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TNA News


Interview Highlights: Konnan talks about TNA's deal with Spike, Cena's gimmick, Guerrero's push

Aug 1, 2005, 15:51

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The following is a summary of Konnan's interview on the Monday Night Mayhem radio show as provided to PWTorch.com by the show's co-host Shawn Walters.

The Big Mosh & The Angry Hero welcome TNA superstar Konnan to the program, his first appearance on the show in over two years. Konnan concurs with the hosts that it is indeed time to celebrate with the announcement of TNA wrestling debuting on Spike TV in the fall. After all the issues with the weekly PPV's and stint on Fox Sports Net, the promotion is on the right track and the talent is ready to "go to war." Konnan relays the story on how he found out about the Spike TV deal, joking that he thought the conference call was going to be a "public firing."

For the Spike TV show to be a success, Konnan thinks the promotion needs to mix the familiar faces that the casual fans know as well as clips of the intense in-ring product. He says a lot of fans aren't aware that guys like him, BG James, Raven, and others are still wrestling. They need to be aware of TNA's star power and the excitement of the X-Division. In addition, Konnan feels the TV show will generate more PPV buys by seeing matches and feuds reach their conclusion at the big shows.

Konnan doesn't foresee TNA experiencing some of the same problems that ECW did while on Spike TV (then known as TNN) since ECW was a cutting edge product geared towards the young adult. Konnan thinks Paul Heyman pushed the envelope too far with the content and was consistently upsetting the network executives, something that TNA is not about to do.

While on the subject of ECW, Konnan gives his thoughts on both ECW: One Night Stand & Hardcore Homecoming. He says both show were representative of the promotion and not watered down, with everyone competing to have the best match of the night. Konnan says Psicosis made a mistake showing up at One Night Stand without his mask, contrary to how the fans remembered him.

On the whole Mexicools gimmick in the WWE, Konnan thinks its "ridiculous" but the group is finding ways to get over regardless. He initially thought of how someone in the back was having a good laugh at the gimmick and laments how they gave all the group members a chance on the mic, despite having horrible English. Konnan goes on to explain that the current WWE writers have no idea how to write for the minorities and realizes there are no black or Latino WWE road agents in the back. He points out that if he had a promotion with a lot of Japanese wrestlers, he would for sure get a Japanese writer to assist them.

Addressing the rumors from last year that he was headed to the WWE, Konnan says that was not true, but he did express the desire to do a program with Rey Mysterio & Eddie Guerrero there. He goes on to talk about the "generation gap" that he encountered with the previous TNA bookers like "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes, The Jarretts, and Dutch Mantel. Most of them still had the conception that all wrestlers need to be like "John Wayne" and don't know how to properly use foreign wrestlers. As he sees it, the United States is no longer about stereotypes, with the Secretary of State being a black woman & the best rapper being while, so why should wrestling adhere to such restrictions.

Konnan talks about Eddie & Rey and their ongoing feud as of late, saying they are now just becoming featured players. Back in WCW, they were just given "bones" or small angles to keep them temporarily happy. Konnan puts over Eddie's expertise on the mic & mastery of his character, while Rey is working hard to get better in his promos. He points out both guys can sell merchandise, draw walk up crowds, so it makes sense to give them a top angle.

The Angry Hero asks Konnan about whether Eddie put too much pressure on himself when he was WWE champion. Konnan says Eddie was never considered to be the "top guy," even in Mexico, despite being one of, if not the best wrestler in the promotion. Eddie was given the ball to run with, but when business wasn't that great, he immediately thought "what I do wrong" and took it quite personal. It only made matters more difficult when JBL was given the title and did a better job than most expected. Regardless, Konnan continues to place Eddie in high standing and used his "inner demons" that he faced to create a powerful persona for himself.

Konnan comments on the recent WWE releases, mentioning there were "no surprises" in the names they decided to cut. He says some squandered the many chances they were given while others, like Billy Kidman & Shannon Moore, were never going to get their chance to shine despite their talent. As far as those who might be signed by TNA, Konnan isn't really involved in such politics but willing to welcome anyone who can contribute positively to the promotion.

Talking about his current TNA storyline with the 3 Live Kru and Kip James, Konnan says it doesn't matter what you call Kip: call him "the guy from DX who said "suck it'" or "Chuck's boyfriend," he still a "bitch." Konnan thinks this is one of the better angles going on in TNA right now, even though its been going on a bit too long. He expects that once TNA gets back on TV, there will be a real payoff. Coming up at TNA's Sacrifice PPV on August 14th, Konnan & Ron "The Truth" Killings will be taking on the team of Kip James & "The Alpha Male" Monty Brown (w/special guest referee: BG James).

