An in-ring veteran and current Impact Wrestling star, Rhyno, recently spoke with Wrestling Inc.'s Andy Malnoske about his legendary career in pro wrestling. Rhyno revealed that popular independent wrestler Reckless Youth first came up with the unique way of spelling his ring name.
"Probably the English language, back when they discovered the animal the rhinoceros," Rhyno joked. "I remember D'Lo Brown coming up to me at a show in Detroit, but I heard Reckless Youth, Edge & Christian were on the show, but I think Reckless was the first one to actually say it. Or something like that, so, I'll give him credit. [Or], I came up with it.
"The spelling too; actually, the 'R-H-Y-N-O' came from Joe Legend," Rhyno continued. "When I signed with WWE, they go, 'We can't use [Rhino]', and they go, 'Well, trademark'. I think they wanted to come up with a different name to make it their own. And I told Joe that and he goes, 'Why don't they just use a Y?' I'm like, 'Yeah, I'll pitch it.' So after about five weeks, they go, 'Yeah, your name is Rhyno with a Y, you're starting tonight.' I'm like, 'Oh, cool.'"
Rhyno thought back to his run as the final World Heavyweight Champion and World Television Champion during the original wave of ECW. He's glad that he is still able to access that similar, uncensored side of himself while helping this breed of talent develop in Impact Wrestling.
"A lot of fans really enjoy that [ECW Rhyno], and they want to see that Rhyno again. This run, that's what I'm giving them," Rhyno explained. "Impact - they just go, 'Alright, here's a microphone or here's a camera, just you be you and cuss.' I'm like 'You want me to cuss? And you're gonna pay me?!' But yeah, they're like, 'Just let us have it.' He gave it to us before and a lot of fans really liked that and, especially, I'm able to work with guys like Tommy Dreamer again, and Rob Van Dam, and Moose, a lot of younger talent like Michael Elgin, and Tessa Blanchard - wow! Sami Callihan, I mean, it's just that you've got so many talented men and women there. And it's fun to be in that locker room, too."
In July of this year, Rhyno shocked the world when he appeared on Impact TV almost immediately after his contract with WWE was finished. Rhyno explained that things were left on good terms with the company, however, he made the shift to Impact because he sees himself as a more useful asset to their roster.
"It was a great experience with WWE; they treated me great. I enjoyed wrestling with [Heath] Slater, tagging with Slater, traveling with Slater, he's got kids," Rhyno said with a smirk. "And you know, we talked about re-signing and they offered me more than double what I was making. Way more than double.
"I just didn't want to - because there's a lot of men and women there, my job is to try and help the younger talent out and try to discover guys like The Rock, the next Stone Cold, and all that. And I think I can service the wrestling business more on a level like Impact Wrestling and on the independent scene too. So it's very important for guys that have been wrestling for so many years to help out the younger generation because the guys that came before me helped me out a lot."
Rhyno's full interview with Wrestling Inc. aired as part of today's episode of our WINCLY podcast. It can be heard via the embedded audio player at the bottom of this post, or watched via the video player at the top of this post.