All News

Drew McIntyre On His Journey Back To WWE, Working House Shows, Southern Fans, Favorite Tag Teams, and more

on

Drew McIntyre was interviewed by Ben Flanagan for AL.com to promote the house show tonight in Birmingham, Alabama. McIntyre talked about his journey back to WWE, working house shows, wrestling fans from the southern United States, his favorite tag teams, and more. You can listen to the full interview (15 minutes) in the player below accompanied by a few quotes.

Your journey back to WWE is pretty amazing. You wouldn’t believe someone worked that many places in four years. And now you’re back and doing great at WWE. Was that always the goal during that time, to make it back to that WWE mountaintop? What helped motivate you to do it all over again, or was it just a totally different journey?

DM: I guess initially it was. When I was first gone from WWE, I was on Chris Jericho’s podcast and I said I will be back. I just have to go out and show the world what I can do. As time went on and as I got various opportunities to help various companies grow across the world, I realized that I was really making a difference in sports entertainment in wrestling. In WWE, the name is what sells. There’s very few particular names like a John Cena or Rock who can truly make a difference, and I realized I was making a difference. And as time passed by and I was making a very fortunate living and was fulfilled, I told my wife I didn’t know if I would be back and I was happy. Eventually it came a time when my contract was up with Impact Wrestling, and I had to make a decision. I had an opportunity to speak to Triple H, and it took about 30 minutes of catching up. He’d been watching what I was doing and said he was proud of what I’d achieved, which meant the world to me. But more importantly, we started talking about business opportunities, which was pretty cool because the first run, we never had these conversations. I was like boy, I was very immature. We had general chit-chat fun conversations, but never business conversation. Now we were talking as men, businessmen. By the time we were finishing the call, I knew NXT was where I had to be, the next logical step from where I was. I really felt like I could make a difference with NXT and introduce the WWE universe to the new Drew McIntyre before I made the next step to “Monday Night Raw.”

You have a house show in Alabama this week. How do you typically like to use house shows to work on either your skill-set or character in terms of performance. What kind of freedom do house shows give you as opposed to the televised performances?

DM: The live events are more interactive for the fans. With TV, you have the cameras there, commercial breaks where the fans can tell there’s a down moment. At the live events, it’s non-stop. We get to play with the audience, the crowd gets to get involved a little more. It’s a very intimate feel. The fans are truly, truly part of the show at the live events because we can interact with you and not worry about playing to the people at home and the cameras. And as you say, a great opportunity to try new things which means sometimes having a bit of fun in the ring that maybe someone as serious as Drew McIntyre might not do on television right now. You might catch me doing a little dance at a live event. When it comes to live events and the complacency factor, that’s something else I watch. I feel like an eagle eye when I watch my fellow talent because I believe in grass roots, putting 100 percent in when the camera is on or not on. From what I’ve seen, the vast majority are putting in 100 percent no matter what, and I don’t know if it’s because I’m calling people out. But from beginning to end, you’re guaranteed an incredible show with a little bit of something for all ages and the whole family, and I’m very proud of that. But again, I’m watching everybody, so if somebody starts to phone in a performance and not give 100 percent, you can be assured that I’ll be calling you out and waiting to kick you in the arse on the way out the door.

You’ve wrestled in the U.S. for so many years now, including in the American South like you will in Alabama on Friday. Does anything about performing in places like Alabama, Mississippi, Florida and other southern states stick out to you, and have you noticed any similarities between that area and Scotland and Europe?

DM: When it comes to the southern states, I used to actually live in Louisiana for a year. The good thing about these areas is the fans are having a good time and just want to enjoy the show and get involved. They don’t overthink things like perhaps a New York or a Philadelphia maybe sitting there writing a little report of the whole show perhaps trying to come up with silly chants to entertain themselves. They want to be part of the show and be entertained by what’s in the ring. They’re a fun bunch to perform for. We’re looking forward to this weekend.

You’ve had a lot of success as a tag team competitor. Who are some of your favorite tag teams in wrestling history? Any less obvious people not expect or fully appreciate?

DM: For me, the obvious examples of tag teams I was a big fan of, Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard. I would watch them and be blown away by how incredible they were. I was a big Hart Foundation guy as a kid. Bret was my favorite wrestler. I loved their dynamic. Most of it was from my childhood because I was the biggest tag team wrestling fan as a kid. I was always impressed by the Road Warriors and Legion of Doom. They were just so large and bigger than life in every possible way. They would just destroy everybody. I always imagined myself and Braun could be a bit of a modern LOD.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply