Bayley Recalls Doubting Herself When She Got Left Behind in NXT, More
Bayley appeared on the latest Chasing Glory with Lilian Garcia alongside Charlotte and recalled not being called up to the main roster at the same time as the other NXT Horsewomen. Bailey was kept in NXT when Charlotte Flair, Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch were called up, and didn’t get her own call-up until a year later in July of 2016. She recalled that at the time, she doubted herself and wondered what she was doing wrong, but said that it worked out to her favor because it forced her to step up in NXT and have a year where she had to take a leadership role.
Highlights from the discussion, as well as the full podcast, are below:
On how she felt when she was the lone NXT Horsewoman not called up: “Yeah, so there was a lot. So, I heard rumblings of them going, and I was not. And I was like, ‘Oh no! What did I do wrong?’ I had just broken my hand, and I was like, ‘Is this holding me back?’ But I was still able to wrestle with my cast on, so that couldn’t have been it. I thought of every possible thing that I could have done wrong. But I remember the night of [their debut], they all text me separately, and was just — like, they felt so bad, and I hated that. They didn’t like that I wasn’t there, and I didn’t want them to feel that way in their debut. And I know they didn’t, but it was — I don’t know, we just had a connection.”
On watching the debut: “So I sat on my couch, and I watched it happen. And I — you know, you kind of have mixed feelings, like, ‘Dang, dude. I wish I could be there,’ but more than anything I was just so happy to see them being there. And I knew once they were there that everything was gonna change. And I knew they they were gonna make my path a lot easier. I’m like, ‘Okay, you guys get the work started, and when I get there, it’ll be a little bit easier for me. At least I’ll have friends when I get there.’”
On the situation being a blessing in disguise: “But now, definitely looking back, I think that year in NXT by myself without them, I had nobody to run to, I had no one to rely on. I had a brand new roster, and I became the NXT Women’s Champion. So that was the biggest year of my career. I learned so much about myself, I learned so much more in the ring. I was able to kind of take more of a leadership role, and travel the world. That’s when NXT started going to the UK, and going everywhere for the first time. And I was doing it as the Women’s Champion. So that was just amazing, I had so many of the girls’ first matches there. I taught Lacey Evans how to do a headlock takeover, and now look at her. Things like that, or I was a part of everybody’s first little things. I definitely missed them, and it was so hard, but I don’t think I would be the person I am or the performer that I am now if I didn’t have that year by myself, because I had nobody to rely on except myself. And when I got there, like, Sasha said, ‘Here, let me show you everything!’ And I was like, ‘Okay, cool.’ They took care of me, and I was very grateful.”