As a guest on WWE After the Bell with Corey Graves, WWE NXT Champion Dolph Ziggler joined the show to talk about his reaction to getting called down to NXT and being told he was going to win the NXT Championship.
The Showoff spoke about feeling stale while on the main roster and how it seemed like he and his partner Bobby Roode weren’t going to have any plans for WrestleMania weekend until this opportunity came about.
“I couldn’t agree more, everyone’s asked me ‘like hey, how do you feel about this, are you surprised?’ Surprised? I came here to scout talent and then two weeks later I’m the frickin NXT Champion,” Ziggler said. “That wasn’t in the cards, that wasn’t even a thought process. It’s hard to say because I’m constantly working, never out sick but I felt stale.
“Roode and I are really good at what we do and it didn’t seem like we were doing anything that important right now, it’s what have you done for me lately and at the moment we’re not crushing it, didn’t seem like we were going to have a match on WrestleMania unless we make something happen. We saw an opening and said hey, let’s try this out, let’s go see NXT because half the time anybody that shows up from NXT their first match is with me anyway.
“Now I’m going to cut out the middle man, go down to NXT and start wrestling them there. I really came to scout talent, see if a few people had some up-and-coming things that I could possibly work with down the line, and got thrown right into the mix. It’s crazy, it’s so funny. If you’re surprised that I’m NXT Champion, normally I’d be like ‘you’re surprised I’m United States Champion or the World Champion, I’m not,’ no no no, I’m blown away.
“I did not plan on this, I’m very happy to be in this moment with Breakker who’s got 20 matches under his belt. He’s got this insane speed and power that, I’ve been speared by Goldberg and I’m like pfft, this guy are you kidding me. This kid hits harder and I’m not even making that up.
“That spear put me down and I was happy to be able to kick out and keep moving but like holy crap, he’s got that in their prime linebacker closing speed for everything, not just the spear. And when he figures out how to hone that in a year or two or three, he’s going to be someone who’s kind of unstoppable.”
Dolph Ziggler will face Bron Breakker in a rematch for the NXT Championship at NXT Stand and Deliver on April 2nd just prior to WrestleMania 38 Night One. The former World Heavyweight Champion spoke about his versatility and ability to do whatever is asked of him at any given time and believes that’s a huge reason for his success and why he was never released by the WWE.
“It’s weird, I feel like that’s why I’m still employed, which is great,” Ziggler said. “There is that tiny little thing in the back of people’s heads where even if I’m not featured exclusively, a couple of weeks go by and it’s Roman Reigns vs. Dolph Ziggler in the main event for the title and you go uh, okay maybe. Other than somebody who’s like this guys not even on TV, we’re not invested in him, we don’t know.
“I can be in that spot, being able to do any of those things. You have to be a renaissance man or woman in the business now just to survive. I could fight for the world title in a couple of weeks and it wouldn’t be a crazy thing. I feel like that investment of putting in the time, putting in the work. I think I’ve missed three or four weeks of work in 17 years, like get the hell out of here.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit WWE After the Bell with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
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