Kalisto is a perfect fit for WWE's cruiserweight division, but it took him almost a year to join 205 Live. On a recent episode of the In This Corner podcast, Kalisto discussed the rise of the division and much more.
It was just a few weeks ago that Kalisto was added to the cruiserweight division and it didn't take him long to win the Cruiserweight Championship. Cruiserweights have recently main-evented RAW and earned a higher priority on the card. Kalisto lost the title to Enzo Amore on Sunday at TLC, but it's clear he will likely be a staple in the title picture for the foreseeable future. Kalisto said he has high hopes for the division and raised the possibility of cruiserweights headlining pay-per-views in the future.
"I think it's great," Kalisto said of the division. "When it first opened, I felt that it was the best thing because I felt that those Cruiserweights are going to display their art inside and outside the ring; meaning, they are going to display the best of the best, and now, who knew we were going to close out Monday Night Raw? We've been headlining Monday Night Raw; it's been surreal as I never imagined that it would happen but it's just happened, so we actually work hard and keep working hard, things happen.
"It might take some time and hard work but things do happen. I saw my opportunity and the unfairness that was happening I just took a stand. I know and worked with almost half of the roster of 205 Live and I know them before WWE, and I know what they can do, and know the new talent, which is great. I believe that 205 Live can take it to another level, and who knows? Maybe 205 Live can headline a WWE Pay-Per-View? Who knows? Anything is possible. That is the thing about WWE that I love."
Kalisto also took the time to pay homage to the cruiserweight division of the early 1990's. He named Eddie Guerrero and Rey Mysterio as his main influence while also praising originators of the division like Chris Jericho and Chris Benoit. He said he hopes to take what these cruiserweights did and elevate it to new heights.
"I always say that they [Jericho, Guerrero, Benoit, Mysterio] changed the game. They are the reason why we are here because not only did they do amazing stuff, but we are taking it to another level. We are taking it to a level people haven't seen it. There is still more to show," Kalisto said. "The Cruiserweights in the 90's and from then on, they motivated us to push even more harder because they are great inspiration. Like you said, Eddie Guerrero and Rey Mysterio, they were my inspirations. There are so many Cruiserweights that inspired me, but Eddie Guerrero and Rey Mysterio made an impact on everybody. I believe that they are the reason why we are here because we want to make a name for ourselves and make a big noise. I believe this is a start."
Kalisto's said he's also a big fan Rob Van Dam. His high-flying style has often drawn comparisons to Van Dam, who was one of the most exciting superstars to watch during his prime.
"I am a big Rob Van Dam fan. I'm a big fan of every style. Like, Rey Mysterio had his own style; Rob Van Dam had his own style, even a wrestler from Japan that I also admired was Hyabusa; he also had his own style, but Rob Van Dam, like his entrance is one of a kind. He is one of a kind. He is one of the guy's too that inspired me where I said, wow, this guy can go," Kalisto said. "I was a fan of Jean Claude Van Damme movies and how he does the splits, and I can do the splits, it inspired me and helped me push. I guess you can say there is a little bit of Jean Claude in me because I was a fan. Everybody in the company grew up as a fan and they were inspired somehow and somewhere and were inspired differently and are now working their dream job."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit In This Corner with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Source: In This Corner
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.