Mickie James spoke at length about her recent run in WWE, her thoughts on ageism in the company, and the trash bag post that led to the release of Mark Carrano.
On the Grown Ass Women podcast, Mickie James talked about the last two years of her career, feeling as if the people in charge wanted her to retire from in-ring action.
“I kept feeling these things of 'we want you to retire. We want you to be an agent.'” she said. “It was what they wanted for me. It wasn't that I wasn't grateful for those opportunities, but at the same time, I see the agents and what they have to deal with and go through. They don't get any of the praise or the thanks that they ever deserve, they have to deal with a lot of crap. I don't know if I could personally handle that.”
“I'm just disappointed as a whole with being made to feel old with Depends and a walker and the whole ageism thing,” she commented further. Later in the podcast, the 41-year-old James brought up that many of the men in the company are as old or are older than her, and they are wrestling for championships.
She at one time pitched an idea for an all-female brand, only to be rejected, with someone telling her that an idea like that doesn’t make money.
“There was this moment where I said, 'What if we do an all-female brand?' I could help lead up that and have an awesome team of women....we have the talent, tools, and facilities, we have everything that we need. It would really help all the girls who aren’t getting the television time. I s*** you not...this one person says to me, 'They're never going to do it, ever. Women's wrestling doesn't make money. Evolution was the lowest-rated PPV ever in WWE. I get what you're trying to do, but I don't understand why you're fighting so hard for it. You should play the cards you're dealt and see if there's a way to incorporate that within a show rather than fight for it to be its own show.'”
James also talked about the opportunities that fell by the wayside, including an angle with Chelsea Green that Green mentioned in a recent interview with Fightful.
“I think we missed out on a lot of moments, whether it was me tying Trish's record and Charlotte tied that and beat me or the Chelsea Green angle. I originally pitched [the angle] way back for Liv [Morgan] because I love Liv.”
Regarding the trash bag incident that led to talent relations department senior manager Mark Carrano’s release, James said she emphasized with him, but doesn’t feel too bad. She also mentioned that she had received her gear back the same way ten years ago when she was first released from WWE.
"I know it wasn't a direct thing, like ‘Hey, this is what we think of you’,” she said. “I empathize with Mark and feel bad he's taking the full brunt, it sucks, but I guarantee his pension package is probably more than what I got paid in my last run in WWE. So, I don't feel that bad. He was not happy in that situation. I'm pissed and I don't want to come across as angry, but it is a direct reflection of everything I've experienced in coming back.”
James was released on April 15. The 90-day no compete clause for her and the rest of those released will expire in July.