Now a TV host for WWE Backstage, Renee Young was quite skeptical at first to leave the career she had working full time for the WWE (on commentary and interviews), to now hosting a show on FOX. Young reflects on her recent transition, and how hard it was for her to not see her friends as much after this sudden move, during her interview with Lilian Garcia on Chasing Glory.
"It was really odd," Young began. "You realize how much of your identity is wrapped up in WWE. For me, it wasn't like 'Oh, I'm not on TV anymore with the WWE.' For me, it was like 'I'm not going to be around my friends.' Without these people, who are my other adult friends? I don't really have any. You get plucked out of your life, and then think like oh s--t, what do I do now? You feel a little bit lost at first. You're like Oh my God, what is everyone up to?"
Young jokingly mentioned that she does not miss the touring part that much. After doing it for seven years, she feels comfortable being in one location to film WWE Backstage.
"I enjoy my time off the road," Young admits. "I was on the road for seven years. It's nice to catch a breather."
When Young took the role as Monday Night RAW's newest commentator back in 2018, Young admits that her time on commentary was very hard for her. With the daily criticism she received on social media, Young was too focused on the negative feedback than the positive.
"I felt like I didn't belong there," Young stated. "I wanted to be like I belong here, I earned this spot. This should be my spot. But, I kept hearing the background chatter, like 'Why is this woman calling the matches? She's never been in the ring. What's she going to bring to the table?'
"There was a ton of support, like an immense amount of support. That was really, really cool, but you tend to be like I want to listen to what the negative people are saying because I'm feeling insecure about it, and they're probably right. It's hard not to feel weird out there."
Though Young was happy to work with Corey Graves and Michael Cole, she felt that the two already had chemistry on how they called the matches. Young felt like the odd man out at the time.
"Corey is one of my best friends, so I was like cool, we get to work together. This is going to be great, we've got such a cool chemistry. But, it doesn't work that way out there," Young announced. "He and Cole had such a dynamic bond. Like on SmackDown now, they didn't need a third person. By the time they were done doing their deal, I was like 'Umm, go get them.' I was already inexperienced in this game, so I was like s--t, everything has been said."
Young did reveal that she was glad she was dismissed from her commentary role, but that she did the best she could, before her departure from the Monday Night RAW broadcast table.
"I was up for the challenge and I really wanted to make it awesome," Young noted. "Like, I really wanted to make it succeed. You get down on yourself and you're waiting to get the call from the office saying we're not doing this anymore. They let me stay out there a lot longer than I thought they were going to. It was nice to feel like I got a good opportunity. But honestly, I was relieved to stop doing it."
Young says the silver lining of her commentary adventure was being able to take on the challenge. However, the backlash she received online was the one thing that made her feel fine with not doing this position again.
"I think the silver lining was to step up to the challenge," Young answered. "Whether it's going to be like the thing people remember me from, which I hope not.
"I had many conversations about his with Jon and I asked him 'Jon, am I the worst commentator you've ever heard?' He was like 'No.' He was like 'I don't get why you have it in your head that people think you're horrible.' He's not a social media person, so, that's not a thing for him. He would tell me 'These are strangers, why are you listening to what strangers say about you?' I felt like I had imposter syndrome."
You can view Young's full interview here. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Chasing Glory- Lilian Garcia with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.