NFL free agent running back DeAngelo Williams was a guest on NFL reporter Adam Schefter’s podcast and discussed his in-ring appearance at Impact Wrestling Slammiversary. Williams was asked if pro wrestling his in his future or if it was a one shot deal. “No, it was a one shot deal,” Williams said. “A lot of the things that I do, if not all of the things that I do, have a meaning to it. I don’t do it just because the opportunity came, but me and Josh Mathews are friends. He’s a color commentator. He actually got in the ring for the first time as well at this card, Slammiversary. However, we’ve been friends. He was with WWE for a long time and he was a commentator there as well. But that’s where our friendship began.
“I’m going to take you back a lot farther that that. My uncle, my nickname is from wrestling, he got me into wrestling. For his birthday I took him to his WrestleMania in Houston (2009)… We took him for his birthday. And he went and we went three or four years after that. And during the course of those three or four years that we went he would ask me if I would get in the ring and wrestle. I was like, no, I’d never do that. Like I respect the sport too much for that. It’s great entertainment for me and I just couldn’t do it. I mean, it looks easy, but I just couldn’t do it.”
Williams noted that his uncle told him that one of his dreams was to see him wrestle. “I was like, if I get that opportunity, I’ll wrestle for you. Well, my uncle died five years ago. When Josh was like, hey, man, you want to get in the ring, you want to wrestle? I was like, no, I’m okay. And then in my mind I was thinking this will be that one match for my uncle. I called him back and was like, yeah, I’ll do it. And he was like, we’ll do it at Slammiversary… He said so what do you want to do. I was like I want to wrestle. He said celebrity matches, they don’t really wrestle. I said I want to wrestle, this is bigger than me and I respect the sport too much to just go in there and not perform like a wrestler. So I went up to Canada for three days and came back and that was the product that you got, outside of the botched table jump.” Listen to the full podcast at ESPN.com
Powell’s POV: Williams said the match was his debut and his retirement all in one. He said he was asked about doing another match, but he declined. He said he would listen if people called, but he said it would just be talk. Williams is turning his attention back to getting an NFL job, but you still have to wonder if he will return once his football days are over. After all, the guy did a tremendous job in the ring, especially considering that he had only three days of training.
As for the botched spot, Williams noted that he protected his face on the botched leap with his face and arms. He chalked up the botch to adrenaline causing him to leap higher than he did in practice, which led to him overshooting the table. When Williams was asked if he was paid for this, he simply said he did it for his uncle.
The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Todd Martin on his background, attending pro wrestling events in Japan, the NJPW G1 Tournament, why lucha libre companies haven't been as successful as NJPW in the United States, AEW optimism, covering pro wrestling and MMA, and more (68:57)...