Wrestling Inc. President Raj Giri recently sat down with Matt Sydal on The Wrestling Inc. Daily podcast where Sydal discussed how he has changed his wrestling style throughout his 20-year career. Before delving into that, Sydal spoke on Triple H helping him out during his career and revealing that the advice that he was given by Triple H is exactly what is being shown on NXT TV today.
“100% like completely,” Sydal expressed. “One of my favorite quotes is, ‘unlearn something every day.’ It’s an Alan Watts quote. Triple H was so generous to me with his time and his knowledge when I was like the young up-and-comer wrestling Chavo, and every life event, after our matches, he would come back and give me just a list of things to work on which is exactly what I see going on in NXT, like how they’re adopting a high-flyer style to the WWE audience.
“Basically, how WWE, NXT does their stuff is the advice that Triple H was giving me, and that’s great, but It includes a lot of assumptions. They’re not necessarily false, but they don’t have to be true either.”
Sydal used an example of him watching AAA in Peru to illustrate that one style of wrestling is no worse or better than another. Personally speaking, he talked about how he is trying to get back to the Dragon Gate style of wrestling. Sydal had started wrestling with Dragon Gate in 2006 and last wrestled there in 2015, and he talked about always trying to do something different and original.
“I was down in Peru, and I was watching AAA in Spanish on my TV, and it just it blew my mind because they weren’t following any of the rules, yet the crowd was still there,” Sydal said. “It was wild, and it was just as valid. So I don’t think one type of wrestling is right and one type of wrestling is wrong, and I’ve used that ability to unlearn what I’ve done and really go back and get back in touch with that Dragon Gate style since now there’s a lot of guys that can work with that.
“And I really feel like what I’ll be doing now is more Dragon Gate pro wrestling related than WWE’s style, but of course, if I’m wrestling in front of 80,000 people at WrestleMania, it will feel like a WWE style thing because that’s how they frame it and that’s what they put out there. I mean what I do now is just completely original, all new shtick, all new act. Everything’s different. I don’t rely on any of my old stuff. I mean, I think it’s boring.
“I wouldn’t want to go see a comedian if he was using the same jokes. So I’m not going out there trying to do the same thing that and my body’s changed, my life’s changed and really if people have already seen me do something a 1,000 times, 1,001 is not going to impress anybody.”
One dream match that Sydal said he’s always wanted was a match against Cesaro on RAW. Sydal’s latter stages with WWE was around the time Cesaro started getting big on the main roster, but Sydal said the match never happened because the contrast in styles between himself and Cesaro.
“One of my dreams in life was to wrestle Claudio [Castagnoli] on Monday Night RAW,” Sydal revealed. “If I had been able to do that, I think people’s brains would have exploded. That’s just the kind of match that I wanted to have, that I could never have because I’m a flyer. Every flyer needs a base. You can’t fly, as you know, with one wing essentially. One wing won’t fly, and so when I got to WWE, I re-adjusted my entire style.
“I had been wrestling in Dragon Gate five nights a week hitting the craziest ranas, taking crucifix headscissors [and] giving Deja Vu headscissors, just all the madness. And I just had to re-tune it up because the guys I was wrestling just didn’t do that style, and it didn’t really bother me much.
Sydal admitted that there’s a lot of guys in WWE that he would like to have a match with including Apollo Crews and Ricochet. He said he’s glad that talented guys like they are able to get jobs in WWE and are not being overlooked for guys that fit a WWE mold that they are seeking.
“Now, there’s a dozen plus guys that I would just love to have matches with from the NXT UK guys, the NXT guys right now [and] the guys moving up to the main roster. I’d like to Uhaa [Nation], Ricochet,” Sydal also revealed. “There’s so much talent there. They have probably twice or three times as many people under contract.
“So I love that there’s two times, three times as many jobs going out there because all these guys are talented. They all deserve to make a living in wrestling, and I was sort of worried how they would if WWE wasn’t going to be hiring the best wrestlers, if they were only going to be hiring guys that fit what they were looking for.”
Sydal’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.