Matt Sydal’s passion and love for the business just shines so bright like a shooting star, literally a shooting star!! In this 3 hour interview you will hear all about how he started watching wrestling as a kid and how he broke into the business. We talk all about his early days working for Ian Rotten in IWA Mid-South and how that was just the start of his journey to get to the next level. He was always trying to learn the business as he shares some of his early lessons from vets who came into the IWA Mid-South promotion. How did he get to the next level and break into ROH? What was it like to be around a young CM Punk, Bryan Danielson, Seth Rollins, Chris Hero and so many young upstarts who went on to be major players in the WWE.
We talk all about his run in ROH and how it lead to him going to Japan to work for Dragon Gate. We tap all about all the key players that were in the landscape around this time. His stories that he shares about his time in Japan are truly remarkable. We talk about his he landed himself into the WWE developmental territories of OVW and FCW. Matt took it upon himself to get booked on WWE and literally grabbed the bull by its horns which got him a job in WWE’s ECW and wait until you hear how it all went down. We cover his entire WWE run as Evan Bourne and what possibly could’ve went wrong if anything and injuries he sustained. Closing the interview we talked about returning to Japan for NJPW, his Japanese legal issue, Impact Wrestling, AEW and so much more!
Were you a wrestling fan growing up?
Who were your favorites growing up?
Do you find they influenced your style in the ring?
Talk about your high school wrestling background?
What made you want to start training as a pro wrestler?
Memories of training at Gateway Championship Wrestling in Missouri?
Did you family have any issue with you training so young?
Talk us through what the training was like?
Was there anything you had issues figuring out early on?
Is it true you were having matches after three months?
Any veterans who went out of their way to help you?
Memories of wrestling as Lance Sydal for the Saint Peters Wrestling Organization?
Memories of Operation Shamrock in GCW?
Where did the Matt Sydal name come from?
Memories of working Makaze and Kid Kash in GCW?
Memories of working for NWA Mid-South?
First impressions of Ian Rotten?
Why do you think so many talents who made a name for themselves came through IWA?
Memories of JC Bailey?
Memories of working with Delirious and Daizee Haze during that time?
First impressions of Delirious from those days?
Are you surprised he’s done so well in wrestling as a booker
Memories of the following from IWA days:
Memories of winning the Ted Petty Invitational and what it meant to you on a personal level
Was there anyone from the IWA era you are surprised didn’t make it to a national level
Any favorite memories of the IWA scene?
Memories of working the very first TNA PPV in the Gauntlet the Gold
Thoughts on how the promotion and show seemed to be behind the scenes that night?
Why weren’t you used in a more prominent position in the company early on?
Memories of your team with Delirious in the company?
How did you end up in Ring of Honor?
Initial thoughts on Gabe Sapolsky as a booker?
Memories of working the ROH Best of American Super Juniors tournament
Memories of working with the following in ROH –
What did you think of the Generation Next stable?
Memories of the feud with Prince Nana’s Embassy?
Memories of wrestling and then teaming with AJ Styles?
Memories of teaming with Chris Daniels and their ROH tag team title run?
Memories of beating the Kings of Wrestling for the titles?
Working the Briscoes?
What led to you turning heel and joining Sweet and Sour Inc?
Memories of Larry Sweeney?
You leave ROH after a final bout against Delirious – did you know that night you were finishing up?
How did you get hooked up to tour Dragon Gate in Japan?
First impressions of the promotion?
Best and worst part of touring Japan?
How did touring there help you as a worker?
Memories of teaming with CIMA, Jack Evans and Don Fuji as New Blood Generational International?
Thoughts on becoming the first gaijin to win the Open the Brave Gate Championship from Masato Yoshino?
What led to you defending it in ROH?
How did you first become involved with Wrestling Society X?
Memories of filming the series?
What were your hopes going in?
Did you expect it was going to be a larger deal than it turned out to be?
Memories of working with Lizzie Valentine as your valet?
That was the first time you really had a chance to play a character – what did you learn from the experience?
When did you realize the series was doomed?
Were you let down you never got to have the match they teased with X-Pac?
Are you surprised there’s still a cult fandom for the series?
You signed a developmental deal after your WSX contract expired – did WWE show any interest in you before WSX?
Who from WWE do you credit with signing you?
What expectations or promises did you have going into developmental?
Initial memories of OVW?
Walk us through a week working in OVW?
Was there a specific curriculum?
Memories of working
Atlas Da Bone
Talk us through why you think WWE severed their relationship with OVW?
You were moved to FCW – compare it to OVW?
