Mickie James is again the place she belongs, serving to characterize the business as champion.
James is the reigning Knockouts world champion in Influence Wrestling, having claimed the title for a fourth time final month on the Sure for Glory pay-per-view by defeating rising star Deonna Purrazzo.
“Deonna is among the greatest on this planet,” James says. “I’m grateful to have the prospect to wrestle along with her once more, which we hadn’t executed since earlier than WWE. She’s probably the greatest Knockouts champions in Influence historical past. And there are such a lot of gifted ladies in Influence, I can’t wait to work with them as champion.”
James can be a part of “Tag Me In”, an inclusive initiative that goals to eradicate the stigma round conversations about mental health and function a reminder that help is available. In lower than a month, the marketing campaign has raised over $45,000, with all proceeds donated to the Nationwide Alliance on Mental Sickness (NAMI).
“That is one thing that’s been wanted for some time,” James says. “We’ve misplaced lots of people within the wrestling household for lots of causes, with suicide being certainly one of them. I simply misplaced my good friend Shannon [“Daffney” Spruill], who was roommate in Louisville after I first bought signed by WWE. We misplaced Ashley [Massaro, in 2019], and that hit me exhausting.
“My youthful sister additionally handed away from ovarian most cancers, which was horrible. All of us have these darkish moments after we really feel like there is no such thing as a one to speak to or that may assist us, however there may be all the time somebody. That’s what helps make this initiative is so highly effective.”
WWE, which simply lower 18 performers final week, was James’ employer till she was launched in April. She has loved a profession renaissance ever since, totally recovering after tearing her ACL in 2019 to change into one of many high performers in Influence. As an business veteran, she has a seasoned contact between the ropes in addition to the ring sense to know find out how to make magic in a match.
“I keep in mind being informed in WWE that I had five-to-seven years on TV,” James says. “That’s how lengthy most girls are there, however I wished to construct a protracted profession. It’s been so particular to have this run doing what I really like.”
Since her departure from WWE, James has additionally performed a pivotal position behind-the-scenes, serving because the driving pressure and government producer for this previous summer time’s all-women EmPowerrr pay-per-view for the NWA.
“After Evolution [in 2018], I wished to do an all-female present to assist ladies develop and get them TV-ready,” James says. “Nevertheless it all fell on deaf ears. Sadly, that wasn’t going to occur. I’m grateful for my time there in WWE, however I’m thrilled we did EmPowerrr. It was extraordinarily profitable, and trended No. 1 worldwide that night time. It was a threat, however [NWA owner] Billy Corgan was prepared to take that, which WWE wasn’t. And there may be nonetheless a lot extra for us to perform.”
James provides a distinguished aptitude to the wrestling business, with the power to make use of her stature to achieve past the style. And he or she is relishing the prospect to play a task with “Tag Me In” and assist increase consciousness for the significance of mental health.
“‘Tag Me In‘ transcends wrestling,” James says. “We wish to assume we will do all of it ourselves, however we will’t. There are folks on the market that may assist.”
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