Kenny King was one of the big stars from the ROH-NJPW G1 Supercard last year in Madison Square Garden. He kicked off that show by winning the 30-man Honor Rumble which featured many of the stars that King grew up watching.
He recalled what that moment meant to him with it being the first non-WWE MSG match in over 80 years when he joined The Wrestling Inc Daily podcast.
“It’s the moment of my career so far. I grew up in New York City and I remember my dad taking me to Madison Square Garden. I think it was Macho Man vs. Honky Tonk Man because I was a big Macho Man fan,” recalled King. “When they said we might be running Madison Square Garden, I felt a certain way. Then it happened and we sold it out the same day. It was still surreal until I broke the curtain and not only having all of those things happen and being one of three people in the ring with The Great Muta ? well the not-so-great Muta because he spit that crap in my eyes ? but the not-so-great Muta and Jushin Thunder Liger, 10-year-old Kenny could have died right there and been just fine. It’s still something that when I look at pictures and I look back, I can’t even believe that was me and I’m doing it.”
King is a part of an ROH Roundtable which discusses racial issues in the country and the roundtable is hosted by ROH commentator Ian Riccaboni. King discussed how Riccaboni got the call to host these panels.
“A lot of people don’t know this but amongst the brothers, Riccaboni’s name is Ricky Bones [laughs]. Ian is a very intelligent guy who is more or less the voice of ROH. It kind of felt natural for Ian to be the facilitator and help move things along,” said King. “I think a lot of our fan base is very comfortable with Ian. They trust Ian and he is somebody who’s been outspoken on various causes and different issues. So, a lot of people trust Ian and I think Ian is a good neutral place to start.”
These roundtables come on the heels of the recent social unrest in America and King revealed how ROH decided to conduct them.
“I’ve gotta give ROH 100 percent credit. It was them who broached the subject. It was after a Zoom meeting and I had gotten an email from Kevin Eck who is one of our contributing writers and works behind the scenes. He let me know the powers that be were interested in doing something like that and having a roundtable about the issues of the day,” stated King. “They thought that myself, Shane and Caprice would be great for it. Initially they were like, ‘What do you think we should do? Should we do it in a tape form, a podcast or video?’ We immediately all said, ‘Zoom’ as it’s a situation where everybody can be live and unfiltered and give their honest opinion.”
King then talked about what it means to him for ROH to allow them to talk openly about these issues.
“It just reinforces what myself and the ROH locker room already knows. ROH and Sinclair, they are fully invested in us, not only as wrestlers or toy products, but as people, what we do and our families. Joe Koff, [General Manager] Greg [Gilleland], they’ve proven time and time again that they are interested in us for who we are,” stated King. “It meant a lot to me to not have to wonder, ‘Oh man, these guys don’t care or think about us.’ It meant a lot to me, not only just for them to say, ‘What do you think about this’, but let’s have all of our black stars who have a point of view and let’s get them together. There was nothing that they said that we couldn’t talk about. There was no subject taboo. They put no restraints on us and that is a continued reflection of Ring of Honor.”
Kenny King is a panelist on the new ROH Roundtable sessions addressing racial issues in the United States of America and pro wrestling. You can check out the debut ROH Roundtable by clicking HERE. Kenny’s full interview aired as part of a recent episode of our podcast, The Wrestling Inc. Daily. Subscribe to get the latest episodes as soon as it’s released Monday – Friday afternoon by clicking here.