For a year it felt like Bayley had been left behind as the lone member of NXT's "Four Horsewomen" to remain off the main roster, but in just six months after debuting on Raw last August, Bayley stunned Charlotte to become the Raw Women's Champion, then snapped Charlotte's pay-per-view winning streak in her first title defense.
Bayley will now head back to Orlando as a champion, where she will face Charlotte, Sasha Banks and Nia Jax in a Fatal Four Way at WrestleMania 33.
With less than two weeks until the biggest match of her life, Bayley spoke to Fox Sports about her favorite WrestleMania moments and her pre-match routine.
You can watch WrestleMania 33 live on the WWE Network starting at 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 2nd.
Fox Sports: A year ago you had to watch in Dallas as Charlotte, Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch had their triple threat match. What kind of things were you feeling as you were watching from the floor?
Bayley: “I was very happy, and super emotional. I was getting a little anxious the more and more the match went on, and the wrestler in me was like ‘ah, I wouldn’t have done that,’ or ‘ah, I wish I would have done this!’ Little things like that.
But then, also, I just wanted to be a part of it. A part of me was a little jealous, honestly. They were able to do all this cool stuff. I don’t know, I just felt like ‘man, if I was there, it would be so much better.’
I just wanted to be a part of it. I felt a little bit left out, but there were just so many emotions. I cried for all of their entrances because I’m such a loser. ‘Oh, that’s so cool!’ I was really happy for them, but I was so determined after that night.
I went back, hugged them, congratulated them. And then I was like ‘time for me to go to work.’”
Fox Sports: Is it extra special for you that your first WrestleMania is in Orlando of all places?
Bayley: “Totally, it’s considered a home to me. We really just started there. We had a million matches there in Orlando, trained for hours at the Performance Center every single day. And I know a lot of the Orlando fans are going to be there - the ones who were there when nobody else was when we weren’t traveling out to all these states and to different countries and everything.
They were always there to support us. So it’s nice to bring all of WWE there and be able to experience that with them. Hoping to see a bunch of them at Axxess."
Fox Sports: How different is it being in the ring with Nia Jax as opposed to Sasha Banks or Charlotte?
Bayley: “It changes everything. I’m still getting used to it. When she came to NXT I was like ‘alright, this is a cool new challenge.’ I’ve never been in the ring with somebody like her. But I’m still - it’s been like two years - but I’m still learning how to actually approach her. Once you think you have one idea of how to do it… she’s just way too powerful.
Our match on Monday, I was honestly worried about it being a no-DQ match. My neck still hurts, and it hurts to drive and to look the other way. It’s a challenge so I’m up for it. I’m building my muscle."
Fox Sports: Do you have any kind of a pre-match routine?
Bayley: “Just the normal warming up and stretching. Every time, before I go out I say a little prayer to myself. I’m very antsy in the back, I’m just moving a lot. I sweat a lot because I get really nervous. Literally right before my music hits I say a little prayer and that calms me down, and then I’m focused. I’m a nervous wreck until I do that, then I’m ready to go.
For my TakeOver matches I was always just a huge mess, a huge ball of nerves. Every single one I said ‘if you can’t do this match, if you can’t do TakeOver in front of 12,000, or whether it’s Full Sail with 600 people, how will you ever perform at WrestleMania? So I’ve always told myself that, and now I’m here and I’m like ‘now what do I tell myself?’ So we’ll see how I handle that one, but I’ve been waiting for it forever, so I’m prepared.”
Fox Sports: As a lifelong fan, do you have any favorite women's matches from past WrestleManias? What's your personal favorite WrestleMania moment?
Bayley: “My favorite matches were always anything to do with Lita or Trish, because they were just the most memorable ones, and always the ones that you could tell they were giving their heart and soul and just putting it all on the line every time they stepped in the ring together.
My favorite WrestleMania moment would actually be the first WrestleMania I ever went to, and that was at WrestleMania 30 in New Orleans. I’ve been a fan forever, but have never been able to go to an actual WrestleMania until I started working with the company.
When I saw Daniel Bryan win the world title, that was the most incredible atmosphere, especially after Undertaker just losing his streak, which was such an awkward and weird feeling in the building. To feel the feeling of the fans once Daniel Bryan wins his title - it was… I can’t even explain it.”
Fox Sports: You star in a hilarious Snickers commercial that was just released. Was that all one take or were you messing up the room over and over?
Bayley: “I had to mess it up a few times. Dude, it was so fun. They had a script for me, and as it was going on they were like ‘oh it would be cool if you did this,’ or ‘it would be cool if you do this!’ And I would sometimes not say the right line and they’d be like ’it’s cool, let’s try that one!’ Yeah, I had to mess up the room a few times. I threw so many cups at the assistant. We were using red cups before and they were like ‘nah, those don’t fly as good.’ I’m actually kind of sad because at the end we had the shot of me kicking the table… and we actually shot one where I was dropping an elbow onto the couch and I was kind of hoping they’d keep that. one, but it was so much fun."