Former WWE SmackDown Women’s Champion, Bayley, has spoken about how she felt like she was slipping through WWE’s fingers during her first reign with the blue belt.
On May 19, 2019, at Money in the Bank, Bayley cashed in the briefcase she’d won earlier in the evening to defeat Charlotte Flair, capturing the strap and the support of millions. However, the subsequent reign would last just 140 days before she dropped the gold back to ‘The Queen’ at WWE Hell in a Cell.
During those 140 days, Bayley felt as if she was slipping steadily through the fingers of the company as they focused on other names and left her in the doldrums to fight for herself, as she told Stone Cold Steve Austin on the latest edition of Broken Skull Sessions:
“Yeah, yeah there was a time where I was frustrated so much. At SummerSlam I wrestled Ember Moon, I think, and the way it was presented to me wasn’t the way that it played out. Then, our match didn’t even match what it could have been, so I felt like, I was not feeling good. I felt like I wasn’t bringing anything to the table and I wasn’t doing anything for the division or the company, and it was, I don’t know, it was really, really bothering me.
I was feeling it since 2017. So when I won the title was in 2019, but yeah, I think I just wasn’t feeling it for a long time. It was kind of a relationship where you’re like, man, this don’t feel like it used to and something’s missing, and that was kind of what it felt like. I think it didn’t feel right and I was losing confidence because I felt that I was slipping right through the company’s fingers, where I thought I had so much to offer, so much to give. I can do great things, but I felt like I just wasn’t being seen in that light. So I was just going to get left behind. I was just going to be forgotten about. So I was getting really nervous about that.”
Despite the loss to Flair at Hell in a Cell, Bayley would go on to recapture the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship five days later. The victory would be followed by a heel turn, brand new look and union with now former best friend, Sasha Banks.
The overhaul of Bayley gave her a new lease of life. Not only did she greatly improve inside the squared circle, but the talent snagged the top spot in the PWI Women’s Wrestler of the Year category and is currently involved in a rivalry with Bianca Belair with both women participating in the 2021 Women’s Royal Rumble Match on January 31.
Credit for the interview: Broken Skull Sessions
h/t for the transcription: Fightful