AEW tag team champions FTR were recent guests on the Push Podcast to talk about the late Dusty Rhodes, and how his teachings have stayed with them to to this day. Read below as both Harwood and Wheeler open up about The American Dream’s affect on their life in the wrestling business.
HARWOOD: “For us, he wanted us to be a team. And I think he enjoyed that we were two Carolina boys. I think he enjoyed the fact that we both had Southern accents, and we had our style of work. And I also think he liked the fact that we weren’t the biggest guys in the room. When you’re 5’10 and you’re surrounded by 6’3″ and 6’5″ guys, you’re often overlooked figuratively and literally. But he told us never to leave each other’s side, whether we were in promo class, at the shows together, or in the Performance Center, ‘Never leave each other’s side. Be seen together all the time, so that people can see what I sees, just on the surface. ‘And then as far as things he taught us, he just taught us how to be conversational when we’re speaking and when we’re talking. Obviously that translates over into your promos. And no one’s ever gonna be Dusty Rhodes. But he knew that being able to converse and being conversational with your audience and with your peers, and who you’re working with, is what makes you money because you’re on their level now. You’re not trying to cut a ‘Well let me tell you something, brother’ promo, you’re talking to them.”
WHEELER: “Yeah, the craziest thing about learning from Dusty is, half the time you didn’t even realize you were learning until after he already taught you. He would like, Mr. Miyagi you. You don’t understand why he’s asking you certain things, and why you’re doing certain things until after, finally you just have this realization of like, ‘Oh wow, that’s why he wanted me to do it.’ Because he would get you in touch with who you are as a performer, and not what other people thought you should be, or what your perceptions of yourself as a wrestler was. He would find out something about you that was different, and he would find a way to transition that to wrestling, so that you’re being more organic with yourself and more real.”
Full interview can be found below. (H/T and transcribed by 411 Mania)