Beth Phoenix Talks About a Possible Wrestling Return, The Glam Slam, Injuries, More

– Former WWE Diva Beth Phoenix recently spoke with The Star Gazette. Below are some highlights:



Q: In your career you also wrestled men. Did you have a preference on who you worked with?

A: I was very blessed. I could wrestle men or women. I was the powerhouse among the girls, so I could blend in and mix it up with the guys. I had no preference as long as there was a good story to tell, female or male, and that the crowd was entertained.

Q: The women on today’s WWE roster are much thinner than the women working 15 to 20 years ago, like Madusa Miceli, Sherri Martel and Wendi Richter. Do you feel like you might have been better served if you could have worked with them?

A: People have said that to me. I’ve been in contact with Madusa, and she said the same thing. I loved Sherri. I loved the girls who could mix it up. I think I am more of a vintage era performer. I would have loved that opportunity, but I made the best of the opportunity in the time I was there. But yes, it would have been awesome to mix it up with (Fabulous) Moolah and the other girls.

Q: Is the money for women wrestlers close to the men?

A: I don’t discuss money, but I will say I made more money than at other things I could qualify for. The key for me is the respect of your peers. I was able to be influential and create a mold. There was no one else who was shaped like me or looked like me. I don’t compare myself to the men.

Q: Did you ever have any real feuds with any co-workers?

A: You don’t get along with everybody, but you have to be able to work with everybody. Respect is important, and if you don’t have it you won’t be on the professional level very long. The ring is not the place to take care of disrespect. It’s supposed to be a safe haven where we protect each other. You can disagree with someone and still do business as a professional. I’ve had some differences of opinion with some, and there were some people I liked more than others.

Q: Your signature move was the Glam Slam (where Phoenix would get behind her opponent, lock arms, lift the opponent high into the air and then slam her face-first into the canvas). Who came up with it? Did the move ever go wrong?

A: It was a couple of moves melded together. I’d hold my opponent up and then drop with an impact. I thought this was something I could hit time and time again. It was catchy. If you believed it would knock someone out, then I did my job. One time my opponent (Michelle McCool), in an effort to make the move look great, ended up squeezing my arms too tightly as I held her up in the air. What I do is release the arm and let my opponent take a free fall. She held on so tight that I couldn’t pull my arms out as we descended for the impact. She couldn’t cushion her fall with her arms. It was a total accident, both of us wanting very much for the match to go well. But it happens both ways. There are times you just get bumped and bruised. I’ve had my share as well.

Q: What kind of injuries did you suffer in your career?

A: You do your best to minimize injuries. I’ve seen a ring rope snap, when there’s been something wrong with the ring, like when a tear in the canvas would result in a bad fall. I worked in an outdoor arena where it was pouring rain, and we were slipping all over the place. You can’t control all that happens. I broke my jaw, still have two titanium plates and nine screws in there. I’ve had ACL surgery, a concussion, black eyes, a herniated disk, sprained ankles and muscles. I broke my hand once. The WWE has strict policies on injuries. The injuries were terrible, but we signed on for them.

Q: Why did you get out of pro wrestling?

A: I left wrestling to spend more time at home with family. I didn’t get to see my parents and brother while I was working, just quick visits living out of a suitcase. It was time to go home.

Q: Do you think you might ever return to wrestling?

A: Never say never. I’m very happy what I’m doing. But I’m still in fighting shape.

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