I have been fortunate enough to be a WWE wrestling fan for over 20 years now, and during that time frame I have been lucky enough to see many wrestlers appear on WWE programming that have caught my eye for one reason or another. Whether it is their athletic ability, charisma or good looks, the WWE roster has never been short on someone to invigorate me as a fan. However, there has been a void on WWE television for over a year at this point, that has yet to be filled. I am of course talking about Saraya-Jade Bevis, better known as the former Diva’s Champion, “The Anti-Diva” Paige.
Paige has unfortunately been out of action in WWE since August 2016 due to a neck injury. While there have been rumors recently that Paige is returning to the ring soon, especially since she tweeted out a picture of the WWE Performance Centre mentioning “Went to see an old friend today,” she wrote. “Good to be back there! @wwe #RoadBackToMyHouse” (Here is her WWE article), Paige has been missed during her entire injury hiatus. While there have been numerous instances of Paige occurring in popular culture over her time off (which out of respect for Paige will be the only mention of it in this article), I think it is best to show the world exactly what they have been missing while Paige has been out of action.
15 She Works Hard
As an athlete, Paige works very hard on her body, and this WWE picture set released of her workout proves how fit she is. While Paige’s “punk-rock prom queen” type of demeanor that focuses on black, leather and stockings can often overpower her athletic ability, Paige is just as athletic as the other females on the current roster. From her matches with AJ Lee which exceeded expectations, to watching her complete with Emma in NXT, Paige has shown her physical nature in the ring on numerous occasions.
Given the recent physical matches that WWE has involved the Women’s roster in – ranging from Tables matches to Hell in the Cell – Paige’s physical style would fit right in and is surely missed. How much longer will we have to wait?
14 Strong, but not Very Silent Type
While we currently have a Women’s Champion in Alexa Bliss who has the punk-rock glamour style fully ingrained in her persona, we cannot forget that Paige did it first in this era of WWE. Paige often incorporates leather into her ring attire, and this photoshoot including Mick Foley’s favorite weapon further exemplifies her personality. The “tough-as-nails” persona that Paige gives us begins with her walk to the ring, which focuses on her strutting to the ring ready to compete, only stopping on the apron to let out a blood-curling scream before shouting “This is my house!”. Now, if she was to incorporate a barbed-wire baseball bat into each of her entrances, she would solidify herself as someone that shouldn’t be messed with upon her return.
13 Simply Unpredictable
Paige is one of the more unpredictable wrestlers that WWE has had on their roster – we never truly know what Paige is going to do next when she is in the ring. We know that she has a very physical style, and will continue to come at her opponent until she gets the win. Paige has also done things in the ring that we would never see coming, not limited to her match with Natalya on Main Event in 2015. Both being excellent wrestlers in their own right, the match was very physical, with Natalya answering Paige’s onslaught with suplexes and submissions. While Natalya dominated much of the match, Paige surprised her with a roll-up to win.
What was really surprising was during the match, while Paige had Natalya locked in a sleeper-hold, she leaned over and licked the side of her face, and proceeded to “mount her” while pinning her. This was chronicled on an episode of “Total Divas”, which showed Natalya being very upset with Paige’s spontaneity. While it may have upset Natalya, Paige’s unexpected behavior is something the fans certainly miss.
12 A Moment to Remember
The RAW after WrestleMania is a very exciting night for fans, as the WWE has promoted it for years as an event “where anything can happen”. Whether it is a very exciting match, over-the-top crowd reactions or the debut of a new face to the roster, the expectation that something surprising will happen has existed for years. This was exactly the case in 2014, when the night after WrestleMania XXX Paige debuted to face the reigning Diva’s Champion AJ Lee. While Paige was a decorated wrestler at the time as the current NXT Women’s Champion and with time in the independent circuit at Shimmer Women’s Athletes, she was a relatively unknown wrestler to most of the WWE audience.
So, when Paige hit her “Paige-Turner” maneuver and pinned the champion cleanly in the ring, it was surprising for all the fans in attendance (and ask you can see by the picture, for Paige herself). Upon winning the championship, Paige became the youngest Diva’s Champion in history at the age of 21, and began her career on the top of the division (WWE.com profile). With moments like these on Paige’s resume, most fans cannot wait for her to return so we can see another moment like this.
11 Gothic Princess
When Paige debuted in NXT in 2013, she came to the ring screaming violently like a pterodactyl (which continued during her match), clad in dark purple attire and thick-black makeup, almost with the imagery of a goth-type character. Gothic characters have been very popular in wrestling in the past, including The Undertaker and Sting to name a couple, because the darkness of their character connects with fans on a different level than other standard character archetypes).
Paige’s gothic persona gives her the same ability, and she portrays this in all of her photoshoots, like the Halloween themed one above. There is something sexy about a “dark-and-stormy” type of character, which is one of the things that fans miss most about Paige. It's definitely something unique about her.
Not only is Paige unpredictable as we mentioned earlier, but she is also one of the more fun Women on the roster. She is constantly posing and interacting with cameras during her appearances, and enjoys being a “silly-heart” while performing for fans. While the current Women’s roster is extremely athletic and entertaining, the division is currently missing a fun-loving type quality, which Paige has in spades. We’ve seen during her appearances on Total Divas, and in the ring alongside Emma, AJ Lee or The Bella Twins hat she can not only be physical in the ring, but that she knows how to have a good time. Plus, how can you not love a girl who is a Harry Potter fan!?
