James Ellsworth was the guest on the WWE Backlash Kickoff Show. During the interview, Ellsworth explained his role in the SmackDown Live women’s trio of Carmella, Natalya, and Tamina Snuka, known as the Welcoming Committee. He told the panelists, Renee Young, Booker T, and Peter Rosenberg that he is the “homeboy” of the group. When asked what that meant, Booker T explained that is means when a person presents credibility to something based on their status.
Ellsworth also stated that he is the “strategist” of the Welcoming Committee. While he was questioned about his credentials to be able to fulfill that role, he stated that he has defeated AJ Styles over three times. As a result, he feels that he can provide what it takes to give the trio the right tools to further excel in the SmackDown Live women’s division. His confidence and ability, in his opinion, will create a path to success for all three competitors at the present moment.
Regarding the reason why the Welcoming Committee exists, Ellsworth stated that it is a way to get the three women in a tight-knit relationship, ultimately for the purpose of getting Carmella a SmackDown Live Women’s Championship match. Most likely, the other two members are not aware of this plan, which may give room for something to brew in the upcoming weeks within the faction.
Also during the interview, Booker T asked Ellsworth if he and Carmella are dating. After alluding the question, Ellsworth stated that they are just friends, which received a “friend zone” comical remark from Rosenberg. Initially, the duo of Ellsworth and Carmella formed due to Ellsworth burning bridges with Dean Ambrose, who was very instrumental in him receiving his rapid success and victories over AJ Styles. Despite his guidance by Ambrose, Ellsworth pushed him while he was on a ladder during his TLC match against Styles, costing him the match.
When asked why he made the decision to betray his mentor, Ellsworth gave this explanation.
“Because, I’ve defeated AJ Styles three times. And now, I get my guaranteed WWE World Title match against AJ Styles. I have his number, so I’m gonna win the WWE World Title. I’m not worried about [robbing Dean Ambrose of his title shot]. He’d have done the same thing to me. We go way back. When I win the WWE title, to make it up to him, I’m gonna give him the first shot.”
After being destroyed by AJ Styles, Ellsworth was left with nowhere to go and no friends to lean on. Somehow, Carmella saw the charm in Ellsworth and started befriending him. Willing to do whatever she wanted due to his infatuation, Ellsworth commenced a total wardrobe change, looking much more like Carmella. Now, he mostly fits the role of introducing Carmella before she comes out to the ring, and most recently accompanying the Welcoming Committee.
Regardless of where this faction heads, Ellsworth has perhaps benefited from it the most. On top of a weekly spot on SmackDown Live, Ellsworth was able to accompany Carmella at WrestleMania 33 in Orlando, Florida. From who once was simply an enhancement talent for Braun Strowman became an official member of the WWE roster and a frequent on the blue brand.
Admitting that this Welcoming Committee group is simply for the purpose to get Carmella a title shot, it will be interesting how this continues to brew over the upcoming weeks. On the other side, a far-less-than well-oiled machine unit of Naomi, Becky Lynch, and Charlotte Flair may implode as well, but spectators of the SmackDown Live brand will have to see how it all unfolds.
[Featured Image by WWE]