TNA World Heavyweight Champion Eric Young took part in a conference call last Thursday to promote the TNA Slammiversary pay-per-view. Young will defend his title in a triple threat steel cage match at the event in Dallas, Texas today.
On being versatile: “I’ve been on TV every week for over 10 years. That’s insane for anybody. Versatility and being able to play a different character and fill a different role year to year is something I pride myself on and always have. If they want me to make people laugh, I can do that. If they want me to make people not like me, I can do that. If they want me to be World Heavyweight Champion, I can do that. If they want me to be tag team champion, I can do that. There are guys in the business that have that attribute but there’s not a huge number, they find their role, they find their niche and that’s what they do for 10, 15, 20 years. I’ve done it all and I wouldn’t change that.”
On beating Magnus for the title: “It was a surprise from where I was to where I ended up that night. Beating Magnus surprised the wrestling world, and that’s not easy to do nowadays with the internet and information everywhere. They did that and created a real moment. I was part of that moment. For me, it comes as no surprise. I’m not a cocky person, I’m not good at anything, except for pro wrestling, but pro wrestling I can do. I knew that I was good at it the instant I stepped in a ring. I knew that’s where I was meant to be, I knew that’s what I was supposed to be doing. It comes as no surprise to me to be World Heavyweight Champion. If you would have told me a couple of years ago that would be a thing I’d say, ‘We’ll see what happens,’ but wrestling’s crazy, man, and it changes every day. I’m just happy to be part of it and 100 per cent proud to be World Heavyweight Champion.”
On criticism aimed at TNA: “It’s always easier to say negative things and report on negative things. When you watch the news, it’s not very often you see something good on the news. That doesn’t mean there are not good things happening. TNA Wrestling is still here, it’s going to be here, it’s not going anywhere, it’s as strong as it has ever been. There is always going to be negative information, that’s just part of the game.”
On how to grow the TNA audience: “I think we just have to pick our direction and decide where we are going and march. That’s something I feel they have been doing for the last six to eight months. They have a vision and decided that is where they are going to go. That’s what pro wrestling is. You have to formulate a plan. Things change, wrestling constantly changes. Guys get hurt, and guys move on. Someone will become popular out of nowhere. Then you have to adapt. That is pro wrestling, but you’ve really got to pick a direction and head towards it.”
On TNA’s next Hall of Fame inductee: “There’s a huge list of guys, guys that were here early early on. AJ Styles, David Young, and Shark Boy were guys that helped build the company. That would be cool for wrestling fans, especially die-hard TNA fans, to dig back in the past and find some of the guys that helped pave the way to build the company. That would be cool for me to see, plus I like those guys and it’d give me a chance to hang around them.”