Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling #319 – Kenny King Interview (Sept. 22, 2016)

The Art of Wrestling with Colt Cabana
Episode 319 – Kenny King
Release Date: September 22, 2016


Report by Chris Davidson

Hot Topics

– Kenny King talks “Tough Enough,” Chippendales, and the Las Vegas dating scene.

– Colt Cabana discusses his latest TV auditions and wrestling in a slick ring.


0:00 – Introduction
6:38– Song of the week
9:24 – Kenny King interview
14:06 – Kenny King talks growing up and jobs outside of wrestling
19:22 – Kenny King talks “Tough Enough”
33:39 – Kenny King talks Thailand
41:36 – Kenny King talks about his daughter and working full-time
45:42 – Kenny King talks Chippendales
51:58 – Kenny King talks staying relevant
58:49 – Colt wraps up the show
1:02:04 – Easter Egg


0:00 – Introduction – Colt opened the show joking about being typecast as a truck driver in his recent acting auditions. Colt teased Kenny King’s history as a Chippendales dancer, and discussed side jobs as a wrestler. Colt reflected on growing older and not having to have a lot of side jobs while in wrestling. Colt talked briefly about his recent auditions, shrugging off a bad audition. Colt mentioned that for some people at the audition, the role could be their big break, but for him it was just another fun thing to do. Colt talked about an ROH show this past weekend in Buffalo where the ring collected condensation from a “moist” building, and wrestlers were slipping around the ring like they were on a Slip ‘n Slide. The next night in Pittsburgh was in a nice venue, but the Sunday show was at high school that could fit 3,500 people, but only had 23 paid attendees. Colt said he had a great time, and tried to make the show fun for the 23 people who paid money to be there. After the show, the promoter’s brother came up to Colt in awe and said he was an “actor or something” because he was amazing. Colt joked that he wished the casting director for Chicago Fire was one of the 23 people, so they could see he was an actor or something.

6:38– Song of the week – The song of the week this week is “Triple Threat” by Bag of Hammers.

9:24 – Kenny King interview – The interview started with Kenny King saying black men are attracted to white women, but he doesn’t have a type. King talked about relationships and women who only date men because of their money. Colt noted that he sometimes worry about women dating him solely for his money. King credited his daughter for his dating choices, because he wants to date women she can emulate. King speculated that living in Las Vegas may be why most people he meets seem so materialistic.

14:06 – Kenny King talks growing up and jobs outside of wrestling – King was born in New York, and he grew up in Queens before moving to Orlando, Florida. King joked about living outside the Magic Kingdom, and about Tiger Woods’s affairs. King’s dad sold timeshares, which King defended as not being a scam if the person who buys it vacations regularly. King also sold timeshares, performed as a D.J. and a pirate to support himself while wrestling.

19:22 – Kenny King talks “Tough Enough” – King talked about going to the University of South Florida to play football. King wasn’t happy, and his dad arranged for him to transfer to University of Nevada – Las Vegas, where he had to wait a year before he was able to play. During his year off, he found a newspaper ad for the second season of “Tough Enough,” and he sent off an audition tape. King was selected for an audition that took place in Las Vegas. King finished as one of the final four contestants, and he talked about another athletic guy who had trouble moving his body in the ring. King discussed in ring fluidity, and how hard it can be for many otherwise gifted athletes. Colt asked if King felt like he needed to shed his “Tough Enough” past. King said that he didn’t want to be a guy from “Tough Enough” that wasn’t good, and he was lucky that he trained with Nick Bockwinkel and Scott Casey right after the show. King avoided indy bookings for a year after “Tough Enough” aired to make sure that he was good enough to stand on his own. King didn’t have to pay for wrestling training after “Tough Enough,” as long as he advertised on his America Online profile who he was training with. King credited “Tough Enough” with helping him learn how to wrestle different types of people. King told a story about ditching the camera crew, getting drunk, and then getting yelled at by Tazz the next day.

33:39 – Kenny King talks Thailand – While training after “Tough Enough”, King went to Thailand on a three-month tour. King was selling timeshares, and left after a great month to work in Thailand. King thought that Thailand would be the beginning of working full time as a wrestler, but strong business didn’t last long. The wrestling show was a part of a bus tour package, but after a few weeks, the person running the tours stopped directing people to wrestling. King went into the experience of getting out of the country, and mentioned that the wrestling venue is now a three-story strip club. Colt and King briefly talked about when they first met.

41:36 – Kenny King talks about his daughter and working full time – After Thailand, King moved back to Florida and the next year his daughter was born. Colt asked if his daughter messed up his career, but King didn’t look at it that way. King realized he’d need to get a second job to support wrestling, because he wasn’t going to quit. Colt asked if King gets called out for being on “Tough Enough” by fans. King said it doesn’t happen frequently, but he doesn’t mind it at this stage in his career. King said that he recently re-watched “Tough Enough” and enjoyed seeing how things have changed.

45:42 – Kenny King talks Chippendales – King said he is a retired Chippendales dancer, and that it was something he tried to hide for a while but has embraced. King had a friend who was touring with Chippendales, and asked him to fill in for an injured performer. After being convinced to watch the Chippendales show in Las Vegas, he realized it was different from what he thought it was and joined the European tour. Chippendales was flexible enough for King to continue wrestling while performing, and once he realized he was the only wrestling Chippendale, he started to blend the performance to build his brand. Colt brought up the theater aspect of wrestling, and King said that he did theater in high school, so when he realized Chippendales was a production, he didn’t have any issues with performing.

51:58 – Kenny King talks staying relevant – King had been wrestling for 15 years, and said that he wants to keep changing to avoid becoming stagnant in the ring. King’s goal is to present something that people don’t expect and they haven’t seen before. King compared wrestling to watching a TV show, where you have to buy into the characters as the characters, rather than themselves. King plugged his social media and Colt asked if there was anything missing. King said he’s happy to be back in ROH, despite the great experience he had in TNA. King talked about the larger crowds with TNA, but said that he enjoys the smaller, passionate crowds in ROH. Colt then ended the interview.

58:49 – Colt wraps up the show – Colt praised King’s current work in ROH, and encouraged fans to check it out. Colt plugged his upcoming events, thanked his fans, Kenny King, his tech help and sponsors. Colt said it was fun to be with ROH because he’s seeing a lot of guys he missed seeing on the road, specifically singling out the Young Bucks, before signing off.

1:02:04 – Easter Egg – Kenny King narrated a handshake between he and Colt.


Score: 8.5 – This week’s episode of the Art of Wrestling flew by. Kenny King is very engrossing to listen to, and hearing about his upbringing and unusual path into wrestling was very interesting. While he is always excellent, Colt did an amazing job directing the conversation and changing topics when they were running out of steam. King was very entertaining, and I look forward to other ROH stars Colt will have on in the coming weeks.

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