Taylor Rust recently appeared as a guest on the Shining Wizards podcast for an extensive interview covering all things wrestling.
During his appearance on the show, the wrestling veteran spoke about his recent roller coaster-style career, the WWE Performance Center training facility, working with Shawn Michaels and landing in Ring Of Honor.
Featured below are some of the highlights from the interview.
On his most recent roller coaster years: “It’s very very unique how it’s all kind of unfolding, ya know? A culmination of a lot of years of hard work on my part, man, finally getting those big payoffs you’ve been working towards. We’re all dealt different hands in life, and this the hands that we got dealt this time, and I was given. ROH is a great company, and if this is the end for them, then this is the end. Maybe it’s not. Hopefully it’s not. Hopefully they keep going. Final Battle, I think, is going to do really well, and I’m looking forward to being a part of that show, and we’ll take it all one step at a time. As far as the past two years of my career, it’s been an absolute game changer the entire step of the way. I had a lot going on in my personal life, and it caused me to take a quick second look at my wrestling career and really put myself into focus. You’re either going to push forward and achieve this big goal you have getting signed to WWE, of being this international talent, of being this sought-after person in this independent professional wrestling scene, or you’re going to call it a day. And I lit that fire, and it pushed me more than I already was, and that’s all I needed. It’s been a really amazing past two years, honestly.”
On his thoughts on the WWE Performance Center: “That’s an incredible place to go there and train. I remember talking with Drew Gulak about it, just looking around it and being like, “Can you believe a place like this exists now in the wrestling world?” Can you imagine being a completely untrained talent and coming here and this is where you’re going to learn – from the best coaches in the world, the best training facility you’ll have in pro wrestling in the world. The utilizations of what they have there is endless, realistically. But I would definitely say I was never intimidated by it. If there’s one thing I’m confident about, it’s what I do in the ring. I’ve been wrestling for about seventeen years now. If I’m not confident in what I’m doing in the ring when I’m being tested by it, I shouldn’t be doing this anymore. Have all the coaches you want, have anyone you want overview my matches, I love it. I want the pressure. I want the center stage when it comes to being in the ring. I want that. You spend enough time doing really, really good matches in front of fifteen people, and I was thinking back to myself back in those days, like does this really mean something? You go out there and you deliver these great matches with somebody, but who’s watching it? Fifty people up here in Salem, Oregon? Does it really count? Every opportunity like that in front of their (NXT) guys. Those are the opportunities you work for.”
On his relationship with Shawn Michaels: “I actually had gotten contacted by Shawn the very next day (after his release). We talked briefly. He basically said that “My number never changes. Please contact me if you ever need anything. I just want you to know that I’m very upset about this, and I hope it’s not the end of us working together.” And that means a lot, coming from someone like him, to know that you’re not an immediate afterthought. And that the relationship that me and him were kind of building wasn’t superficial, and that it was real to the extent that this person is caring about me, genuinely, and not just nine-to-five. And that’s kind of nice to know.”
On Ring of Honor being his landing spot: “Right before I had gone to WWE, they had the Pure tournament. I signed my contract for WWE while in the hotel room for ROH there with the Pure tournament stuff. And after my match, and my weekend there, I had talked briefly with the (ROH) office, and basically, they asked me what my status was within the industry and where I was going. They said that they had heard a rumor that I had been signed by WWE, and I was like “Yeah, the rumor would be true then,” and I did just literally sign it last night when I was talking with them. They (ROH) said they understand, but if anything happens, please reach out to us and know that we are very interested in working with you. We love your work. That was a great feeling to know, that they weren’t mad about it. They were bringing the Pure tournament and they gave me and Tracy (Williams) a lot of time and they were spending this money on me, and I was immediately gone. They could have easily just said that “If you’re not sticking around, then you’re not one of our guys, we have no leniency or loyalty to you. We have plenty of other guys that want to work here.” But they were still very understanding about it. And when I got released, they were the first people I hit up, and it was an immediate “We saw, we understand, and we’d love to have you back. Please, if you can do the next PPV, we’ll put you on right away.” That was a great thing to know.”
Check out the complete interview at ShiningWizards.com.
WRESTLING NEWS REACTION & DISCUSSION
* For late-breaking WWE & AEW news & rumors, follow our social media reporter on Twitter @MattBoone0709
* Follow the official eWrestling account on Twitter @eWrestlingCOM
* Follow the official eWrestling Facebook page at Facebook.com/eWrestlingCOM
* Chat with other fans about this article in the official eWrestling Disqus feed below, or at Disqus.com/home/forums/http-ewrestling-com