Posts Tagged ‘Gimmick’

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Steve Austin made an appearance on MMA Tonight and spoke about the comparisons between himself and Becky Lynch and why he thinks her “The Man” gimmick is money. Austin was asked what he thought of people comparing Lynch’s current run to his “Stone Cold” persona and felt like if that’s what the people believe, then it’s true.

“Well, I guess she is, if everybody is saying she is,” Austin said. “She does remind me a lot of myself. If you line up that women’s roster and you lineup that roster back in the day when I was still in the ring, and you said, ‘Hey, I need you to pick out my next breakout Superstar.’ I don’t think your gonna pick out Becky Lynch and I damn sure know you wouldn’t pick me out of that lineup.”

Lynch won this year’s 30-woman Royal Rumble and challenged WWE RAW Women’s Champion Ronda Rouseythe next night on RAW. Earlier this week, Lynch got her knee cleared after she was suspended by Stephanie McMahon until she did so. After attacking both Stephanie and Triple H, once Lynch got her knee cleared, she then had to apologize to get her match. After doing so, it seemed like all was good until Vince McMahon came out and suspended her again, adding Charlotte to the match against Rousey, instead.

Austin spoke about how Lynch has worked her way to the top over the last couple months.

“She has willed herself, she has worked her ass off, “Lynch said. “Studied the game, she got hot, then been cooled off. She’s got a little bit of attitude behind her, got a little ticked off and said, ‘Hey man, I’m gonna be a star.’ Vince McMahon wants everybody there to be a star, he’s going to set you up and he’s going to give you opportunities. She’s made the most of the opportunities and when they tried to slam the door she just kicked the door down and burst right through it.”

Austin not only gave a thumbs up to the comparisons between himself and Lynch, but he thought her current gimmick is “money.”

“I’ve loved what she’s done, I love what she’s doing,” Austin said. “I like her swagger. And she’s the hottest thing going right now. She’s not a person who’s dwelling on this being the most athletic match in the world, she’s a great worker in the ring, but it’s character driven. ‘The Man’ I love this gimmick, if you’re a young lady, calling yourself ‘The Man’ just like Ric Flair used to be—’To be the man, you gotta beat the man’—but, this is a whole different entity with the way Becky presents it, and obviously, she’s a female, it’s an awesome gimmick and it’s money.”

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Mandy Rose recently spoke with The New York Post to promote WWE Elimination Chamber and said she enjoys getting to push the envelope with her character. Rose said she believes being able to push the envelope makes sense for her character in this PG world.

“You know my character, I’m obviously that sexy-hot bombshell that nobody else has,” Rose said. “And I feel like it works with me and I feel like we’re very careful and I don’t want to push that envelope [too far]. Obviously, we’ve [the women] come a long way. What we do is entertainment and, you know, I’m really enjoying our story. And I think that it gives me a lot of different opportunities and showcases my character. So, it’s been a lot of fun. I kind of like beating up Naomi. So that’s been a lot of fun, too.”

Rose also expressed interest in doing an intergender match for WWE. She said now is a great time for those kinds of matches.

“I think it’s a great time for it,” she said. “Women are breaking down those barriers and they’re becoming, you know, they’re main-eventing and it’s just been an amazing time for women in general in sports. I feel like, yeah, why not do inter-gender matches? It brings entertainment. It brings a lot of different viewers and demographics and all that, so why not do it?”

Regarding her partnership with Sonya Deville, Rose said she considers Deville to be like a sister. She talked about how they hit it off from day one.

“The second she said hello, I was like, ‘Hey, what’s up’ and she’s like, ‘Wow, you’re really cool’ and we just hit it off,” Rose said. “I don’t know if it’s from we’re both from the Northeast and we just had a lot of similarities. But ever since then we have been nonstop, you know, best friends.”

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Kofi Kingston recently spoke with The Canton Repository and said The New Day works so well together because their chemistry is unbelievable. Kofi said he has not argued with Xavier Woods and Big E once since they were put together almost 5 years ago.

“The stars aligned, and our chemistry is unbelievable. When we go out there, we’re having genuine fun. We’re not just characters going out there acting like it; it’s actual fun we’re having, and people feel that energy and want to be a part of it,” Kofi said. “We’ve been traveling together for almost five years now, and we’ve never gotten into a fight ever. We all have the same interests and same hobbies, and we all want to be the best and at the forefront of sports entertainment in WWE. We’re fortunate to be in that position.”

Kofi also talked about what WWE Chairman Vince McMahon saw when the group brought their original idea to him – three preachers serving up the gospel of positivity.

