By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Oral Sessions with guest Aleister Black (a/k/a Tommy End)
Host: Renee Paquette
Interview available via Oral Sessions via Apple Podcasts
On his relationship with Paul Heyman: “He reached out to me on the day that it [being released by WWE] happened. It was very sad. Paul has always said to me, ‘Tom, I think that you are five years ahead of the business. As brilliant as I think you are, I think that’s sometimes your biggest issue, you are so far ahead mentally that people have to catch up to it.’ And he still believes, ‘you are going to do great things.'”
On New Japan Pro Wrestling: I think it’s no secret that I have a lot of love for New Japan. I think in several interviews I’ve mentioned that I never grew up watching WWE, I watched New Japan on Eurosport. When AEW had Yuji Nagata, I was pretty envious… New Japan would be phenomenal. I love Japan, I miss Japan. Even thinking about it gives me butterflies. Never did I feel more like a professional wrestler, and I can say that now, than when I stepped off the plane in the Narita Airport.”
On the jump from NXT to WWE being the kiss of death: “I think one of the main issues it that there is too many cooks in the kitchen, whereas Hunter [Paul Levesque] has a vision and oversees the entire vision with his team. He always puts his ear to the ground and he communicates very, very like one on one with his talent, and everybody shares his vision. Where I feel on the main roster, a lot of people think that they know Vince’s [McMahon] vision. They haven’t closely followed the people that are being brought up. Vince sees certain individuals and is mesmerized by them, and then when he has them he’s kind of like, ‘Okay, where do I place you?’ And I feel the time spent with “where do I place you’ loses it, because it’s taking too long for people to be placed. Whether that is because their vocation is too quick or people don’t have a creative vision coming in or people rely too much on letting the main roster do your creative work for you, who knows? I think it’s a combination of all three. I don’t believe in one party always being the complete blame for anything. When you come in, you are a professional. You need to have a vision for yourself, you need to have ideas continuously.”
Other topics include his first meeting with Vince McMahon, a pitch for Black to help Undertaker during The Last Ride match at WrestleMania, who Paul Heyman pitched to enter the room when the Black character was asking people to knock on his door, the wrestlers he looks forward to facing outside WWE, why he’s not bitter, and more.