The reality star, who last appeared on MTV's 'The Challenge' in 2013, tells PEOPLE she decided to join 'The Traitors' because "this is the perfect game for me"
“For me, the Challenges at one point had gotten way too hard for me just physically,” Cannatella, 44, tells PEOPLE of why she stepped away from the MTV show. “I had plateaued and then I was just not good anymore. But for this [The Traitors], it's completely different. I can still carry my weight in this game.”
Her Challenge castmates also played a role in why Cannatella stopped competing.
“I stopped caring because I didn't like the people,” she says. “There are better people in this show, but this is more of a mental and kind of emotional toughness game. And I've always felt like I was super mentally and emotionally tough. And so this is, to me, I was like, ah, this is the perfect game for me because I can actually just thrive and survive.”
“You can't trust anybody in the Challenge house,” she says. “You really can't. You could trust your alliance up to some point, but that's it. I do think that we can take that ‘trust no one’ over here, but getting to know people is easier here than it is in The Challenge.”
Traitors actually helped her repair her relationship with Tamburello.
“CT and I did our last show was like 14 years ago-ish, but I just didn't like him,” Cannatella admits. “He's changed so much. I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, we're like grownups now!’”
Now “they're like my brothers,” Cannatella says of Devenanzio, 41, and Tamburello, 43.
All of the Challenge vets ended up being Faithfuls on season 2, and the Traitors killed Devenanzio off first. Cannatella and Tamburello have had made it further into the game, but not without their names getting tossed around as possible Traitors. Cannatella played a part in Peppermint being voted out early on, only for the RuPaul’s Drag Race alum, 44, to be revealed as a Faithful.
“I didn't have a game plan at all, but I did see all the seasons and I knew that it was going to be way different because there were all reality people,” Cannatella says, referring to season 1 including layperson competitors. “I was hoping for non-television people, actually.”
Cannatella thinks the difference between The Traitors and The Challenge “is night and day.”
“The show is completely different,” Cannatella says. “I was like, wow, I can get used to this!”
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New episodes of The Traitors drop Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on Peacock.
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