Notsam Wrestling Podcast
Episode 201: Samoa Joe Interview, Trish Stratus, All In Breakdown, PWI 100, Diva’s Title Return?
Release Date: August 30, 2018
Recap by: James Hayes
From New York, Sam welcomes you to the podcast!
He starts off with some interesting ideas regarding the Divas Title.
“Maria Kanellis caught a little bit of heat over the weekend for saying they should bring back the Diva’s Title. It wouldn’t be the worst idea for Maria or someone from that era, to bring back the title, and you could compete over it. It would be a heel title. You could do something with that. I think the idea of somebody coming up and sticking up for the Diva’s title, where we really start to flesh out storylines. With everything being happy-happy joy-joy and positive you start to lose what makes wrestling, wrestling. At the end of Wrestlemania you don’t want to see all the male wrestlers coming together and giving each other a hug. The women’s movement can be a super important thing without that bleeding into storylines. I like the idea of some of the divas coming and proclaiming their era is the best. Bring back a Maryse or Molly Holly. Molly Holly’s still got it.”
(Maybe we will know the women’s movement has been a success when WWE stops drawing attention to it.)
“It was clear when she was in the ring that she still has it as an athlete. She still has wrestling in her DNA, which is interesting because she didn’t come from wrestling. But eventually when she got there she was like a fish to water. I believe her skill at wrestling comes back like riding a bike. I think that Trish Stratus is going to really be able to show up. And I think she knows how important it is. This is the only match that has been officially announced. They are using this match to sell tickets. It’s one of the main events. She showed up on Raw and was amazing.”
Samoa Joe Interview
Sam feels Joe is doing the best work of his WWE career and A.J. Styles is in the best storyline since his rivalry with John Cena. A personal feud all for the title that most thought these two would never even sniff.
Samoa Joe walks onto the stage.
Sam: What a cool dude. I wish I had that presence about me, that aura.
Joe: It’s a comedy club, right?
Sam: It is. Thank you for being here.
Joe: World famous Caroline’s.
Sam: What is it about you? I feel wherever you go there’s love. You were just on tv telling a man that he was a bad father, and his wife didn’t want him to wrestle anymore, and then you come out here and it’s Joe! Joe! Joe!
The crowd chants “Joe!”
Joe: It’s because I’m a lot deeper character than you want to give me credit for. Many of these people out here are from broken homes and have Fathers that have let them down time after time. Told them lies and not been a part of their families. Just know that for all of you poor children out there I am your champion.
There is applause from all around.
Joe: I will go forth and I will find the men who have wronged you. And I will tell them what scumbags they are. And I know your Mothers love most of you, but just know Samoa Joe loves you too.
Sam: I guess the thing most people realize is that Samoa Joe is for the children.
Joe: Like Wu-Tang.
Sam: What do you suppose it is about you and A.J. that more than most have taken opportunity, I don’t know if it’s taken opportunity, but have risen to the top? People go if this guy comes up from NXT they are not gonna use him right. Samoa Joe and A.J. Styles are the counter to the argument. When you are looked at you are not looked at as world travelers, you’re looked at as WWE Superstars. What is it about you two specifically…
Joe: We are better than everyone else.
Giggles from everyone.
Sam: I see.
Joe: I’ll be honest… I looked at WWE and thought, “I’m gonna kick down the door in and I’m gonna make them use me right.” If you want to do things right and be responsible for your career, then be responsible for your career. You are responsible for your success. Anyone in your way, you push through them, or work around them. I don’t have a lot time for excuses about people crying and saying I wasn’t given the right opportunity. Nobody gives you anything. 18 years ago I was shut out of this company and told I would never step foot in it ever, subsequently afterwards I heard tons of reports, “They would never hire him.” When I left my old company was assured, “Don’t worry he’ll be back. They will never hire him.”
Sam laughs like an arch villain.
Joe: That was actually said. “We’ll get him for less money. He’s stupid. He outpriced himself from the market. He’s insane if he thinks Vince McMahon would ever hire him.” Thankfully Tripe H is around so he hired me right away.”
Sam: You did capitalize on the wave of the business changing almost around you, in the sense that you show up at NXT, but you’re still doing independent…
Joe: I had the greatest deal in the history of professional wrestling. I could work freely for WWE, and work with others, and collect checks from merchandising. The whole nine. It was a good deal. But WWE did think my prospects were limited when I got there and that’s fine. This is something that’s not new to me, there’ never been a time, or company that wanted me. When I went to ROH I had an match with Low Ki…
The crowd claps with respect for Low Ki.
