Malakai Black did an interview with Bleacher Report to discuss a wide range of topics. Here are some of the highlights:
Picking his name:
“When I made the transition from point A to point B, I wanted to commit myself to something that was different but, at the same time, had enough recognizable traits that it was still in the same wheelhouse of what I have done before,” he said.
“I have always portrayed darker characters and my previous name was very ‘old testimony.’ I wanted to look at a name that was also referencing that but had different meanings. Malachi means messenger. He was a lesser prophet known in Hebrew.
“A lot of that character is based on European tribalism and paganism from around the time of Julius Caesar. There were a lot of Celtics in the lowlands who worshipped a deity called Cernunnos, and I based the mask and a lot of the dressing off of that symbolism. I find it fascinating. I had to do some digging and research to find something that would work in a similar fashion but still be something new.”
Wrestling Cody Rhodes:
“It went exactly the way I thought it was going to do,” Black said. “Cody is a very talented individual with a similar mindset. He has accomplished many great things in this business. I don’t know if this is the end of our dance or what will happen, but I gave him a sendoff that is probably still deeply rooted in his head.
“It’s one of the most memorable things I have done. I made a statement with that match and in the segments leading up to it. I did everything I said I was going to do.”