Natalya recently spoke with WWE Deutschland, where she went into detail about her journey to get hired by the company. She pointed out how tough it was, noting that she couldn’t rely on her family connection due to the fact that the Hart Family was still estranged from WWE due to the Montreal Screwjob.
“When I was trying to get hired by WWE, it took me over five years to get hired. I was sending in tapes, I was sending in my promo pictures, I was doing whatever I could to make headway. I wish so much that I had somebody who could just make a phone call, that would have been so much easier than what I had to do. But I didn’t have anybody to make a phone call. My family, when I was trying to get hired by WWE, my family was estranged from WWE, meaning when you go back to the Montreal Screwjob, even though that happened in 1997, there was a lot of tension between WWE and the Hart family. I understand why, it was a really difficult and complicated situation, so I think it was challenging for the Hart family members, especially the younger ones, to get hired because there was all this conflict. But of course, that all passed and we managed to work through all that, but for me, I didn’t have my dad to make a phone call, I didn’t have my uncles to make a phone call, I didn’t really have anyone. I had to basically fight tooth and nail to turn every single no into a yes. Now that I’m in WWE, I appreciate that so much more, I appreciate that no one helped me. It was really, really hard, but it made me value what I have. Being the longest-tenured woman in WWE, somebody told me the other day that I am in the Guinness Book Of Worlds Records for having the most matches of any female. To be honest, I don’t even pay attention to all the matches I’ve had because I have been having so much fun. But if somebody was to tell me that before I got hired by WWE I would never have believed them, because there were times when I didn’t even think I’d get hired by WWE. It was so challenging for me to get hired. So, I want anyone that has a dream, I want people to know that if you’ve been rejected if you’ve been told no and the door has been slammed in your face, you can do it. I promise you can do it, you just have to be relentless, and you have to do whatever it takes and hit every single corner and just fight, fight for your dreams.”
Natalya then discussed her husband, TJ Wilson (Tyson Kidd), and the impact that he is currently having on women’s wrestling as a producer for WWE while paying tribute to the work that Fit Finlay has also done for the division.
“I think, and obviously I am biased, but I do think, TJ having wrestled, he’s been involved in wrestling for 25+ years from when he was a teenager up until now and his work was seamless. If you go back and watch the triple threat, and I am challenging everybody who is watching this to go on YouTube and watch it. It’s TJ vs. Dolph vs. Cesaro and it was this beautiful triple threat match and it was just seamless, it was brilliant. We look at a match that Bianca and Becky and Sasha just had in Saudi Arabia and because of TJ’s expertise, because he’s so good at what he does, and because of his seamless work for 25 years, he is able to help give so many other people this inspiration. You see the top performers in the world today and they are finding inspiration from TJ because of the work that he did. So, his reach is so much greater than just being a pro wrestler, his reach now is far and beyond that, he’s helped change the face of the way people look at women’s wrestling. We started that with Fit Finlay who was undoubtedly one of the biggest pioneers for women’s wrestling, without Fit Finlay we may not be where we are at today with women’s wrestling. So, it takes to be able to pay that forward, everything that Fit did for us. We are so grateful and lucky now to not just have Fit, who works very closely with the women at NXT. But you now have TJ paying all that expertise forward on the main roster and helping women really shine. He’s produced two main event matches for WrestleMania for the women. He’s taken that seamless style of his and been able to transfer t to other people so he’s got a huge, huge reach. You see two or three matches a week, whether it’s on PPV, Raw, or SmackDown and if they’re women’s matches, just know that TJ has a pretty good hand in a lot of that. ‘We appreciate you TJ, we thank you, you’re amazing. You are truly one of the most underrated, underappreciated performers of our generation and just know that we all appreciate you now, so we are sending love.’”
Natalya also spoke about the Canadian Stampede In Your House event, revealing that it was the last time the entire Hart family was together, which made it a very special night for her.
“It’s one of my favorite matches ever. It was so special because it was in Calgary, it was the last time our entire family got to be there together to celebrate each other and of course wrestling which we love. It was the last time our entire family was in the ring together, and that’s one of the reasons why it was so special. But if you go back and watch that Canadian Stampede In Your House PPV, the reaction that the Hart family got in Calgary, it was so loud that the cameras were actually shaking. That was so cool to be able to experience that, it was just thunderous applause. There’s just so much respect and so much history for our family in Calgary and the contributions that the family has made, but also a great story. You think about the Legion Of Doom, Goldust, Steve Austin, Brian Pillman, Ken Shamrock, Owen, Bret, my Dad, Davey, it was just so cool and there’s so many iconic people in that match. Seeing the way that Steve Austin wanted to include my grandfather in the story and Bret just being the consummate professional, there were so many great things in that match. Very special and so special that my family all got to be together for that.”
The former Women’s Tag Team Champion also spoke in detail about Bret Hart and the honest feedback that he provides for her while revealing a recent story about Roman Reigns and the Hitman.
“Bret is the best, he’s so knowledgable, he’s always there for us and he’s so honest. That’s the thing, sometimes, people don’t always like that honesty, but I do like it. Bret will say, ‘change this around,’ or, ‘take your time more.’ Something that Bret always says to me that really resonates and it’s why his style is timeless is, ‘you can’t have an amazing match when people aren’t selling.’ That’s kind of an inside term in wrestling of showing pain or showing emotion, or showing that you’re going through something. When I think of the greatest sellers of all time in wrestling, I think of Bret Hart and that’s what made his matches so special. He wasn’t just doing all these crazy things without selling, every single thing meant something. Every single thing that he did mattered, he made everything matter, he maximized every moment. Bret took risks, no doubt, but he made everything mean something and every opponent that Bret was in the ring with he elevated, he made them better. I can’t think of a bad Bret Hart match. Even his match with, gosh I shouldn’t say this, but it could have been weird, it could have gone off track or been, and it was a little hokey, but the one with Bob Backlund. I can’t remember what it was, he had to talk into the microphone and say, ‘I quit,’ it was amazing. Bret made you feel something, he’s a master storyteller and that’s what made Bret so special in that he could tell stories and make you feel something and that’s why his work is so timeless. It’s funny, I was talking to Roman Reigns the other day, and I said to him, ‘Bret had read an interview that Roman had done,’ and Roman had said that Bret was his inspiration. I showed Bret the interview and Bret said, ‘all the years of hard work and the bumps and the bruises, to be able to inspire the next generation and Roman, to be able to inspire someone that’s at the top of their game’ he said, ‘it just means everything to him because it makes him feel like all of his work wasn’t for nothing.’ I told Roman that and he was just super touched because Bret is special to him and he’s special to me. Bret Hart’s legacy is still living on to this day through the top of the game, so it’s very cool to see that and it’s a testament to him as a person and as a performer.”
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit WWE Deutschland, with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.