If he was ready to take the next step during his heyday in WWE:
"Yeah I absolutely was ready, it would've been -- we would've created a new star right then and there. But WWE -- like I talked about in there with the ankle injury, they were never gonna let it happen. If you looked at the merchandise numbers and how well we were doing on everything - some nights beating John Cena. If you look at now with the NXT people and they give them all the merchandise in the world, I had to fight to get all the merchandise that I had and I still had a quarter of what John had at the time or half of what he had. And they wouldn't let me go anymore, as where now they can't make enough stuff for people. They were not allowing me that opportunity when the numbers where there and the crowd was supporting me because of my situation. They weren't going to have it.
"So they took it all away as you saw, the heel turn. Vince personally came up to me and told me 'I want your merchandise to tank, let it tank.' So from a business standpoint you can't be a heel - 'I don't want you selling merchandise as a heel.' Kevin Owens was a heel, Seth Rollins was a heel, and all their other heels still have merchandise. So explain that. And it all goes back to my ankle situation."
His dream match and where it would take place:
"That's to be determined, I've talked about how Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania is a money matchup if built up properly. I talked about it in a day and age when there is very few men on TV. As far as how people are perceived, and there is an exceptional amount of talent up there. Just that casual viewer, I feel like that superstar look I feel like that's missing today and I felt like that's part of the appeal to Ryback. Not only to the kids but to the adults also, that having - and it's a hard thing to do today. Where kids will like somebody like Roman Reigns, where the adults aren't necessarily - and that's not his fault per say. At all. I think Ryback vs. Brock is the match I would want to go back for."
Connecting with the parents of WWE fans:
"You want to extend your belief and I've always -- especially during those hotter periods, it always felt good to me when the dads of the kids wanted to meet me as much. Like they were as excited as the kids, I knew I was doing something right. Because the dad's reaction, because the kids like wrestling but to get the parents, that's hard to do. So that was hard for me, that period, to throw that all away and let -- cause you can't create that stuff overnight. You can get it back but it takes time, but we had it instantly."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit The Buzzards Wrestling Podcast with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Source: The Buzzards Wrestling Podcast