Ring of Honor's PCO recently took the time for an in-depth interview with Sportingnews.com. Among the topics discussed, PCO looked back on his first time being a part of the WWE roster and the controversial way in which he, and others, were released from the company. PCO also anticipates a successful future, and he revealed that ROH has assured him of big plans ahead.
PCO explained that his newfound determination and success as a performer can be attributed to wisdom he's gained through a life in the professional wrestling business. Listening to others, eating right, and learning gymnastics are a few of the tactics PCO incorporates in to his everyday life in hopes to see further success.
"With age comes experience and I'm now at a point in my life where I'm wise enough to realize what I need to do to achieve success, and more importantly, to be happy" PCO said. "I listen to people more these days, when there was a time when I would only listen to myself. I've been wrestling since I was 16 years old so I've been around this crazy world long enough to make my own mistakes and see the mistakes made by others. Back in the day, I would react a lot more different to how I'd handle things now, but to do that takes time and I think that's a big reason why I'm enjoying wrestling today.
"I've listened so much more in the last 18 months than what I have in the 30 years before," PCO continued. "When I made the decision to go all the way with the PCO character, I had to put everything into it. I started to eat right, live right, look after my body so I could give myself the best possible chance of realizing my dream of becoming a world champion in one of the big companies. I enrolled in gymnastics class to get as flexible as possible and now I'm doing moonsaults and backflips easier than I could ever manage. If this is going to be my last run then I had to give it everything from the start."
In WWE, PCO was recognized as Jean-Pierre LaFitte, a descendant of the real-life pirate named Jean LaFitte. Despite a three month feud with Bret Hart and a hopeful future, backstage issues with The Kliq's Shawn Michaels and Diesel would result in PCO's release from WWE. PCO claims that his relationship with Vince McMahon seemed intact after everything occurred, however, WWE "wasn't a nice place to work" and they promptly let him go.
"[The Kliq] had Vince McMahon's ear, I still think I was okay with Vince because he gave the Jean Pierre Lafitte character a lot of support, and allowed me to work with Bret Hart on a regular basis," PCO explained. "Today in 2019, it's very easy to blame the likes of Diesel and Shawn Michaels for whatever happened back then, but I could've handled the situation a lot better too. The main issue for me is that these guys were playing around with the livelihoods of so many people and they didn't care about what financial pressures people were under. The amount of wrestlers they kept down or got fired just so they could keep the money and spotlight on themselves was something that I thought needed to be spoken up about.
"My biggest falling out with them came when I refused to do a job for Diesel when we were working in Montreal," PCO said. "I'd been told the plan was to go back there at some point for another match and I don't believe it made sense for me to lose clean. This made them all go a little bit crazy and soon after I was gone from the WWE. Vince still held me in some regard because he came to me with other ideas, but it wasn't a nice place to work and I got my release a little bit later."
With the stable of Villain Enterprises following alongside him, PCO is ready to make waves in the world of Ring of Honor. PCO revealed that ROH made a big fuss about signing him and they've acknowledged that there are big plans in his future.
"Several things jumped out at me. First, they have a locker room full of the best wrestlers in the world who go out there every single night and never give less than 100% to the fans," PCO said. "Secondly, they made a big fuss of me and convinced me that my future there was going to be a memorable one. When you've spent the bulk of your whole career trying desperately to convince people that you have what it takes and they're unsure, it becomes frustrating. Ring of Honor made it clear from our very first conversation that they wanted me, that they had big plans for me, and that they were fully behind PCO. I've only been here a very short time as it was December when I signed, but I'm happy so far, and please keep watching our shows because they're only going to get better."