Former WWE wrestler offers his theory on C.M. Punk's departure, comments on Daniel Bryan, pay-per-view payoffs following the WWE Network launch
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On the WWE Network: "I think it’s a great idea. The WWE Network gives the younger generation an opportunity to see what real wrestling was. It also reintroduces people like Roddy Piper and Ric Flair to the younger generation. I think it’s a great think and I’m really glad to be a part of it."
On the potential loss of PPV royalties to talent: "From the fans’ perspective, paying $40 less for a PPV is great. From a talent’s perspective, I think that (they) lose money. (Talent) is in this not only because we love wrestling, but also because we need to provide for our families. Once you put the PPVs on the Network, you lose the DVD sales and merchandising aspects that you had before."
On whether or not he was notified of his appearances on the WWE Network: "I wasn’t called or notified. Not even a letter. I really don’t care though; I’m glad they put my stuff on there. It keeps my name out there. It’s great for wrestlers that aren’t with the company anymore. You don’t get forgotten."
On whether he watches the current product: "I don’t follow it closely. I DVR it, watch what entertains me, and I fast forward what doesn’t. What gets me fired up about the WWE is that they have such a huge pool of talented wrestlers that the whole show could be fantastic (but it’s not). I remember when I was a kid, I used to hang on every single thread; now it doesn’t seem like that."
On his favorite parts of the current product: "I love tag team wrestling. I’m a big fan of what’s going on with the Usos, the Rhoades Brothers, and the Shield. I’m also a huge fan of Cesaro. He’s not your typical heel; he’s a guy that you love to hate, and that’s rare."
On Daniel Bryan: "Anyone that knows Daniel knows that he’s one of the hardest working guys in the locker room. It’s good to see that finally the cream rises to the top. He deserved that, he’s earned it, and he’s the right man for the position. You don’t always get what you want in life, but if you want it bad enough, you have to keep going at it. It’s very parallel to real life. It’s not WWE’s job to give people what they want right then and there. It’s WWE’s job to draw people into their next TV program. That's what they’ve done, they’ve carried people over Monday to Monday with their storyline."
On CM Punk’s departure: "It’s all speculation based upon my experience with the WWE and with Punk, but the WWE has a very bad habit of not following through with storylines. That’s probably one of the reasons that Punk stepped away. He knows the fans aren’t stupid. He came into WWE with a fantastic following, but WWE didn’t understand it and kept him in developmental longer than they should have. He kept fighting and finally got onto the main roster and proved himself to the WWE office and the (sarcastic) ‘fantastic’ writing staff. They think that whatever they put out there, they can shove down the fans throat and they’ll buy it. They have a very contorted view of the wrestling business."
On his current whereabouts: "Everybody thinks that getting to the WWE is the hardest part. In my opinion, staying there is the hardest part. Being relevant is the hardest part. Letting the office know that you can draw money is the hardest part. Before I got into the wrestling business, I was working from daylight to dark, and as soon as I got released I was working from daylight to dark. I wrestle on the weekends, but my wife’s family has a heavy equipment business (and I work there). I see so many guys that are only a few years older than me and are walking hunched over, constantly in pain; I feel blessed that I got out relatively healthy."
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