Nick Aldis on today’s wrestling scene: “”I think it is a good age. I think we’re on our way”
Show: Interactive Wrestling Radio
Guest: “Magnus” Nick Aldis
Your Hosts: Patrick Kelley & James Walsh
Reigning and defending NWA World Heavyweight Champion “Magnus” Nick Aldis is our guest on the 4th of July. Why? Well, we didn’t think it through. But, if you get the chance to interview one of the top stars in all of wrestling who holds the 10 pounds of gold, you take it!
We speak to the former TNA Impact Wrestling star about a lot of topics including winning the NWA Belt, All In, the trials and tribulations of being married to Mickie James when both have a busy work schedule and are parents to a lovely 3 year old. We also talk ROH Best in the World and more!
Nick Aldis will be defending against Professional Peter Avalon on Sunday, July 8 at the World Famous Nile Theater in Mesa, Arizona. We have a video promo from Mr. Avalon as well to hype the match! We are the Epicenter, after all!
Patrick Kelley and James Walsh also do a full segment talking about the goings on in wrestling AND review ROH Best in the World before we get to the interview. So, for those who have missed the more fun, wrestling nerd chats, Happy Independence Day!
Please visit http://wrestlingepicenter.com/ to listen to/view or download this interview!
NICK ALDIS :
On what it means to be NWA Champion:
“It means a great deal. I think anyone that is a student of the game like I am and understands the history of the men who have held this title before me, you understand what you’re holding in your hand. It is a badge of honor! It is special to think I am a part of what is bringing it (the title) back to prominence where it belongs.”
On if the NWA belt means more overseas than in the US:
“I don’t know if it is more. I think what is more accurate is there is less familiarity with the dark period. In England, for example. That is one of the places where it has the least prestige. I don’t mean that in a disparaging way. During the time where the NWA was the number one organization and the belt was the number one belt, wrestling in England was its own. We had World of Sport with our own guys. Now, looking at my generation of guys and fans, we have more information thanks to things like the WWE Network, 30 for 30 on Ric Flair, the Andre the Giant documentary on HBO, there’s more of an appetite for the history of it. It is more revered by guys of my age in England than it was back then.”
On the rebirth of World of Sport:
“It is a crazy time in the business. While I’m over here as the figure-head of the resurgance of the NWA, World of Sport is making its return to ITV television. I think it is great! For a second, we were flirting with the idea of me being involved in the project. I didn’t due to different political issues with Jeff Jarrett involved. There is a different team involved now. If you ask me, there is a ready made story factor there. THe other key brand in the 70’s and 80’s was the NWA and the guy holding the title is British! There is a lot of stuff going on now with WWE NXT UK as well.”
On the rise of British wrestling in the 21st century:
“I take great pride in guys like myself, Wade Barrett, Doug WIlliams, Marty Scurl… We certainly led that pack. We’re e not here to be token British guys! To steal a Conor McGreggor line, “We’re not here to take part. We’re here to take over!” I’ll argue this point with anybody! THere’s a lot of guys right now patting themselves on the back for British wrestling. The reality is, had it not been for TNA sort of solidifying that fan base and giving me that chance to not just be that token British guy the way that other promotions had used British guys… When I had the courage to say “I’m not going to just be a guy, I’m going to be the guy and be World Champion!” They listened, it resonated, and it worked! That was at the end of 2013 and into 2014. Now there’s all these guys getting their shot to be on television. I don’t think that’s a coincidence. I think that’s a butterfly effect.”
On the current wrestling scene:
“I think it is a good age. I think we’re on our way. I would love to see it get to a point where it was in the 80’s with sold out shows for all different promotions and different guys. I was actually having this conversation with my wife (Mickie James) yesterday. There’s a core group of guys who are not in the WWE, around the world there are probably 20 or 30 of them, and obviously it is completely subjective. I don’t believe in star systems, ratings systems because it is a subjective thing! It is entertainment. There is no measurable metric. Having said that, in terms of the revenue they make and generate by the fans, there are a group of guys who are sort of considered on a higher level than some of the guys within the WWE – Not all of the guys in the WWE but certainly some of them. Obviously in other eras, there were those that implied that. But now, there are things to sort of quantify that.”
