Ted Dibiase Jr. Talks Signing With WWE, His Father's Reaction, HBK, Daniel Bryan's Success, More
But, as I started to progress, I really picked things up pretty quickly. Then I got invited to go to Japan and work a couple tours with Pro Wrestling Noah, and the feedback was very positive. So, he started to get excited, and it started changing then where he was like, "Ok. Maybe he can do this." Then the interest grew and finally we had something to talk about because I was a big soccer player. I don't think a lot of people know that, but I was a huge soccer player in high school and he just didn't get soccer. He played football. I played football too. I was a lineman, quarterback and a receiver. So, we love sports but he didn't know soccer and he didn't know the quarterback role or receiver role. So, now he could tell me. Then the education, when I started picking his brain about wrestling, it was cool man. We were talking every day and he was just ripping my matches apart, which was disheartening sometimes, but I know I needed it.
Wrestling INC: It wasn't that long after your, you were in Japan that you signed the developmental deal with the WWE and less than a year from that you made your debut. Did you think you were ready? It happened really fast.
Dibiase: I honestly never expected in a million years for it to happen that fast. You know, I'm pretty gutsy. Was I completely ready? I don't know, I mean I've seen, I think a lot of the guys get put on the road before they're completely ready. The problem is, there is not a lot of guys to learn from. The way you learn this business is, you work with people who are better than you, you work with the veterans. I wasn't working with any veterans and the only way I was gonna work with veterans is if I go on the road. So, that's when the real learning process began because you kinda plateau when you're in the developmental, you feel like it's so far under you actually get in ring with, you know, top guys. I was fortunate to work with Taker, and Hunter, and Shawn Michaels and Randy Orton. So that was when I really began to get a grasp of the art of what we do. But, I was ready to go, man. I wasn't gonna tell them not I'm not ready, don't bring me up.
Wrestling INC: It seems like when I talk to a lot of, when talk to multi-generational wrestlers, they'll talk about how it's easier to break into the business, but it's much harder to get pushed or develop your own character, or get to the top because the expectations are so much higher. A lot of people instantly see your father, your grandfather. Is that kind of what you experienced?
Dibiase: 100%. I was actually offered a developmental contract before I even stepped in a ring and I didn't wanna do that because part of that, that stigma. I wanted to really earn the respect of the guys, and hopefully fans that [thought], "Hey, he did it the hard way." But, yeah, that is a little easier for us to get our foot in the door, but it's like microscope is on you and they're watching you. Everybody's comparing you to your father, and mine just happened to be really good. They were watching me saying, "Is he gonna be as good as his dad?" I'll be the first to tell you - I'm definitely not as good as my dad, but my dad had 23 years of experience and worked with some of the best. So, it's just hard, and it's harder today to really learn the craft.
Wrestling INC: You were put into Legacy, and you were talking about some of the guys you got to work with. Undertaker and Triple H and Shawn Michaels. What were some of your favorite matches during that time?
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