Additional and conflicting details have surfaced concerning a backstage incident between WWE Divas Champion AJ Lee and NBC personality Michelle Beadle at last Wednesday’s Tribute to the Troops event at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Pierce County, Washington.
Wrestling Observer editor Dave Meltzer reported this morning in a podcast on F4WOnline.com that Lee went on tirade towards the Access Hollywood co-host upon seeing her chat with CM Punk, her boyfriend, backstage at the event. WWE officials were very embarrassed and angry at Lee over her “unprofessional conduct,” which PWInsider.com is corroborating. They are especially upset because Beadle appeared as an invited guest of WWE, who is affiliated with partner NBC Universal. Furthermore, the incident took place at Tribute to Troops, which internally is considered one of the most important events of the year by WWE chief Vince McMahon.
Beadle was at the event as the official host, which will air as a one-hour television special on Saturday, Dec. 28 at 8/7C on NBC.
The word among wrestlers backstage at today’s WWE TLC pay-per-view event in Houston, Texas, was that Lee did not approach Beadle due to jealousy, but because she had spoken to Punk in a disrespectful tone. Lee approached Beadle after Beadle had a conversation with Punk, not during a conversation between the two as had been previously reported.
Beadle had remarked something to Punk in a disrespectful manner that allegedly upset him, which led to Lee searching for her—what Beadle said cannot be confirmed. It is said that Lee approached the popular television personality and told her that she was not to speak to her boyfriend in that manner again and if she did, there would be a problem.
One wrestler who witnessed the incident is denying the claim of Lee raising her voice and cursing at Beadle.
“Anyone who said that is a liar,” said the wrestler, who spoke under the condition of anonymity.
Since Beadle is a celebrity, there is heat on Lee over the ordeal. The same wrestler remarked, “Celebs are untouchable in the backstage scene. WWE wants them more than they need any wrestler, so automatically, the wrestler is going to be wrong here, even when [Lee] isn’t really.”
Beadle acknowledged rumors of an incident with Lee this morning on Twitter. In response to a fan remarking to her this morning on the social media outlet, “You should have slapped AJ Lee when she got in your face,” Beadle stated, “Meh. I thought it was a joke.” She then added in response to an upset AJ Lee fan, “Hon…it was done in front of company people. I didn’t say a word. I thought it was a joke.”
Lee is scheduled to defend her WWE Divas Championship tonight at WWE TLC against Natalya.