I recently had the distinct pleasure of speaking with IMPACT star and one-half of the Knockouts tag team champions, Tasha Steelz. The Boricua Badass and I discussed Fire and Flava’s (Steelz and Kiera Hogan) huge marquee victory at Hard To Kill, how grueling the tag tournament was, what it’s been like wrestling at Skyway Studios, whether she has her eye on anyone in AEW, and what it was like to have wrestling legend Jazz backstage. Highlights, including the full audio interview, are below.
Whether her and Kiera feel validation being crowned the first Knockout tag team champions of this new era:
I mean we told everybody…we told everybody from the minute that we both appeared together on IMPACT wrestling, which is coming up about a year ago, that we are going to be the most dominant, and not just as individuals but as a tag team. At Hard To Kill I think we proved everybody right didn’t we? But you know…we have some ways to go. Beating Havok and Nevaeh wasn’t easy. Yes we beat em two times before but the third time was really harder than the last two because they did come with more than just their A-game. They completely brought it, but we proved that we were Hard To Kill, and now we’re just waiting for the next ones to step up. Past, present, future, we do not care. We’re gonna let you all know how dominant we are in this Knockouts division.
What she thinks was the hardest match they had in the Knockouts tournament:
None of the matches were easy for us. We started with the Sea Stars. I’ve in the past had my run with the Sea Stars, I’ve had my run with one-half of the Sea Stars which is Ashley. I don’t believe Kiera has gotten in the ring with either one of them so I was able to brief her up a little bit about how tough these competitors are, and they are definitely tough. I’ve faced them a couple of times in the northeast so they’re very tough. We were glad to get through them.
Then there was getting through Taya and Rosemary, which was our…I wouldn’t say our hardest but we’ve had our past with not beating them in the past. Despite what people said that it was Deonna and Kimber Lee that helped…it wasn’t them. They did NOT help us win. I don’t know what their problem was, but Deonna and Taya already had their time. That was all me and Kiera. We beat Taya and Rosemary. We beat them on our own.
I can’t say who was the hardest, who was the easiest, everybody was tough. If we need to do it again…we’ll do it ten times again with these same opponents.
How she’s used to wrestling without fans but admits that she misses the adrenaline rush of a live crowd:
I’m not gonna lie…I think I speak for everybody…I miss the fans. I miss that adrenaline rush. I miss those burst of cheers, those burst of boos, when you get to heckle the fans back. I do miss it, but at the same time I’ve adjusted over this past year how to work without a crowd. It has fit me very well. Going back to my training days where I would train and wrestle in matches with my trainers, with other people, including Deonna, and we would wrestle with no crowd. It would just be us and a couple of the other students. To me it’s just a natural thing. Wrestling without fans, wrestling with fans, either way you’re still going to get 100% from the Boricua Badass and she will not change either way. So I’m used to either or.
Whether her and Kiera have their eyes on anyone in AEW:
This is the whole thing with me and Keira being the best women’s tag team. We don’t just want to be the best women’s tag team in IMPACT, we want to be the best women’s tag team in the entire world. This is why we are so dominant. We don’t care who steps up. Anybody from any promotion, any challengers wanna step to us…they can get it. Anytime. I have my eyes on everybody that feels like they can compete with Fire and Flava. That’s who I got my eyes on. So whoever has the time, we got the place and we got the days. Tuesday nights on AXS TV at 8pm.
Getting to work with pro-wrestling legend Jazz, and how inspiring Jazz has been to her career:
I was getting excited to think that either we would be facing Havok and Nevaeh in the finals or Jordynne and Jazz. I was like, “Oh man if we’re facing Jazz and Jordynne in the finals this is going to be like facing a close relative.” Seriously I’ve looked up to Jazz for so SO long and I’ve watched her for so long. A couple of girls I used to be in the locker room with used to call me baby Jazz, and I would take that as a high compliment because I just love this woman. Just her being there…she just…you could pick her brain about anything and everything and she gives you so much history of the stuff she’s been through and stuff you can just learn in the future. She’s got a little retirement tour coming up and I told her, “you can come stop by the hard knocks of Steelz and we can go.” I don’t know if I’ll be victorious but I’m going to try.