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Exclusive: Ohio Valley Wrestling's Randall Floyd on OVW's future & working with WWE

EXPERT COLUMNIST
Exclusive
625   //    17 Jul 2019, 05:12 IST

OVW's Randall Floyd in action / Photo courtesy of Gladiator Sports Network
OVW's Randall Floyd in action / Photo courtesy of Gladiator Sports Network

Randall Floyd is not only one of the stand-out stars of Ohio Valley Wrestling, but he was also a stand-out athlete at the University of Indianapolis as an amateur wrestler. The Indiana native has also been seen on WWE television and has a recent match with WWE Hall Of Famer (and current All Elite Wrestling producer) Billy Gunn to his credit.

I had the pleasure of doing Q&A with Randall Floyd -- a three-time OVW TV champion -- about life in Louisville and what else he has coming up. Floyd can be followed on both Twitter and Instagram via the social media handle @randallfloyd_.

You have appeared on WWE television before. Was WWE your entry into being a fan of wrestling?

Randall Floyd: WWE was not my first fan experience. As a young kid, 5 or 6 years old, I remember seeing WCW and instantly obsessing over it. "Macho Man" Randy Savage is what I really remember from my first experiences as a fan. It wasn’t until Stone Cold and The Rock that I knew what WWF was. From there, I had any and everything there was to do with wrestling. Toys, video games... you name it. I’d wrestle my toys and cut promos at my wall in my room. Now, 20-plus years later, nothing has changed.

Was there anything surprising about your WWE appearance back in May?

Randall Floyd: No real big surprises. Not like I expected. Wrestling on live TV in front of however many viewers at home and an additional 12,000 or so people live, I was surprised at how little I was nervous. I’ve been more nervous for a 10-minute match at OVW in front of 300 people. I don't know what it was but I felt at home on that big of a stage.

You are a top performer within Ohio Valley Wrestling. Had you been to Louisville before working with OVW?

Randall Floyd: I had been to Louisville before coming here to wrestle, but it was less for wrestling and more for dragging my friend down 4th Street back to a hotel room many hours into a bachelor party. Real wild night.

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OVW has a history of creating some of wrestling's all-time top draws. Beyond yourself, who do you think are some of the OVW performers to watch?

Randall Floyd: One word. Dimes. Top Five Alive: Dimes. Dimes is someone at OVW that I admire because of his work ethic and his willingness to push himself to become great one day. We train together almost every weekend and I’m very thankful that he is there because he is someone that pushes me to work harder as well. I see a lot of myself in him in that we come from similar backgrounds -- amateur wrestling -- and with how he has developed since I have known him.

When I was getting myself ready for a WWE tryout, Rip Rogers asked me to get someone that I thought would come in and work hard during the extra sessions he was going to put me through. Dimes was the first person that I reached out to. He stepped up and came through for me and I’ll gladly do the same when it’s his turn, which will happen. Once he truly finds out who he is as a professional wrestler, I believe he will go as far as he wants. I’m a big fan.

People think of OVW as being "Al Snow's company," but not everyone realizes that it is an accredited school. What else do you think people have wrong about OVW?

Randall Floyd: You hear things all the time. And people can say exactly what they want. OVW is doing huge things with our new trade school that will soon be opening. Things that could possibly change the wrestling world for the better. I’m excited about the future of this company.

What do the next few months look like for Randall Floyd?

Randall Floyd: Busy. With OVW becoming an accredited trade school and me being the trainer for our beginners' programs, on top of all the other great things happening. That makes my life busy. Busy is good. Busy is exciting.

Is there a career accomplishment you are most proud of?

Randall Floyd: The first day I stepped into a wrestling school. I put it off so long after college due to fear. I was nervous, I was scared, what if I was no good? What if I failed? It took me almost 2 years after college to build up enough courage to answer an ad in San Diego, California to join a wrestling school.

So I called SoCal Pro and have never been so happy to leave a voicemail. Jeff Dino called me back the next day and the day after that I was in a ring training with absolute-machines like Anthony Idol, Ricky Mandel and Mike Camden. I was very proud of myself for just showing up and finally doing it. Since then I made the move closer to home and now am having the time of my life with OVW.

Is there a long-term goal you are working towards in your wrestling career?

Randall Floyd: The goal has always been WWE. One way or another I want to work at WWE. I would be happy to have an opportunity at any major promotion but as of right now, WWE is on top and my interest in anything that I do is to be the best at it. As long as I’m having fun wrestling, that’s all that truly matters to me.

When not busy with OVW, where does your free time usually go?

Randall Floyd: Video games. Music. Comedy. Movies. TV. I try and find ways to draw inspiration from almost anything. I really enjoy discovering new music. Listening to a comic I’ve never heard before. Going to a movie theater. Sitting on a couch for 12 straight hours trying to beat Zelda. I feel it’s good to take a step away from life and just really dive into something that interests you every now and again.

Finally, Randall, any last word for the kids?

Randall Floyd: Show up. Sometimes it can be the hardest thing to do but just show up. Find something that you are truly passionate about. Something you can’t go an hour without thinking about and throw yourself 100 percent at it. Once you’ve shown up, keep showing up. It is impossible to get worse at something if you just keep showing up. You can only get better.

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