After shifting his focus from professional football to pro wrestling, Riddick Moss signed with WWE's developmental territory, NXT. In his time with the company, Moss has had different ring names, tag team partners, and gimmicks, but he's now more confident than ever that he's prepared to take on the challenges of the main roster.
Moss has been recently represented by his new manager in the ring, Robert Strauss, formerly known as Robbie E in TNA/Impact Wrestling. He's been having a pleasant experience along the way, especially since Strauss has assisted him in snagging some side bookings.
"It was a natural chemistry between [Robert and I]," Moss explained to the Not So Sam Podcast. "Right away we started working together here and there and I knew he was, obviously, very charismatic and talented, and I was excited to try working with him. It was only recently that I realized that he is really my agent. He is absolutely aware of himself by setting up the interview with Sam Roberts; he set up the TMZ article as well."
Moss went into even greater detail about the dynamic between the duo, revealing that Strauss' work ethic is on par with his own. Riddick now better understands the extent some superstars go to in promoting the brand, whether that be podcast appearances, working the live crowds, or opening yourself up to vulnerability.
"He is taking it as serious as he possibly can, and it is really cool to work with someone who - I like to pride myself on my work ethic, Rob is always trying to match it and always coming up with ways on how we can make what we are doing better," Moss explained. "And continue to do what we are doing - push it and get it out there. For me, that is especially cool because I think the way I grew up and how I came up through football, hard work for me was putting my head down, and doing the physical work, and doing the mental work, but just on my own. I wasn't looking to open up my personal life and let people in. I always love working in front of a live crowd, and to do something like this podcast, Robert has shown me that this is something that I need to do and he has also made it happen, quite literally. He is absolutely my real agent and I couldn't be more pleased with him."
Despite the positive experiences that are resulting from his time working with Strauss, Moss does indeed harbor some disappointment in the lengthy delay in his call up to WWE's main roster. Moss signed his developmental contract in 2014 and has yet to hold any gold in NXT or make an appearance on the main roster of WWE.
"It's a bit of [frustration] because I came in with Finn Balor and Kevin Owens; I came in at the same time with them," Moss said. "I was aware, and wasn't delusional, and thought that I would beat Finn Balor at an NXT:TakeOver or something like that. I was aware that there were circumstances for everybody coming in, but I changed my mindset and started to think that I need to continue to grind away, and trust in the process, and let everything play out. I was doing well and getting good feedback, so it didn't really occur to me that I needed to do more than that.
"It's just this balance of you have to be willing to let go of things you can't control, but at the same time, put your full effort into things so that you can control, and you have to have patience with that," Moss continued. "Put your full effort into whatever you are doing personality wise and whatever you are doing in the ring, and when it doesn't happen right away, you have to be willing to just say that it doesn't matter and continue to improve in spite of that. It is so easy to say and so much harder to do, but it is something that I try to get better at each and everyday. Going into it, I thought I had the right mindset, but as I have been in this longer and longer, more and more has opened up to me and realized there is so much more you can do."
Moss commends stars like Finn Balor, Dash Wilder, and Scott Dawson for the time they contributed in helping him develop his skills when thhey first came to NXT. He initially didn't grasp just how challenging being a WWE superstar was going to be. Moss, however, continues to improve and apply the teaching of his coaches.
"Everytime in professional wrestling where I thought I would have figured it out, a month later, my world would completely turn upside down," Moss stated. "I did know that there was a ton to learn. I did not come in with the attitude that this was going to be easy by any means, but I didn't realize how much I didn't know. Even coming in with Finn Balor - Finn was real friendly to me. He helped take me under his wing, and really helped me out, and it was a bit of a process learning the WWE style that they wanted but of course, with a bigger learning curve. Just to see how good he was and how long he was doing it, yet he still had more to learn, I knew I had more work to do, and I just hung around with guys like Finn Balor. Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson were also great to me.
"I tried to soak in as much as I could, and I am still trying to do that, and it is crazy because everyone has different experiences in pro wrestling," Moss continued. "Everyone comes from different backgrounds in the industry, or out of the industry, and they bring a different perspective. We have so many great coaches and great minds at the Performance Center that you just have to soak it all in. And it may even be a little overwhelming at times, because like I said, you are working on something from a piece of advice that someone gave you, and you are trying to figure it out, and you think that you got this, and it makes sense and is getting the reactions I want to, and then someone else will tell you a new piece of advice that once you watch your match back, you realize that they are right, and that there are things you need to improve upon. So that is another balance - that you cannot do too much at one time and cannot over complicate things. You just have to continue to try and get better. I don't anticipate it ever ending."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Not Sam Wrestling Podcast with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.