During a recent episode of Renee Paquette’s The Sessions podcast, Jon Moxley shared his belief in Marina Shafir’s vast potential as a professional wrestler. The Purveyor of Violence highlighted Shafir’s impressive background in judo and martial arts as a testament to her abilities.
Marina Shafir, so much potential there. She is the only one of our species that we have at AEW. There is nobody else, we only have one of her. I see her wrestling differently than everybody. Looking, talking, acting differently than everybody.
She has all these martial arts skills and high level judo and MMA experience. She is such a natural at so much of it. She is new at the pro wrestling stuff, like the running, ducking, selling, and bumping.
I saw her wrestle at Bloodsport and it was like she was a different wrestler than I have seen on Dark and Elevation. It was like she was totally different because she was in her element. She wrestled Masha Slamovich, very talented girl. She was wrestling barefoot and moving around. Her footwork and kicks and movement were totally different because she was in her element. I was like, ‘We need to bring that to TV.’ That brings a whole new element to the division.
Continuing the discussion on Marina Shafir, Jon Moxley went on to elaborate on her exceptional performance in Josh Barnett’s Bloodsport, where she had the opportunity to compete in a style of matchup that suited her skills. He further suggested that AEW should find a way to showcase her strengths on television.
Just as a suggestion, I was like, ‘On Bloodsport, you wrestle barefoot. I’m not saying you should wrestle barefoot, if you don’t want to, then don’t, it’s all good, but the fact that you were barefoot drew my eyes to your feet and it made me notice how good your footwork was. It made you look way more athletic. It added a whole new dimension.’
It created a whole new dynamic. I’m just trying to get her to loosen up, and she has. She works really hard to work on these little things. She goes out there to get better every single time. I’m just trying to get her to be loose and do what she knows how to do.
She already knows how to do everything she knows, it’s just putting it where it needs to go and all these little things. That just takes experience. One of the matches she had, I think it was against Athena, they had a good amount of time, not just four or five minutes. Once they hit halfway through the match and were in a good sweat and warmed up, you saw her change gears. Seeing that, that’s what I’ve been waiting to see. It’s so subtle, but I could notice it, and when she got into the zone and changed gears, it pumped me up.
Marina Shafir is the future of wrestling
Marina Shafir is a former mixed martial artist and current professional wrestler, born on April 14, 1988, in Moldova. She grew up in California and began training in judo at a young age, earning a black belt at 19. She competed in several judo tournaments and won gold at the 2008 US Open Championships.
In 2012, Shafir transitioned to mixed martial arts, making her professional debut in 2015. She competed for several promotions, including Invicta FC and Bellator MMA, and amassed a record of 2 wins and 2 losses before retiring from MMA in 2018.
After retiring from MMA, Shafir began training as a professional wrestler and made her debut in 2019 for the independent promotion, Absolute Intense Wrestling. She later signed with WWE and competed in NXT before being released in 2021. Currently, she is a member of the All Elite Wrestling (AEW) roster.
Shafir is known for her background in judo and her striking abilities in MMA. She has also been trained in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and wrestling for her professional wrestling career. She is married to fellow professional wrestler and former MMA fighter, Roderick Strong, and they have a son together.