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Christian on LAW- 07/21/01

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Jeff Marek:
We talk a lot in the wrestling industry about the year Kurt Angle had. This was the year that Kurt Angle went from being a mid card guy to an elite level performer. But I think real quietly you put together one of the most amazing years that I've seen a young talent put together in this
industry. Do you see this as the coming-out year because last year everyone started talking about Christian?

Christian:
Yeah. For me, that was so far my biggest year and I hope to be going from there uphill. Until then, I had done the Brood and didn't get a chance really to talk or anything like that. I was waiting for that opportunity and had it in the back of my mind that when getting the opportunity, I was going to try and speak as best I could. Of course, the more you get to do it the better you get and the more fun it becomes so it all flows. Basically, now, whereas with the Brood and the gothic thing, [it was] great but it wasn't really me.

Jeff Marek:
Did you find that you were kind of hiding behind the gimmick and they weren't giving you a chance to develop as a performer?

Christian:
The reason they didn't give me a chance to develop was because it wasn't really me. For a character to work it's really an extension of yourself. I wasn't gothic and I really didn't know what to do with it. What you see now is me with the volume cranked way up. Basically, I know what I
would do in certain situations and that has made this whole year easier because I've been able to be more myself.

Jeff Marek:
And obviously the promo skills are something everyone has picked up on right away but you went from being a good wrestler to almost an elite level performer. You really turned it on in the ring. I know a lot of you guys are like "Oh, we do 200 shows a year. It's very physically taxing. It's
mentally taxing. It's a long grind." But at the same time, without that heavy WWF road schedule, you wouldn't have improved as much as you did, correct?

Christian:
Exactly. You don't get the chance to get ring rust because we're on the road so much. It's hard -- sure. But we're in there 4 or 5 days a week so you keep your flow going and you're mind going. Sometimes if you take a break it's hard to get your mind back in the ring so it keeps
everything fresh and crisp. So, in a lot of respects, it helps out more than it injures.

Jeff Marek:
It also helps the World Wrestling Federation move forward with their athletes. You look at what happened with World Championship Wrestling before Vince bought it and we talked about how they don't have any developmental leagues and they're not grooming talents... plus, they're not
on the road enough to have any of the young talent improve. We kept saying, "Where are the Kurt Angle's and Christians in WCW? There's a lot of talent there. How come no one's getting developed?" And the simple answer is: they're not on the road enough.

Christian:
Exactly. The young guys, from what I understand, weren't getting help. People weren't giving them advice that they need from experienced guys. We have that. Guys like Triple H, Steve Austin, and the Undertaker that will help young guys and they've been around for so long and have so
much experience. You can watch them and learn but when they sit down and you pick their brain, you can't help but learn. That's what every young guy needs.

Jeff Marek:
We talked a little bit about World Championship Wrestling. Now under the umbrella of WWFE, what's it like having those guys around?

Christian:
So far so good. They do what they're asked to and realize the opportunity that has been given to them now and really want to take it and work hard. They seem to have the right attitude so I think it's going to be good for everybody.

Jeff Marek:
How long is it going to take those guys to adjust to the WWF style of ring work?

Christian:
If you had an office job and you move to a new office, it takes awhile to get adjusted to the new computer system. It's going to take a little time for everybody to get adjusted and feel everybody out and once that happens, everything will be a lot smoother. But like I said, it's a
transition and it always take a little bit of time.

Jeff Marek:
Now that there is only one national company, even the best jobs for professional wrestlers (I know you still go out and help Hutchy here in Toronto) what do you say to guys breaking in now even if there is only a few spots for professional wrestlers?

Christian:
If a person comes up to you and say "I want to become a professional wrestler," you can't just say, "Yeah, I want to become a professional wrestler." You have to really want it. It's something that you have to basically live for. For five years before I got to the World Wrestling Federation and I still do, I lived and breathed this. This is what I am. You have to make this your life and that's really the only way you can make it (at least that's the way I see it). That's the way I saw myself -- if I didn't make this my life, I wasn't going to make it.

Jeff Marek:
That's what I found really weird about WWF Tough Enough. There's all these people that really want to be in the World Wrestling Federation and be pro wrestlers and I'm thinking to myself. if I really want to be a pro wrestler, I wouldn't just pin myself on these hopes with Tough Enough.
I'd be in the gym and I'd be joining a wrestling school. What do you think about the guys in Tough Enough and the people that have entered in it?

Christian:
Actually, I've been watching the show and I really like it.

Jeff Marek:
It's a great show.

Christian:
The speech that Hunter gave, gave me Goosebumps when he said it. I like the show and I hope the people on the show appreciate the opportunity they've been given. There's guys that have worked for eight years on the independents to someday get to the World Wrestling Federation. These people have a chance to walk in and get a contract if they really want this. That's the kind of mindset I would have about this. I think the show's entertaining and I think there's a few people on it that have shown some promise. No so much but there are some that really are.

Jeff Marek:
Absolutely. Getting to the World Wrestling Federation specifically, Christian, it seems no matter how hard the WWF tries or no matter how many times they plan to break you and Edge up, for one reason or another, it never seems to happen. Before Wrestlemania last year there was
the idea that you guys were going to go into singles and then before King of the Ring and before the WCW angle it looked like you guys were going to split. Is this ever going to happen or are you like married to each other forever?

Christian:
[Laughing] I don't know. I don't know what the plan is. I don't know if they just want to feel it out and see what the reaction is or what but I don't think there's ever been a 100% agreement from the fans that it's time for you guys to break-up. Maybe feel it out or tease it, I don't know. I think one day down the line we'll go our separate ways because you have to change and you have to keep things fresh and you can only do this for so long until people go "Okay, enough of this." One day we will and I think doing so much singles stuff lately has helped us get in that mind frame too
a little bit and stuff like that.

Jeff Marek:
Obviously, that has to be the long-term goal for any performer. Being a successful tag team is one thing and the E&C tag team is definitely one of the best that the WWF has ever sent on television before; however, I would imagine that what you want to do long-term with your career is spin it off in a singles career.

Christian:
Yeah, like I said, I think that the way that both of us see it going eventually. When's the best time? That's another story.

Jeff Marek:
It's got to be really tricky and kind of scary if I was the World Wrestling Federation and I saw my last super tag team, the New Age Outlaws, pretty much destroyed themselves after they got their singles pushes after they got the tag team success. I'd be a little weary of splitting up a successful tag team too. One of the things I've loved about your work lately is your work with the King of the Ring trophy. First of all, whose idea was that to bring in a trophy for King of the Ring?

Christian:
We came in the next morning and they had a trophy for the ceremony.

Jeff Marek:
What went through your mind? Because as soon as I saw it, I went "Okay, a couple Canadian kids. This is them pretending they have the Stanley
Cup."

Christian:
Yeah, it looks like the Grey Cup.

Jeff Marek:
[Laughing]

Christian:
I kind of held it up like the Stanley Cup in the ceremonies.
That's what we thought about too.

Jeff Marek:
Are you going to keep going on with the trophy gimmick as long
as it lasts?

Christian:
Yeah, we still take it out with us every time.

Jeff Marek:
What's the reaction been to it both from the crowd and behind the scenes? The fans love it, obviously. What do the boys say about it?

Christian:
They like it. We keep doing the thing where I go to kiss it and he walks in and goes "What are you doing?"

Jeff Marek:
[Laughing]

Christian:
We keep doing things like that to keep it entertaining.

Credit: LAW