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IMPACT Wrestling's Ace Austin on moving into the main event scene, how Hot Topic factored into his development & more (Exclusive)

IMPACT Wrestling
IMPACT Wrestling's Ace Austin / Photo courtesy of Ace Austin
EXPERT COLUMNIST
Modified 25 Sep 2020, 16:05 IST
Exclusive
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IMPACT Wrestling has been in the news a lot lately, as it continues to air its flagship weekly two-hour program IMPACT! every week airing on AXS TV. Meanwhile, earlier this month the company announced that it renewed its long-running broadcast deal with Mexico City-based MVS Comunicaciones MVStv. One of the IMPACT performers who has people talking these days is Ace Austin.

Ace Austin is just five years into the wrestling business, yet he is already a former X Division Champion and will be challenging for the Impact World Championship -- against Tessa Blanchard, Michael Elgin, Eddie Edwards and Trey -- at Slammiversary XVIII, which is set to take place on July 18, 2020. Such a victory would reportedly make Ace Austin the youngest world champion in professional wrestling history.

I had the pleasure of speaking with Ace Austin by phone on June 22, 2020. He opened up about his quick ascent to IMPACT's main event scene, the evolution of his ring entrance, working at Hot Topic as a teenager, and his influences.

The full conversation with Ace Austin is embedded below for your listening pleasure, while part of the interview has been transcribed exclusively for Sportskeeda. More on Ace Austin can be found online via www.twitter.com/The_Ace_Austin and www.impactwrestling.com.

On moving up into the main event scene just five years into his wrestling career

Ace Austin: I didn't work so hard from the time that I was so young to not be where I'm at right now. This was always the goal, and how fast I got here was nothing but a testament to my work ethic, my raw talent, the raw potential that I possess, so I can't say that I'm surprised. This is where I'm supposed to be. That's why I've been using the hashtag "#Inevitable" a lot lately. I think I'd like to add that to my moniker, I am "The Inevitable" Ace Austin.

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On developing a distinct ring entrance without pyro or special effects

Ace Austin: I got a job at Hot Topic when I was 14 years old and held it all the way until wrestling became the number-one job for me. It pays all the bills now. Working at Hot Topic at the time, we got this sweet purple trenchcoat in the store, I had an employee discount, the coat went on clearance, bada bing bada boom, I paid almost nothing for it. I handmade the patch on the back of the trenchcoat and sewed it on myself, by chance, it took forever.

My look got even better, I started to grow, I switched to trunks -- because I have amazing legs -- and then the staff, I found the staff, that was a very big moment for me. I remember seeing that staff for the first time and saying to myself, "That is gonna change everything about me, about my character, about my career." So I grabbed the staff, and then I didn't know what I wanted to do with it at first. I spent some time in some independent locker rooms with some of my friends after the show, trying to just think of a way to do things.

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I've always been big on presentation. It's something that I was taught, and innately, it was something I kind of knew. I was big into musical theater when I was in high school and stage presence is something we talked about a lot. Being able to draw attention to you and be the most important person in the room. I knew that I had to do something with this staff to encompass that.

Now, working as a young man on the independent level, when you're working these shows in gyms and VFW halls, there's not going to be pyro. There's almost never gonna be smoke, nothing like that. So I decided to create my own sense of pyro. That's where the staff comes in. It's something that you can't look away from, it's something that no one's ever seen before, and it was a combination of what I used to do for my entrance -- the one-handed cartwheel thing -- when I was in high school I used to do that one-handed cartwheel all the time when I was onstage or anything like that.

So I just threw those two things together and it definitely worked.

Published 23 Jun 2020, 06:34 IST
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