This week on Oral Sessions with Renée Paquette, AEW star Powerhouse Will Hobbs came on the show to discuss his soon-to-be one-year anniversary with the company. Last July, Hobbs started as an enhancement talent, who spent most of his time working on AEW’s developmental show, Dark. Now, Hobbs is hitting his peak in one of North America’s most notable promotions. In his interview, Hobbs recalls the very moment he found out he was going from a developmental star to a main roster performer.
“I got offered a per appearance, tier-0 [contract],” Powerhouse Will Hobbs began. “I wrestled Darby Allin on the Saturday Night Dynamite that we had. I’m stretching, and Tony [Khan] goes, ‘Hey Willie, I bet you’re gonna knock it out of the park tonight. Go kill it!’ He takes a couple of steps away from me, and then he comes back and goes, ‘Oh, yeah, after tonight, I’m going to sign you.’ This is before I go out, and I’m like, what? I did my match with Darby, and Tony had his hand in that match, which was really cool that he put me in that position.
“I guess, the night I met you, September 5, at the pay-per-view, I was told that day that I was going to be in it [the Casino Battle Royale], and it was going to be a surprise. About a week later, I got offered a contract.”
As part of Team Taz, Hobbs has prevailed as the unyielding backbone of the group. Hobbs took a moment to describe what it’s like to work with the leader of the pack, and how the ECW legend has been a pivotal mentor for him.
“Taz is great! I’ve always watched Taz in ECW, and he always reminded me of a few people I knew on the block – with his attitude and how his persona is, that’s really him. He’ll let you know when you’re doing something wrong. But he’ll also tell you when you’re doing something right. I’m happy to be working with him,” Hobbs mentioned.
When he isn’t focused on helping Team Taz advance their ratings and title opportunities, Hobbs mentioned that he likes to spend his time hanging out with fellow AEW stars Lee Johnson and “The Captain” Shawn Dean. He also stated that he enjoys learning from the best in the business.
“Lee Johnson and “The Captain” Shawn Dean,” Hobbs replied. “You’ll always see us together. We get made fun of that when you see one, you’ll see the others.
“I also hang out with guys who help me out a lot: FTR, Arn [Anderson], Cody, Tully Blanchard, Dustin, Jim Ross. There hasn’t been one person that I’ve gone up to that has shunned me off. Everyone is helpful.”
Two months before Hobbs joined Team Taz last November, Hobbs aligned himself with former AEW World Champion Jon Moxley. Although their collaboration was cut short, Hobbs was happy to restore his working relationship with Moxley, one he had built with the former champion just before Moxley concluded his last stint in WWE.
“I did some extra work with him [Jon Moxley] in WWE before,” Hobbs revealed to Paquette. “Do you remember when he had his entourage come out in the gas masks? Yeah, we talked about how hard it was to breathe. It’s cool that he remembered me.”
Speaking of Moxley, he is just one of several who Hobbs would love to step in the ring with. With so many challengers in front of him, Hobbs is ready to make his one-year mark in AEW meaningful by proving to Tony Khan why he made an excellent decision on signing him.
“I want to work with everyone and anyone,” Hobbs stated. “I would love to have a match with Cody, Dustin, [Chris] Jericho and Mox, ’cause I know that he’s scrappy and he’s got some hood in him, and we could just go at it.”
You can listen to Powerhouse Will Hobbs’ full interview here. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Oral Sessions w/Renée Paquette with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.