Rhea Ripley recently spoke with Newsweek to promote tonight's match against Dakota Kai on this week's WWE NXT episode. Ripley, who was the first-ever NXT UK Women's Champion, is currently in the middle of a big push on the black & yellow brand. She was asked how she's feeling these days.
"It's incredible to be honest," Ripley said. "I can't put it into words how happy I am about everything, and to even get my name out there, let alone be one of the top stars at the moment. It's absolutely insane, and I can't wait to keep going out on Wednesday night to show them what I can do."
She continued on about her big push, "It's insane. How far that I've come even from the first Mae Young Classic to now it's insane to see myself become who I know I truly am. And even from Evolution to now, going into work every single day, giving it all I have and working my ass off there and in the gym lifting weights. It's insane to have people recognize me for my work and get behind me. And I couldn't do it without the support behind me from the fans. It's been such a tough journey, but it's also been rewarding at the same time. I can't wait to see where it all takes me, From going to the Performance Center every single day and not giving up on what I truly knew what I was worth or knew what I can do, to now going out there for WarGames, it's absolutely insane. And then going out there the next night for Survivor Series and winning for team NXT. It's t been a wild wild ride and I hope it never stops, but we'll see where it goes."
She was also asked how it feels to go from being a top heel in NXT UK, to being one of the top babyfaces in the regular NXT brand.
"It's been weird. It's been so strange," Ripley said. "I would go out there and try and be the biggest prick I can be. And everyone seems to get behind me. I don't know what it is, I don't know why. I started to embrace it a little bit, and now it's definitely weird because how can you guys like me? [laughs]
"I just go out there and give them the show they deserve to see, and being heel or face doesn't matter to me. I'm just going to go out and be myself, and if they like me they'll like me and if they don't they don't. There's still a lot of people who don't like me, but they are now overshadowed by the people who do like me."
Ripley will face Kai tonight but she's got her eye on a title match with NXT Women's Champion Shayna Baszler. She was asked what it would mean to become champion of the main NXT brand.
"It's such an honor, in my opinion, to be the person who defeats Shayna Baszler who had been such a dominant champion here in NXT," Ripley said. "It would be absolutely incredible, and it's just something I can put under my list of achievements. If I can be the one to dethrone Shayna Baszler you will be seeing a very cocky Rhea Ripley. If I can be the champion of NXT I don't even know how to put it into words. It would be so humbling and appreciative, but also I would prove to everyone why I should be NXT Women's Champion."