Mountain Man Beard Products presents for the first time ever The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling getting a taste of its own medicine as John and Chad are joined by two guests at once and they are the mastermind's behind The Academy: School of Professional Wrestling, former WWE & TNA Impact Superstars Ken (Mr. Kennedy) Anderson and Shawn Daivari. In this EPIC 90+ minute interview Anderson and Daivari discuss the creation of their new training facility in Minneapolis, Minnesota and what they expect to accomplish by using their well-traveled experience to help break in incoming students. You can download the full episode at this link.
What led to the creation of The Academy:
ANDERSON: "Daivari and I have been best friends for the last sixteen years. A lot of people don't know that, we've never done anything on TV, we've never really alluded to it in our on screen presence but we started out riding up and down the highways and really humping it in the Mid-West and going to training seminars and trying to get dark matches and tryouts with WWE, ECW and with TNA and we didn't know anybody when we got into the business. We literally had to book and network and make our own contacts and claw and fight and scratch our way to where we got and Minneapolis (where the Academy is located) used to be a huge hot bed for professional wrestling and some of the greatest names ever in the history of business have come out of this place and it sort of died down over the last ten years or so and there are no wrestling schools in the Twin Cities. There are 5.8 million people here and we thought it is time to do something and I think we bring a lot to the table, I think we are two guys that know what it takes and what WWE is looking for and what IMPACT (TNA) are looking for and we hope to give our students an opportunity that we never had. It is kind of like a parent wanting to have the best for his kids."
Finally deciding to pull the trigger and put the concept together:
ANDERSON: "It is something that we have been talking about for a long, long time. I'm a guy that I feel like I have to have all my ducks in a row and everything needs to be lined up and everything needs to be perfectly placed before I pull the trigger and I think with my podcast my co-host at the time said let's just get it off the ground and let's get running and we can tweak it and add or subtract as we go along and that is sort of what Daivari said. He said let's just do this."
Finding the right student and do you have anything in mind you specifically look for:
DAIVARI: "One thing I've always saw is successful people in any facet of entertainment before they even have that talent or learn it or express it you just can see that this is a guy that walks into a room and makes everyone's head turn. Me and Ken have had this conversation that when he was in high school or when I was in high school before we even thought about wrestlers or people with jobs we were like that. Not because we were great wrestlers or great athletes or entertainers but because when we walked into a classroom within a couple of days people would say come see this kid Ken in my class who is hilarious or watch this kid Shawn he always f*cks with the teacher and it's really funny and you see that right away. I've never met a successful wrestler who doesn't have a billion stories that sound identical to me."
ANDERSON: "There is not necessarily a cookie cutter formula for who is going to be successful and who the right candidate is. Everyone has a different story. How many people thought Mick Foley would ever amount to anything in the wrestling business? He did it on his own."
DAIVARI: "It is the same thing with me. I did not have very much exposure when I came to WWE. I did some stuff with Ring of Honor right before I got signed but that was the only National exposure I had for the most part and nobody knew what I did. When people see my old stuff, they are blown away from who they saw on TV to the guy who said I want to be a pro wrestler. I love the guy but think of someone like Spike Dudley and you think that Spike Dudley is ten times the wrestling superstar of this Shawn Daivari kid and that is how unlikely I was to ever make it. I never put it past anyone because something could click and this guy could be someone someday."
Having Molly Holly On Board to help train the incoming female students:
DAIVARI: "Molly Holly and I have been friends for a really long time and one thing that nobody knows is there are a couple girls that at that time and today the girls are amazing but at that time she was wrestling with more or less models. She was the only one that could have good matches. When Trish Stratus really didn't know anything (she turned out to be a really good wrestler) but when she didn't know anything it was Molly Holly's job to take on this model from Toronto who doesn't really know how to wrestle but she has eight minutes a night and if you have someone who doesn't know how to wrestle and you get eight minutes live on TV and they are nervous and they are scared and they are in their tenth match then you can make them look like they know what they are doing and that is the person I can guarantee is who is going to be one of the best trainers you are ever going to work with. That is Molly's secret and no one knows that she was this mechanic at a time and place when female mechanics didn't exist. Eventually when she left you saw the quality of inexperienced girls matches go down."
ANDERSON: "I think she is going to be a fantastic trainer and I know she is going to be a great trainer because she genuinely cares about people. She cares about individuals and we all know that she is a completely selfless person. We all know that everyone learns differently and people learn at different paces and they use different techniques to learn and I think she is one that can really break down the individual and say this person needs a shout (even though I don't think Molly Holly would ever shout at anybody) but she will be able to determine what each individual needs."
Please visit the OFFICIAL Facebook page of The Academy: School of Professional Wrestling and please listen to the full 90+ minute interview. Both Daivari and Anderson comment on TNA's future, their time with the company as well as highlights from their respective tenures in WWE as well as much more about their brand new training academy. Follow the Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling on Twitter @TwoManPowerTrip and please subscribe to TMPToW on iTunes, YouTube, Google Play, Spreaker, Player FM, Tune In Radio.