Last Friday, Salina de la Renta, 22, was at the helm of the first-ever MLW and The Crash Lucha Libre co-branded show in Tijuana, Mexico. According to MLW’s CEO Court Bauer, she is a prodigy who “has great instinct, a real desire, a real appetite, and she can execute.”
On-screen, she is the “manager” of LA Park, El Hijo de LA Park, Bestia 666, and Ricky Martinez. She is the founder of Promociones Dorado, “which acts as a pipeline to the stars of Latin America for sports leagues, TV and film in the United States and abroad,” according to MLW.
Behind the scenes, she has a pivotal role in the company, is the commentator of MLW en Espanol, and has been the first Spanish female announcer to call weekly pro wrestling. Every MLW episode she produced has been a rating success. Salina de la Renta is everywhere and is able to show how young and talented women can be successful in a male-dominated business. Salina is quite simply a revolution on her own.
SteelChair Mag had the chance to have a one-on-one conversation with Salina de la Renta last week about her path with the company, her wrestling career, multitasking on MLW, and what the future may hold for her.
At 22, you’re a valet, a commentator, a producer, a wrestler which is such an incredible path for such a young lady. When you look at everything that you have already done in the business, what is your reaction?
It is definitely groundbreaking to me. I think it’s amazing because I never thought, growing up, that I was going to be able to achieve so much by the time that I was 22. I always knew that I wanted to be a superstar, but I didn’t know if I was going to be in movies or on TV. I didn’t know what was going to happen, but I certainly knew that I wanted to be on television, then I got my first opportunity in professional wrestling. Thanks to Court Bauer, I had the opportunity of working in different aspects of professional wrestling, not just in the ring but behind the scenes, and that’s definitely my favourite part. I’m very, very proud of everything that I’ve been able to accomplish.
You’re a wrestler but you suffered a serious injury in your leg. Do you think, one day, you will be able to come back to the ring? Is it something that you want?
Being in the ring is the first thing I’ve done in the business, I will always have love for it, and it certainly opened a lot of doors for me but, as of now, I’ve been able to be very successful staying outside of the ring, and my legs snapped about five different times and I don’t really know if I want to get back into that because, if I get hurt again, it’s going to take time off again.
What are your thoughts on the Women’s Division MLW is about to create? What do you think you could bring to it? To what extent do you think you could be involved in it?
I think a Women’s Division is a great addition to MLW, especially because fans have been asking for it over and over and I’m all for giving the fans whatever they want, which is like why I also suggested that I am a permanent executive producer because that’s what everybody was asking for. I’m all for the Women’s Division, and as far as what I can add to it, well, I am the pipeline for all Latino American talent. If there’s any Luchadora out there who wants to be in professional wrestling or wants to be in MLW, well, I’m looking for talent.
How do you feel about working with people like Konnan or LA Park who have been so important for the business?
I had the opportunity of representing Pentagon Junior, Rey Fénix, Angel Garza, Ultimo Ninja (Humberto Carrillo). Currently, I represent LA Park, El Hijo de LA Park, and I had a run with Low Ki, I had the opportunity of working with Lucha Libre legend Konnan. Currently, I was negotiating a couple of deals with Savio Vega. So I have a couple of big names on my list.
It is definitely an honour to work with Lucha Libre legends. I couldn’t be in a place where I’m happier because I’m not only learning about this business, I am also hearing a lot of knowledge from people that have been around for 20 to 30 years and combined experience more than what I’ve been alive. I can’t express how much of an honour it is for me to work with people that basically started this business.
Currently, Promociones Dorado is made of LA Park, El Hijo de LA Park, Bestia 666, and Ricky Martinez. Who would you like to add to your business?
Whoever I’m adding to Promociones Dorado group, I can’t give you this information because it would be like spoilers. I can’t tell you what’s coming on the show.
How would you describe Salina, your character on-screen?