“From the very inception of New Day, we told Vince McMahon no matter what he gave us we would be able to make it work, because we believe in the chemistry we had,” Kofi said. “Going back and forth with Vince, we had a very different idea of what we wanted it to be. The idea he came back with, we said, ‘OK, he’s really gonna test us on this guarantee we gave him of making anything he gave us work.’ But we just kept doing it, and we evoked a lot of emotion from people, and really, that was what it was all about. Eventually, we kind of got to do what we first wanted, and over time it turned into what it is now.”

Kofi has been with WWE for around 12 years now. He said he’s trying to do this for as long as he can, when asked where he sees himself in the next decade or so.

“Who knows, man. Who knows. I’m just trying to do this as long as I can. I’m still having a lot of fun. Being with Woods and Big E is definitely the most fun I’ve had in my career. I was talking to E about it the other day, and I said, ‘I thought I was having fun the first six years of my career.’ Then I met the New Day, and I realize what having fun actually means,” Kofi said. “It’s been amazing with these guys. We’re always looking for different ways to keep our finger on the pulse of pop culture and implement that in what we say and how we entertain. I can’t tell you where the future is gonna go, but I can tell you it will be fun.”

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As previously noted, WWE Superstar Mustafa Ali recently caught up with professional wrestling icon Chris Jericho on Talk Is Jericho. Among many other things, Ali talked about WWE initially wanting him to portray a heel for the company. Ali discussed the challenges facing 205 Live and the cruiserweight show being compared to NXT. Additionally, Ali talked about having his best match and advice he received from injured WWE Superstar Sami Zayn.

Apparently, WWE wanted Ali to be an anti-American heel when he first came to WWE and it was WWE producer and former WWE Superstar Road Dogg who told Ali that he would get an opportunity to be a babyface.

“It’s actually Road Dogg that pitched the idea [of being a babyface] because when I started they did want me to be the bad guy. So they had the big Pakistani flag in my entrance and if you put up any flag that’s not the American flag, it’s going to get heat. They weren’t going to push it like he’s a ‘evil foreigner’, but they were pushing the anti-American agenda, but very subtly.” Ali recalled, “so Road Dogg pulls me aside and he goes, ‘you’re right! Why do we have to make you the bad guy? You have this great move set and I think we can mould it to fit the WWE style, but let’s run with you as a baby and see what happens.’ So I was all for it and I fully believed I could do it.”

On the subject of 205 Live, Ali professed that the show’s time slot hurt the brand, but also having to build multiple performers and a brand at the same time made things more challenging.

“I felt like the biggest problem was the time slot when 205 [Live] was shot. The second biggest problem was that we’re not only building brand new WWE Superstars, we’re doing a bunch of them all at once and we’re trying to build a brand. It’s one thing… if you want to make Cedric Alexander tonight, what do you do? You have him come out and answer Seth Rollins’ open challenge. And they have a crazy match for 20 minutes and people are invested because they care about Seth and now Cedric shows he can hang with Seth and Cedric is made. But now, Cedric has to go out with me, who they don’t know, and they barely know him, and we’re going out after SmackDown.”

Ali stated that 205 Live being compared to NXT is unfair because NXT has been around for many years and it is an established brand. Moreover, NXT signed many international stars while the 205 Live’s biggest star was The Brian Kendrick.

“To me, it’s not a fair comparison at all. 205 [Live] always gets compared to NXT. What’s the difference between NXTand 205? NXT is doing great. NXT has a platform and an established brand that took almost a decade to establish. Like, NXT is not new. It took a very long time.” Ali continued, “and then they brought in all these international stars to help build this brand. 205 [has] got none of that. Do you know what I mean. It’s all guys from the independent scene. The most well known guy on our roster was Brian Kendrick. Like, obviously, we know how great he is, but he’ll be the first one to tell you he’s not on Seth Rollins’ level of popularity.”

According to Ali, the 205 Live roster huddling around a monitor backstage to watch his SmackDown match versus WWE Champion Daniel Bryan was a very meaningful moment to the recent blue brand recruit.

“We learned very quickly that we’ve got to watch each other’s backs. We’ve got to protect each other. Like, this is the only way it’s going to work. When the match with Bryan happened, yeah, the first thing that happened was I came backstage and they were all standing there and they had watched the entire match and it was like all congrats and I was like, ‘man, I’m getting feedback from Vince [McMahon]. I’m getting feedback from Bryan. Like, AJ [Styles]. I’ve looked up to guys like Jeff Hardy and Rey Mysterio my entire life and they’re giving me props and [saying] ‘oh man, you belong here’ and stuff. All that meant the world, but to come back and see your brothers in arms that you were in the trenches with, they’re all standing there and they’re all genuinely happy for you. Like, dude, that was heavy. That was a very heavy moment for me. This meant the most.” Ali added, “as wild as that night was, that meant the most.”

