Originally published at Mercedes Moné excited to be part of STARDOM, talks NJPW Battle in the Valley selling out
The first long-form interview from Mercedes.
With New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s Battle in the Valley event inching closer, the company pushed out the first long-form interview with Mercedes Moné since she left WWE.
Mercedes arrived to New Japan at Wrestle Kingdom 17 to issue a challenge to IWGP Women’s Champion KAIRI for Battle in the Valley. With KAIRI and Moné being the only match announced for the show at the time, it sold out.
Mercedes shared her thoughts about that accolade and said she knew she was going to make an impact upon arrival but it was cool for her to see how quick of a turnaround that was.
Personally, I always knew I was going to make an impact here. But it’s cool to see how quick it was, the turnaround to go from another name and character I’ve done for ten years to now be Mercedes Moné, and to see that instantly trend… just people obviously caring and wanting to see my match with KAIRI was cool. For it to sell out with that match being the only thing announced at that time was amazing. I know my fans always love and support me, so I knew it was going to do well, but it was kind of a shock to see how quickly it went that well.
She was asked about the thought process of making the jump to Japan from WWE. She kept herself busy with various projects and ventures since leaving the company.
Despite focusing on a career outside of wrestling, it is always her number one and there was no soul searching needed as far as coming back to it.
I’ve been working every single day since I left there. I’ve been making movies, making TV shows, magazines, modeling, I haven’t stopped. But wrestling has always been my number one love, and there was no soul searching involved in coming back to wrestling. I went to Mexico for a month in October and lived there.
Moné is excited about venturing into STARDOM. She mentioned that the only all-women’s event she’s been part of is WWE Evolution. Mercedes added that she’s always been mixed in with the guys and sharing five minutes of a three-hour show so she’s excited to be part of an all-women’s promotion.
I’ve only gotten to experience WWE Evolution as an all women’s show. I’ve never been part of an all women promotion like STARDOM is, so that will be a first for me. I’ve always been mixed with the guys and sharing, what, maybe five minutes of a three hour weekly TV show. So I’m really excited to be a part of STARDOM and be a part of all women’s shows. I’m intrigued to see what it’s like and how it all works, but it’s been working for Japan for a very long time, and being involved with all these potential fresh matchups makes me excited about the future.
The locker room and staff at Wrestle Kingdom 17 were receptive to the WWE Triple Crown and Grand Slam Champion. She was able to meet members of the STARDOM roster while training with them. She brought up that she hopped around a few dojos like NOAH, TJPW and Sendai Girls’.
Meeting the staff and the women at Wrestle Kingdom, there was a lot of respect and acceptance right off the bat. That meant so much to me. I met a few of the STARDOM wrestlers already from coming to Japan and training with them- I always try to hop around a lot of dojos and learn from a lot of people when I’m there. I feel like doing that earns some respect I hope- I can only show the respect that I have for them, and the passion that they have for wrestling is the same that I do. I’m not nervous, I’m excited to earn more respect from the fans and the other Japanese women. But then, if I don’t get it, hey, I’m the ‘CEO’, not them, so it doesn’t really matter (laughs).
There are currently nine matches scheduled for Battle in the Valley and four of those are championships bouts. The lineup can be viewed here.