NXT UK stars Zack Gibson and James Drake, better known as the Grizzled Young Veterans, recently spoke to Digital Spy about all things pro-wrestling, including how Gibson has adapted his promo style for American audiences, and Drake reflecting on Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels’ work with the brand. Highlights are below.
Zack Gibson talks adapting his promo style to American audiences:
“You do have to adapt but at the same time, the accent and the nuances of British humour or slang terms and stuff like that’s also something that’s interesting to a foreign audience. So we’re sort of educating them, whether they want it or not, on Scouse culture, maybe showing them some new terms they’ve not heard before. Something that some people struggle with is they go too far one way. They love their hometown and they love their own funny little phrases that they have but then they do 99% of their dialogue in that accent and with those terms and for that reason, it goes over people’s heads. It’s about working a little bit smarter and making sure that everyone can understand you whilst still trying to stay true to yourself.”
James Drake on Shawn Michaels helping with NXT UK:
“I think one of the reasons why he has such an attraction to help the UK team is because, if you look at his style, especially in The Rockers, his work rate was go, go, go, go – effort and energy were not missed. I reckon that’s one thing he identifies with and sees in the UK is the effort and energy. The other thing is, I think a lot of us, as time’s gone on, are my size now. [Shawn’s] been able to see people of his stature have an opportunity to make a living and get far in wrestling I feel like he’s identified that and if there’s anytime he can help them on their way, he will never say one or two liners, if he wants to give you advice he’s committing some time to do that.”