Nikki Bella and her sister Brie helped usher in a whole new generation of WWE fans through reality shows Total Divas and Total Bellas.
Meanwhile, the sisters also enjoyed a tremendous amount of success in the ring, with Nikki standing as the longest-reigning Divas Champion in history. However, despite their incredible popularity in some wrestling circles, both Nikki and Brie are heavily derided in others.
This is something that came to a head in the aftermath of the special 30th-anniversary edition of Monday Night Raw. The Bella Twins were pulled from the event in the lead-up for other media commitments and Nikki in particular took WWE to task over the lack of female legends featured on the show.
Speaking on the Bellas Podcast, Nikki has now claimed that she is the “most hated person online” in the industry.
“Even when it comes to the wrestling industry, I’m the most hated person online. There was literally an article written about it two weeks ago. It is true, I’m the most hated person in the wrestling industry, and it’s so mind-blowing because I’m probably one of the nicest. Beyond that, I am hated for being so misunderstood. If I stick up for the women, I’m hated. If I stick up for myself, I’m hated.
The thing that has always been mind-blowing is, I’ve never claimed to be the best wrestler. For some reason, me wrestling and showing passion and love, they hate me for it. It’s like I’m not allowed to be passionate or have love for it. In every industry, there’s an MVP, there’s a champ, there’s the best. In ours, you don’t have to be the best wrestler to be the most popular. I think a lot of people didn’t like my popularity. We get dragged for a lot of stuff.
Why should my passion and love be taken away or why should I be hated for it? I love the business so much and I loved being in the ring so much. I never claimed to be the best, and people dragged me as if I’m out there saying, ‘no one can beat me.’ Yes, I am the longest-reigning divas champion in history, that’ll never change. It’s not like we were in the Olympics and I got there and won it.”
WWE Hall Of Famer Says There’s A “Bandwagon Of Bella Hate”
Nikki Bella added that she doesn’t understand what she’s done to make herself so hated.
“There is so much more that goes into being a WWE Champion, there are so many components that go into it. It’s really crazy because the wrestling industry absolutely hates me online. Not all of them. Obviously, the Bella Army is so strong. We’re talking about 10% out of 100. I also feel like I’m misunderstood. They read headlines, they don’t listen to me fully.
When we were on IG Live and Raw 30 came up, I was on IG Live for a good 20-30 minutes talking about Barmageddon season finale, and questions came in about Raw 30. That was about three minutes of a 20-minute IG Live, but people cut things down and made it as if I went on IG Live to talk about that.
It’s interesting because, it’s mind-blowing to me because I see all the hate, and it’s really hard, because I love this business so much. I broke my neck in this business, and other bones, but I came back, I’ve risked my life, I’ve risked so many things because of how much I love it. It’s hard when you’re so hated for something. I’m always confused of like, why, what have I ever done? Being successful, literally, that’s it, because I’m successful…I’ve never turned my back on the wrestling industry.
The more success I’ve had, I’ve always tried to bring more awareness to women’s wrestling, and empower more women, what can my success do for others? There are a lot of people that see that, and write articles about that too, which I’m so appreciative of the people that stick up for you [Brie] and I, and have written amazing articles about us and showcase that is truly incredible. That small group, it’s a really distinct demo, and it is mind-blowing. I also think, the people that do hate, they are the ones that are afraid to not go with the flow. They’re afraid that trolls are going to turn on them. There is a bandwagon of Bella hate.”
Nikki Bella hasn’t wrestled since coming out of retirement to compete in the 2022 women’s Royal Rumble match. The Bella Twins were inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame as part of the class of 2020.
H/t to Fightful