know, you just have to wait your turn. The world keeps turning. It does suck because then you sit here and question, ‘Well, did I not do as well as I could have? What can I change? What can I do better?’ But you have to realize it’s not anything that you’re doing.”
Carmella eventually returned to the ring on April 2nd, where she was defeated by Bianca Belair.
Elsewhere in the conversation, Carmella commented on Billie Kay’s release from the company. Carmella detailed how she was looking forward to working with Kay, and was “rocked” by the news.
H/t to Fightful for the transcription.