On the subject of Ali’s favorite match to date, the former police officer said he has not had his best match yet and related it to advice he received from Zayn that the art of being a WWE Superstar is being able to do things within the WWE’s limits or confines.

“I don’t think I’ve had it yet in the sense of what it means to really be a good performer. I’ve had, ‘this [aspect] came off real well’ or ‘the story came off real well’ or ‘this spot came off real well’ or ‘I did really well selling.’ I don’t think I’ve had this match that’s this perfect mixture of both.” Ali explained, “what people don’t realize here in WWE is, you can go out in any company and you can have these crazy five-star matches and you can do all this stuff and you don’t have chains on you. The trick in WWE is to do it within this confined little box.”

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One of the biggest differences in pro wrestling today than during the 1980s and 1990s is the difference in characters. The Golden Age of Wrestling and the New Generation had many over-the-top characters like Earthquake or Doink the Clown in addition to flamboyant personalities like “Macho Man” Randy Savage and The Heartbreak Kid, Shawn Michaels.

Sheamus is someone who longs for those old days and misses the characters in wrestling. He talked with solowrestling.com about how pro wrestling has evolved over the years and moved away from these eccentric personalities.

“Today a very different product is offered,” said Sheamus. “I think we’re missing some characters. Yes, I believe it. I think we are leaving the creation of characters a little abandoned. Any important series like Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead base their product around the characters and their background. I think the athletes and wrestlers that we have today are the best in the history of the business, although in turn I think the business has changed to what people want to see.”

WWE still has some characters but they aren’t highlighted as much as they were in the past. Sheamus pointed outfellow countryman Finn Balor as someone with a unique character that is often forgotten about.

“Then you see Finn Bálor with his alter ego from The Demon, you also have the Bludgeon Brothers – there are a lot of characters, but I think they should be reinforced a bit more,” stated Sheamus. “Perhaps one of the most popular characters that WWE has right now is the prodigy of NXT, The Velveteen Dream. He is a 23-year-old star, talented and with an arrogant character who is destined to do great things in the future.”

Sheamus declares himself to be a big fan of “The Dream”, and insists on re-introducing flashy characters on television drastically.

“I do not mean characters like The Berzerker or Papa Shango,” said Sheamus. “I do not mean unrealistic characters. I mean things about which people can feel identified. But that’s one thing that talent should do itself, and it’s taking the opportunity to show fans a personal side. Although I reiterate again, we have never had as many talented stars as we have today.”

For the past five years or so, WWE has trended more towards a “reality era” in part due to the influence of social media and the internet. Real-life personalities are moving to the forefront, but Sheamus thinks there is still a place for flashy characters in today’s wrestling.

Sheamus was then asked about his favorite wrestling characters and it would be hard to find many fans who disagree with him.

“As for personality, without a doubt my favorite of all time is Macho Man Randy Savage,” stated Sheamus.

“As for character, there is no doubt that the greatest of all time is The Undertaker, right? Look at all the time he has spent in the business and everything he has achieved. He is one of the greatest in history and I will remember him forever.”

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Kofi Kingston recently spoke with The Argus Leader to promote Saturday’s WWE live event in Sioux Falls. The full interview is at this link and below are highlights:

The gimmick he used when he first came to WWE:

“When I came into the WWE, I was looking for characters. When I was training before I was even signed, I was listening to the Damian Marley CD ‘Welcome to Jamrock,’ and I got the idea one day in promo class to cut a promo in a Jamaican accent and everybody in the class went wild. That was the character I played from that point on and it kind of stuck until it didn’t. It was definitely a great way for me to break into this business with a character that has never been played before in WWE. All the characters you’ve seen over the years in WWE and not one was Jamaican. So, for me to do something that had never been done before was almost a no-brainer. The fact that it was entertaining too was great. It all worked out in the end.”

The 2019 Royal Rumble Match:

“You never quite know what’s in store for the Royal Rumble, and I think that’s the beauty of it. For me, the goal has always been to win. That would be the greatest “trick” of all, getting the win. So that’s been the goal and we’ll see how that comes about. We really have no idea with what’s going on with the Royal Rumble, even on that day, because there’s so much stuff going on. I’m sure it’ll be as entertaining as in the past if not more.”

If WWE will break up The New Day:

“I think stereotypically, when you have groups or tag teams, it’s a matter of time before they’re broken up. But with us, it’s a lot different because I think that we have something that nobody else has or nobody has had for a long time. We’re a three-man group who essentially cover all the bases.

“All of us are entertaining, all of us can wrestle very well and all of us can speak very well. To me, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense for them to break us up. We’re at the highest now than we’ve ever been. We’re doing a lot better now as a group than we were as singles. A lot of times when teams break up, it’s to do better as singles competitors than they’re doing as a group. It’s kind of hard to justify that with the things we’re doing right now with our merchandise sales and all the products we’re coming out with, the fanbase that we have, people clambering for pancakes and Booty-O’s and ice cream. We have a unique way of connecting with the crowd, so it doesn’t really make sense to split us up at all, even if we wanted to.”

