TNA Star Joe Hendry Discusses Living His Dream 'In Real Time' On WWE NXT

Joe Hendry's name was said on "WWE NXT," so the TNA Wrestling star appeared on the show to take part in the Number One Contender's Battle Royal for the NXT Championship. Though Hendry was the first eliminated, the crowd's response to the star was hot and even quantifiable, with his debut becoming the top video for WWE on social media since WrestleMania. Hendry recently spoke about his "NXT" debut on "Busted Open Radio," noting that he was living the dream.


"There are so few moments like this in life, you have to enjoy every moment of it," he said. "All jokes aside, Tommy [Dreamer], you spoke to me about the importance of taking a moment to enjoy those moments and those reactions and just appreciate them when they come."

Hendry also spoke about his entrance and explained it was a bit different than what he does in TNA. He said the changes with "NXT" production actually helped him soak in the moment. He compared it to Chris Jericho's old entrance, with turning around to the audience, so he was on the stage for a little while longer than usual.

"I hadn't really prepared for how long that would feel in real time," Hendry said. "But actually there was about 20 seconds that was like, 'I can actually just take this in.' And then the comments, people are saying, 'You can see that's a genuine moment' that I'm having with the crowd, and that's me looking up going, 'Thanks guys. Thank you.' Because I just feel that the fans had my back that day."


Joe Hendry's NXT debut felt like total validation

Joe Hendry said that he felt like the "NXT" fans had his back for his debut, noting that he still hasn't processed it yet. Despite that fact, Hendry was happy about things happening so quickly, because he didn't have time to overthink. He said his debut exceeded his expectations and he has his iconic theme song, in part, to thank, though he still didn't initially think it would help get him over.


"I started to [think] like, 'Okay, this could be a bit of a moment here,'" he said. "Stars at the PC, a lot of them were talking about my song and that started to get me to think. A couple of the producers were saying they were expecting a big reaction, and I kind of just started to get this rumbling that, 'Oh, more people know this song and my act and are familiar with me than perhaps I had realized.'"

Following the hype over his debut and its massive response on social media, Hendry said it doesn't feel real. He called the experience validating, especially after struggling in another industry for so long before making the jump to professional wrestling.

"I was in music for 10 years with no success, and recently I just had a song that charts, and I was like, 'Damn, that's validation,'" he said. "And then to go out there and just have this feeling like I had something to offer the business, and just go out there and get that reaction."


If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Busted Open Radio" and provide a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.