Former WWE Champion Drew McIntyre sat down with Bleacher Report to talk all things wrestling. McIntyre revealed, following his release from WWE in 2014, that he decided to mold himself after two fellow WWE stars, one of whom has gone on to reach extraordinary heights outside of wrestling.

“I always talk about John Cena as someone I patterned myself after, after I was released rather than learning from him in the moment when I was there on the roster,” McIntyre said. “Instead of working to better myself on the roster, it took getting fired and bettering myself personally before I thought of who I could look up to in this business and whose mentality I needed. I thought about John and how relentless he was with everything he did: be it in media, the gym, in the ring and every aspect of his life.”

“Cena is such a workaholic and The Miz followed that exact same path. I said to myself, ‘I’m going to be that guy, too.’ Whether it was outside of WWE or inside WWE, whenever I was given any kind of position where I was able to take the reins and get the media opportunities and they wanted to speak to me, I was going to take full advantage of it. The second I had that title, I said, ‘Give me it all! I’m that guy now, there’s no excuse, I want every little bit of it.'”

McIntyre also discussed what has prevented him from receiving the fan backlash other top babyfaces like Cena received over the years. As he’s said before, McIntyre believes it’s because his character is largely an extension of himself, making him more realistic to the fan base.

“I’m not the fresh cool kid on the block,” McIntyre said. “Everybody knows who I am and what I’m about. I’m going to continue to be Drew McIntyre. I know exactly who I am as a character and it’s not far off from the real person. I’m going to continue to be me and evolve the character, add more layers wherever I can.

“We’ve seen good guys in the past get massive, massive boos, but people are emotionally invested one way or another. I think it’s pretty crazy that from what I gather, people have been pretty much digging what I’ve been doing for a solid year and a half. That’s not lost on me with how difficult that is to do in this day and age.”