Joe: Gabe Sapolsky wanted that brutal match in ROH and I remember him telling me to my face, “Listen, I can’t afford to be flying people out to California every month, so thank you for doing this tonight, but I don’t see a future.”
Sam: By the way, if you are a prospective employer great way to…
Joe: You’re not worth the plane ticket. It was cool at the time because I had a job in Japan. I don’t need your ass. I came in we did the match and Gabe came up to me and said, “Hey man, what does your March look like we want to book you from now until forever?” When I stepped in TNA, I had turned them down several times before, and I was dedicated to ROH, we had a great financial agreement and I wasn’t going to break that just for TV. I got in TNA and they told me they lost their television but we heard you are big with the internet fans. They said they wanted to bring me in and I had a buddy that was working for Viacom and he tells me Spike is gonna pick up TNA. No one else knew this info.
Sam: This is wrestler insider trading.
Joe: I went in and they wanted to do an awful deal right away I said, “How about I do a couple shots and if you like we’ll make a deal.” Also I knew about the deal to Spike, so I could get more money. I did a couple shots, held off until the Spike TV deal was made and then I said, “Pay me goddamn it! You know you need my ass!!”
Sam: Have you always been a business headed person?
Joe: Yeah. I am in the wrestling business. Let it be known. I. AM. IN. THE. WRESTLING. BUSINESS. I quit my day job the day after I started training. I’ve been doing this ever since. I know the real numbers. I’ve worked for every company. I support guys who know their worth and ask for their worth. There’s a good chance I will be in a wheelchair when I’m 60, but I signed up for this. Proudly. That being said I have an extreme amount of respect for people who know their worth. Always know your worth.
Sam: Any profession that is a dream job, you run the risk that when you get a chance, you’ll do it for little to no money.
Joe: It’s across the board in entertainment anywhere. They don’t expect compensation and they wonder why people don’t respect them, because they don’t respect themselves. Pay your independent wrestlers. If the company doesn’t have money, then there’s something wrong with the company. People got on me on Twitter about that. “Easy for you to say, you are a WWE wrestler.” Bitch, I’ve been on the grind for 18 years.
Sam: First time I met you, you were not at WWE. You were a miserable man.
Joe: I had to go to this god awful interview. Seriously, we were going around to Sirius and all of a sudden I’m in an interview. I was like “Who booked me for this?”
Sam: The second time I met you, you had just got into WWE NXT. I was like, “I like this dude. He is the man.” What changed?
Joe: My money wasn’t right. The second time I was loaded and I was like, “What up, Sam? That’s my dog!”
Sam: Is there a high from a good match or is it a low, like why would WWE not be looking at me? I’m having some of the best matches in the world. What’s the issue?
Joe: It wasn’t an issue because I worked in development for WWE. I was training talent to make the transition into the WWE system. I had the checklist I knew what they wanted. It made the decision easier, because if that door is closed for me I can focus on these other companies. Even in my time in TNA I knew we had a good relationship. And my checks were not late.
Sam: Were you surprised that you got moved to the main roster?
Joe: I think after the first week, I knew main roster was happening, when they got the merch numbers, and the viewership numbers. This simplest way to describe is I walked on to NXT, and went to studio next day Hunter got off the bus and said, “Congratulations. Number two in merch last night.” And I went, “Number two in merch for NXT, that’s pretty good.” Then he said, “For the company.”
More claps from the crowd.
Joe: I said, “Who was number one?” Triple H said, Kevin Owens, but he just made his debut against Cena. I said, “Okay, I’ll take those numbers.”
Sam: And you get to keep your name.
Joe: I do my due diligence. I own my own name. A lot of guys don’t take the time to do that.
Sam: You told me a long time ago you got a dope lawyer.
Joe: Dope. Oh, he’s real grimey. The stuff I’ve gotten away with. He was actually instrumental in helping with the Smackdown deal. We sell all these t-shirts, I debut on TV, and now they’re like, “Gotta let him keep the goddamn name.”
Sam: Does missing WrestleManias, is that something that effects a guy like you?
Joe: Missing Wrestlemania sucks. It’s a hallmark event. We work towards it the whole year. It’s a annual goal for a lot of the people. Injuries are injuries. It wasn’t a big deal but anytime you miss Wrestlemania it sucks for a personal and financial standpoint. It’s two-fold.
Sam: What’s it like to be in the ring with Brock Lesnar one on one?
Joe: Hmmm. It’s like they shaved an ape and gave him a buzz cut. Brock is unnaturally strong. Brock’s thing is that, he’s gonna lean on people, and if you’re not aggressive and you don’t get in his face, he’s gonna eat you alive. You wanna push that jab, I’ll push out that jab too.
Sam: Just the guts it takes to find that out.
