IMPACT Knockouts star Kylie Rae recently spoke with Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp to talk all things pro-wrestling. Highlights from the interview can be found below.
Her pursuit of pro-wrestling while in grad-school:
It’s kind of a funny story because I would have never guessed they would have even been interested. I think I had just moved back up to Chicago within a year and had started grad school. That’s when I was really pursuing wrestling full time. Like, 100% I was in. I was like, I’m giving this my two years of graduate school to pursue wrestling full time and I don’t know if I knew what I wanted, but I think I just wanted to live off of wrestling income. If that makes sense.
Talking with Britt Baker about signing with AEW:
I just got a message from Britt Baker one day that just asked what my goals were in wrestling and where I saw myself in a few years. I remember thinking, “That’s a fun question.” I’m like, “Well, this and that,” then she came back with, “Would you ever be interested in a contract?” I’m just like, “Oh, my gosh. Yeah, who wouldn’t be? That’s why we do this.” She’s like, “How about AEW?” My heart dropped, I was like, “Do you have their contact information? Do you have someone I can talk to? I’d love to!” I was just trying to get anything. “I would love to.” I was at their first show in Chicago at the Sears Centre. Just seeing that, I remember that, being in there. I have the broken collar bone, ‘cause I have the sling on and I’m sitting there crying because I’m seeing like Britt and Tessa [Blanchard], and I’m so happy. It was cool. So, to be considered for that was awesome ‘cause I was just in Japan with Britt a couple weeks earlier. Then once we talked a little bit, she was like, “Alright, I’ll put you in contact with Brandi [Rhodes]. She’ll be reaching out to you.
On her return match against Isaias Velazquez:
It was everything I needed, if that makes any sense. Because this past year was the hands down hardest time in my life and that match it kind of brought me back and helped me realize how fortunate I am. Not just from the match, but just the amount of support that I got. Like, coming back and seeing everyone at the show and talking to everyone. ‘Cause I missed a lot of people. I was away, it was like a few months and it was hard. It wasn’t intentional at all. I hated every second of it. So, I never wanted the fans to think I’d let them down. It was very scary to come back because I don’t know if they thought—like I felt like I’d let them down. I felt a sense of guilt. They have so much importance to me and my stock and built me up. I was like their girl and I wanted to be their girl. I wanted to fight for them. It was sad, but then once that match happened it felt like it was right.
Why she decided to sign with IMPACT:
I’m just in a completely different state mentally, physically and emotionally. After the Bound for Glory pay-per-view, they did approach me with an initial contract. I was just straight up with them and I said, “I’m not there yet. I’m not ready.” I was just being honest with myself. I needed to continue to work on myself. I think it was the right choice, obviously, and they respected that. I can’t thank them enough for being 100% understanding. ‘Cause that’s not easy to do, turn down a contract. This is my dream. Any wrestler, that’s their dream. They want that contract. I’m just letting it slip through my fingers. It was very hard. I sat on it for a while and then a couple months later they re-approached me with another offer and I grasped at it. I couldn’t reach quick enough. I still had to be like, “Hey, ask a couple questions?” But, I knew I was signing. I was so ready.
Full interview is below.