On November 4 of last year, WWE shocked fans with the sudden release of 18 different wrestlers from across their different brands, including surprising names like Karrion Kross, Keith Lee, and former Raw Women's Champion Nia Jax. Jax, in particular, was surprising to fans, as it was assumed she was all but untouchable because of her family connections, which includes Universal Champion Roman Reigns and WWE legend and Hollywood star Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. But in the days that followed, inside stories began to emerge that Jax's abrupt release was at least partially due to her refusal to get the COVID-19 vaccination, something WWE was heavily stressing their performers to do. Now in a new interview with Jax herself, it appears those stories were correct.
Appearing on a recent episode of Renée Paquette's podcast, The Sessions With Renée Paquette, the former Nia Jax, now going by her real name of Lina Fanene spoke about the end of her WWE career this past November and how it all went down. According to Fanene, while WWE was very adamant that their performers get vaccinated so that they won't have any issues performing in different venues and different areas, that request was a non-starter for her.
"I stood my ground on certain things that I know that they weren't happy about. I was choosing not to go and get the vaccine. It was a personal choice." She continued to explain how Vince McMahon himself even tried discussing it with her to no avail. "I remember sitting down with Vince because the entire two years I was there, we were tested every day, and I never popped positive. I never had COVID the whole time. It was like, 'Well, kid, you're not going to be able to fulfill some of your contractual duties'. I was like, 'Well, if that's the case, then that's the case.' Like, it's a business, and I understand you got to run your business."
Even though her refusal meant the end of her time as Nia Jax in WWE, Fanene explained how she's happy with her decision. "But that's when I was like, you know, I feel really good because of the decision for myself. I stood by how I felt. I always go by my gut feeling. If it doesn't feel right in my stomach. I just can't force myself to do something I don't feel good with. That's just how I've lived my entire life." (h/t WrestlingNews.co)
Why is she so against the vaccine? She doesn't explain, but whatever she read on a Twitter thread must have been pretty convincing if she was willing to ditch Nia Jax and give up what was surely a very nice income. Hopefully, she can make some dough signing autographs at fan conventions. That is, of course, if they don't have any vaccine requirements.