Matt Sydal spoke with RealSport on a number of wrestling topics. Here are some of the highlights:
"I mean, I guess? I don't know, I don't really watch it other than to watch my homies Neville and Tozawa kill it every night. I think it's pretty incredible, from the looks of their roster, seems like a lot of guys there are good but again, it's a lot of guys who're doing a weak ass version of the style that I've proliferated and the kind of style that I acquired from Dragon Gate which is exactly what Tozawa, Neville and Uhaa, Apollo Crews are doing. The guys are incredible, I'm not here to s--- on anyone else. But you know, when it comes to this cruiserweight title? I was in the WWE for a long time and there was no cruiserweight title, so I don't believe in boundaries and borders and guys of a certain size can only wrestle and work with guys of that same size. I am into all of it in wrestling.
The X-Division since its inception, has pushed the wrestling forward, has encouraged creative, original content and encouraged people who had not gotten an opportunity in wrestling to go out there and take their opportunity. So I think the X-Division, is similar to the cruiserweight division in that it is now guys' opportunities to make their stance, to take the spotlight. That's what I do every time I go out there, whether it's in the X-Division or for the world title, anywhere on Earth, we can just go out there to make a name for ourselves. I admire those guys and what they're swinging for, and their ideals. And I want them to keep chasing it down but I want everyone to know that there's a king of the X-Division, there's a king of the cruiserweights, a king of the junior heavyweights and that's Matt Sydal."
Others imitating him and wanting more wrestlers to be original:
"I wouldn't know because I don't watch people who imitate me. Personally, I think Ricochet has got a hell of a shooting star press. I love Neville's 360 shooter [Red Arrow], which is, quite possibly, more incredible than mine. Yeah, but everybody else is just a weak ass carbon copy of me, whether it goes from their kickpads to their belts to their armbands. I'm the trendsetter, I'm the leader in the industry and everybody else has just been following right behind me and I'm glad to be leading the group, I'm glad to be leading the charge. I welcome everybody to try and do all the moves that I do because the technique will never be as flawless as mine. It will never look as smooth and as crisp and it won't be as damaging as mine because I'm the originator and everyone else is a follower.
I encourage people to strive to be more creative, to push the boundaries of their own personal limits, to trust themselves, question authority and to not be a copier. To be an original is the truest form of this business. There are so many guys that have great characters and great abilities, and then there's also a lot of guys who are trying to do shooting star presses and be me. But, you know, everybody's gotta start somewhere. Well, I tell you what, if anyone else is bringing shooting stars to Impact, a guy like Andrew Everett, you know, I'm gunning for him. The way I see it, shooting star presses, there can only be one guy that does it and that's gonna be me and if anybody else wants to encroach on my territory, I will defend it."
Working for WWE back in 2008:
"I know when I was twenty-four, I was not ready for the opportunity but it came my way and I just had to scramble it and rely on my instincts and my training and you know, I survived. The way the industry was, in 2008, was for somebody like me to enter the WWE, it was very, it was almost a shocker, to the world because, what was going out online at that time, to make it into WWE, you have to be six feet tall and over two hundred and thirty pounds, you know, period. No ifs and or buts about it. But I knew that, just like reality, those rules are malleable, they can be changed. It was a little foggy and I took that first step out there and I could kinda see what Brian Kendrick and Paul London had done. I thought that there might be a step here, a stone to cross this river, to get across, and it was foggy and I think what I was able to do was to start blazing a little trail that everybody could start feeding into and creating their own path. Once they saw that once I overcame the barrier, it showed other people that that barrier is possible to overcome as well. If there's anything I'm proud of, it's that. It's that I empowered to people to say 'Hey, if he can do it, so can I,' and that's why you have guys like Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens on TV right now. It's been this great team effort. For me, I don't see the divisions in wrestling, I just see the boys in the back and the fans out there and everybody is working together."
You can read the full interview by clicking here.