In an appearance on Insight with Chris Van Vliet, former WWE star Maven talked about the biggest moment of his career, eliminating The Undertaker from the 2002 Royal Rumble. He took Van Vliet through the process of finding out what he and Taker would do in the match, and called it a career making moment.
“I dare to say that it was the spot,” Maven said. “If you ask anyone to mention anything from the 2002 Royal Rumble, what are they going to say? I honestly have no clue who won that match. So at the time I was finally training and I was in HWA in Cincinnati. They flew to be to Atlanta and they said ‘you’re probably going to have a spot in the Rumble.’ I’m like ‘okay, maybe I will get to come out.’ But I had wrestled Taz a couple of times and I had also wrestled Booker T on SmackDown. I had a little bit more TV experience by this time. I get to the arena and I am walking to the ring. Shane and Taker come up and see me. They say ‘Mave, we want to tell you what we’ve got going on tonight.’ Already, Shane, why does he care? And why is Taker here? I thought it would be one of the agents coming up to me telling me ‘hey you are coming in 17th and going out 18th.’
Then they tell me. They are like ‘Taker is going to s**t can everyone out. The Hardys, Lita, then you are going to come out. It’s going to be you and him. You’re going to hit him with that drop kick and eliminate him.’ I’m like ‘what?’ Taker, no lie, turns, looks down at Shane and says ‘are you f***ing kidding me?’ I didn’t know. I thought he was being told this information at the time too. I’m like ‘Jesus I’m dead. Please just die right now.’ Then he just turns and winks at me. That just shows what a professional he was. He was willing to put me over and to do that favor. It wasn’t just for me, it was for the wrestling business. I will spend the rest of my life answering questions about that. He gave me a career.”
Aside from the Undertaker spot, the other thing Maven is best known for is his theme music, Behind the Stars. This is ironic, considering Maven isn’t that big a fan of the song, though he respects how much the fans like it.
“I don’t love it,” Maven revealed. “It’s the saddest thing because if people bring up The Undertaker thing first, they bring up my music second. That’s no joke. Everyone loves it but me. I feel bad because the band is great, it’s a good song. But here’s what it is, it’s just not the song I would have picked for me to come out to. When I was growing up and thinking late at night about the theme I would come out to, that isn’t it. What would I have picked? At the time I was probably into a bit more hip hop music. Or, to this day, if I need something to bump to, then “Kickstart My Heart” by Mötley Crüe, old Metallica, stuff like that. “Stranglehold” by Ted Nugent. To me that’s the best opening music ever. But I love the song because of how much the fans love it.”
When asked about there being any missed opportunities during his WWE run, Maven pointed to a lack of mic time compared to other wrestlers. He feels if he had been given more opportunities to talk, he could’ve shown more personality and been a strong heel presence like he feels he was in TNA.
“I could have been a lot better on the mic than a lot of the guys that they had,” Maven said. “I definitely think they could have done more with me. They could have exposed more of my personality. Trust me, when I left and started doing stuff with TNA, I am a hell of a heel. I’m a damn good bad guy.”
Arguably the most successful run of Maven’s career was when he held the Hardcore Championship going into WrestleMania X-8. He shared with Van Vliet a moment he shared with The Rock while backstage before the show.
“So it’s WrestleMania 18 in Toronto,” Maven recalled. “I went in the Hardcore Champion and left the Hardcore Champion. I’m backstage and I am scared to death, there’s 70 something thousand people out there. The Rock sees this and he says ‘Mave, come here.’ So I go up to him and I think I’m going to get words of advice from the best. He goes ‘hey, no one is really expecting much out of you. So just do the best you can.’ He turns around and walks away I’m like ‘what the f**k was that?’ He then turns and winks at me. That calmed me down. That one little joke, then it was like ‘f**k it, lets have some fun.”
You can watch the full interview below.