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Becky Lynch appeared on State of Combat to discuss some of WWE’s strange booking, becoming “The Man,” why she hugged Charlotte before Survivor Series, and social media. Here are some of the highlights:

Being told that she should cut a promo against the fans that lifted her to the top as WWE attempted to turn her heel:

“There was a lot going through my head on that day because I come off such a high from the reaction of the night before, from finally saying that I’m doing with this, that I deserve more. And that’s a very freeing feeling because you almost were shackled by friendship for so long. So you say, ‘OK, I’m taking off these chains because the only person bounding me down right now is you—and me by allowing it. And I’m taking it off.’ And then I think everybody thought that I was going to be the bad guy because of that.

“But I don’t think that I was because I think anybody can relate to that person that always wants you to do good but they don’t want you to do better than them ever. And they don’t really want you to succeed—maybe to a level to where you’re content but never where you’re truly happy, never to where you’re truly soaring. And I think everybody has that person who everything comes easy to them, everything is handed to them and there’s no struggle. Unfortunately, that’s not most people. That’s not most people.

“And I went out there and I was going through a lot of stuff, I was questioning a lot of things, and the one thing I did question was—and I could feel it from the fans, too. Because when I said it, I said, ‘Well, when Charlotte [Flair] stole the win from me, you got up and you cheered the new champion. You weren’t that upset, were you?’ And I think people agreed with me. They did stand up and cheer a new champion because she weaseled her way in like a Flair does into a match where she didn’t belong and she did what she does. She’s an opportunist and she stole that opportunity from me.”

Her “enough is enough” moment at SummerSlam:

“I think it’s been progressive. I don’t know that there’s a defining moment. The physical moment was the moment the world saw at SummerSlam, but I think it’s been building for such a long time, it really has. If you go back and you look at any of my interviews backstage or whatever, I’ve been saying the same thing for a long time. I keep getting overlooked. I keep getting taken advantage of and I need to change. I kept saying, ‘I need to change; I need to do something different.’ But I think I didn’t—for lack of a better term—I didn’t have the balls to do it really. I was still stuck in that mindset of, ‘No, let me get along with everybody. Let me do the right thing. Let me not ruffle too many feathers. Let me ruffle a few, but not every one – certainly not my best friend.’

“And then when I realized that was what was holding me down, keeping me back, casting a shadow on me, I was like, ‘Ha-ha, no way. You asked me for advice. You rely on me. And you’re the one [getting a push]? Well that doesn’t sound right. Surely I should be the one since I have the knowledge, I have the ability, I have paid my dues in so many different ways.’ She works hard, but nobody works harder than I do or for as long.”

Becoming “The Man” and exorcising some demons:

“‘The Man’ is a state of mind. What I’m going out there and doing is I’m just telling the truth. I think that’s what people are reacting to, that’s what people are responding to. It’s just the truth that I’m saying; there’s no words of a lie coming out of my mouth whenever I say anything. I’m just stating fact. And unfortunately, they’re not said often enough, and they’re not said loud enough to a large enough arena of people. Now I’m doing it on every single platform that I have. Whether it’s on Twitter, whether it’s on Instagram, whether it’s on a WWE show on RAW or SmackDown, at a pay-per-view, in a backstage interview, whenever I get the chance to come on your show and talk like this, I will stand out there and I will state the facts.”

Whether it’s true that some backstage said her accent was holding her back:

“No. Nobody ever said that … to my face. Ha-ha. Nobody ever said that to my face, but I wouldn’t be surprised if some snake was saying it behind my back. I’ll prove them wrong. I love proving people wrong. It’s one thing to prove people right, and I love doing that, but it’s a whole other [thing] to go out there and prove people wrong.”

Why she hugged Charlotte before Survivor Series:

“… and then I have to watch Charlotte Flair step into my role. And clearly you hug people you don’t like when you’re concussed because I don’t know what I was doing; wouldn’t have ever hugged her in a million years in a sober state. I have to watch her try to be bootleg Becky at Survivor Seriesacting like she’s me, thinking she’s tough, thinking she’s edgy. That woman couldn’t have any edge if she turned into a Rubik’s cube.”

Talking trash on social media:

“That’s where the fun is. That’s where the fun is. You know, the thing is, if you’re going to say anything about me, just prepare that I’m going to come back at you. And if you’re not prepared for that, well then I would advise getting my name out of your mouth.”

Lynch also discussed Vince McMahon’s reaction to her. You can check out the full interview by clicking here.