On the threshold of greatness is a very scary place to be. On one hand, you know you're not far away from accomplishing everything that you've ever set out to do. On the other hand, you know that if you fail, you're not going to get many other chances to make good. In fact, you know that this could be your only chance to reach the top.
To say that it's a nerve-wracking position to be in is putting it mildly. When the entire future of a career depends on the successful completion of a set course of action, many people tend to freeze up. Thought they've proven themselves talented enough to give themselves a shot at greatness, very few have what it takes to make those last few steps necessary to achieve it. They become afraid to move ahead for fear of stomping around in quicksand.
Right now, Edge is standing precariously close to, well, the edge of superstardom. By winning the 2001 King of the Ring tournament, he put himself in position to become the WWF's next breakout singles superstar. A seven-time former WWF World tag team champ, Edge seemingly has everything it takes to make it as a main-eventer. He has good looks, a winning (if not charming) personality, and an all-around talent for wrestling that many of his peers do not possess. If he doesn't make to the WWF's top tier, it'll be his fault.
And maybe a little of Christian's fault, too.
Let's face it: If it weren't for Christian, Edge would not be where he is in the WWF. Edge didn't capture those seven tag team championships with seven, six, or even five different partners. He didn't even capture those seven titles with two different partners. He captured all seven with Christian. For that reason, Christian has every right to be jealous of Edge's solo success. If he was just a tad bit taller, maybe he (and not Edge) would be garnering all the glory.
Maybe if he was just a tad taller, he wouldn't be so preoccupied with upstaging Edge.
Editor-in-Chief Dave Lenker and Senior Writers Will Welsh and Harry Burkett recently sat down with Edge to talk about his King of the Ring win, his plans for the future and Christian.
Dave Lenker: Edge, thanks for having us over. We really appreciate it.
Edge: No problem, Dave. Welcome to the abode of absolute awesomeness.
Lenker: Um, thanks, I'm surprised that you have time to see us, being that your schedule as the 2001 King of the Ring has been keeping you pretty busy.
Edge: Yeah, I'm really busy, but not too busy to grant you guys an interview. After all, a king must address his subjects every so often, correct?
Lenker: Sure, I guess that's right. So that being the case, let's begin. How does it feel to be the King of the Ring?
Edge: It feels so totally rocking, Dave. Being a WWF tag team champion has its perks, but it's nothing like being King of the Ring. It's just so cool. I always knew I had it in me to win the thing. I just had to be given the chance.
Harry Burkett: You say that you always knew you had it in you, but did you really? You and Christian have been teaming for so long, it must've been weird to not have him in your corner for the tournament. Did you have to adjust your strategy to account for this change?
Edge: I looked at it like this, Harry. As a tag team wrestler, I'm half of a combination. But when I'm in that ring, I'm usually in there in a one-on-one situation. Sure, Christian and I double-up on an opponent from time to time, but when I'm in the ring, I'm usually in there against one other opponent. Not to sound like a braggart or anything, but I think I can handle myself in that kind of setting against anyone. So I didn't really change anything going in.
Will Welsh: That doesn't make a lot of sense. Are you saying that you wrestled your singles matches in King of the Ring like they were tag team matches? Because that's what it sounds like to me.
Edge: Pretty much, yeah. Of course I had to adjust things to a certain degree. Like, for instance, I knew that I wouldn't get a breather every so often by tagging out. I had to pace myself a little better, a little slower. That's really about it, though, except for a few other minor changes. What works in tag team matches works in singles, too.
Lenker: Edge, we all realize that you're a superb wrestler and an unbelievable athlete. Those traits undoubtedly helped you capture the King of the Ring crown. But do you think anything else helped you that evening?
Edge: Dave, if you're hinting that I only beat Kurt Angle in the finals because Shane McMahon speared Angle, I think you're dead wrong. Besides Christian, I was the only other person in the entire tournament who had the confidence to beat Angle. Everybody else was so totally scared of him, being a former WWF Champion and the defending King of the Ring. Everyone forgot, though, how tight Kurt and I were. He taught me quite a lot about himself, especially since he, like all of you, only considered me a tag team wrestler. Kurt never thought that I'd be standing across the ring from him trying to take something that belonged to him, namely the title of King of the Ring.
Welsh: I'm glad that you brought up Christian.
Christian: (Wildly swinging open the door to Edge's home) Did I hear someone call my name?
Edge: What the hell are you doing here? I told you that these guys were coming down to interview me today.
Christian: I know, that's why I'm here, bro. They can't interview the 2001 King of the Ring without interviewing his bestest brother, can they?
Burkett: Actually, Christian, we could do without your presence today.
Welsh: yeah, I'd agree with Harry on that one.
Christian: Oh yeah? Well, how were you going to interview the King of the Ring without his trophy? (Christian runs to the front door and quickly grabs the trophy, which he had apparently left outside.)
Edge: Gimme that! (Edge yanks the trophy out of Christian's hands.)
Christian: Wow, that was way uncool, man. Totally not a whole lot of heinosity there. I was only keeping it safe for you, bro.
Edge: You've been keeping it a little too safe for me, bro. I'll handle it from here.
Christian: Whatever you say, man. Just hand it back real quick. There's some smudges on it that I'd like to take care of.
Lenker: Excuse me, guys, but we're trying to conduct an interview here. Christian, you're more than welcome to hang out, if that's okay with Edge, of course.
Edge: Yeah, whatever, let's get on with this.
Lenker: Great. Since we have just stumbled upon what I view as a sore subject, Edge, how do you feel about Christian constantly stealing your sunshine?
Edge: What kind of loaded question is that, Lenker? He's sitting right here!
Lenker: That's all the answer I was looking for.
Edge: What's that supposed to mean?
Lenker: Well, your opposition to answering a difficult question about your brother in front of him confirms what I and every other wrestling fan out there things about you two right now.
Edge: And what's that, oh wrestling swami?
Lenker: that you two aren't awfully long for each other.
Christian: That's a bunch of bull! Edge and I are tight to the end! Nothing is gonna split us apart!
Burkett: Do you really expect us to believe that, Christian? We've all seen the way you've been fondling...
Welsh: Good word.
Burkett: ...the King of the Ring trophy. It's like you think you won the tournament and not Edge. Shouldn't Edge be able to enjoy something that he accomplished on his own without having to worry about you butting in?
Christian: I don't know what you're talking about. Edge likes how involved I am in his singles career, don't you man?
Edge: Yeah, whatever. Can we get off this subject?
Welsh: Sounds like a good idea. It's getting a little uncomfortable in here. Edge, having won the King of the Ring, where do you see your career going from here? It's not always the big boost people think it is.
Edge: Oh, this will be a big boost for me. I'm no Billy Gunn, if you know what I mean. It could really go any number of places. I'd like to recapture the Intercontinental Title. Back in July of 1999, I had a one-night reign as the I-C Champ, when I beat Jeff Jarrett for the belt in Toronto. Before going on to bigger things.
Welsh: Like the WWF title?
Edge: Yes, before going on to bigger things like the WWF title, I'd like to recapture the Intercontinental belt. I think it would help me get fully acclimatized to the singles division. Then it's on to the WWF title.
Christian: An being an eight-time WWF tag team champion sounds good, too. Right, Edge?
Lenker: Don't' answer that. You've already been through enough grief today. Thanks for your time. Anything you'd like to add in closing?
Edge: Yeah. Wanna know what I'm gonna do next? Watch the damn TV.
Credit Pro Wrestling Illustrated / November 2001