Konnan has been enjoying his time as a member of The 3 Live Kru with Ron "The Truth" Killings & BG James, mentioning how he had to convince Jeff Jarrett why he wanted to team with them. He figured if they got six months out of the group, it would have been worth it and now they're going close to three years together. Konnan remembers the initial vignettes as being fun to tape and is surprised at the longevity of The 3 Live Kru, even without solid storylines for the group.

Konnan says he always liked performing in tag teams, taking less of a physical toll on him in his currently more weakened state. He says The Dudley Boys would be welcome to TNA, although Bubba Ray's purported "bully" attitude would not be tolerated in the locker room. Overall, tag teams better allow him to get over his character while Killings does all the high impact moves. Konnan goes on to say how the young teams like America's Most Wanted & Triple X make the division exciting.

Konnan puts over the X Division as "incredible," comparing it to his earlier matches with Chris Benoit & Eddie Guerrero. He is older now, feeling more hurt but would love to get involved with a lucha- style match down the line. Konnan says there are no egos in the X-Division and the booking committee won't allow such talent to go to waste like it may have in WCW.

Konnan has no problem being outspoken on the booking committee; he would rather "sell out or get the hell out." He says the booking committee is focused, devoid of politics and overall is "hipper" than the other bookers. They won't create angles to amuse themselves at the expense of the company and have a good handle on what the audience wants.

Konnan also gives his thoughts on John Cena, pointing out that while Cena isn't that good in the ring, he has tremendous charisma and the WWE plays to that strength. It's similar to what Paul Heyman would do in ECW -- with the WWE hiding the fact that Cena was never a real "thug" but the fans will accept him as such.

Mosh gets Konnan's thoughts on two former WCW cohorts, Chris Jericho & Eric Bischoff. Konnan talked about Jericho not being in good with Nash in WCW and he thinks that attitude was translated by Nash to Triple H in the WWE. He thinks Jericho took a lot of criticism for not being able to work the "WWE style," despite being great on the mic and "ring general" overall. As for Bischoff, Konnan says he would "punch Eric in the face" if they were to meet again, but does commend Vince McMahon's brilliance for being able to bring in his once mortal enemy and make him into one of the best characters on RAW right now.

Konnan explains the origins of his shoe attacks that he's recently unveiled in TNA at Slammiversary. He started the gimmick in Puerto Rico as a heel against Carlito, throwing his show at the face's head to get heat. As a face, it became more comical, throwing his shoe at a heel's stomach. Ron Killings saw a tape of the shoe attacks and convinced Konnan to do it in TNA, albeit begrudgingly. Fortunately, the gimmick is getting over in Orlando and the fans have even started bringing humorous signs because of it.

Konnan expresses how great the TNA fans are in Orlando, making it apparent what wrestlers they like and don't like. He thinks the fans in Orlando & in Nashville were so into the product because they felt like they were a part of something special, something that's going to break out huge. Konnan goes on to thank the Carter family for all the money and unwavering support for the TNA brand to get where they are today.

In closing, the MNM crew and Konnan talk a little football, as Konnan is a huge sports fan. Mosh asks who Konnan would pick between The Mayhem's hometown Buffalo Bills and Konnan's current team, the San Diego Chargers. Konnan says he is a Miami Dolphins fan at heart but does like the Chargers' jerseys and marvels at the talent of Chargers RB LaDainian Tomlinson. Regardless, Konnan is a big Bills fan too, talking about how great a guy former Bills QB, Jim Kelly, is and how he's a big fan of Bills RB, Willis MacGahee -- ironically enough a former University Of Miami football player

Be sure to check out Konnan teaming up with fellow 3 Live Kru member, Ron "The Truth" Killings against "The Alpha Male" Monty Brown & Kip James (w/BG James as the special guest referee) at TNA's Sacrifice Pay-Per-View, Sunday night August 14th! For more, visit www.TNAWrestling.com

Monday Night Mayhem returns this Thursday with an all-new, slam-packed edition -- featuring former WWE superstar Matt Morgan, TNA color-commentator Don West (to preview the upcoming Sacrifice Pay-Per-View & the TNA/Spike TV cable deal), and former WCW & WWE World Tag Team Champion,1/2 of The Nasty Boys, and one of Hulk Hogan's closest friends, Brian Nobbs! You can hear Monday Night Mayhem in its entirety every week only on www.AudioWrestling.com & www.MondayNightMayhem.com.



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