Baron Corbin On Roman Reigns, His Early Days With The WWE & More

Baron Corbin On Roman Reigns, His Early Days With The WWE & More

During his appearance on “After The Bell”, Baron Corbin spoke on his early FCW days, Roman Reigns and more. Here are the highlights:

On How His Mentality Got Him In Trouble During His FCW Days:

It was funny because you said, ‘I’m an athlete. I’m an athlete.’ That quote got me in trouble actually on my tryout. It’s like my second day on a tryout. They brought me in for like a week-long tryout, and there were guys like Bray Wyatt in the ring and stuff like that. He [the coach] was like, ‘hey, do you think you can do a drop-down and a leapfrog?’ And I was like, ‘well, yeah. I’m an athlete. It’s easy.’ He goes, ‘oh, ok.’ Then he had me start running, and I’m doing drop-downs [and] leapfrogs. After about 10 of them, I’m looking over after each one like is he gonna tell me to stop? I was also 325-330 lbs at tryout, and by about 14, I go this is bad. All of a sudden I clipped my foot, and I face-planted. He laughed, and he goes, ‘huh, I thought you said you were an athlete?’ I just did 18 drop-downs and 18 leapfrogs. I was blown sky-high, so it’s always just funny when I think about that.

On Roman Reigns:

But walking in the door, it was eye-opening. I’ve been apart of athletics my whole life from boxing to jiu-jitsu to football to golf on my high school team. Every locker room is different and has an atmosphere. Nobody wants someone new walking in. If you’re a good, high-level competitor, you know that walking into the door. You know nobody is gonna want you there because you’re there to take a spot. In reality, that’s what you’re doing. FCW is a very small funnel into WWE. If one guy got called up, that’s one less guy that’s gonna get that opportunity.

So walking in, I knew that. I spoke with Johhny Stamboli. He was actually in Arizona. I knew I was getting a tryout. I knew I was getting signed. I wanted to kind of figure out the culture a little bit because you don’t want to disrespect anybody. You walk into a football locker room and you do something stupid, you’re gonna get slapped. It’s just the way it goes, and I know this kind of has the same attitude like there’s a respect here and a level of respect that’s expected. So I met with Johnny, and he kind of walked me through from shaking hands to letting everybody get their spots, their lockers and then put your bag down where it fits. That kind of thing.

On Promos Being The Most Difficult Part Of The Transition Into Wrestling:

The transition for me, the physicality: I dropped 65 lbs. coming in, that stuff was relatively easy. To understand the ring movement and balance and all that was in-ring, [it] was fairly simple to learn for me. It was the hand me a microphone, here’s your promo, make me believe it. That’s where I’m going whoa this is really hard because I’m just doing an interview like we’re just sitting here talking and it is what it is. But now I’m having to take this emotion that I’ve been taught to hide for so many years because in sports, you don’t want your opponents to know that you’re hurt, you’re tired, angry [or] frustrated. But now we want to take those emotions and we want to convey it to millions of people around the world, but you want them to understand every bit of things that are going through your mind, and you want them to feel what you’re feeling. If you’re hurt or if you’re angry or if you’re embarrassed, you want these people to understand that. You want to amplify it by 10 because there’s people that are up in the nosebleed sections that want to understand that and people around the world. That was the most difficult part of the transition for me into becoming a WWE superstar.

On Using His Reputation To Irritate People:

The rumor went around that I was making all this money more than anybody else, so I was like OK, let’s add fuel to the fire. I think I brought about 10-20 grand in cash to a promo and was like, ‘yeah, I’m going on a date tonight. Maybe 2000.’ Just the worst thing ever. Just trying to irritate everybody.

On Not Knowing Much About Wrestling Prior To Entering The Business:

It was fun to learn all the aspects to it because coming in I wasn’t aware. I’m gonna admit this actually, and it’s really bad, but I wasn’t aware of this independent world of training in a sense. I thought it was Japan and OVW because I read Batista’s book. I’m admitting that. I read Batista’s book in college and was like I gotta go to OVW if I want to get there. I remember driving down there. That’s how I got my information on how to become a WWE superstar was Batista’s book. I just don’t feel cool admitting that at all.

You can listen to the podcast below:

Credit: After The Bell. H/T WrestlingInc.

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