Memories of working with:
When did you learn you were being called up to the ECW brand?
Initial thoughts and hopes for being there?
Where did the Evan Bourne name come from? Did you like it?
Memories of teaming with Kofi Kingston on WWE ECW?
Thoughts on his success over the last year in the company?
WWE had banned the shooting star press when Paul London was doing it but brought it back for you to do – was there ever any warnings about the move or safety while using it?
You started to get a big push in ECW – break down who was the creative team and who worked with you behind the scenes at the time?
Memories of working with Matt Hardy at Cyber Sunday?
Memories of the following in WWE ECW:
You won a Best Finishing Manuever Slammy – did they actually give you a statue?
You get traded to Raw in June and wrestle Randy Orton in your debut – hopes and expectations when you are brought up to the top brand?
Talk us through a day backstage at a Raw taping when you have a match vs. when you don’t?
Memories of working Money in the Bank Ladder Match at Wrestlemania 27?
Talk the pressures of working a major Mania match in a stadium?
Best part of working for the company Mania week?
Memories of working against/teaming with:
Thoughts on Swagger’s MMA success?
You were written out to have shoulder surgery – where did the injury occur?
What sort of pressure does the company put on your to come back?
Who put the Air Boom tag team together with Kofi?
Talk us through creating the team and the differences in working to get yourself over vs. the team.
Memories of the team winning the tag titles over David Otunga and Michael McGillicutty?
Did you feel the company was invested in you at this point?
Memories of working against Miz and R-Truth?
Ziggler and Jack Swagger?
You are suspended for a violation of the company wellness policy in November – what’s your side of what happened?
You return and immediately lose the belts to Primo and Epico – punishment?
You are suspended again, this time for 60 days – what happened?
Talk to us about your motorcycle accident and the foot injury you suffered?
How much pain are you in these days seven years later?
What do you do to cope?
Was there a point it didn’t appear you were going to return to the ring?
Was there a plan B if you couldn’t return to the ring?
How did you personally and mentally endure a year of recovery?
Memories of returning to the ring for NXT vs. Sami Zayn?
Why did WWE never bring you back to TV?
Were you surprised when the company released you?
Thoughts on your WWE run overall?
Have they ever approached you about returning?
You return to ROH in 2014 – is that through your relationship with Delirious?
How has ROH changed now that it’s owned by Sinclair Broadcast Group?
Memories of working the following:
Memories of the best of 5 series with KUSHIDA
When you returned to the indies, you began working quite a bit in Europe – what makes that scene so unique?
Memories of working PWG and why do you think it stands out against so many other independent promotions?
Memories of returning to DG?
You begin to work EVOLVE in 2014 as well – how had Gabe Sapolsky change?
Memories of working Ricochet and Johnny Gargano there?
You had the chance to tour and wrestle in South Korea for PWF – what was that experience like? How were the fans compared to American or Japanese fans?
You had the chance to wrestle in Israel as well – what were the fans like there?
How do you end up in New Japan?
Differences working there vs. Dragon Gate?
You received a nice push early on, teaming with Tanahashi and wrestling against Omega – what sort of plans did they tell you they had ?
Thoughts on teaming with Ricochet to win the 2015 Super Jr. Tag Tournament?
Let’s talk about the arrest at Kansai Airport in Japan
Were you aware what you were doing was illegal?
What was your response when they arrested you?
Memories of being in jail in Japan?
Did New Japan try to help you legally?
You made the decision to plead guilty – why?
How long will it be before you are allowed to return to Japan?
Do you regret everything that happened?
Do you think the door is closed to working for New Japan?
You make the decision to leave ROH and sign with Impact – what made you make that call?
How had Impact changed since the Nashville days?
Memories of your return vs. Trevor Lee?
Memories of working with
Alberti el Patron
Your observations on the time period jeff jarrett had returned to take over the company
Was it true he was out of control behind the scenes
Memories of working the TV tapings in India
Who came up with the idea of Josh Mathews as your spirit guide
It seemed like your team with Ethan Page never had a chance to get out of the gate – thoughts on working with him?
What led to you departing Impact – why weren’t you offered/want to sign a new deal?
You’ve wrestled sparingly since leaving Impact – let everyone know what you’ve been up to?
Future goals or plans?
Thoughts on AEW as a potential destination for you?
Favorite cities to compete in?
Favorite Arena to wrestle with?
What do you think is the biggest misconception of you publicly?
Have you ever thought about writing a book about your experiences?
Would you be open to returning to WWE one day?
How do you think Triple H will do running the company vs Vince?
Message to your fans?