When the name Ric Flair is spoken, many individuals know who he was and what he has done for the wrestling community in his 40 plus years in the squared circle. Now his daughter Charlotte (Ashley Fliehr) has taken the Diva’s division by storm. She is the current NXT Women’s Champion and has shown that women can handle their own in the wrestling business.
Charlotte was kind enough to talk about her career, her goals and expectations, and what it was like to make her debut on WWE Raw.
With the NXT still being the developmental area for the WWE, how is it for you to be one of the lead performers having been the “Women’s Champion” until Wednesday night?
“Honestly, I soak it up every single day. I can’t say it gets old. To be able to represent NXT and see how far the brand has come in the last year, I am so honored. It’s very humbling to know that we have come a long way and I take it extremely serious.”
On December 9th, you debuted on WWE Raw and had a match against Natalya, which ultimately you lost via rollup. What were your feelings when you got the call that you were going to get to debut one of the biggest stages on WWE Raw?
“To be honest I don’t think about the match itself. I look at this being one of the first opportunities of many that I will have in the future. Just to have the opportunity to whether it was one minute or twenty minutes was great to highlight the future (NXT), and myself.
“Natty has been there for the biggest moments in my career. She was my very first dark match at NXT. She was my first NXT Special match where I won the women’s championship. These were very special moments and I don’t think it could have gone any better.”
Being in NXT helps hone your craft so to be speak. How did that experience help you when you made the jump to WWE Raw for the very first time?
“All we do is train each and every day. We do hard cam, storytelling, hard cam and everything else that makes this product come together. I was extremely nervous but I didn’t want everyone else to know that. I wasn’t worried about my moves in the ring, because that comes second nature but I was more worried about how I would present myself to the audience. I wanted everyone watching at home that I was the best.”
Before you debuted as a wrestler you took part in the presentation of Triple H’s entrance in last year’s WrestleMania. How do you compare the debuts from one being more of a assistant to the other being more of the focal point?
“Honestly, I think the WrestleMania thing was more personal than anything. That show was the first one I was there without my little brother. It was emotional because I was going to each and every show the last few years with me entire family. To walk out on that grand stage in front of 80,000 people is the most electrifying feeling. Triple H also hand selected us which was extra special because he could have hired models instead. But he picked us and it was such a great honor.”
“NXT TakeOver Rival” took place last night and you defended your title in a Fatal 4 Way. How is this match going to help build not only your own career as a wrestler, but the development of women in NXT?
“This is great opportunity for me to shine. It’s going to show people that I’m all business and that I’m one of the best females in professional wrestling. I am floored that all of us can show that we are the greatest women competitors in the ring. We always want to outdo our previous specials and I think this match can be a match of the year candidate.”
Triple H talked on Stone Cold’s Podcast on how he wants to give the Divas more time to develop their stories. How is the development of your character and storylines progress in NXT?
“Down in NXT, Triple H and the writers are very hands on as well as our coaches. They have a very good grasp of our characters. Speaking for the Divas we have earned their trust and respect and there’s leeway to experiment. The only reason we are given more time because we have delivered time and time again.
“You think of Bayley, Sasha Banks a year ago. I think Triple H really wants the divas to shine.”
The WWE audience over the years has grown to abbreviated women’s matches and the phrase “Oh it’s a women’s match, time to use the bathroom.” What do you think is missing from the women’s matches and characters that would bring that phrase to a whisper?
“Hearing that is extremely frustrating because it will change. If they were able to play our matches on Raw it would be great to show that the women can work like men. I’m not saying the Divas on the roster now aren’t capable of doing that but the training in NXT has really helped us. I think over the years with the Divas searches and very little training makes it hard to make the division legitimate
“I hope over my career that they don’t like at our matches as a ‘popcorn match.’ I truly believe we are paving the way for a great division.”