Mandy Rose has finally become the total wrestling package after becoming Havoc NXT Women's Champion at Halloween. It's a journey to the top where the bodybuilder turned wrestler went from novice to ruler, walking down a steep learning curve that required both mind and body to get the job done. Of course, the former "Golden Goddess" is no stranger to M&F Hers, who appeared on a historic magazine cover in 2019, but it would be two more years before the muscular beauty won her first WWE single title.
The new champion, still beaming from her win over Raquel Gonzalez, sat down to share the lessons of her professional wrestling journey to date and how she moved from Monday Night Raw to NXT, a more aggressive style of wrestling accepted and it paid off making headlines by switching from blonde to brunette.
Mandy Rose is eager to learn
When Mandy Rose first appeared in WWE in season six of Tough Enough, she was simply dismissed by some fans as a "Barbie doll" incapable of reaching the square circle. But after finishing runner-up on the reality show in 2015, the former fitness model was offered a full-time contract and she made sure to give her best on every opportunity entrusted to her by WWE officials. In 2017, Rose was featured with Sonya Deville on Monday Night Raw to form the group known as Absolution, led by the legendary Paige.
“There were a lot of surprises,” says Rose, recalling her younger years. “I think I come from the fitness world and have never set foot in a wrestling ring before, the first time I ran on the ropes, I was completely torn apart. There are so many things to learn and I'm still learning, ”she says. "I think someone like Paige when we first got to Monday Night Raw with Sonya Deville was very helpful because she was helping us with things that are not always taught. It's trial and error, you learn while you walk, but if you didn't make these mistakes, you wouldn't necessarily know what to do to perform better. "
Mandy Rose trusts the process
After making an impact on Raw as part of Absolution, she entertained fans on SmackDown thanks to her tag team partnership with Sonya Deville and a brief on-screen romance with Otis, and then back to Raw, where she returned to NXT with Dana Brooke. It would have been a difficult time for any wrestler to figure out where they belong, but Rose knew the results would come if she continued to give her all to WWE.
“When I was first told I was going to NXT for a while, you don't really get a lot of explanations, but I was always the person who turned everything I got into gold, no pun intended, and stuff I did it. ”When she switched to NXT, Rose took off her iconic gold ring attire and made the decision to change her hair from blonde to brunette. "It shows the reckless aggression I've always had," says Rose.
Four days before winning the NXT title, she posted some of her favorite glute workouts to her millions of fans on Instagram and correctly predicted victory over Gonzales, a much bigger enemy. "I was fed up with being scolded for my looks, and I wanted to be held accountable for my hard work and real talent," she says.
Mandy Rose became a leader
As the NXT women's champion, the roles have now been reversed and Rose acts as a mentor to Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne in the new group Toxic Attraction. “I think it's coming full circle,” says Rose. “People made that comparison (with Paige) and I think it's cool because it's great for me to be able to say that I'm the leader of the group now, just a few years after the birth of 'Absolution' and ours Debut. So, it's really cool, I feel really motivated to help a lot of women in NXT. (When you start out) you're really trying to please everyone and get to this main roster and get on the big stage and that is when you kind of forget to enjoy the moment and enjoy the process so I try to remind the girls that this is a very exciting time (in their life). "
Hide the negativity
Mandy Rose rightly apologizes about her start at WWE. While she may not have taken the traditional route of doing small independent shows first, there is no doubt the former bodybuilding champion always had the tools to be successful. But of course, being a champ is not just about reps and sets in the gym, it's also about believing in your own potential and blocking out those negative voices. "I always tell people, you never know where you'll end up, so always take risks because one thing can lead to another and you won't know if you don't try."
Being the best invites envy and trolling, but Rose has learned to deal with such challenges. “I always say these haters motivate me out there,” says the champion. "It just makes me do better and push it in their faces because I've always been the underdog."
Appreciate the milestones
When Rose won her first WWE Championship, she thought about success. "It was of course a very exciting time, definitely," she says. “At that moment, I have a lot of emotions going through my head. I think all the hard work over the years has paid off and I finally have this incredible achievement that I can look back on in the years to come, I'm just really looking forward to the journey. It's a true reflection of how much work I've put in, I've been with WWE for 5 or 6 years now, and not just because it's a title. It's just one of those moments when I can really think and feel really blessed and grateful for everything I've achieved. "
Keep looking for the next destination
As the leader of Toxic Attraction, Rose looks forward to her future and it seems like holding the championship won't be enough. “It's just the beginning for Toxic Attraction to take over the women's department,” says Rose. "We will leave our mark"
Emulate only the best! @WWENXT @trishstratuscom https://t.co/lFg9ILDVQS
- Mandy (@WWE_MandyRose) July 14, 2021
This fantasy match with another legend who paved the way from the fitness world to the WWE universe, Trish Stratus, is something Rose wants as much as the fans do. "It's still a fantasy of mine that one day in the future we can step into the ring," says Rose. But whether it happens or not, she wants to point out that speaking to the Hall of Famer was a huge help to her career, and Rose has always made sure to tell Stratus & # 39; Studying matches to hone their own craft. “She could look so great, but she could also perform so well,” she says. As NXT Women’s Champion, it looks like Rose has finally combined body and mind to become a true WWE Superstar.
Check out Mandy Rose and Toxic Attraction every Tuesday on NXT on the USA Network.