Io Shirai On Her NXT Women’s Title Reign, Toni Storm & Mercedes Martinez, NXT Dream Matches

In a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, Io Shirai discussed her current reign as NXT Women’s Champion, her NXT dream matches, and much more. Here are some of the highlights:

Io Shirai on her current reign as NXT Women’s Champion: “I am so proud to be the champion in what is considered one of the most talented women’s divisions in NXT history. The fact that I have been able to defend my title against a series of skilled challengers in such high-level matches has been a great experience for me. I fully intend to defend my title in an effort to raise the brand profile of NXT and its women’s division by continuing to have quality matches week in and week out.”

On what she respects about Toni Storm and Mercedes Martinez ahead of their NXT Takeover: Vengeance Day match: “Despite Toni’s young age, she has already experienced and accomplished so much in this business. It is not easy to travel around the world, compete in different promotions and stay on top wherever you go. Toni has managed to do that wherever she has been, including NXT. And Mercedes Martinez, I feel a lot of veteran confidence with Mercedes since she has had the longest career among the three of us. The fact that she came to NXT for title shots proves she is still very hungry, and not just satisfied with being here or what she has done in the past.”

On her dream match with Mayu Iwatani in NXT: “Yes, Mayu Iwatani is certainly one of my greatest rivals. If we ever have the opportunity to compete for the title at an NXT TakeOver, I am confident we would put on a great show. It is definitely a dream match for me.”

On a potential WrestleMania match with Meiko Satamura: “No question about it. WrestleMania is the grandest stage we have in this business and I have always wanted to compete under that spotlight. A match with Meiko Satomura is another dream match for me. Fortunately she has joined NXT UK, making it a real possibility now. I am so excited.”

On her pick for wrestling’s most talented performer: “My definition of talented is how much a performer can attract others to what they are doing. So I would have to say Rey Mysterio. I watched him when I was younger and that was when I knew I wanted to be in a WWE ring one day. And now after a long journey, here I am.”

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