Eric Young Talks Daniel Bryan Comparisons, Winning TNA Title, Changing His Character, More
Mike Chiari: Now that you're world champion, do you feel any added pressure to continue trending in the direction of a more serious character as you try to establish yourself in the main event?
For the storylines I've been involved in, that's what it called for. I'm never going to lose my sense of humor. I was a class clown when I was a kid, I've always been the funny guy and I've always liked making people laugh, and that's not going to stop. It will just be a different brand, a different style, a different way of being funny. I'm funny on my show that airs on Animal Planet. I'm not silly on the show, I'm not goofy and all that other stuff; I'm just kinda me. That's the version of Eric Young that you're going to get. It's important for me to be funny, and that's what made me popular. That's what got me over with the fans in the first place and I won't lose that. As far as adding an edge, when you're rolling around in tacks with the monster Abyss, it's hard to crack jokes. There's nothing really funny about that. But yeah, it's a cool challenge for me because that's what I have been for the last five to eight years, and this is a whole new world for me. I can do it. I know I can. I've always known that and I'm dying to show people.
Brandon Galvin: Eric, you've been playing the underdog role for the majority of your career. Now that you're champion and everybody is targeting you, will this change your state of mind on how you approach your matches?
I still look at it as being the underdog. My face is not really the face of a champion and my body may not be the body of a champion, but I bring something completely different and I think that is what wrestling fans have latched onto. I'm a wrestling fan since I was five and I am one of them. People can relate to me. I'm a wrestling fan. I've been a wrestling geek my whole life. My VHS tapes are still at my house and my VCR is still hooked up so I can watch old tapes. I'm a bit of a nerd that way.
Donald Wood: There have been comparisons between your championship victory and Daniel Bryan's in WWE at WrestleMania—you both won two matches in one night and have a super-sweet beard—What are your thoughts on the comparisons?
I definitely see the comparisons. Like you said, we both have sweet beards, we both won two matches, were both world heavyweight champion and I don't think either of us are prototypical champions. That's what makes us special. Anytime someone wants to make a comparison between me and Daniel Bryan, go ahead and knock yourself out. He's a super talented guy. I never met him personally, but I know lots of guys that know him and he's a nice guy. I listened to his interview on Steve Austin's podcast and he sounds like he's a cool dude. Anytime anyone wants to compare me to him, they can go right ahead.
Mike Chiari: There was once a time in pro wrestling where guys had to be a certain size to get the top title, but do you feel wrestlers like yourself and Daniel Bryan have helped throw those prerequisites out the window?
I think that kind of world has been on a downward spiral for awhile. Guys like Chris Jericho and Eddie Guerrero opened the door for guys my size and Daniel Bryan's size. It's not so much about being 6'5" and this massive person anymore. I'm not a huge guy, but I'm a good size. I'm about 235 pounds. Comparatively, I'm a pretty decent sized guy, but I think that perception is a thing of the past. People just care about having a good product and I know we can supply that.
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