WWE Hall Of Famer Trish Stratus appeared as a guest on Ring Rust Radio and spoke about a wide variety of topics. Below are some of the highlights from the interview, which you can check out above.

On comparing the WWE women’s division in her day versus now:

“We were given tons of opportunity and that’s why that era became so memorable. It’s something like when people bring up the Divas Era, some of them thought it was crap. I never would say it was crap because the performers in that era were so great. What they were missing, like you said, was opportunity. They were not given storylines back then. They had some great matches, but you don’t remember them because they didn’t have a chance to develop the characters and give the story to the audience. We were given so many chances from promos to different interactions with other characters. Storylines is the thing everybody loves about wrestling from when you were kids to now. To me it was exciting to see all the different outfits and hair colors like something out of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat. Even now during interviews, I get told that it’s not like it was during my time anymore. The only thing missing is character development and definition of characters. I would say the performance center is working on that and they are pumping out these seasoned performers. It’s not like back in the day when they would tell us to just try a move and see what happens. Here they work together, understand the psychology, they work on their promos, they get out in front of that crowd so this way it’s not their first rodeo. I think now they are getting a lot of opportunities and we are getting a great product from that.”

On how her career might have been different if there was an NXT brand for her to develop her skills in before debuting on WWE television:

“I might not have had so many crappy matches in the beginning like I did. The fact that these girls come in to the performance center and it’s a different feeling being in there compared to a live audience. I remember my first promo ever I was like a deer in headlights. I would have come in more polished for sure if they had that when I came in. The story of me though is my underdog story. The reason I feel I have that connection with the crowd was because they saw me fall down and get back up, brush myself off and try again. They saw me come out and try to be better than what I was last week and not mess up the move I did the week before. They got it and they understood I was given this position and I was trying to do my best to maximize what I had been given. I was given a unique opportunity because I was a newbie and had very limited experience considering the girls around me. It was the people around me that elevated my game like Jackie, Molly and Jazz. My NXT was kind of like working with these girls and going in week by week. Working with the guys behind the scenes and in the ring while also taking extra promo classes helped me out tremendously. They would put the camera on me in back and say let’s just try some stuff. I had my own NXT camp, kind of. It made a big difference just doing a show that night compared to going that extra mile and doing that promo work backstage and rolling around the ring with the boys. Going the extra mile and just finding room to work really made a difference.”

On working with Vince McMahon and Stephanie McMahon early in her WWE career:

“It allowed me and pushed me to elevate my game. Having to go to work knowing you are working directly with the Boss means you can’t suck basically. Working with him, I had the chance to learn a lot from him directly. The way he approached things, what worked and what didn’t work and knowing why that didn’t work so next time I can be better. That really helped me learn by leaps and bounds working side-by-side with him. Working with Stephanie was great because she was so high profile and her expectations honestly were low. We were able to blow people away because people didn’t expect much from us. If you go back and watch that match between us, it wasn’t great, but it was the storyline that brought us there. We watch wrestling because storylines bring us to the accumulation of a glorious match. To start off in that environment did a lot for me. I did make a really good bond with Vince and Stephanie. We actually just texted earlier and we are still all very close. It was a great experience to work with them like that.”

On her memorable WWE retirement and if any one match or moment stands out as the most special in her career:

“My retirement was one of the two top moments of my life. I remember walking into that arena that night and I still couldn’t believe that it was happening. It almost felt like a swerve because the whole situation seemed too good to be true. Everything was right from being in my hometown to the match itself was all perfect. Winning the title and making history was bittersweet because I won the world, but then I was going to be leaving it to go on to the next chapter of my life, but I will never forget it. I will always feel that in my mind that was one of my pivotal moments in my career. My match with Mickie James at WrestleMania 22 was my last WrestleMania before I retired. I felt like we got to that point where a women’s match wrestling wise could be better than a guy’s match. We didn’t want to be viewed as a women’s match, we wanted it viewed as just a wrestling match. The reviews came in the next day and they were very high on us. I remember it had about four to five months of storyline behind it which really got us there and that is rare nowadays for a women’s match. So much development of character and the storyline really made the match what it was. We then just left it up to the crowd and their reaction was awesome. It was fun for me to be a good baby face in the match and get booed because of a part of the storyline which I thought was really cool. Those were two moments that really stand out to me. My main event on Raw was obviously a highlight as well. Walking to the arena that day, we saw the board with all the matches listed and we thought it had to be a mistake to have us listed as the main event. When we finally realized it was us, it was such a great moment. They gave us that platform and told us to go do our thing and maximize our opportunity. Lita and I, and everyone that was helping us to get there, it really was a team effort. We really stepped up our game and made it successful.”