It’s been a dozen years since Shelly Martinez last appeared in WWE as Ariel. She then had a stint in TNA and appeared on the indie scene since then but retired in 2017.
Martinez reportedly had a heated confrontation with Batista that led to her WWE departure and she has been outspoken about the pro wrestling industry as well. She talked about any bitterness with pro wrestling when she joined VOC Nation Wrestling with History.
“People think I’m bitter about wrestling. When I was bitter about wrestling, I couldn’t talk about it. Now when I talk about it, I’m just saying how I feel,” Martinez stated. “Wrestling has brought me these people that are in my life now ? my secret society, my fan club, that’s what’s important in my life.”
In regards to Batista, the two of them buried the hatchet in recent years but Martinez did hold a grudge for a while. She used to have negative thoughts about Batista but now thinks the incident that led to her leaving WWE was actually what she needed.
“The name Batista used to have a different association with me. Throughout the years I always have these recurring dreams about him, where he is trying to help me,” Martinez said. “My situation with Batista was the last nail in my coffin [at WWE]. I realize that’s why they fired me?I used to think it was just about that situation, but I now realize that was the last nail in my coffin.
“I am very grateful for my experiences in the WWE, but that’s not a place for my soul. I’m not down with that kind of work environment and everything that comes with it. If Dave Batista hears this I want to tell him ‘thank you dude, you did me a big favor.'”
Martinez joined a WWE developmental territory in late 2004 and made her main roster debut in mid-2006. She would last just about one year on the main roster and wrestled in only four matches.
She reflected back on her time in WWE and why her experience there led to her 2017 retirement.
“It wasn’t what I thought I signed up for. I decided to retire when Balls Mahoney and Chyna had passed. At the time I was doing the indies full time and I told myself that if I am going to continue doing wrestling, I have to at least make it worth my while?and the only way to make it worth my while would be to make it back to WWE,” Martinez said. “But do I want to go back there? No! That’s when [I realized] that I was done, and I had my final match in Germany with the DWA. I didn’t need a Wrestlemania match [to feel fulfilled].”