On a recent episode of The Wrestling Inc. Daily, Drew Rice sat down with former WWE and World Tag Team Champion Tyson Kidd. During the interview, Kidd shared a story from his interaction with a wrestler backstage when he first went to Deep South Wrestling, another former WWE developmental territory.
“I remember instantly when I first came down to Deep South,” recalled Kidd. “I remember one of the guys saying ‘I heard there were cuts after WrestleMania. Are you worried about getting cut?’ And I was like, ‘Bro, I got here a day ago. I don’t think I moved all the way down from Canada to get fired in a week. I hope. Unless I did something really, really wrong.’ So, it is funny. You just kind of see that paranoia, especially at that time, and I learned really quick to just enjoy this for what it is. Because you don’t know what is going to happen.”
Kidd also recalled being told that he may be getting called up to ECW alongside Natalya, and how he wrestled a match in front of Arn Anderson and Fin Finlay. A match that neither legend was pleased with.
“[Billy] Kidman came back from the road on a Wednesday, and he told me ‘Hey, your name got brought up during the meeting. They’re thinking of debuting you on ECW next week with Nattie as your manager,’ remembered Kidd. “Well, then walks in Arn Anderson and Fit Finlay, and now we have to do matches in front of two of the main producers. I wrestled somebody, and right away Arn and Fit both hated the match the second it was over. They had a lot of critique for it and weren’t that happy with it. And in my mind, I had blown it. It was over. I was supposed to get called up next week, but this report is going to say ‘No, don’t do it. This guy is terrible.’ I get a phone call that day from an ECW writer, and I get called up that next week anyway.
“I ended up having a great relationship with both Fit and Arn. As a talent and a producer, I have learned so much from both of them. It is just funny, your mind will play games on you and tricks on you. So it is easy to get in your own head, especially when you are in developmental.”
Kidd also identified how the backstage environment has drastically changed in the WWE within the last fifteen to twenty years, and how it is much more of an open and accepting community than it used to be.
“There has been a shift, and it has been very cool,” stated Kidd, “We have the strongest amount of talent that the company has ever had in its history, in terms of up-and-down the crowd. Seth has been very braggadocious about how he feels about the locker room, and he is right. I think our locker room is insanely talented, both guys and girls. So, I think the culture has changed, and it has changed in a good way. It has changed a lot in ten years, and I think, in my opinion, it has changed for the better.
Kidd also noted that there has been a shift in the perspective of the talent, and said that most of the talent became professional wrestlers because they loved it, and that attitude has greatly impacted the locker room attitude.
“I think that is what it has become more than anything else, which is a love for this, a love for wrestling. I think that is maybe what has shifted the most,” noted Kidd. “Now, there seems to be a lot more focus on in-ring ability within the locker room, and everyone trying to get better. And I think, obviously I can’t speak for the generations before where I wasn’t in the locker room, but I think now more than ever, that people are willing to help everybody else out.”
“For example, I was a producer for a match a few weeks ago. Two other talents were coming up with some ideas with me. One of the girls who used those ideas texted me later that night saying how she was so sorry [for taking the idea], and I was like, ‘What are you talking about? We’re all on the same team.’ Wherever the ideas come from, I don’t care. As long as we all just have a great performance, it’s all good. Wherever they come from, we’re all on the same team. I’m not mad. I’m not wired like that. If you had a great match, that’s it.”