WWE legend Booker T has heaped praise on his protege Roxanne Perez and predicted a ‘long career in front of her’.
The NXT Women’s Champion’s status is currently unclear with WrestleMania Week and NXT Stand & Deliver fast approaching just two weeks after she collapsed on screen following her title defence against Meiko Satomura, and there has been a lot of speculation about how much of the storyline is rooted in reality.
Although NXT commentator Booker didn’t go detail, he exclusively told Metro.co.uk: ‘You know, Roxanne, she’s making history, man. She has a long career in front of her. It seems like everything is happening so fast, like lightning in a bottle for her.
‘Her thing is just staying focused, and one thing about her also, she works so hard, she’s gonna push herself to the limit.’
He discussed the 21-year-old star’s match with the Japanese wrestling veteran, and he admitted he struggles to talk about Roxanne after being so heavily involved in her training from the age of 16.
He said: ‘The match with Meiko Satomuta was, I think, the match that really put her in a position to where she knows she can do it, but now it’s about not just being able to go out there and do it, it’s about being able to go out there and do it, and finish, and move to what’s next.
‘I always say, it’s the toughest thing that I ever did in my life being a part of the wrestling business, and to see Roxanne at [21 years old] with so many accomplishments at such a young age. The future’s bright for her.
‘I just look at her like a little girl, that’s why it’s so hold for me to talk about her, it’s like talking about one of my kids. It’s like talking about my little girl, I just want the best for her. To see her go down like that, it was definitely a touching, touching moment.’
The Hall of Famer admitted it can be ‘really, really hard’ commentating on Roxanne’s matches and balancing their real life bond with his role at the announce table.
‘It’s really, really hard. When she won the title, the night she won the title, I was so excited. I wanted to go and hug her, but I wanted to give her that moment at the same time,’ he recalled, referencing her big win over Mandy Rose on December 13, 2022.
He smiled’So I sat back down, and one of the guys in my earpiece said, “Book, get in there!” I gave her a hug.’
He likened it to moments from his own in-ring career, including the first time he locked horns with the legendary ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage.
‘Macho Man’s coming down the aisle, I turned into a fan for a moment, then I had realise, “Wait a minute, I gotta work here,”‘ he laughed. ‘It’s one of those surreal, surreal moments that you find yourself in – very rare, in this business.’
There could be more of those surreal moments waiting for Booker as a commentator when WrestleMania goes Hollywood next week, and he’ll be on hand with Vic Joseph to call the action at Stand & Deliver.
He’s ‘psyched’ for the show – which will see Bron Breakker defending his NXT Championship against Carmelo Hayes, Johnny Gargano battling Grayson Waller and more – but he’s less keen on the earlier start time.
‘I’m feeling good, man, I’m excited! I’m pretty psyched up, other than having to get up at 10 o’clock in the morning,’ he chuckled.
First appear at WWE legend Booker T discusses Roxanne Perez collapse and insists his protege will ‘always push herself to the limit’