Access’ Nancy O’Dell & Maria Menounos Tapped As WWE’s First Female Celebrity Hosts

Access Hollywood’s Nancy O’Dell and Maria Menounos are stepping into the WWE Raw ring.

Nancy and Maria will be the celebrity hosts at WWE Raw on October 12 in Indianapolis, joining previous guests such as Shaquille O’Neal, Jeremy Piven and Donald Trump — the first women to ever hold the role.

For Nancy, it’s an extension of her partnership with the WWE for her charity, Betty’s Battle, which she launched in honor of her mother to help fight ALS.

“I’m very honored to be the first female celebrity host of RAW. WWE has been my partner in spreading the word about the foundation I started in honor of my beautiful mom who passed about from ALS, Lou Gehrig’s Disease, last year,” Nancy said. “The foundation is called Betty’s Battle and who better to go into the battle against ALS with me than the WWE Superstars!”

Meanwhile, as a longtime fan of the sport, Maria is also looking forward to teaming up with WWE for the event.

“I’m a lifelong fan of the WWE, having watched with my father from the time I was little girl. The art of professional wrestling, I feel, is an underrated attraction. Wrestlers don’t get the respect they deserve, especially from those who say it’s fake. I’d like to see any of these people get in the ring 340-plus nights a year and have their bodies slammed against plywood,” she explained. “The choreography doesn’t make hitting that mat hurt any less. In addition to what they endure, the WWE performers are unique and rare for they are (and must be) both an athlete and an artist. I wonder how many famous actors or athletes could captivate a live crowd of 20,000 people, having to speak to them, in character, via microphone and later grapple inside the ring? No other performer in the world of sports or entertainment must meet such a demand and I doubt few could. I am beyond excited and flattered to guest host ‘Monday Night Raw.’”

In addition, Nancy was named Sexy Superfan of the Month by the latest issue of WWE Magazine. She told the mag she’s even learned some wrestling moves.

“Well, Mr. McMahon taught me how to do a headlock,” she said. “So I would take the headlock, but add in a Hollywood pose for the paparazzi.”

Earlier this year at the 2009 SAG Awards, Nancy broke the news that Mickey Rourke would appear at Wrestlemania XXV, where he went on to defeat Chris Jericho in the ring.

“We, my entire family, are huge fans of the WWE. In fact, I think my youngest boy Carson is their biggest fan, so this is just a thrill. We have gotten to know a lot of the WWE guys personally and it will be a blast to be a part of the show!”

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