|By Raj Giri||July 11, 2012 | Comments|
Click here for part one of the interview, where Kanellis discussed getting her break in the business, working for WWE, her WWE release and more.
WrestlingINC: When you first got released, did you think that you were done with the business or did it motivate you to get more involved.
Maria Kanellis: With wrestling, at first, I didn't want anything to do with it. At first, I was angry. And at first, I don't know -- I was very disappointed in a company that I gave so much of my life to. Then, all of a sudden, just because I didn't want to be the girl that just continues to resign a contract that doesn't help my life -- I just didn't want to be that girl anymore. I just thought I was done with wrestling.
Then, of course, you start getting that itch. Then, you miss it. Then, you want more. So, what started as me just doing signings at wrestling shows, ended up with me starting to talk wrestling more and more. I blame it all on Mike, actually. He's the one that made me start talking about wrestling again, truly. ... When I started talking about wrestling more and then I got asked to do After Buzz TV for Maria Menounos' network, that's when I knew I was never going to get away from it.
WrestlingINC: When did you meet [boyfriend] Mike Bennett? Was it after you got released?
Maria: It was after I got released, but we had done shows together because we could have met at one of the shows because he's been to a million try outs. I just never met him. I don't know where the click didn't happen or what. But, I met him at a show, it was in March of last year. I met him there and I was dating someone and he was dating someone. So, nothing could really happen. But, I literally said to one of his friends that I could really get myself in a lot of trouble with him.
So, the whole night, I made sure I was standing next to him or sitting across from him. I made fun of how he ate his cheese sticks and low and behold, in May of last year, I get a direct message on Twitter about the fact that he wanted to help me with his cheese stick. That's how we started talking again. It was so weird. It was just meant to be, I knew it the moment I met him.
WrestlingINC: Later that year, you made your debut with ROH. What are your thoughts on ROH as a company? It seems as though if you want to watch "real" wrestling with good matches and performers being given real pushes -- I think you see it more there than other places.
Maria: There are so many opportunities at Ring Of Honor. If you do a good job, you get to do more. If you do a crappy job, then you don't. [Laughs.] I love that. I love that excellent work is rewarded. I love that hard work is important in Ring Of Honor. It's really the most important thing is working hard. I've been a fan of Ring Of Honor for a long time. I probably went to my first Ring Of Honor show in maybe 2006 or 2007.
I'm a fan, I've been a fan of the product for a long time. It came up as a very strange thing in the beginning. But, they were just like, 'Hey, would you want to come and be at a pay-per-view?' I said, 'Sure, I would love to.' Then, I ended up being with Mike and I was in town, and I was like, 'You know what? I'll just go to the show with him.' All of a sudden, I'm on the show all of the time. [Laughs.] It's just a very strange thing.
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