WrestleMania 35 will be the last match Maria Kanellis-Bennett was active in.
Since departing WWE in 2020, Maria Kanellis-Bennett along with Mike Bennett returned to Ring of Honor and Mike is a part of the talent roster and Maria is a part of ROH’s Board of Directors. She’s been involved in the Ring of Honor women’s division and making announcements concerning the division, such as all things involving the Women’s World Championship tournament that is underway.
While making the media rounds, Kanellis-Bennett guest appeared on The State of Florida Sports Podcast. She was asked if people will get the chance to see her back in the ring and she confirmed that she is retired from in-ring competition. Maria’s last sanctioned match was in July of 2019 when she and Mike Bennett took on Becky Lynch and Seth Rollins. Maria did not get physical in the match due to her pregnancy. She was last active in the ring at WrestleMania 35.
I will not be getting back in the ring. The last match that I had was actually at WrestleMania  and I think that’s a very good way to go out in your career, so to do anything more than that seems rather silly. But I loved being able to compete in the ring with so many amazing competitors. That’s just not what I’m interested in now.
Elsewhere during the interview, Maria spoke about how she got into wrestling. Being an in-ring talent was not something she was initially interested in. She wanted to get into wrestling to be an interviewer and caught the bug of that while watching Jonathan Coachman’s interactions with The Rock.
I don’t think there was ever a point in my entire career or entire life that I ever said that [wanting to get into wrestling and get to the top]. I was a bikini model. I was doing the bikini modeling circuit for Hawaiian Tropics, I was a huge wrestling fan and I loved what Jonathan Coachman was doing with The Rock and I wanted to be Jonathan Coachman. I just thought that their banter back and forth was amazing and so for me, I came in as an interviewer and somehow, the wrestling itch got to me to where I started training, I was never great but I started training and you know, I ended up having a lot of great competitors that I was in the ring with. I see a lot of myself in Quinn McKay except Quinn is so much more athletic than me and I think the world of her. I think she’s gonna have an amazing wrestling career, alongside her interviewing career.
The ROH Women’s World Championship tournament will conclude at the ‘Death Before Dishonor’ event on September 12th. Thus far, Rok-C, Angelina Love, Miranda Alize, Nicole Savoy and Allysin Kay have moved on to the second round.
If the quotes in this article are used, please credit The State of Florida Sports Podcast with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.