On August 22, 2015, Bayley defeated Sasha Banks at WWE NXT Takeover Brooklyn to become the WWE NXT Women’s Champion. In doing so, she became the fourth woman ever to hold the title. What came next was a more than 200-day reign on top of the NXT women’s division before being dethroned by Asuka and moved to the main roster. In the years since, she has captured Raw, Smackdown, and tag team gold, while new generations of female WWE stars have been cultivated in NXT, including current WWE NXT Women’s Champion Tiffany Stratton.
In an exclusive Haus of Wrestling interview conducted at the WWE Money In The Bank media junket, I asked Bayley what she thought of Stratton.
“When I first saw Tiffany, I thought she had a great chance,” she began. “I thought she had a great presence. I remember telling her, ‘You already got the hardest part down. You already have a great presence coming out to the ring,’ which, for me, was so hard to do.
“For people who come from wrestling, for some reason, we just want to wrestle, and we really lack that character stuff, but she had that. She definitely still has a lot, a lot to learn that she can learn from all the girls there, but I think she’s just … it’s different. You know? We had Mandy, and Mandy was great. I think she gives a little different twist to the division right now that adds an interesting factor.”
As of late, it has not been uncommon for main-roster WWE stars to visit NXT or, in some cases, spend an extended period of time. As of late, Baron Corbin and Mustafa Ali have made themselves regulars on Tuesday nights, and WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth “Freaking” Rollins spent a few weeks feuding with Bron Breakker. Could Bayley find her way back to the yellow and black brand for a confrontation with Stratton?
“If I feel like cashing in, you better watch out,” she said.
It is worth noting that this interview was recorded the day before IYO Sky’s Money In The Bank victory, but since then, Sky and Bayley have acted as if they are both holding the Money In The Bank briefcase, something they made clear to me at the post-show press conference. If Bayley does choose to cash in on Stratton, it may not be immediately, as she was injured this past weekend at a WWE house show. However, she told her fans on social media that she would be “alright.”
My whole conversation with Bayley can be found on today’s Haus of Wrestling episode, now available on Premier Streaming Network and the Haus of Wrestling podcast feed. Subscribe to Haus Of Wrestling on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, or wherever you find your podcasts.
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