Joe. In all honesty I’ve been beaten up by men tougher than Brock Lesnar.
Sam: Can you name names?
Joe: Bas Rutten
There are claps from the crowd.
Joe: Don’t clap for that.
Joe: I’ve been in the ring with lots and he is by far one of the most impressive physical people you can be in the ring with.
Sam: You allow them to set the pace?
Joe: Trust me I will. If you don’t get the job done on that first shot I will. I am not a proponent of street fights, but I have been in a few assaults.
Sam: Okay. I don’t know how comfortable I am with the follow up.
Joe: I’m just saying instead of talking it’s easier to hit the guy in the back of the head, laugh with your friends, then leave quickly before the cops come.
Joe: If you’re gonna fight get paid for it.
Sam: You’ve been in the ring with Braun, how does that compare to Brock?
Joe. Brock is explosive and Braun has that old man strength. There’s a difference in speed.
Sam: Anything you learn about the business once you got to WWE?
Joe: They just do everything more and all the time. The traveling hits the fourth week of being gone four or five days. This is my life now. You adjust to it.
Sam: Do you see yourself training people after your done?
Joe: I don’t want to outstay my welcome, but I’ve been in talks with WWE and several other people, with at some point during my life doing more backstage stuff.
Sam: Samoa Joe is dropping pearls of wisdom. Before you clap think of what he just said, “I’ve been in talks with WWE and several other people.” That’s the beginning of a great negotiation. It’s smart.
Sam now opens the floor for the audience at Caroline’s to ask Joe questions. There are some fun questions like:
Why he is not related to The Rock?
Would he rather train Drake or Pusha T?
What are his thoughts about Scott Steiner math?
Best Disney villain to be a WWE Superstar?
Why did his water spill during this interview?
Click the link at the top to hear the full interview. It’s worth it.
The video of this interview is currently on Sam’s patreon. https://www.patreon.com/notsamwrestling. It can also be found on youtube within the next week or so.
State of Wrestling
Number one is Kenny Omega. Last year was Okada. This is only the second time in history a non-WWE star was not at the top. Sam says the guy deserves it because he always delivers. He is not overrated and if he comes to WWE it will be because he wants to. It will also cost them a lot.
A.J. Styles is number two. Perfect.
Kazuchika Okada is number three. Sam says he is top ten, but not number two.
Brock Lesnar is number four. Sam says he’s also too high. His program with Reigns never got over.
Seth Rollins is number five. He’s the man. Sam would have put him at two.
Sam feels Chris Jericho should be in the top ten because of all the work he’s done in New Japan.
(Chris is subtly bringing all the promotions together and changing the game!)
Nope. Becky Lynch has struggled for too long and fans have bonded to her. WWE underestimated how popular the Irish Lass Kicker is. It won’t work. Maybe
Becky just needs better t-shirts. (Huh?)
Braun Strowman is now a heel. It’s a risk. Long-term he will be over as a babyface Universal Champ. Fans will cheer him no matter what.
Neville is free… to come back?
It’s been a full year and rumor has it he is coming right back. Maybe he goes to NXT UK? Sam hopes he pops up at the All In PPV.
Kevin Owen quits
Kevin is gone but not really. Sam thinks KO could also show up at All In. It would make Owens feel like a rock star. Let the guy show up at whatever indie show he feels like. It would build a real buzz for him. Will it actually happen? He’s not betting money on it.
It’s the biggest indie event ever and it’s in a great wrestling city, Chicago.(We will know how well the show is going based on the occurrences CM Punk chants.)
Sam won’t be there but he’ll be watching and doing a recap show immediately after.
All In and the The Starrcast Convention both have great buzz. (It feels like a moment in time.)
Saturday night it goes down. The pre-show, Zero Hour will be on WGN. Sam is especially excited for the Over Budget Battle Royal. He’s hoping to see some big surprises.
Nick Aldas vs Cody Rhoades is the big one to see. It’s likely the main event.
Check out Sam’s interview with Aldas below.
Sam wants to see if these guys can meet the production value of WWE. It will be key in selling the idea that they can compete with any other promotion in the world.
You can catch All In on Fite-TV or on PPV this Saturday.
Mae Young Classic
This was a great show! Samoa Joe is my favorite wrestler and this interview shows why. He drips charisma. I especially liked the way he gave a glimpse into the laid back person he is versus the baddass he portrays in WWE. I wish someone had asked about the SummerSlam TNA chants and if we will ever see the Muscle Buster.
Roberts has a laid back personality that makes his guest feel comfortable, thus allowing for more honest and revealing answers, then he would otherwise get.
Rating: 8 out of 10
See ya next week!