During her appearance on Bell to Belles, Mercedes Martinez spoke on why she feels that she needs to protect her legacy at all times. Here’s what she had to say:
People think that is probably the wrong decision. But for me, it was the right decision right then and there. Maybe they could have gotten somebody else but for me and for the 20 years that I put in this business, I didn’t want my WWE career to be valued as part of a group and in a name change. I built my legacy on my own and for me, I was like, I don’t have a long shelf life at 40 years old. I don’t know how long I’m going to be a part of this business, especially with WWE. I don’t know if they’re going to keep me around long. I don’t know anything. Nothing’s guaranteed in life. So do I want my legacy, my WWE stamp to be part of RETRIBUTION, or do I want my stamp to be known as the Mercedes that people know and love and that of the badass? That’s really what it came down to? It was, I need to be known as Mercedes. That’s what they grabbed me as that is what I want to leave as when it came to WWE.
So you know, we talked. Everyone was on the same page. They understood where I was coming from. There was no heat or anything… They understood my concerns with the mask and they understood everything. It wasn’t like, ‘I’m just gonna drop this.’ It was a mutual talk. Everyone was on the same page. Within a couple of days after that they let me know, ‘Yes, we agree. We’re gonna send you back to NXT,’ and I was like, ‘Thank you so much. If there’s another opportunity on Raw or SmackDown for the main roster that you want me to be a part of, or add Mercedes, that was my thing, then I’m more willing to do whatever you want. I will be a team player but also morally in my heart, I have to also be mindful of what I built my career on and that’s being true to oneself. So that’s what I did. I was true to myself and I stuck to my guns. Did it cost me a main roster run? Probably.
Credit: Bell to Belles. H/T 411Mania.