Zeda Zhang is most notably known for being a former WWE NXT Superstar who also competed in the inaugural WWE Mae Young Classic women's tournament.
First of all, please tell us a little about yourself (how long you've been wrestling, companies you've worked in/career highlights).
I've been doing pro wrestling for about a year and a half, but I have 10 years of MMA experience, which includes Brazilian Jiu Jitsu; amatuer wrestling; boxing; muay thai and some judo.
Where did you train to become a wrestler?
I started at Brian Kendrick’s school, Santino Bros a couple months before I got signed to NXT.
For those unaware who you are, how would you describe your style and character?
After NXT, I’ve been experimenting with my character. When I am heel, I am an angry Chinese girl yelling at people in Mandarin. When I am a babyface, I am mostly a happy Asian popstar. My wrestling style is very MMA based since that is my background. I do a lot of amatuer wrestling moves, strikes, and throws. #ThrowsAndBows (stands for throws and elbows).
What would you consider the hardest part about being a professional FEMALE athlete in a male dominated sport?
I’m used to it at this point with MMA being such a male dominate sport especially 10 yrs ago before it was as popular as it is now. It is always having to prove you deserve to be there.
What do you think of the current state of women’s wrestling?
It is a great time for it. Women are getting better and better proving they can have great matches and deserve to be there.
How does it make you feel when people discriminate women’s wrestling and what should be done about it?
People are going to discriminate no matter what. It is up to the women to do well, the promotions to promote them and the fans to support and come together to help with this womens evolution.
Do you believe women can, let's say, one day main event a show like WWE's Wrestlemania?
With the way women are going...definitely.
Who are your favourite wrestlers, and who would be your dream opponent to face?
Favorite wrestlers are Kurt Angle and Charlotte. Dream opponent is Charlotte.
You have a background in MMA. How does MMA compare to pro wrestling? What are the pros and cons to knowing MMA before wrestling?
It helps in many ways but in some ways it is almost the opposite. The pros is that it helps me be able to wrestle like a real fight but con is that I sometimes am not dramatic enough because MMA movements look small compared to prowrestling. In MMA, we are taught to be tight and in prowrestling we’re taught to be open.
Let's discuss your WWE career:
-What was it like training at the WWE Performance Centre?
The PC was wonderful. Very top notch. Had top trainers, coaches, doctors and equipment.
-In the Mae Young Classic tournament you sadly lost to Shayna Baszler. What was it like wrestling her, seeing as you both have MMA backgrounds?
It was a great match up. We had similar styles so it was an easy story to tell and we just flowed with what we knew.
-How does it feel knowing millions of people have watched you wrestle in WWE?
It is an honor to be able to have such a large platform to tell my story.
-What was your take on the tournament and what did you learn?
It was a well put together tournament and feels good to be a part of history. I learned a lot from the match and getting to experience that and having a little taste. It made it all that much more real to me because we train all the time and it becomes repetitive, but rarely do we get such a big opportunity like that. So it just made me realise I want to pursue this that much harder.
-You were then signed to NXT. Can you tell us how your time there went?
It was long days and hard work but very rewarding.
-Are you able to provide details on your release at all?
It just isn't the right time. The Chinese market is not ready for WWE and budget cuts had to be made with their expansions to other countries.
What promotions have you worked in since your release?
A lot. It's been almost a different promotion every week but the biggest ones so far is probably Major League Wrestling and Pro Wrestling Revolution.
You showed up at the Major League Wrestling’s Fusion tapings, where you and Su Yung decimated the men in the ring. Why did you choose to interfere in their match?
You’ll have to wait and find out in future episodes ;)
Speaking of fighting men, what is your view on intergender matches?
I had to train with men for my whole MMA career so I’m fine with it.
You and Su Yung are collectively known as the Kodukushi Death Squad. Do you use this name elsewhere or just MLW?
Only MLW, since it is our tag team name and wouldn't work elsewhere, unless Su Yung and I are booked as a tag team elsewhere.
Where can we expect to see you next? And are there any other dates/future appearances of yourself that you'd like to plug?
I'm actually going to be doing an Asia tour, but my next big show in the US is the Big Events Wrestling Convention in New York, November 9th to 11th.
Anything else you'd like to add / give thanks to anyone / shout out to any companies / people?
1. Team Vision Dojo and all the people who take the time to train and work with me.
2. The people from WWE who still help me (you guys know who you are).
3. Last but not least, my parents for being so supportive with my career choice.