Mr. Anderson talks time in WWE, Drew Galloway, Samoa Joe & more
In a recent interview, TNA star Mr. Anderson spoke with Alex Obert of the Journey of a Frontman website. While he spoke about a variety of topics, below are a few highlights:
Alex Obert: It’s been a big couple of months for Impact Wrestling. In the past couple of weeks, there’s been major things going on. First of all, what are your thoughts on Drew Galloway coming to the company?
Ken Anderson: I didn’t watch WWE after I left. And that’s when he really started to get a good push. So I didn’t know too much about him, I had heard people say good things about him though. As a performer, it’s hard to sometimes gauge how good a person is based on crowd reaction alone. I didn’t realize how good he actually was. I got a chance to see him perform over in the UK, sort of in his home country. He’s great on the mic, he’s great at storytelling and he’s really solid with everything he does in the ring. Nothing looks phoned in or bullshit, it looks like a real fight, which I prefer.
Alex Obert: I recall he had some matches on Heat while you were on the RAW roster. Did you run into him backstage?
Ken Anderson: Very briefly. He had just come up and I had been there for a while. You’re so busy when you’re backstage at a RAW or at a Smackdown. They’re always bringing up new talent and I always try to be nice to everybody. I try to talk to everybody as much as I can. But at the time, if memory serves me correctly, I was at the stage where I was just existing at that point. I was sort of bummed out by the way things had happened. You get frustrated and you just punch the clock. It sucks to say because this is my dream job, it just goes to show that the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.
Alex Obert: Did those feelings begin once you lost the Money in the Bank briefcase?
Ken Anderson: What happens is when you’re injured, you’re punished for being injured. You get injured because your job is dangerous and they run you five days a week. I was never injured because of stupid things that I did, it was usually at the hands of somebody else. Once I got a bruise on my triceps that was misdiagnosed as a torn triceps. It’s almost like you’re punished for getting injured. When you come back, you’re sort of depushed and somebody else has taken that slot. That’s understandable to a degree, but they can say “Here we go, off to the races again” and they choose not to. Another one of the things that frustrated me was everything that brought me to the dance in the first place, I was told to stop doing all that stuff. “Do it this way, don’t do it that way. What you’re doing is wrong.” I did it on Smackdown for a couple years. Taker, Batista, Rey Mysterio, Bob Holly, Chris Benoit, Kane, Booker T, all those guys loved working with me and had no problems working with me. I went over to RAW and suddenly I don’t know how to work or wrestle or do my thing. I was told don’t do it this way, do it that way. That to me was frustrating because all I wanted to do was entertain.
Alex Obert: There’s been more big news in TNA over the past couple of weeks. Samoa Joe has left the company, what are your thoughts on that?
Ken Anderson: I love Joe to death. I think that no matter what happens, he’s just a tremendous talent and he’ll be sought after. It’s always hard to take that step into the unknown, but he did it and I respect the fact that he had the balls to do it. He just said “You know what, I’m gonna leave and try some different things.” I think that even if he went around and did independents, he would be just as successful as Colt Cabana in that regard.
Alex Obert: But what about the other side of the spectrum with a potential shot in the WWE? You think you could happen?
Ken Anderson: I think so. I absolutely think it could happen. And I hope it does for him. I hope if it does, he’ll have a good experience there and I hope they’ll treat them well. Joe’s a guy that will stand up for himself too.
Alex Obert: In closing, what do you have to say to those that are tuning in to the new chapter of Impact Wrestling? Fans have been vocal about the company, but things are looking up.
Ken Anderson: I always say that I don’t understand the mentality that people have where it’s almost as if they clamor for the demise of the alternative product. I think that wrestling fans, in general, are never gonna be happy. Especially the internet wrestling fans, they’re just most vocal and they think they know everything about our business. They know a lot, a lot more than the average viewer, but they don’t know everything. They don’t know all the particulars about why it is and what we do. I always say that if you feel like you have the better formula, then start your own business. Start your own company. You’re free to do that, it’s America. The decisions that the company has made and Dixie Carter and those on her behalf have made, we did the best with the hand we dealt ourselves. Circumstances happen, but we’re still here. People have been calling for the end of TNA since it first started, they said it would only be around for a few months. They kept on saying and saying that it was almost done and that this or that was the final straw. We happen to be on a network right now that has a significantly smaller reach than Spike. But I think that’s a good thing. I always think companies do their best work when their back is in the corner. I always feel like I do my best work when my back is in the corner. When I came to TNA, I had an axe to grind. I was pissed off. I was bitter. And it helped me and my character. It helped me with things I was saying and doing on television. In that same regard, you’ll see the same thing with TNA on Destination America. If people don’t get the network, call your cable provider and ask them to start carrying it. If more people do that, they will eventually do it. There’s a little news network called TheBlaze that was started up by Glenn Beck and it was just an online thing. Now it’s on Dish Network and I believe it’s replacing Fox News on DIRECTV. And that’s because the viewers, the fans, kept calling their cable providers and saying they want this.