WWE superstar and current women’s tag champion Sasha Banks spoke with Sports Illustrated ahead of her showdown against NXT women’s champion Io Shirai on tonight’s Great American Bash special on USA. Highlights from the interview are below.
On living her dream and trying to be a good role model:
For me, being a role model and a leader is what I have to give back to the universe. It’s not easy to be so exposed and so open and so raw, but I’m here to show people that I’m a real person, too. I am just lucky and fortunate enough to be living my dream in front of millions of people. If that connects with people, if that resonates, all I can do is be myself and hopefully show people that no matter what they go through–whether it’s good, bad, or hard–we’re all in this together.
Says she cannot fight “hate with hate” in regards to AEW’s Sammy Guevara and the comments he made:
As you can see on social media, I left my comment out there, I made my statement. I don’t feel like I need to touch upon it any more than I did, but as a role model, I have to lead by example. I can’t show hate with hate. I only can show through education, dignity, and integrity.
On being thankful for everything she’s been through as a kid:
We all have a journey and a story, and we’re able to tell people what we’ve overcome. No one’s perfect, no one’s had an easy road or an easy life, but overcoming difficulty makes us who we are. I’m so thankful for everything that I’ve ever been through since I was a kid. If I didn’t go through those things, I wouldn’t be the strongest person I’ve ever been in my whole life.
On her highly anticipated matchup against Io Shirai later this evening:
I’m just coming down here today to show people that this is not their NXT. This has always been my NXT, and that’s what I’m going to show tonight. No matter where I am on the card, I always headline. I’m always the main event. Whether it’s first, second, third, fourth, or fifth, I am the main event no matter where you put me.