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KURT ANGLE DISCUSSES WHETHER HE'S ACTUALLY WRESTLED FOR THE LAST TIME, AEW, VINCE MCMAHON, THREE STARS HE WISHED HE HAD WRESTLED AND MUCH MORE: COMPLETE INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT

By Dave Scherer & Mike Johnson on 2020-10-09 19:59:00

Mike Johnson: Well let's talk about that last run, cause obviously you worked as the General Manager for a while, but they brought you in initially doing the WWE Hall of Fame. You had had issues with Vince McMahon upon leaving, that was one of the issues why you left, you had talked about that. Do you think with the return and just that last run, do you think you and Vince ever got back on the same page you were on when things were good between you two, do you think he ever recaptured his love for Kurt Angle because there is a lot of criticism amongst fans that the Kurt Angle that we got to see, especially towards the end, you were kinda rushed back into the ring out of nowhere and you were not presented in the same light that you were in that initial run. Do you think you and Vince ever ended up back sort of in sync the way you were during the initial run in the Attitude Era?

Kurt Angle: Well, I think there are a number of things. For one, when I got back to WWE, I took a year off from TNA and I wrestled about 10 times that year, I wrestled Del Rio, Rey Mysterio on the independent circuit, Cody Rhodes a couple times, Joe Coffey, Zack Sabre Jr., all these great wrestlers, it was a lot of fun. I did it to stay in shape so that when I returned to WWE the following year I'd be in wrestling shape and ready to go. I was having great matches too. Was I the same Kurt Angle? No, but I was pretty close. I was good...I was good enough that I knew, you know, if Vince wanted to give me a title run, I was ready for it, but when I got to the WWE, they had no plans of me wrestling, at least not at first, and I understand. I mean, Vince looked at me as a liability, I have painkiller issues, I have neck issues, I think he was a little nervous to stick me out there cause if something happened to me I think that, either one - you know, liability reason or two - he would feel bad that he put me in that position. So I understood why he did what he did, but you know, I'm an adult and I had different plans, I wanted to make a return, have a title run, wrestle...have my Wrestlemania retirement match with somebody that was a legend or a Hall of Famer, or you know, someone that would be a future Hall of Famer like John Cena, so it didn't go out as planned but I understood why, you know Vince just...he looked at me as a liability and I wasn't. The problem was when I started as General Manager, I became inactive, so I was inducted into the Hall of Fame...I wish it was the opposite - wrestle first, General Manager second, Hall of Fame third, and I told Vince that, he said "We're going to induct you into the Hall of Fame first," and that night he said, "Tomorrow on RAW you're going to be the General Manager," and I was like, "Vince, I still want to wrestle." He goes, "We'll get to it," so I became the General Manager and I became inactive - I wasn't wrestling, I wasn't taking bumps, after, you know, I think I maybe wrestled once or twice that year, I think I did a TLC match for The Shield, and I think Survivor Series and the problem was I had a leg injury, so that didn't help me out. I pulled a muscle in my thigh doing sprints, so I didn't perform very well, so I think Vince looked at that and said "Uh, he might not have it anymore." Problem was, when I got inactive, my body became arthritic - my knees, my back, my neck, I gained weight, my shoulders...I couldn't put my hands over my head, it got really bad, so I...I was aging so quickly because I was inactive, I wasn't bumping anymore...it's crazy, the more you bump, you wrestle day in, day out, the looser you feel, believe it or not, I mean you get sore at times, but staying active, especially in pro wrestling, you need that, if you don't, first of all you're going to lose your wind, you're going to get tired fast, second of all your body is in no position to continue to take a bunch of bumps if you haven't been training it to do so. So I got really arthritic, I looked like an old man, and that's when I told Vince I want to retire, and he said "I thought you wanted to go another year?" I said, "No, no..Vince, whenever you do have me wrestle I'm doing a job for somebody, I know you don't have plans for me, so I just want to retire at this Wrestlemania. I'd love to wrestle John Cena." He said, "Well you have a program with Baron, you're going to wrestle Baron regardless. If you want Cena, I might be able to do that next year," and I said, "No, I'll just wrestle Baron." So I ended my career, Vince didn't end it, I did because I knew it was the right thing to do. I just wasn't performing at the level I wanted to.

