Toni Storm has set the WWE Universe on fire with her charisma, charm, and wrestling ability. While she wasn’t successful in the original Mae Young Classic back in 2017, she came back to be a premier star in NXT UK and defeat Io Shirai at Evolution to win the second Mae Young Classic tournament.
It is clear Storm has a bright future ahead of her. Many fans and wrestlers alike cite Storm as being the leading star for NXT UK. Despite Rhea Ripley being dubbed the first NXT UK Women’s Champion, Storm is likely to become the face, regardless of whether she has the title on her shoulder or not.
Storm was interviewed by Sport Bible, where she discussed numerous interesting topics, such as the creation of her in-ring name, her move from New Zealand to Australia to the UK, her Mae Young Classic journey, and more. We have showcased some of the highlights below:
Storm first explains that her original wrestling name was simply ‘Storm’ and she later adapted to ‘Toni Storm’ after she moved to the UK. This is a reflection on her real name- which is Toni Rossall.
“Ha-ha! Well, it changed to Toni Storm when I first moved out to the UK, so I was about 17 and I just got landed with it because I was originally just Storm. I got given that [name] when I was 13 and I stuck with it. It was because, to be honest, my grandmother thought it would be really cool. And I was debuting quite soon after training, so I needed a name fast and I went through every name and then my grandmother just thought it was great!”
Given how fast she has become a prominent up-and-coming competitor in WWE, Storm is asked to reflect on what it is like for her to compete for NXT UK in locations such as Liverpool.
“It really does! Just NXT UK, as a whole, I’m so proud of the brand. It’s been a long time coming. It’s such a hotspot over here; it has been for so many years. We have some of the best talent in the world, and now we finally have a brand where we can showcase that to millions of people now, which is what, to be honest, we always needed.
“Especially being in Liverpool, I’ve already got goosebumps thinking about it because things really began to kick off for me when I moved to Liverpool. Things really started to move forward. Yeah, it’s a big part of me. It’s a big part of my journey, so hopefully people see that.”
Storm is posed as the face of the NXT UK women’s division, and possibly the NXT UK brand itself. She comments on what the pressure is for her to maintain that position.
“There’s definitely a lot of pressure and it’s definitely very difficult to deal with because, yeah, there’s a lot of weight on my shoulders and a lot of pressure to be the best in any locker room. But I just keep doing my thing. I keep pushing through. I figured that if I can come from nothing in Australia all the way to NXT UK, then there’s no limit to what I can do. So I just need to keep pushing like I always have done.”
Storm is asked to give an insight into the journey she has taken with WWE. This question pertains to the Storm Mae Young Classic victory arc, which saw the NXT UK competitor lose in the semi-finals last year before ultimately winning this year and submitting her place in WWE history.
“It was definitely a very stressful experience, very rewarding in the most incredible experience of my life, but the journey was hard. Because I made it to [the] semi-finals [in] 2017 and going into 2018 I was like, ‘well, if I get less than semi-finals, then that’s a knock on me.’ So I had so much pressure, so much drive and determination to get to the finals because that had sat with me for over a year and I was like, ‘I have to get to the finals. I have to win this thing.’ It’s all I need to do, so I just kept that vision in mind and it worked out for the best. Ha-ha!”
If WWE were to introduce a women’s NXT UK Tag Team Championship, Storm is asked whether she would be interested in going after them, and if she has a tag team partner in mind.
“Of course! I mean, I’ve always been quite the lone wolf throughout my entire career, but I can be quite friendly. I’m not sure who I would pick. That would take a lot of intricate thinking. It would definitely [be] only the best partner — someone that can keep me in line. Good luck to them. Ha-ha!”
Would you like to see an NXT UK Women’s Tag Team Championship? Are you a fan of Storm? Let us know your thoughts, opinions, and reactions in those comments below.