Interview: Tessa Blanchard on 2018 Achievements, Magnum Finisher Origins, 2019 Goals

Wrestling Epicenter held a recent interview with Tessa Blanchard and some of the topics discussed included her career achievements in 2018, the origins of her Magnum finisher, her goals for 2019, and more.

On the topic of her career achievements last year, Blanchard stated she felt happy to make some history defining moments for her career and getting to travel around the world.

“This past year, I’ve been making history in different ways than other women in the business are making history. That is the cool thing… I have the freedom to travel the world! I’ve won titles and championships all over the world! I’ve gotten to main event Korakuen in Tokyo, Japan. Coming up now, I’m going to debut on WOW Superheroes on AXS TV! I competed in the first women’s match ever to air on China TV. No one can take that from me! So, in different ways, I’m making history. That is a really neat thing for me. That is what I always wanted to do in wrestling is to travel – To go everywhere and to do everything and wrestle everyone. I’ve wrestled some of the best women and men in the world! I want to wrestle everyone in the world so when I beat them, I am the best in the world!”

On the topic of the origins of her Magnum finisher, Blanchard stated it was inspired by wanting a move similar to Chris Jericho’s Codebreaker and also wanting to honor her stepdad, Magnum TA.

“Wow, I don’t think I’ve ever told this story. So, I’m a huge Chris Jericho fan. I’ve always been a huge Chris Jericho fan. I was in Japan – I believe it was Osaka. I was wrestling a girl and I hit the finish and she kicked out. I’m like, “Well, fudge! What do I do now?” So, I go to the top rope and I do a move off the top rope. That was the first time that I had ever been to the top rope! From that, it progressed. I was trying to think of something that I could do to anyone that was unique to myself and still showed intensity and still had a little bit of the past in it. So, as I said, I’m a huge Chris Jericho fan – I love his finish. But, I wanted to up the anti a little bit. So, I do it off the top rope. My step-dad (Magnum TA) is an amazing person. He was an amazing wrestler. But, his career was cut short. He is someone that I look up to and someone that I respect. He is someone that I go to for advice… I think he is extremely underrated and does not get the recognition that he deserves. I think that he should be a WWE Hall of Famer, to be frank! I wanted to name something after him and I remember one of the commentators coming to me and saying, “Tessa, I need the name of some of your moves.” I was like, “Well, this is the Magnum!” (laughs) I remember my step-dad always telling me to be careful with that move. He’d say, “That ring is unforgiving. That ring hurts.” Every move, every bump! It doesn’t feel good. If it was easy, everyone would do it! It is a very taxing thing on your body. So, my step-dad told me to be careful with that move. That move is tough on me. It is a very tough thing on my body.”

On the topic of her goals for 2019, Blanchard stated her main goals are for women to compete in the main event of an Impact Wrestling pay-per-view event and for inter-gender wrestling to become more popular.

“You know, I’m not sure what is going to happen in 2019 but I do know that it is going to be better than 2018. That is a huge statement to make because 2018 was absolutely amazing. But, with the WOW Superheroes on AXS TV which has Mark Cuban and Jeanie Buss behind that. I’m so excited for people to see that air in January. With Impact, I hope to retain my Knockouts championship. I hope for women to main event an Impact (PPV) event which has not been done yet. I hope to share the ring with Gail Kim one day… I hope that inter-gender wrestling can make a breakthrough. There are a lot of hopes for 2019. But, you know, I’ve been going moment by moment, match by match, and it seems to be working out so far!”

Other topics discussed during the interview included her thoughts on Gail Kim and Taya Valkyrie, her career goal of competing in the X Division, and her thoughts on Impact’s Homecoming 2019 event.