Beth Phoenix wants another Royal Rumble opportunity
GREG OLIVER - Producer, SLAM! Wrestling
|The Great Khali and Beth Phoenix stare each other down in the 2010 Royal Rumble. Photos by Mike Mastrandrea
The returning Edge may have won last year's Royal Rumble, but the most memorable image was most definitely Beth Phoenix in the Rumble, kissing and then eliminating The Great Khali. She called being in the match "the most intimidating and invigorating experience" of her life.
Phoenix entered as the sixth combatant, though she said it wasn't planned out all that long ahead.
"It was a really, really last minute opportunity," Phoenix told SLAM! Wrestling, adding some background. "Honestly, I put my bid in each and every year, hoping that one day I could follow in the footsteps of Chyna before me, but there wasn't an opportunity. In 2010, they decided to give me a shot."
In the bout, while staring up at the hulking Khali, Phoenix decided to take an unorthodox step and plant a wet one on his lips, surprising the former World champ, and allowing her to dump him over the ropes. CM Punk eliminated Phoenix shortly thereafter with his GTS.
That's all well and good, but people want to know, what was Great Khali like as a kisser?
On the phone, Phoenix gets a little flustered. "Well, Khali, ha ha, I don't think he was, as a kisser, like I've said, I've had the opportunity to kiss a couple of WWE superstars in Santino [Marella] and him. I would rank Khali up there high just because I was able to use it against him in the end. It wasn't really a pleasure cruise, so to speak."
It is evident that Phoenix (real name Beth Carolan) takes great pride in being just the second woman in the Rumble.
"Being only one of two females that have done that before, it's probably the most intimidating and invigorating experience of my life. I can't imagine any scarier experience than, going toe to toe with one man is crazy enough, let alone the off chance of being in there with 29 other male superstars," she said. "It was a very intimidating experience, but it's one of those things where I really admired what Chyna had done in the past. I was thrilled and excited and ready to take on that challenge myself. I can't tell you how awesome it was to be able to do that in 2010."
CM Punk dumps Beth Phoenix from the 2010 Rumble.
Will we see her in this year's Royal Rumble, which goes down on Sunday from the sold-out TD Garden in Boston? After all, there are 40 entrants into the Rumble for the first time ever, and she is not involved in the women's title match, a handicap bout with Natalya
defending the belt against Michelle McCool
"There's 10 more spots, and that means 10 more chances to go an compete in the Royal Rumble, and go and compete, to wrestle for the World heavyweight championship at WrestleMania," she said. "I think that the odds are a little bit better this year to get another opportunity, but like all the superstars, we don't find out until the very last minute. So, there's always a chance. That's the great thing about watching it on pay-per-view is that you never know what you're going to see."
EDITOR'S NOTE: Watch for more on Beth Phoenix in the coming weeks, including the difficulties in returning from the torn ACL, her friendship with Natalya, and her memories of working in Toronto at Cactus Pete's!
Beth Phoenix bio
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2010 Royal Rumble Photo Gallery
Greg Oliver is no sexy monkey. He can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.