I don’t describe my character as a character because I’m not a character. Salina is who I am, and I don’t pretend to be a powerful woman because I do it 24/7. I am currently the executive producer for my third episode of MLW Fusion. It’s going to be the biggest show in Tijuana, and we’re expecting about 5,000 people. And I did all on my own. Every single achievement that I’ve made in this career has been myself. If I can tell you anything about my character, she’s just an amplified version of who I am. It is basically putting who I am out there and just giving a little more case because, at the end of the day, we are entertainers, but everything I do is as real as a human.
Who were your favourite wrestlers when you were younger?
When I was growing up, I didn’t know about professional wrestling at all. I moved to Florida from Puerto Rico, which is where I lived for 17 years. I moved to Florida because I wanted to study film and one of my assignments at my screenwriting class was to study reality TV, and as I was trying to find a reality show to look at, my parents suggested for me to watch Total Divas because they thought it was quite entertaining. I didn’t even know what it was and I saw a bunch of women just trying to wrestle, they still had a pretty cool life, I got to see a little bit behind the scenes, and I just felt like I fit in. I saw the show, and I was like maybe I was meant to do that, but I won’t know if I don’t give it a try. I talked to my Mum, and I started telling everybody I think I want to become a professional wrestler even if I still hadn’t watched a single match to that day. Everybody thought I was insane, and I said I don’t care. I called a professional wrestling school, Pro Wrestling 2.0, and they said that I could just stop by and try it out. I started bumping, I met Sami Callihan that day, I met Simon Gotch, Santana Garrett, and they were all like very helpful. They were like, let’s try this, let’s try that, and I fell in love with it. Ever since I’ve just wanted to find out more and more and more and do this well. Now I am who I am.
I guess my major influences would be the Bella Twins because they were the ones that I looked at and said, “That’s the life I want to have.” I always remember the scene where Nikki Bella was crying because John Cena had just broken her heart, and her sister just said, “Nikki, honestly, you’re one of the biggest athletes in the world right now, so everything else doesn’t matter.” At that moment, I said one day I want to be going through something, look at my life and say, but look at where I am at, nothing else really matters.
Do you feel like you will be with MLW forever?
I wouldn’t even say to somebody forever. I will be with MLW as long as I can be. I am definitely happy where I’m at right now, and I don’t even consider any other options as of now. I have a long-time commitment with MLW and, if I had the opportunity of making a second commitment, I would.
What are your personal expectations for MLW?
I expect this weekend show to be the biggest we have ever had. It’s going to be led by me completely, so I think it’s going to be great. The last two shows that I got to be the executive producer of had the best ratings that MLW has had in its history. Not only we have 3 times the auditorium that we’ve had for other shows, but we’ve seen a lot of hype on the internet because we have an alliance with The Crash right now. We’re going to Tijuana for the first time. Outside of the United States, and we’re leading to our first PPV in Chicago, so there’s going to be a lot of surprises.
I have no doubt that the Tijuana show is going to be a success. I really have zero doubt because I’m in charge. Whenever I’m in charge, ratings go through the roof, so I seriously can’t even picture my show as a failure because that’s just not going to happen.
It’s incredible to see how focused you are at 22.
I have always been a hard-working woman. I have very good parents to look up to. My Dad left when I was 2, so it was all my Mum. She was always working hard to ensure that I had the best education. I went to a private school in Puerto Rico. She did that so that I could have a good education because the education system in Puerto Rico is really harsh. If you want to get into a good school, you either have to be a really talented kid to get a scholarship, or you need parents who have money. My Mum was not just rich by Nature, she just worked really hard and sacrificed a lot of things, so I could have an education. Then, when I was in 11th grade, she decided to move to Florida so that I could continue to get a good education because college in Puerto Rico literally is not worth anything. When you come to the United States with a Puerto Rico degree, they don’t even accept it. It’s just looked at as a joke. My Mum moved here so that I could have the best opportunities, and everything that I do is to make her proud because I appreciate all the sacrifices that she did. That’s how I stay focused.
All pics and videos courtesy of MLW and Salina de la Renta