Independent Wrestling Spotlight with Kaia McKenna

OSAKA, JAPAN - OCTOBER 10: General view during the New Japan Pro-Wrestling 'G1 Climax 30' at Edion Arena Osaka on October 10, 2020 in Osaka, Japan. (Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images)
OSAKA, JAPAN - OCTOBER 10: General view during the New Japan Pro-Wrestling 'G1 Climax 30' at Edion Arena Osaka on October 10, 2020 in Osaka, Japan. (Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images) /

As “The Conduit of Karma”, Kaia McKenna has been making a name for herself all over the independent scene as of late. In July of last year, McKenna had her first match against Debbie Kane at Titan Championship Wrestling. She was trained at The Black and Brave Wrestling Academy by Seth Rollins and Marek Brave.

The Beginning of Kaia McKenna

Where McKenna grew up, everyone watched wrestling, including pretty much her whole family. Kaia recalled going to indy shows all the time growing up and how that cultivated her love for professional wrestling. “When I got older, I realized I was just able to do it,” says McKenna. McKenna also was a martial artist when she was younger, which helped her in the wrestling world.

Growing up, McKenna realized she was always really invested in the stories told through professional wrestling and the characters. “The performance is cool, but I love the characters who are larger than life,” says McKenna. “We go through all the motions with them and become invested with them on our TV.”

When she graduated high school, McKenna continued onto college and just jumped right into the corporate world. Around that time, McKenna recalled going to see a SmackDown show live. “Just being at SmackDown made me realize that it’s something I loved deeply and was attainable for me,” says McKenna. “It was something I loved and still do.”

McKenna had some great inspirations for getting into professional wrestling. “I love Eddie Guerrero, Ultimo Dragon, Misawa, Great Muta, Nigel McGuiness, and Bryan Danielson,” she said. “The moment I realized I could do it was the breakthrough moment for me.”

McKenna would go around to a lot of the little independent wrestling shows in her area and help out. This consisted of helping out in the ring crew. “I just showed up and offered help,” she said. While helping out, McKenna would take the opportunity to take in some knowledge. “It was also a great opportunity to talk to people and learn and just pick their brain. Nobody is going to say no to free help.

“I also wrestled in the backyard and decided to get serious about it by going to wrestling school.” She eventually found Black and Brave Wrestling Academy, and as they say, the rest is history.

Kaia McKenna Finds Black and Brave

“When you’re training in the backyard, you just do whatever you want,” says McKenna. However, that is not a realistic impression of what a wrestling school is like. According to McKenna, the school is very tough, which it should be. “Wrestling isn’t for everyone, but there’s a spot for you if it’s for you.”

Being a wrestler for McKenna was just as physically demanding as it was mentally. It’s a challenging experience. However, McKenna was thankful for her coaches for making it better. “Rollins and Marek are incredible coaches,” says McKenna. “They are remarkable coaches and true masters of the game. It was mind-blowing the amount of knowledge they shared with us.”

“In 12 weeks, we were all trained and knew our moves, and how to be safe and have a character,” says McKenna. Kaia McKenna had her debut match at Titans Championship Wrestling in New Jersey taking on, Debbie Kane. “I was nervous,” says McKenna. However, McKenna went on to say none of her nerves mattered as soon as she went out there. “I was also confident in my ability because this is what I worked for. I was able to find confidence in my training.”

Kaia McKenna Takes The World By Storm

McKenna wrestles at WWR+ and has become a mainstay there. “I love it,” she said. “It’s an all-women’s promotion and it’s something we are all building from the ground up.” McKenna also went on to say that there is so much amazing lady power at WWR and the environment there is incredible. “I appreciate what they are doing for women in this industry and giving us a platform to shine. I feel so lucky to be a part of WWR+.”

Another promotion McKenna has performed at is Beyond Wrestling. Beyond, which has been around since 2009 has had a ton of talent come out of it and be picked up by other companies. “It was a huge opportunity to wrestle Masha Slamovich at Beyond,” says McKenna. “Everyone there wants to see everyone be successful, so to be offered a spot at a show like that was just the biggest honor and I wanted to go out there and make the most out of that chance.”

One of McKenna’s biggest matches came at GCW. This is where she wrestled the great, Holidead. “It was awesome wrestling Holidead,” says McKenna. When McKenna wrestled Holidead, that was the first-ever women’s GCW show. “To be a part of that was a huge honor in its own right and to be a part of it was ground-breaking.”

Kaia McKenna Becomes “The Conduit of Karma”

Becoming “The Conduit of Karma” came naturally to Kaia McKenna. Prior to this, McKenna had previous gimmicks as an ’80s chick or a country girl. But she decided to drop those and bring out her current character: the good witch, aka “The Conduit of Karma”. “I love stories, I want to tell stories,” says McKenna. “The best way to do that is to use my character to tell stories.”

McKenna recalled hearing Rollins and Brave speak about how playing a character is a lost art of sorts. “To hear Rollins speak about how much he enjoys stories in wrestling helped me to realize that he is so right,” McKenna remembered that on promo day, she went into the ring and began casting a spell and it went over super well. “Becky Lynch was there that day and she told me to not just play the witch, but I had to be the witch.”

What’s Next For “The Conduit of Karma”

Coming up, Kaia McKenna will be wrestling at WWR+ on Sunday, Aug. 22, where she will be taking on Kimber Lee. She will also be at Invictus Pro Wrestling on Sept. 25, where she makes her debut against Gabby Ortiz.

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When asked about her future and upcoming goals, McKenna kept it short and sweet. “I want to wrestle anyone who wants to step up to ‘The Conduit of Karma’ and experience a dose of good magic.”