Booker T: I'm definitely a fan to a certain degree, but it's not something that I would want to do. It's not something that I would want my kid to do. It's a gladiator sport. Back in the days, when one guy lost, he got killed, he got thrown to the lions. That's pretty much what UFC is.
You see guys get their arms broken, you see these guys get their knees torn out. And it leaves them in a certain position for the rest of their lives. So, I'm thinking about the livelihood being more important than anything.
To see a guy get kneed in the nose -- you know, that could really screw him up for the rest of his life. I'm not a fan of certain parts of it, but I'm a fan of the warrior spirit.
WrestlingINC: Also during that time, you became King of the Ring and you had your run as King Booker which is probably one of the most memorable runs that people really remember with you winning the World title as King Booker. How much of that was you as far as coming up with the accent, the pinky and things like that?
Booker T: All of it. [Laughs.]
WrestlingINC: No one suggested that you do the pinky and stuff like that?
Booker T: No one suggested any of my antics as King Booker. None, zero. They were writing words for me, but then I would change the words and say them however I wanted to. Creatively, the origins of King Booker was something I thought about because when everybody would win the King of the Ring tournament, their character would act the same. They would never act like a king.
I was like, 'I'm going to act like a king if I become King Booker.' I thought about it and I studied the Pope, the King of Scotland just as far as people to watch. I just took on a different persona that people could remember forever more. With everybody that won the King of the Ring, they're not going to think about them first, they're going to think about King Booker. Then, they're going to think about who (else) won the King of the Ring.
WrestlingINC: Right. I think with the Kings of the Ring, yourself along with Macho Man when he did the Macho King thing and Harley Race back in the day...
Booker T: Yeah, I think we're the three most revered kings. It's a close race between myself and Macho Man, I think I got him beat on antics alone.
Booker T: Eh, it was like a vacation, like a paid vacation. I didn't do much there and I wasn't in a lot of angles or anything there and they didn't know what to do with me. I really wanted to help the AJ's and the Bobby Roode's and guys like that but they didn't have any direction.
So, for me, I just came to work, did my antics -- I had an African accent there. [Laughs.] So, I'd come to work, do my deal and go home for two weeks. So, it was easy and I needed the detox, I needed a breather.
And still be on television. I didn't want to not be on television because, like I said, out of sight is out of mind. So, I just wanted to take a break but still be on television to keep people thinking about me. Even though the television exposure was not that relevant, I was still doing my thing. I was still in the mix and wrestling on a fairly regular basis. So, I was still in the game, I didn't let the machine get all rusty.