By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
PWMania interview with guest Mark Haskins
Interview conducted by Lee Tarrier
Interview available at PWMania.com
On his match with KENTA at Defy Wrestling’s UK debut: “Yeah, I’m so excited. It’s funny because it’s very much a coming full circle match for myself, right? So, years ago when I was training to be a professional wrestler, back in 2006 2007, I used to watch the matches of KENTA versus Bryan Danielson from ROH, in my little bummed out flat that I lived in, in Portsmouth, it was it was such a mess. You know, and one of my good friends who is now a photographer, Tom Langford, he used to come around my house when we used to watch KENTA matches on a weekly basis. I remember saying like, one day I want to wrestle him. And sure enough, 17 years on, here we are, it’s finally happening. So it’s going to be a very exciting and cool moment for me personally again to go out there against somebody like KENTA because I think he’s one of the best of this generation. And it’s a match I’ve been thinking about and looking forward to for a very, very long time.”
Having unfinished business at ROH, and thoughts on WWE and AEW: “I was heartbroken that ROH ended the way that it did or at least of my time with ROH ended the way that it did because during the pandemic I appreciated so much how much they took care of us. I think I was paid to stay at home longer than I was actually paid to be active for them and that entire time that I was at home, I wasn’t just sitting at home I was doing everything I could to be more of an asset when I returned.
“The amount of things I put myself through during the pandemic is mind blowing. Now looking back at it, I just remember thinking to myself, there are going to be those who use this time to do nothing and those who step up that game, so when they do come back, they’re going to be a completely different animal. I was one of the ones that said you know, screw this. I want to be even more of an asset when I return, I want to really do something, I want to be able to in any way that I could repay the favor to ROH that they have done for us by taking care of us during that very turbulent and rocky time for everyone globally.
“So the fact that it just kind of ended and they said, you know, we’re we’re selling the company, we’re gonna have to let you all go. That was very heartbreaking in a lot of ways because I just I wanted do something for them. Everything I put myself through during the pandemic was because I wanted to be able to give something back in return and I felt like I never was able to pay that favor back, so yeah, I feel like that there is unfinished business with ROH. I think that AEW is a fantastic product.
“WWE is back in a good position to what it was years ago. I think that all in all, it’s an exciting time in professional wrestling but who knows what the future holds. You know, I’m 35 now. I’ve been wrestling 17 years, you know, probably the majority of my career is behind me, you know, I’ve got to be a realist in certain senses. And the terrifying thing as well as you know, it only takes one bad bump and you know, it could all be over. So, since coming back from the pandemic, I’ve just tried to look at wrestling as I’m going to enjoy this and I’m going to do the best I can with whatever time it is I have left doing it.”
His dream match and wanting to wrestle WWE’s Butch again: “I mean there’s there’s a lot of talented guys who are still going that I would love to tie it up with you know. Literally anybody on the the AEW roster, as there’s so many good guys. I would love to wrestle Pete Dunne [Butch] because I always loved wrestling Pete and it’s been great to see where his career has taken him and I think he’s only got better and better with time.”
Haskins also discussed where British wrestling stands in 2023, Progress Wrestling, Johnny Gargano, and more.