According to many reports, a new rule in the WWE states that the Divas who appear on E!’s Total Divas reality show can’t win the Divas title. While not exactly confirming it, Calgary’s Natalya doesn’t see it as a big deal. At least, not any more.
“I’ve heard that rumour. It’s hard to explain it because every single day in the WWE things are changing. Remember that anything can happen in the WWE. Who would’ve have thought that Bret Hart would ever come back?” Natalya told SLAM! Wrestling. “Would I like to be Divas champion again? For sure, but it doesn’t define me. About six months ago, I felt I wasn’t worth as much if I wasn’t Divas champion. But now, it’s not what’s making me wake up in the morning. Since I started doing Total Divas, my life has changed is so many ways that I wasn’t expecting. And you know, tomorrow, all the rules can change again.”
Total Divas not only allowed her to perform in the WWE in very different ways than she used too, but it also allowed her husband, Tyson Kidd (TJ Wilson) to blossom. Since the start of the current season, fans of the show have seen him becoming more arrogant. NXT fans can see that side of him as well.
For Natalya, it’s just an aspect of Kidd that the WWE Universe hadn’t been exposed to.
“He’s just embracing is inner TJ. He’s always been cocky, I mean, he’s grown up around Teddy Hart you know! What you see in NXT is not too far from the truth. But yeah, TJ is getting quite snotty! Actually, Dusty Rhodes helped TJ in ways people don’t even know. He brought that inner jerk in him we’ve all grown to love,” explained the 32-year old.
Talking about NXT, Natalya is spending quite some time in Orlando, at the Performance Centre, helping the future WWE Divas-to-be.
“I go to NXT whenever I can, to get the opportunity to work with the girls like Sasha Banks, Charlotte, Bailey and Alexa Bliss. There’s a lot of very good girls out there. It’s like if I’m in a candy shop. You see them from where they started.”
From all the women at NXT, Charlotte is perhaps the one fans are raving the most about and Natalya was able to see her develop from the get go.
“I had one of Charlotte’s first matches over a year ago. At the time, she was questioning herself, asking herself if she was good enough, if she could do this. She felt the same way I felt when I started because we both come from a wrestling family. It’s hard to fill Ric Flair or Bret Hart’s shoes.”
On May 29, Charlotte beat Natalya to become the NXT women’s champion in a match people are still talking about. Natalya was able to see first hand the improvement in the “Nature Boy”‘s daughter.
“I’ve seen a different Charlotte there. She blossomed in this girl who gave me a run for my money. Ever since that match she has a different attitude, she’s a different person now.”
There are a lot of women working at either NXT or simply learning their craft at the Performance Centre. One reason behind their success and their improvement is a former indy wrestler known as Sara Del Rey(Sara Amato).
Natalya knew her well before both of them were hired by the WWE and is not surprised by Sara’s training skills.
“When I got hired by the WWE seven or eight years ago, I was told that I wasn’t ‘diva’ enough, that I was too much of a wrestler. And Sara has been through this as well. But she’s able to take that wrestling background she has and putting it to and play with the Divas on NXT. So they have this different flavour from a girl who has a worldwide experience and who’s a tremendous wrestler.”
About her own training, Natalya has recently trained with MMA star Josh Barnett. Even though she has very good wrestling skills, it’s all about always improving for her.
“I don’t like to get comfortable. Josh has really helped me and volunteers a number of hours of his time to help me getting better. So what if I grew up around wrestling all my life, I really want to get better and better and better, learning from people with knowledge of catch wrestling and grappling. I want to be so well-rounded. Nobody can outdo my work ethic. It’s not something you can teach somebody and it’s something you can’t take away from me,” said the granddaughter of one of the most feared shooters, the late Stu Hart.
Tonight she will be at Bell Centre for the third WWE show of the year in Montreal, something the city hasn’t gotten in quite a few years. While it isn’t confirmed yet, the tentative match would be Natalya teaming with Naomi against Cameron and Layla.
But whatever match she will get, coming back to Canada is always a thrill for the Calgary native.
“There’s always a different vibe when I come to Canada. Canada is home for me. Dolph Ziggler gets mad at me and tells me: ‘Nattie, you can’t own all of Canada!’ Dolph Ziggler needs to know that I can own all of Canada because we are that damn good! I can do the sharpshooter there and everybody understands not only what it is, but what it means and the history behind it, especially in Montreal.”
WWE comes back to Montreal tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Bell Centre. Confirm so far is Dean Ambrose against Randy Orton in a street fight with Kane in Orton’s corner. Plus, many other WWE Superstars such as Dolph Ziggler, The Miz, The Usos, Gold and Star Dust, Mark Henry, Damien Sandow and Montreal’s own Sami Zayn will be on the card.