In a recent interview on the Getting Over: Wrestling Podcast, Shawn Michaels discussed working with Triple H in NXT, encouraging talent to speak their minds, and much more. You can read his comments below.
Shawn Michaels on whether creative has changed in NXT since moving to NXT and what it’s like working with Triple H: “Not that I’m aware of. Hunter, obviously, he’s the final say. But we’ve always had similar visions and similar ideas as far as creative and what we enjoy about wrestling. I’m still a huge wrestling fan, and when they’re actually out there in the ring, I don’t think anybody gets any more joy out of that than I do. Hunter has learned so much more than me when it comes to a production standpoint. He could now produce a movie or a motion picture. I’m very much enjoying learning that aspect from him. I think we balance each other out.
“I’m still the wrestling fan part of it – the simplicity, the old wild west aspect of it. Together, he’s able to take something that may be very wrong that I might have as an idea and make it so much bigger and better than what it was. In that aspect, I think we work well together. It’s still a business, and it’s no different than when we were in the ring. It continues to evolve and change, and you have to adapt to that. To me, that’s where all the enjoyment comes out……there’s just nothing better than being able to be out there and work side by side with the guys you drove up and down the road with.”
On encouraging NXT stars to push the system and speak their minds as performers: “I still encourage participation, let’s say. Again, I always try to make it very clear, please try to understand it’s not the same world, it’s not the same business. It’s so much bigger. Nobody should handle it the way that I handled it. No one. But I have to balance that with honesty, and that is letting them know that I can’t say for sure that if I didn’t at least push myself and push the system a little bit, I don’t know if I would have gotten where I got. It’s always important creatively to be finding the next big thing, the next movement. If you’re standing still and plateauing, that’s OK, but I would always encourage our guys and gals to push for more.
“I always use the line that Vince gave me years ago, which is, ‘Look, Shawn, I just want you to go out there and go for it, and I’ll reel you in. This generation does it with a lot more sense and sensibility than I did. Again, I think they’ve got a nice balance. To answer your question, I do encourage them to push themselves and to continue to evolve and try to grow as performers because I feel like they would get stagnant and complacent. That’s a delicate balance for them to have to adjust to, and they have got to do it on their time. I always make sure to tell them, don’t do it if it’s out of your nature. By all means, don’t do it. But if it’s something you passionately feel, I think you’re going to feel better, at least expressing it, as long as it’s expressed professionally and well-mannered. Certainly in NXT, everyone’s allowed to have a voice. You just can’t have the voice that I had 25 years ago.”
If using any of the above quotes, please credit The Getting Over: Wrestling Podcast with an h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.