Deonna Purrazzo Says Post-WWE All She Wanted Was A Place That Would Pay Her To Wrestle

Deonna Purrazzo has opened up about her transition from WWE to IMPACT Wrestling.

After two less than memorable years in WWE/NXT, Deonna Purrazzo was released by the company on April 15, 2020. She immediately found a home with IMPACT Wrestling, winning the Knockouts Championship for the first time that summer at Slammiversary. She won the belt for the second time in November and held it for nearly an entire year before dropping it to Mickie James at Bound For Glory in October 2021.

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Speaking with Fightful's Sean Ross Sapp, The Virtuosa discussed preconceptions that some have about demands that WWE releases have when hitting the free-agent market, saying that all she wanted was a place that would pay her to wrestle.

"Yeah. I feel like when you leave WWE or other places and then you’re trying to find where you’re going to land, people have these preconceived notions that you have demands and want things. I literally wanted nothing but a place that would pay me to wrestle. I didn’t come in asking for anything. I was like, ‘Let’s see what would happen.’ I swear when I was told I was going to win the Knockouts Championship at Slammiversary, the first thing I said to Steve was like, ‘It’ll probably change. No. I’m not gonna tell anyone else,’ because I didn’t think it would happen. So for them to give me that right away and let me roll with it for the last eighteen months has been amazing," she said.

"Yeah. I think people thought I was going to be asking for a million dollars to wrestle," Purrazzo continued. "Also, we were still in the thick of COVID. So there weren’t a lot of indies running. So after my 90 days were up, I had to take what I could take or what was out there. So I think people assume everyone’s asking for a lot of money. I think people assume that they go in saying, ‘I need a storyline with the champion. I need to win.’ A lot of times they don’t win. So I think it was even better that I went for the Knockouts Championship and won right away because that really shocked a lot of people."

Purrazzo's partner, Steve Maclin was also released by WWE after seven years with the company. He has since found a home in IMPACT as well, but Deonna explained what she did and helped him with in regards to navigating the indy waters. She said the following:

"Yes. Steve, honestly, never really broke out on the indy scene prior to being signed to WWE in 2014. He’d been wrestling for one year. So I think, for him, it was more of an education process and guiding process of like, ‘Okay, now come to IMPACT with me and meet some people and see what happens.’ He didn’t go in looking for a job, but he came out with one. So that was awesome. It was, ‘Okay, get in touch with this guy to have music done so you can release music and work on t-shirt designs,’ and things you don’t have to worry about when you’re in WWE. It’s just given to you. I was like, ‘We have to create some buzz and get people interested in what your next steps are. This is what I did, let’s try to replicate that for you."

Purrazzo recently returned to television, looking to regain her title, admitting that she has to get back to basic and not let the glitz and glamour of champion get to her again. Maclin, on the other hand, is pursuing the X Division Title but hasn't been able to get Trey Miguel one-on-one quite yet.

Fightful provides live coverage of IMPACT Wrestling every Thursday night beginning at 8 p.m. ET.

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