Mike Johnson: Well, wrestling retirements usually only last as long as the person retiring wants them to. Obviously you're not under contract to WWE right now and All Elite Wrestling has really captured the attention of a good portion of the audience, as we can see by their weekly numbers on TNT. Are you open to working with AEW in some fashion? Like if they wanted you to come back, maybe not even as a regular but like as a surprise to come work a big pay per view match or something down the line are you open to that? Or do you feel like the chapter of Kurt Angle in-ring performer should be shut going forward?

Kurt Angle: Yeah, I..you know what? I love AEW, you know, I love what they've been doing, I think they've got a lot of great young talent, they've done an excellent job so far. Would I be interested in doing it? I don't know, I don't have plans on wrestling. Every once in a while I do something for WWE, I kinda like that. Maybe somewhere along the line I might do something for AEW but I don't have any plans to do that.  I do want to move on with my life, you know, the same way I left amateur wrestling - I left and never looked back. I'm that individual that likes to move on and do something else so I'd like to put this career behind me and continue on.

Mike Johnson: All right, so let's put the career behind you but I got one last question about pro wrestling and we'll talk a little bit about the snacks again. Was there ever...you know, you talked about wanting to wrestle John Cena at that Wrestlemania 35 in New Jersey, is there anyone that you wanted to get in the ring with and kind of work with and it never happened? Like for me, I know the great while whale that I think of when I think of great Kurt Angle matches that never happened - I feel like Daniel Bryan vs Kurt Angle in some universe somewhere was a Wrestlemania main event for an hour, maybe you feel differently, but was there anyone you ever looked at and said, "Man I can't wait for that moment" and then the moment never came?

Kurt Angle: Daniel Bryan is definitely the first one but I love Roman Reigns and I love Seth Rollins. Those three I would have loved to mix it up with before I retired. But you're right, Daniel Bryan is very special and I think him and I could have had an excellent match.

Mike Johnson: All right, so before we get out of here, as Kurt mentioned - PhysicallyFit.com. Physically Fit Nutrition, you can check out all of the chicken snacks and the plant based protein snacks that he and his partners have created. Kurt -  I want to thank you for sitting down with Dave and myself. It was a lot of fun. I look forward to getting you back here in January when you announce your sneakers, and if you've got, you know, obviously you've got fans that have followed you since the early days of Pittsburgh, through the Olympics, and obviously through your journey through WWE and TNA and beyond - what's your message to everybody? When you came to WWE initially, the 3 I's were the definition of Kurt Angle, the on-screen persona, but we're going through a lot of dark times right now, we're all trapped in this crazy vortex, from your perspective, what's your message to everyone who's just trying to endure?

Kurt Angle: You know what? It's tough, I mean, everybody is going through the same thing, days get long and repetitive, I know a lot of people are feeling very negative right now, but we're going to pull out of this eventually, it's not going to last forever, and I think we're going to be stronger. I just hope that everybody took advantage of this time to spend with their family and friends because there's not much else you can do, so, you know it's crazy cause my in-laws and my cousins they come over, I'm around them so much now we're getting in arguments [laughs], it's like, I never would have done that before so things can get a little crazy in times like this, you just gotta keep a straight head and know that we're going to come out stronger in the long run.

Mike Johnson: All right well, let's hope and if anybody knows about coming out of issues and becoming stronger in the long run it would certainly be our guest, the Olympic Gold medalist Kurt Angle. So Kurt, I want to thank you for sitting down and talking to us. If anybody wants to watch another interview with Kurt, you can check out the Broken Skull Sessions right now - Kurt Angle sitting down with a fellow WWE Hall of Famer Steve Austin, and of course you can follow Kurt at @RealKurtAngle on Twitter.   So our best to you and thanks for sitting down with us.

Kurt Angle: I appreciate that. The interview was great, thank you.

Dave Scherer: Real quick, before we go, the Blue Cheese snacks are great, Kurt. I just have to tell you.

Kurt Angle: [laughs] Good, I'm glad you liked them!

Dave Scherer: I tried them yesterday and I was on mute and I didn't want to jump in but those are great so folks, I wouldn't tell you if it wasn't true, everybody listens to this knows me, go out and get your hands, we'll put a link on the site - snacks are outstanding.

Kurt Angle: Thank you so much guys.

Mike Johnson: Until next time our paths cross we thank you Kurt and to everybody listening we thank you for your support of PWInsiderElite.com. We'll be back with a lot more soon, take care, be healthy and most importantly, be safe.

For more on Kurt Angle's new protein snacks, visit www.PhysicallyFit.com.

 


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