Former Ring of Honor World Champion Kevin Steen recently spoke to WWE.com about being signed to an NXT developmental deal. The full interview can be seen by clicking here at WWE.com. Here are some highlights:
On What Led to His Signing: William Regal came to a wrestling show I was taking part in California almost a year ago exactly, I believe it was Aug. 31 of last year, and it was for PWG, Pro Wrestling Guerrilla. The match I had that night, I think did a lot. I had never met William Regal before; I didn’t know him at all. I had great respect for him already; he’s actually been one of my favorite wrestlers for quite some time. To have him watch my match and take the time to tell me what he thought and give me advice was already great, but then a couple days later, I was contacted to see if I wanted to be part of a tryout camp. Just to have somebody like William Regal have enough esteem for me to go as far as to actually recommend me for a tryout meant a lot. Then I went to the tryout camp and I got through it, and what made me stand out were the promos, where we basically had to sell ourselves verbally. That’s always been one of my strong suits — the way I talk and what I say. I make it count, and I think that went pretty far in getting me to where I am now.
On When he Starts With NXT: No, I start Aug. 25, in a couple weeks. I’m really looking forward to it. I had the chance to go there just last week and got to see how everything works and meet everybody there, and it was really good, so I’m looking forward to being there full time.
On The WWE Performance Center: I remember a year ago when I would read all the NXT guys commenting on Twitter about how amazing the Performance Center was — not only the way it works but the actual building itself. When I went there in March for the tryout camp, I could see what they were talking about. There are seven rings and there’s a conditioning room and it’s just a dream for somebody who does what we do to have a chance to develop themselves in that environment. And then the coaches who are there, their names speak for themselves as far as how well they can help somebody build and develop himself to become a WWE Superstar. I think everybody who’s there is very lucky to be there and that’s why pretty much everybody in independent wrestling wants to get there. So I feel very lucky to have the chance to be in that environment.
On Signing With WWE: From the moment I started wrestling, my goal was to get to WWE. Some guys have plans laid out where they want to go to Japan, go to Europe, go here, go there, and then they feel to go to WWE. I always felt like WWE was where I belong. Not even since I started wrestling, but since I was a kid. When I was 11 years old and I saw my first WWE show, that’s where I wanted to go. Obviously, you can’t start at the top, so I made my way, for years, to that moment, but I didn’t necessarily think I had to go to Japan, Europe or Australia. I was just fortunate to get all those chances and they were all great experiences, things I would never take back. It was never something I necessarily felt I had to do, though I’m very happy I got to do it.
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