WWE star Samoa Joe recently spoke with Fox Sports ahead of WWE Fastlane tomorrow night, and below are some interview highlights:
Backstage atmosphere around WrestleMania:
“It absolutely changes. Now you’re seeing the event, the card itself, what’s going to go down that weekend, start to form and gain shape and become what it is. The environment gets more competitive. Everybody in the locker room and everybody that goes out there night after night is looking to be on their A-game, because they want the opportunity to have the spotlight shone on them on the grandest stage, on the biggest show in our industry. Things kind of go into overdrive, and there’s very much an amped-up feeling of competitiveness and people want to go out there and show their very, very best.”
Biggest adjustment in WWE NXT:
“The biggest thing right off the bat is the schedule of the average WWE wrestler is very intensive. It’s a full-time commitment. You’re shot around the world at any given point in time, all throughout the year. You spend a lot of time on the road, so if you’re not really prepared for that kind of lifestyle, if you’re not accustomed to it and you don’t know how to navigate around not just the United States, but the planet in an efficient and sane manner, it can get kind of overwhelming. And definitely, in WWE, it’s the heaviest schedule in the industry, period. I don’t care where you go or what company you work for – and I’ve pretty much worked for them all – WWE by far is the most brutal road schedule in the world. It takes a special kind of individual to navigate that and be able to thrive in that environment. It’s a challenge that I’ve enjoyed.”
If he was getting impatient not being on the main roster:
“No, not really, because I was seeing NXT grow into this third brand within the realm of WWE. It needed me. We had these big events every year – Dallas, Toronto, Brooklyn – and to not have me there would definitely affect the product and definitely affect the momentum that the brand had going for it.
I also knew that when you do get that call, you want to make sure there are things in place to give you the best opportunity to succeed, whether it be on Raw or SmackDown. It’s very much about timing. I’ve been in this game for a while and I kind of realized that, you know, it’s definitely more about timing than trying to get anywhere as quickly as possible. When the timing’s right, things all fall into place, it definitely gives you a lot of momentum – which is what you want to do anytime you find yourself within the bounds of a new company or a new brand.”