She's been in Playboy, the WWE, she's now in ROH, she's an entrepreneur, a business woman, a brand; she is Maria Kanellis. She now sits down and answers questions from Ford. Exclusively on PWinsider.
Ford: How receptive was the ROH locker room to your arrival?
Maria Kanellis: I was very happy to be accepted so quickly into ROH. I brought cookies and banana bread to bribe the boys so that may have helped....Hahaha.... But in all seriousness everyone has been super helpful and welcoming. ROH is gonna be making an even bigger name for itself because all of the talent and executives know that ROH is the next big company in wrestling. We are just getting started. It's no longer just another Indy. It's the future of wrestling and I am very proud to be the FIRST LADY OF RING OF HONOR.
F: Did you have ANY reaction in your head, good or bad, to the "CM Punk" chants at Final Battle?
MK: It's funny that people still remember that I dated Punker. It was almost 5 years ago. I am a completely different person now than I was back then. Now when I hear those chants it reminds me of OVW and the beginning of wrestling for me. I am very proud to say I learned most of what I know about the wrestling business from Punk and now when I hear those chants I use that knowledge to make it a storyline. I am happy that Punk is where he is now and he deserves all the success in the world.
Mike Bennett and I knew that we were probably gonna get those chants so we were not surprised. It's funny to me that the fans thought it would bother me. I have been with 2 wrestlers in the almost 8 years I have been in wrestling and both men are hardworking, trustworthy, and loyal men. I am proud of my history. So, chant all you want......
F: What do you think ROH is missing to truly become number 2 in America?
MK: Time. We just got our TV deal got even a year ago. ROH is getting bigger and bigger every week. Also, both Champions on WWE are from ROH so in my mind we are already number 1.
F: Besides the obvious, what are some differences from WWE to ROH that the fans may not know exist?
MK: The fans are crazier. The matches are more creative. It has a better schedule. I can do outside projects. Yay for freedom!!
F: Do you still have any close relationships with anyone in the WWE?
MK: Lots of people.
F: What do you think of the current Divas and what may that division be missing?
MK: The only thing the Divas are missing is a reoccurring move set. Or even a reoccurring attitude. (For example, Trish had the Matrish, StratusFear, Air Canada, Stratusfaction, Licking back handed chop.) And more time on TV of course.
F: Who wins at WrestleMania, The Rock or John Cena?
MK: Rock but I want Cena to win.
F: Explain what “Crossfire Ladies” is and what your role is there?
MK: I am the Creative Director of the Ladies Division for Crossfire Wrestling in Nashville. I book the girls, the matches, the story, and keep them in line of course. I am building a powerful group of Ladies that gets time to work and to really show what Ladies Wrestling is about. It is growing and by next year we will have a Crossfire Lady's Champion. Crossfire Wrestling shows are amazing we get anywhere between 1300 to 1800 people every show and 2 dollars of every ticket goes to the Make a Wish Foundation.
F: Where can we watch After Buzz TV and what exactly IS it?
MK: http://www.afterbuzztv.com is where you can watch it and AfterBuzz is a show about Monday Night Raw. We are the buzz after the show. I am the host and Jensen Karp (Former WWE writer), Christopher Joseph (Lilian Garcia's Husband), Preston Gomez (Superfan and Dj), and Mike Bennett (Prodigy and ROH wrestler) are my co-hosts. We talk Wrestling, the business, the gossip, the future, and the past. It's right after Raw every week.
F: Where's Maria in 5 years?
MK: Continuing to take over the world one project at a time. I would like to be running my own Ladies Division of Wrestling on TV and help young up and coming women follow their dreams. Maybe married, maybe kids, but, mostly working; acting, writing, singing, designing, and just creating. I used to think success had an age limit but now I think that I just want to keep doing things that make me happy. And that is real success. Passion is my Motivation.