Saraya recently returned to the squared circle for the first time in five years after she announced her retirement in 2018 due to injury. During a recent podcast appearance, the Anti-Diva opened up on the limitations she still has today.
Saraya’s 2018 injury and consequent retirement at 26 stunned the wrestling industry. The former Paige was once heralded as the leading figure of WWE’s “Women’s Revolution” and ushered in a change in how women were viewed in pro wrestling at the promotion.
During her recent appearance on AEW Unrestricted, the 30-year-old addressed the rampant fan speculations that she wasn’t truly cleared to wrestle:
“I feel like I have to clear this up because I feel like the internet just creates their own stories! Which is just like, ‘Calm down! You’re not with me! You’re not behind the scenes!’ The assumptions are strong in the IWC.” [From 04:47 onward]
Saraya continued, noting that she’ll be taking better care of herself in the ring this time around:
“So it’s not that I’m scared to get back in the ring, I just want to take it slower this time. So people on the internet are just like ‘How is she cleared? She’s gonna hurt herself’ and then on the other hand they’re like ‘Wait, you don’t want to take a piledriver and German [Suplex]? Are you even cleared?’I don’t want to take a German Suplex and a Piledriver! There’s just some moves that I’m taking out of my repertoire.” [From 07:45 onward]
Despite her doubts, Saraya made her return this weekend during AEW Full-Gear. Following her match, the star took to social media to reveal where she got her inspiration for her in-ring gear.
If you use one of the transcriptions above, please credit AEW Unrestricted and give an H/T to Sportskeeda Wrestling for the transcription.
Missed out on AEW Dynamite? Catch up on the show’s results here.
Not everyone was happy with Saraya’s return to wrestling, as a WWE veteran harshly slammed her for her performance
The Anti-Diva hasn’t had the smoothest return to wrestling as many a fan would have hoped.
She first experienced a ton of backlash after cutting a poorly-received promo during her second AEW Dynamite appearance, but some were not impressed with her Full-Gear performance.
While some fans online took to social media to complain, WWE veteran Jim Cornette utilized his podcast, The Jim Cornette Experience, to vent his frustrations:
“By the sloppy Go-Home Stretch, I think Saraya was either ready to give up or blown up because by the expression of her face she was like ‘Oh, f**k these people aren’t caring.'” [From 02:57:03 onward]
Saraya is likely gearing up to be a main eventer in AEW, but will her first match in All Elite Wrestling cast a shadow on her eventual AEW Women’s Championship run? But, was Cornette simply too harsh with his assessments? Sounds off in the comments section below.