TNA Wrestling held a global conference call in preparation for the Against All Odds PPV this coming weekend and Jeremy Graves from Dropkick Radio had the opportunity to speak with former the world champion Samoa Joe for a few minutes about a variety of subjects.
Here is the conversation with Samoa Joe.
[You'll be able to hear this same conversation on our next program this coming Monday at www.DropkickRadio.com live from 7pm UK/2pm EST.]
DKR – Hello Joe. How are you doing?
SJ – Excellent. How about yourself.
DKR – Doing good thank you. Doing very good. My first question is relating to the UK tour. You spoke about [earlier in this conference] how the Wembley taping & how there was such an electric atmosphere and how the production people were really excited about the challenge [of filming the show in the unique conditions the original layout of the event had presented. Because it was set to be a non-televised event there was any consideration taken to adjust the layout for a possible television taping.] But would you mind talking about how excited all the performers were on the show and ultimately how well you think the show translated to television?
SJ – The level of excitement for the performers was pretty off the charts. I think too because you had a lot of guys who had not been in that environment yet. A lot of people who were newer to the company who were looking around the arena going “wow, this is pretty spectacular”. As far as I was concerned personally, to walk into an arena to look out into a crowd & just see the anticipation in their faces and when you hear that first initial roar of the crowd when the show started up it definitely amped everybody and got everybody ready to go.
DKR – When it comes to the global expansion of TNA you really have been at the forefront of it particularly from a UK perspective. You came over prior to the inaugural UK tour, on the first UK tour you I believe you were the world champion. For you what key aspects of growth have made TNA the presence it is in the UK and ultimately has it surprised you how much the fan base has grown in the UK for TNA?
Before I was in TNA I came over for several years with other companies and made forays in the UK and it was always just a hot bed for the art of professional wrestling. I think a lot of that has carried over into what you see today.
DKR – TNA have already announced the next year’s tour for 2013. Would you like to see TNA perhaps try and venture overseas in general on a more regular basis than just the once a year?
SJ – I would. I think international expansion is key to the growth and the success of any company in professional wrestling. Once again it boggles my mind that there hasn’t been a full time major national promotion in the UK up to this point. I would love to see TNA run the UK more, run Europe more. Obviously our expansion into India is going fantastically and I look to seeing what we’re able to accommodate here in the coming year.
DKR – When it comes to your tag team with Magnus (pictured below) you’ve spoken about how you both just wanted to go out and be a great team but is there a particular aspect of the union between you two that gelled extra well to enable you become as well oiled a machine as you have become?
SJ – There’s definitely a natural timing between Magnus and myself as far as what we do in the ring and it’s natural in the fact that it’s not practiced. Magnus lives a few States away from me and I’m always never at home so to get time to actually work with a tag team partner and work out the kinks we haven’t had that much time. We meet for a little bit before hand and then we discuss we’d like to accomplish but it’s a testament to his ability that he’s able to get in the ring, read off of me what we’re doing and just go from there. I think that’s the biggest key element that works between us is just there’s a weird innate & natural timing between the two of us.
DKR – Looking at how other sections of TNA have been developing, the X-Division has really had a resurgence over the last half year or so, Austin Aries currently being the champion. Regardless whether you become the tag team champions [at the Against All Odds PPV event] or not you’ve made it clear you would be more willing to go back for the World Heavyweight Title, but [are there] any aspirations to perhaps want to go back in the X-Division to perhaps meet up with someone like Austin Aries?
SJ – Absolutely. Me and Aries have a past and I’m sure I owe him a few. I think the X-Division has hit a resurgence but it’s on the back of performers like Aries and a lot of guys who are coming back of injuries right now. I would like to go back into the X-Division. Obviously the powers that be have set a weight limit that I don’t think I’ll be breaking anytime soon, but yeah any chance to compete with great athletes in the ring I’m always up for. If there’s one thing people know about me in pro wrestling, I’m not scared of a scrap. I don’t care about who it is, if you want to get in there we’ll go. I have very, very fond memories of my time working in the X-Division & the matches I’ve had in the X-Division and would love to revisit that any opportunity that I get.
DKR – My last question for you now is a bit of a random one but when it comes to tag teams in TNA there aren’t really many teams with team names as in Crimson & Matt Morgan and we’ve got Samoa Joe & Magnus. Any plans to perhaps try and get a team name for Samoa Joe & Magnus at some point?
SJ – I was just asked this question the other day and it’s funny, I don’t know I might implore TNA to maybe have a contest to name us. Between the two of us it’s funny for guys who work so well together we can’t find common ground on anything else in the world. Putting together a team I don’t know, maybe we should do a fan contest. Please don’t quote me on that it’s by no means in the works or anything. Maybe I’ll go to the office and get Chris on it and see what he can do.
DKR – Excellent. Thank you very much and have a good day.
SJ – Thank you.