The current WWE Raw Women’s Champion, Sasha Banks, attributes rapper Snoop Dogg for playing a key role in her development as a WWE Superstar. The American musician, who also happens to be Sasha’s first cousin, is the inspiration behind the diva’s much loved Legit Boss persona in WWE.
“Well, I pretty much spun my character from him and being around him”, she admitted in an interview with BET.com. She went on to elaborate how Snoop Dogg influenced her in-ring persona:
“I was just looking at everything in entertainment those days. It was all about Nicki Minaj, Floyd Mayweather, Kanye West, Snoop Dogg. And from always being around Snoop, all his security guards and his friends call him Boss. I was like, 'I need a nickname, I need a persona, I’m going to call myself the Boss — Sasha Banks The Legit Boss.”
That is not the only time Snoop Dogg helped shape his first cousin’s career. Sasha recalls WrestleMania XXIV at Orlando in March 2008, when she was 16. Snoop Dogg was the Master of Ceremonies for a match then, and Sasha convinced him to take her along for her first WrestleMania.
“He took me to WrestleMania when I was 16, and I swear to God I thought I was going to get signed just because I was like, 'can I meet Vince [McMahon]? Can I?' and, of course, nothing happened”, Banks recalls.
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Sasha confirms that Snoop Dogg is a massive fan of professional wrestling and cites that as the reason they bonded.
“It's awesome to see that he had see me from when I was 8, and I always told him that I was going to be a wrestler and everyone was like, 'yeah right!' And now I'm here doing it!”
As a matter of fact, Snoop Dogg has been involved in WWE previously, as a guest. He was the Master of Ceremonies at WrestleMania XXIV as mentioned above. He was the guest host of RAW in 2009 and teamed up with Hulk Hogan to throw Curtis Axel over the top rope at WrestleMania 31 last year.
This resulted in a unique achievement for Snoop Dogg at this year’s Hall of Fame Awards ceremony when he became the first musician to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. During his acceptance speech, he surprised everyone including Sasha by mentioning her.
“I want to give a shout out to my little cousin — Sasha Banks, the legit boss,” he said, to cheers from those in attendance.
“You know what’s so crazy about that scenario is that I remember in 2008 when I took her to WrestleMania in Orlando, she was just a young little teenager, and I took her around to meet everybody that she wanted to meet, and you could just see her face light up. You could tell this is where she belonged. This is what she wanted to be. To see the love that you guys have given her. To see her face on the side of the AT&T Stadium, I mean, I don’t even know what to say to express how great it feels as a family member to see my little cousin fighting for it all tomorrow.”
The following night at WrestleMania 32, Snoop Dogg performed Sasha’s entrance music, ‘Sky’s the Limit’, in front of a record 101,763 people, before her Triple Threat Championship Match, which she eventually lost.
Sasha has come a long way since then and having her cousin to look out for her, as well as for her to look up to, she is well-set to realise her immense potential and become one of the greatest wrestlers of all time.
One step in that direction will be the first ever women’s Hell in a Cell match for the WWE Raw Women’s Championship at the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view scheduled to take place on 30th of this month. The current WWE Raw Women’s Champion will defend her title against Charlotte as a part of a triple main event, which again is another first for women’s wrestling.
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This transformation of the women’s division from being eye candy, during the Attitude era, to main eventing matches in NXT, has been a long journey and it has got a lot to do with NXT and the arrival of the Four Horsewomen – Charlotte, Becky Lynch, Sasha Banks and Bayley.
Each of these wrestlers had different journeys to reach this point personally, as well as professionally. However, Sasha Banks’ rise to the top of the Women’s Division represents that of a true WWE fan realising her dream, and in that respect, she is a real inspiration to girls who aspire to become professional wrestlers one day!
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