In a recent interview with “WWE Insider” magazine, WWE Diva Nikki Bella revealed she has a big role in her WWE debut. WWE Divas Champion Nikki Bella will appear in Captain America: The First Avenger, and will play a key role in the movie’s storyline.
This Sunday night at 8:00 EST / 5:00 PST, the WWE Universe will get a chance to see the next big superstar to emerge from the WWE Performance Center, when Nikki A.S.H. makes her WWE debut in the main event of WWE SummerSlam. The NXT standout will take on WWE Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair in a non-title match, with the winner set to face AJ Styles for the vacant title at WWE Evolution.
Nikki A.S.H. (aka Nikki Cross) has had a busy few months, as the nearly superhero not only won the golden briefcase at Money in the Bank, but also cashed it in on Charlotte Flair the following night to become the new Raw Women’s Champion. Then, in a No Holds Barred bout, she defeated Flair once again, demonstrating how determined WWE’s favorite hero is to retain the championship around her waist. Her greatest challenge yet awaits her at SummerSlam, when she will face both Flair and Rhea Ripley. I recently had the opportunity to speak with Nikki A.S.H. about the big match, as well as the rollercoaster ride to the title thus far, dancing with The New Day, and even what her lineup for an almost superhero team would be.
First, we have to speak about the crazy journey to the Raw Women’s Championship, and although any one of the events leading up to it would be remarkable, having everything happen in such a short period made picking a favorite difficult.
“Oh, the horror. I mean, I have to admit that the Money in the Bank moment was just incredible. That was a first, my first time back in front of the crowd, and the briefcase and joyful tears simply flowed “Cross remarked. “The next day, she cashed in and became the Raw Women’s Champion. And it was pure victory and joy for me. So I believe those two times, even though they were the same emotion, they ended up like celebrating into the crowd and being with our supporters again, even though they were the same experience.”
“I’m not sure if anything will ever surpass those moments, but there have been some wonderful ones with individuals who have served as mentors to me. I went on WWE The Bump, and they brought in Robbie Brookside and the Hurricane, who has been a wonderful mentor, trainer, and friend to me, and has always been there for me “Cross said. “Then there was Hurricane Irma, which was incredible. He’s been amazing in terms of being helpful and allowing me pick his brain and just generally assisting me.”
“Then, when I won the championship and survived the gorilla, a few of the locker room guys Face Timed my husband. So I was able to visit my spouse at that time, and it was a really moving experience for me “Cross said. “And Tamina, for example, gave me this huge embrace and I just began sobbing, and then I was able to see, say, Sarah Schreiber, who is one of my closest friends, and I was able to give her a hug, and she’s been there every step of the way as well. It’s been amazing, and it’s hard to choose a favorite moment.”
While Nikki A.S.H. is all about encouraging and being a role model, that doesn’t mean she’s a pushover, as she’s shown against Charlotte on many times.
“Yeah, Nikki A.S.H. has a lot of different aspects to her, just as I have a lot of different aspects to myself. There’s a little bit of mystery, a little bit of mischief, a little bit of fun when I think about Nikki A.S.H, but there’s also this, you know, the character is going to be underestimated because she’s tiny. I think superheroes, and I’m nearly a superhero myself, so I’m not quite there yet, but the ideal example for me is Captain America, Steve Rogers, who was still standing up to bullies before he received the Super Serum. He was still fighting for his rights. I could do this all day, he said.”
“Nikki A.S.H. is like that to me. There will be moments when she falls down, but she will get back up since that is what life is all about “Cross said. “She isn’t always going to, and she isn’t going to be flawless, but she will always fight and attempt to stand up for herself. And I really believe that, and being able to embody it in the role has been very gratifying because I feel it sends a strong message, which I appreciate.”
In her SummerSlam encounter, Nikki will face both Ripley and Flair, but she has a different perspective on both of them. “I believe there’s a bullseye on your Cape when you’re Raw Women’s Champion,” Cross remarked. “I cashed the Money in the Bank case on Charlotte, and a few months back, Charlotte and Rhea were making fun of me in the Beat The Clock Challenges. After that, Rhea said, “OK, I took you for granted.” I underestimated your abilities. It was, and it is still Charlotte, so I believe the queen has taken it personally.”
While we know Nikki is nearly a superhero, there’s no reason she couldn’t form her own superteam right now, so we asked who she’d add to the roster for her own team right now. “Right now, I need The Hurricane, and, in terms of titles, would the Butterfly League be appropriate?” She went on to disclose the remainder of the cast, saying, “I’ll have to think about the name for a while, but Hurricane and then The New Day are two possibilities. That’s a total of four individuals. It’d be like the Spice Girls with me as the fifth member. That’s superheroes mingling with Marvel and WWE. It would be a worldwide hegemony. It would be galactic hegemony. It would be complete dominance. And I’m on board. It has my support.”
Nikki A.S.H. may be seen on USA Network’s Monday Night Raw, which airs at 8 p.m. EST every week. Nikki A.S.H. will face Rhea Ripley and Charlotte Flair at SummerSlam, which airs live on Peacock at 8 p.m. EST, with the opening program at 7 p.m.
Who do you think Nikki A.S.H. will face next? Let us know in the comments, or follow me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB to discuss all things WWE!
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