Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn were recent guests on the Talk Is Jericho podcast. During their conversation with Chris Jericho, they discussed what it’s been like teaming together.
Owens and Zayn were booked as rivals throughout the majority of their WWE careers, with their real-life friendship being used in their storylines. Zayn turned heel and aligned himself with Owens at the Hell In A Cell pay-per-view and the shift in his character has been lauded by fans and critics alike. Owens said he’s enjoying teaming with his friend, especially since Zayn is fully embracing his heel role.
“It’s funny to see him (Zayn), at least to me, where this reserved, introverted character who has always been charismatic, turn up the annoying features of his personality,” Owens said. “It’s funny for me because I’m kind of always the same, but now I have this guy bouncing around me, acting over-the-top and being annoying as he possibly can be.”
Zayn had previously been the consummate babyface, the underdog character fans loved to cheer for, so it was a surprise that he would play such a good heel. Zayn said he has played the heel at a couple independent shows, but for the most part he’s always been a good guy throughout his career. He said he’s still working towards becoming a top heel in the company that people can take seriously.
“I did it for like a couple of tiny independent shows in Quebec that would never see the light of day. One time, we did a program once or twice for a couple of companies where I had turned heel for like 6 months where Kevin had turned into the devil and had gotten in my head, so I was like under his spell for a few months, but outside of that, never,” Zayn said. “I need to figure out a balance because I don’t look like Brock Lesnar. I don’t look like a killer, so I still need to be taken as a threat. The heel I want to be is real mouthy, which is fine, but I want to be a guy that can be taken seriously to win the world title. I just want to win the world title; I don’t want to be a guy that Vince McMahon looks at and says, ‘never, we can’t.'”
Despite winning the NXT championship and being a part of a few high-profile feud, Zayn has never held a championship in WWE. Zayn said he’s not sure if Vince McMahon views him as a future champion.
“I don’t know how Vince views me in that regard because I don’t think he would tell me where I would go in his office and ask him to give it to me straight whether I would ever become a world champion,” Zayn said. “I know he would never say that, so there’s no way of me really knowing, but imagine if he told me that.”
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