9 Muscles for Days
While we already saw Paige lifting weights in a previous photoshoot, the picture did not give a true indication about how cut and muscular Paige is as an athlete. Paige’s ring attire and pale skin often eclipses her athletic prowess, but pictures like this prove how hard she works to maintain her body. When Paige returns, it looks like we will see a leaner and more muscular version of her as a wrestler.
While Paige has been off since June of 2016 for a variety of reasons including a neck injury, it is clear that Paige is training hard for her return to the ring, which has fans very excited. She's credited her boyfriend Alberto Del Rio for training her to keep her in ring shape and she looks ready.
8 Selfies Everywhere
The weekly WWE’s Top Instagram pictures that appears on WWE.com needs Paige to come back, plain and simple. While the segment is currently staying afloat with the likes of Mandy Lee, Emma and The Bella Twins posting pictures for fans to view, Paige is one of the un-sung “Queens of the Selfies”. Her Instagram is littered with close-up pictures showing of her features, which give us a more detailed glimpse into her exciting life. Whether they are shots from backstage or by the pool, Paige is not shy about sharing these pictures with her fans on social media. Unfortunately, these have become less frequent since her absence from WWE, but her imminent return promises an influx in these types of pictures, which we can’t wait for.
7 Don’t be a Lemon
We already spoke about Paige’s unpredictability in the ring during her match with Natalya, but Paige has given us many other moments that show off what she is willing to do to win a match. During a feud with The Bella Twins in 2014, they ended up stealing Paige’s clothes from her locker room so she could not compete. Not to be one to turn down competition, Paige knew that she needed to find ring attire to wrestle that evening, and proceeded to march through the hallways only wearing a towel to find something to wear. Eventually, she stumbled upon Adam Rose’ entourage of “Rosebuds” wearing silly clothing, and quickly selected the pink-pixie outfit you see above to wrestle in. Not only is the outfit very flattering on her, but she revealed in an interview that she really wasn’t wearing anything under the towel! “That was legit live, guys. I had to run through the hallways in just a towel. I never thought I would be on Raw in just a towel."
6 This is Her House
We already discussed before how strong Paige is in the ring, but it cannot be understated that she is one of the most attractive women on the WWE roster. While the leather-glamour type of attire is not everyone’s cup of tea, she is certainly capable of dressing in other manners to show off her sexuality. This photoshoot from the WWE shows a softer side of Paige in a fancy-home photo shoot – she has traded in her studded ring attire for a fashionable pair of shorts and see-through top, not leaving much to the imagination. Or on the other hand, does it make our imaginations run wild?
In any event, it's been a while since we've seen Paige in one of these stunning photo shoots, so this is a friendly reminder how she can own a camera.
5 Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
The backstage of WWE has been described as a very fun atmosphere for young wrestlers, particularly those who are looking to have a good time with others. While much of this fun used to only be available when a wrestler would write a “tell-all” book, social media gives us a great glimpse into the interactions that other wrestlers have with each other that we normally would not see on television. Particularly, Paige’s friendship with Emma is a highlight during their time backstage together. All the way from their time in NXT to traveling through foreign countries during European tours, Paige and Emma’s antics are well documented on social media, including this stunning photo above. With Paige being off the road, we have not been given the pleasure of these types of photos, which we are anxiously awaiting when she returns.
4 Going Down to the Pool
Do you know how hot it would be to wear leather all the time? We can’t expect Paige’s closet to only be filled with her wrestling attire, and a quick trip to Paige’s Instagram account proves that she doesn’t only own leather – she is not afraid to dress down and spend a day at the beach or by the pool in a swimsuit. It is selfies like this from her home that really show off different sides of Paige that we don’t always get to see from her wrestling character. WWE wrestlers spend over 200+ days a year on the road performing, so when they get the opportunity to unwind they enjoy themselves to the fullest. Paige has had plenty of time to enjoy her personal life the past year.
3 The Sweeter Side
Paige’s in-ring persona is a smash-mouth, take no prisoners type which focuses on doing everything that it takes to win over an opponent – whether it is attacking her from behind, or beating her decisively with her submission holds, Paige will do whatever it takes. Unfortunately, this does not depict a very wholesome person on television, and someone that it would be a good idea to avoid if they were in a bad mood. However, if we take another trip to Paige’s Instagram we see that she has a much softer side as a young woman. Paige entered WWE programming at the age of 20 and has grown up as a woman in front of wrestling fans, so these types of photos serve to remind us just how alluring Paige can be as a lady.
2 Watch Out, She’s Taken
The worst thing that I can do is get this far into an article an unfortunately remind you that Paige is off the market – in October 2016 her and former WWE erestler Alberto Del Rio became engaged. While there has been numerous “spotlight” article pieces about their relationship – which is entirely there business as far as I am concerned – it is great to see Paige so happy. Even though Total Divas programming should be taken with a grain of salt, Paige has been very open about her past relationships and the emotional and physical toll they have taken on her. As long as everyone is happy and healthy, I wish Paige nothing but the best in her personal life. Let's hope the allegations on the couple earlier this year were misinformed.
1 Leather and Fishnets
While I have already discussed Paige’s in-ring ability and attitude, it really cannot be understated how attractive Paige is with her punk persona. The combination of leather, fishnets and knee-high boots is enough to make any man sweat, but couple this with Paige’s choice in makeup and hairstyle, and she looks out of this world. Often when wrestlers are out of action for a period of time, they will return with a new look and attitude to ensure that they get attention during their return. For what it is worth, I sincerely hope that Paige does not change a thing upon her return, and we are treated to the same Paige we’ve come to enjoy on WWE programming. Get well soon Paige, we miss you.