Naomi opens up about ‘Naomi deserves better’ hashtag, original plans after Royal Rumble return and her superstar look
Naomi is only 32, but she has already been signed with WWE for 11 years and many feel she has even greater heights to reach.
The SmackDown star is a former two-time world champion and won the Women’s Battle Royal at WrestleMania 34.
However, after making a stunning return at this year’s Royal Rumble, many fans feel Naomi hasn’t been given the opportunities her talent deserves.
The ‘Naomi deserves better’ hashtag started trending on Twitter and if recent reports are to be believed, WWE started to take notice.
talkSPORT caught up with the popular star this week to talk about her career and pushing forward.
On social media and some things being out of talent’s control…
That’s the frustrating part. Because there is so much that is out of my control and out of my hands. Some things I’m just tied down to and can’t do or can’t say.
But, the support is good. Even the constructive criticism I appreciate. The negativity just fuels me to be better and help me grow. I wanna fix any holes in my game and just continue to grow and evolve.
But, it is a lot and it is overwhelming sometimes. Taking it in, like all the, time is a lot. Sometimes I have to step away and take a break.
I try to stay positive because sometimes it can weigh you down, but it’s not something I run away from. Social media is a big platform and you got to take the good with the bad.
I just try to keep that balance, but I definitely appreciate the trends, support and just the conversation because I’m just one person.
I can vouch and say we should go this way, we should do this, we should do that. That can be ignored. But what you can’t ignore is the masses and the thousands and thousands if this continues to trends. That’s when it matters and it has an influence.
Although some don’t think it should and some don’t think it matters, that’s probably one of the biggest tools we have as talent these days.
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Those trends really matter and change our course of direction at times. You don’t get to choose when the fans matter or don’t matter and I think, especially in this pandemic right now, that’s one of the biggest ways we’re connected with our fans right now.
If enough people keep saying something, you gotta take heed to it at some point.
On if the company has spoken to her about future plans since #NaomiDeservesBetter…
Yeah, but it’s difficult as well because of the times we’re in. The show is constantly changing and evolving, there’s just so much going on so I don’t know what the solutions are.
All I can do is keep doing my part, keep showing up and giving it my all. Ignoring the haters and continuing to do what I love. I’m happy to still be here, be present and be a player.
It’s not something I take for granted, especially after the big releases we had this year.
Although what we do is very stressful at times, it’s something I remind myself to be grateful and thankful for. That I’m still able to wake up every day, have a job to go to and not just any job – but a dream job.
We’re going to look at this pandemic era years, maybe decades down the road and be like ‘damn, that was crazy!’
On if WWE presented any plans for her beyond her Royal Rumble return…
It was just I was coming back. It was extremely nerve wracking. I had been gone for quite some time and the one thing after being gone like that, you don’t want to come back and it’s crickets [laughs].
I was just so nervous if I would be missed and if people would care! Just hearing the audience when I did return I was like YES! They still with me. I’m OK and ready to kick ass.
I think because I got such a good response we kind of tried to go somewhere after that, but I don’t know.
On her in-ring gear and style…
It’s literally whatever I wake up and feel like doing and looking like. I remember in the earlier stages of my career I would change up a lot and I was told don’t do that, because it’s hard to brand me and market me.
But, that’s just how I am. I feel like gear is like clothes in like when you go to the store, would you buy the same shirt in like 20 different colours? So that’s how I feel about my gear. I don’t want the same gear, I always want to switch it up.
That’s why I change it so much and I try to keep the neon colours for some consistency, but I get bored really quick with a look so I’m always changing my gear, my hair and I like to be creative.
I got two awesome seamsters; Julie, who’s been with the company from the beginning. I think she actually started the seamsters department in WWE. And Sandra, she also makes my gear and she’s been making it since the beginning – she made my first gear.
So between those two, sometimes I collaborate and I’m like ‘can we do something like this?’ And they’re like ‘Naomi, hell no. That will look horrible. We’ve made this for you.’ [laughs]. Some of my ideas are too much. But I like being creative and different with my gear.
Make sure you catch Naomi on SmackDown every Friday night on BT Sport