On All In selling out and why he’s not in WWE:
“You have a guy who had a good run in the WWE but was never really given the opportunity and opted to leave versus a guy who if I had a dolalr for every time I was asked why I’m not in the WWE, I’d never have to wrestle again but for different bullshit political reasons and for different personal reasons, they won’t give me an opportunity there. We’re headlining and it is for the NWA World Title! It is so crazy where everything has gone. I’m under contract to the NWA but I’m showing up and working Ring of Honor. Lightning One are producing stuff for Cody and the Buys leading in to All In and Lightning One and Ring of Honor are working together. Ring of Honor and New Japan are working together! The way I look at it, there have been so many missed opportunities where greedy promoters didn’t have the foresight to say, “Well, this is a money match. Lets make it work and we’ll all benefit!” No, they just went, “No, he’s not our guy!” Or, someone would say “Wouldn’t it be great if this guy wrestled that guy” and they’d say, “Well, it can’t happen because he’s under contract here and he’s under contract there. Well! It can happen! You’re just not letting it happen! My generation said, “No, it can happen and we’re going to make it happen.” The beauty of guys like Cody, the Bucks, Marty Scurl, myself… All these guys like Pentagon all over the world who’s brands are making their own opportunities. Also, the promoters and producers that have the progressive mindset that is what needs to happen to move the business forward but also aren’t crippled by their egos where they couldn’t bare to admit that it wasn’t their idea.”
On if it is different working a huge venue versus a more studio sized venue:
“Not really because I do that a lot. It is sort of a throwback but we’re not doing it to be a throwback. We’re not doing these things to be a throwback to the NWA of old. I’m a television guy. Don’t get me wrong. I love being in a big arena. I love the big fight feel. But, for anything outside of WWE, you’re not going to experience that every single week. That’s just not sustainable for anything that doesn’t have their resources. We’re also living in a digital world where people want their content delivered right away, it needs to be high quality, and there has to be a certain style to the delivery. For us, we see the opportunity in working with Championship Wrestling from Hollywood and Championship Wrestling from Arizona because of the production quality. For me, I want to give every single person in the building an experience they won’t forget. But, we are working to the cameras. When you watch the Tonight Show, you don’t think, “Well, I bet there’s only 500 people in the audience!” You’re watching what they’re doing. For me, being a student of a game, it is nice to adapt and have to use different skill sets.”
On how he and Mickie James manage being a family with their busy schedules:
“Sure, it is difficult. But, it is not impossible. I would make this point to anyone who asks this. Yes, there are times… My July is nuts. I go to San Antonio, TX. Then I go to Mesa, AZ. Then I go to Australia… Then I go to Ring of Honor. Yes, there are times it is difficult to be away from my son. There are also guys who are gone 8 hours a day everyday… Or maybe 10 hours a day with commute. Wheeras, when I’m home, I’m home all day long. Even if I’m having to work and do stuff at the house, he’s there with me. If I go to the gym, he goes to the kids zone at the gym. We play football in the park. He definitely is not starved for parenting, attention, or love. It is just that he gets it in a different time frame.”
On the progression of the NWA under Billy Corgan:
“I would be certain that in the near, not too distant future, there will be a stand alone NWA broadcast. I can’t speak to the delivery system. That all is a business decision. When you talk about the vision of the NWA and the progression of it, we went from… We’re coming up to very close to a year to where Billy bought the rights to the brand. Right away, people were scratching their heads, “Why did he do this? What did he buy?” Fast forward 3 months, people are like “Oh, the’re going to do this.. I don’t get it.” Fast forward six months, people are saying “This is interesting. I kind of like this 10 Pounds of Gold show.” Fast forward to September 1st, our vision culminates in front of 10,000 people with the NWA World Heavyweight Title on the line in the main event.”