Eva Marie Launching Podcast, Signs Deal with PodcastOne
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Bigger Missed Opportunity?
These two were the prime candidates by WWE officials to be the next big thing in the post-Fab Four era of WWE. But, due to a myriad of mishaps, it never came to light. Who was the bigger missed opportunity for the women's division: Lana or Eva Marie?
Rumors circulated in 2015 that WWE was looking to position Eva Marie and/or Lana as future stars in the women's division in the coming years. After husband Rusev's initial push for the United States Championship had dissipated at WrestleMania 31, Lana's character would become more of a focal point in the summer that followed, as she was paired with Dolph Ziggler and turned babyface. The plan was for Lana to be 'Americanized' and be known as "CJ"; a hot, blonde bombshell character. A big blow-off/coming out party for Lana was planned at SummerSlam 2015 between her and Dolph against Rusev and Summer Rae would be cancelled after Lana sustained an injury in training and (allegedly) contacted TMZ in regards to her and Rusev's in-real life engagement, which irritated officials and ultimately led to Lana being placed back with Rusev again. She has intermittently flirted with active in-ring competition since then, even competing for the SmackDown Women's Championship and in the Money in the Bank Ladder match in consecutive years, but no real overtures have been made since in regards to positioning her any higher or making her an act separate from Rusev.
Alternatively, Eva Marie was sent back down to WWE's developmental territory, NXT, following WrestleMania 31 and two seasons of featuring on E!'s Total Divas. Enlisting the likes of Brian Kendrick for private training (which was ultimately brought up as a focal point of the Total Divas arc in Season 4), Eva Marie returned to NXT ready to wow... but, she didn't. Instead, a unique archetype was re-introduced in which her mere appearance created controversy-- a beautiful woman with a lot of corporate backing, but little physical ability. This gimmick parlayed her into a Women's Championship match on NXT TV and a lot of hype for a main roster transition of the gimmick following the brand extension of 2016, which inevitably wouldn't happen due to a Wellness policy violation and an irate husband-ger leading her every move.
With the backing of The Rock and Henry Cavill's management company, Eva left the WWE to pursue a career in film, or in fashion, or in modeling, or in makeup, or in YouTube, or in podcasting, or in motivational speaking, or in psuedo-celebrity status, or in having a different hair color. Whichever came first. Meanwhile, Lana holds the fort down as a part of Rusev's "Rusev Day" act, the peak of her husband's marketability within their collective tenure in WWE.
With all things considered and their respective appeals, who was the bigger loss for the company? Does Lana still have a chance to reach a bigger peak within the women's division?
The Red Queen Talks Personal Struggle.
By Twisted Bliss
In an essay for InStyle (http://www.instyle.com/celebrity/total-divas-star-natalie-eva-marie-alcoholics-anonymous-essay) ,
the 33-year old opened up about her lifelong struggle with alcohol. Eva Marie would transparently discuss how her fight against addiction nearly ruined her life.
“I’m an alcoholic. I have relapsed, destroyed relationships, hurt my family, and disappointed myself numerous times. I will be an alcoholic for the rest of my life. The fact that I have been sober for almost five years doesn’t mean that I am “cured,” it doesn’t mean that I had a drinking phase in my 20s, and it doesn’t mean that I can have a few drinks now and again or just drink in moderation. There are no shades of gray when it comes to alcoholism—it’s black and white,” she wrote.
Eva says she’s been sober for five years but hit “rock bottom” prior to coming to WWE. She served three months in jail for multiple DUIs arrests and was struggling in her personal and professional life. She was able to enter into a 12-step program to get clean and still attends AA meetings every week to avoid falling off the wagon.
“Before I started working my 12-step program, my mind was a mess, my life was a mess, and I’d hit rock bottom. I served three months in jail for repeated DUIs. I didn’t have a license, I didn’t have a stable job, and I was living in an apartment that I could only afford due to a heavy discount my landlord offered me because a murder had taken place there between the previous tenants. That’s what my life looked like right before I started down my road to sobriety,” she explained.