AEW World Champion Jon Moxley was on a recent episode of Busted Open where he again talked about his change from WWE to AEW. Moxley has talked about before on hitting rock bottom in WWE, and he reiterated his analogy of being asleep for a long time and awakening after leaving WWE on Busted Open.
“It’s not even comparable. I’ve talked about it lid ad-nauseam,” Moxley noted. “It’s all the same story a million times. It really was like I was asleep for years. Without getting into it, I was in a much deeper like, mentally dead state that I realized could’ve been in a deeper depression than I realized.
“I feel it was going to be life in there, get all of the money, and get out while the getting was good. My body is still somewhat operable and I think getting hurt kind of gave me an opportunity to rethink things, while I was sitting at home rehabbing.”
Moxley has admitted that he has become a different person since leaving WWE. He continued talking about how he no longer has a script handed to him.
“It’s really really that simple,” Moxley stated. “I mean it’s a lot of things and the most based simple thing, is they don’t give me a script. Like if I had to boil it down to one thing that drove me crazier than anything, was the fact that I got handed a script and told what to say.”
Moxley currently works a brawler-type style as part of his approach to added more believablity in wrestling and treating it like a real fight. He detailed more about why that is important in wrestling.
“100%. That’s what sucks people in,” Moxley pointed out. “It’s the personality, the stories, and relating to the story or the person on some level and just like any other TV show, or like any other movie as far as the scores and stuff, and in the match, if it’s real to you, it can’t be real to anybody else unless it’s real to you. You’re trying to swell violence and intensity like you got to be in the moment and you got to have the intense to hurt your opponent for the duration of the match.
“That’s what I try to bring to matches at AEW. Try to make them real fights like, I’ll work myself off sometimes like I truly like almost believe that I truly hate my opponent at times. Bigger matches at times where I would have been like the pressure is really on. I got into my mind that I hate this dude and believe I hate this dude. I walk to the ring, I’m about to f–k him up. It helps portray that. If you don’t believe it, nobody else is going to believe it.”
Moxley was asked if there are any young talent in AEW that stands out to him. He didn’t name one person highlighting that many young talents in AEW, but he did praise his tag team partner on tonight’s Dynamite, Darby Allin calling him “the next Jeff Hardy”.
“There’s multiple, and I don’t want to leave anybody out, but there’s a bunch of good talents on the way up,” Moxley said. “You got the MJF’s, the Jungleboy’s and all that. They’re so lucky to be in this kind of environment to be able to like foster their growth and not be hindered or any kind of boxes or anything like that. The Joey Janella’s, the Darby.”
“Darby, I’m teaming with in a tag match against Cage and Ricky Starks, another really awesome young talent. I worked with him on an Indie show before AEW started and I gave him a Snapmare and somehow, he took a piledriver on top of his head. The crowd was like ‘OHHHH’ and what the hell dude, I’m just trying to snapmare you, but I was like, ‘Ohhhh, he’s going to be the next Jeff Hardy’ He’s got that innate ability like every single bump that he takes make him look like he’s dead. So I was like, ‘Yeah, something there for sure’.”
The all important 18-49 demo has been one of the biggest topics in the Wednesday Night War. It has come to a point where Chris Jericho has brought it up enough to become the “Demo God”. Moxley have his opinion on why the key demo is so important.
“Definitely good for the future, because we need that. You need wrestling to be cool, and it needs to be like acceptable,” Moxley admitted. “I watched wrestling my whole life. Imagine you know, feel like a 19-year-old college kid and you’re like, ship is coming over. You got wrestling on, and you don’t want to look like a geek that watches wrestling.
“If it’s like something stupid on the TV, like turn it off. You want it to be with everybody in the room watching it and be like, ‘Oh that’s cool’. You want everyone in the family to be watching it. I think wrestling needs to be cool again.”
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Busted Open with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Mehdy Labriny contributed to this article.