Tuesday, May 26, 2015

James Storm Talks Revolution, TNA Feuds and More

Welcome back to another edition of the v2 wrestling podcast. On tonight's special, Adam is joined by TNA legend James Storm. The full audio is available at this link. Below are the highlights.

Original plans for the Revolution:

"The whole startup with the Revolution was a different vision than what I had in mind. TNA came and asked me if I would help these guys out a little bit, and I didn’t mind at all. My vision of it at the beginning was I wanted it to be me, Gunner, Sam Shaw, Lance Hoyt and Crimson. You look at that group and those are some bad boys. But they had a different vision of it and they asked me what I thought of it. I make the best out of everything that I’m given and if I’m able to help some guys out along the way, that’s what I’ll do. So far I've felt like I’ve elevated some of these guys up."

The growth of the Revolution:

"First they asked me for my thoughts on it and I told them. Then they asked me to start out with Sanada and work from there. I was still getting my feet under me with the heel turn and just figuring what direction I wanted to go and everything. That was a learning process for me with Sanada, and we brought in The Great Muta and did a deal with him. Then it just started growing and we brought in Manik, Abyss and now Khoya, who I’ve been working with closely to try to get more ring time and more ring experience for him. I just told TNA that he needs more ring time. I can teach a monkey how to do wrestling moves, but to actually learn how to work in front of a crowd is something that he has to learn in the ring, in front of a crowd. It’s hard for someone to be taught that."

Does he prefer being a heel or a babyface:

"I always prefer being a heel, just because I was always taught that it’s easier to piss people off than it is to make people happy. These days it’s hard for good babyfaces to get over because everybody wants to cheer for the cheaters or the guys that they think are cool or something. For example, John Cena. It’s hard for him to get over as a babyface, but I think if he turned heel, people will really boo the hell out of him. Or he would actually get those people who are booing him now to start cheering for him. Wrestling fans are weird, but at the end of the day they want to cheer for whoever they want to cheer for and that’s how it goes."

Who can be the top babyface for TNA:

"I could. Given the correct program and everything, I believe I can be that pure babyface that TNA needs. Just for the simple fact that people can relate to me. I’m not the giant 6-foot-4 jacked up guy. People from town say, I want to root for this guy because he kind of reminds me of someone I’d like to hang out with or could hang out with, you know? It’s just one of those things where I don’t feel like I got the proper push at the time when I was the World Heavyweight Champion, but that’s all behind me now and I’m just moving forward. Given the right opportunity, I could be that pure babyface that TNA needs."

The future of the Revolution:

"It’s one of those things where I’m not really sure. I think they’ve got more plans for it and they kind of want to take it in a different direction, maybe the direction that I thought of at the very beginning. They talked to me about some new people coming in and what I thought. I’m always about trying to make the product better, because once the product’s better, everybody makes more money. This whole Revolution thing, I like doing it, but at the same time I like being on my own as well."

His real-life friendship with Gunner:

"I’ve been friends with Gunner and Crimson for a long time. They came to me when me and Gunner had our feud and they asked me if I would help elevate him because I think they wanted to do something with him and the World Title, and of course I was like, yeah. I love Gunner to death and if I can help him out, that’s fine. So we did all this and we beat the hell out of each other, but then he was left off TV for a while and that kind of bothered me a little bit. I’ve heard now that they’ve got plans to bring him back and do something really cool with him, so all the best to Gunner."

Thoughts on Billy Corgan joining TNA:

"He was at the last TV tapings that we had. They already had the TVs written and everything right before he came in, so I don’t think he was able to change stuff around. I got to talk to him and I shot some ideas and he loved them. He gave me some of his ideas and I was just trying to make sense out of some of the things he was saying. I really didn’t know too much about him except he was the lead singer of the Smashing Pumpkins, but talking to him and getting to know him, the guy knows a lot about wrestling. He looks at it like I do, from a fan’s standpoint. How will this translate over to the fans? Will they like this or will they not? Will they be like, this doesn’t make any sense at all? Because wrestling fans are not stupid — they don’t want to have their intelligence insulted by some crazy, ridiculous storyline."

Rumors of TNA being canceled by Destination America:

"I’ve been told by the higher-ups that there’s nothing to worry about. TNA is owned by a billion dollar company, Panda Energy, so the money is going to be there. They talk about the network saying this and that. Every network wants great ratings, but the problem is that it takes time for the casual wrestling fans and the viewers to find Destination America. A lot of people don’t have that channel, or it’s a premium channel and they have to pay for it. My mom actually couldn’t find it until like a month ago. So it’s just taking people a little longer to find the Destination America channel. Nobody really knows except for the network and Dixie Carter, that's how I look at it. Dixie cares about the wrestlers like they’re her own kids. If something's going to go down, she’s going to have a meeting and talk about it with all of the guys, so that’s how I look at it."

Who he wants to work with in TNA:

"I’d really like to work with Bobby Lashley. I think me and him could have some good matches, with him being a babyface and me being a heel, or vice versa. I always like working with the bigger guys. It's harder working with bigger guys when you're the heel because it's hard to get sympathy on them, but Bobby Lashley is one of those babyfaces that I think, even though he's a big guy, he can still get sympathy on himself and make people care about him. I’d also like to have a good run with Kurt (Angle). I think with me being heel and him being the face of the company right now, I think that could be a really good angle."

Thought on Beer Money reunion with Bobby Roode:

"I think creative has got him doing something with Austin Aries right now. I wish him all the luck and everything, but it’s one of those ideas that I also pitched to TNA. Hey, how about we get Bobby Roode to join the Revolution and have Beer Money in the Revolution? So you never know, it can be something that kind of comes around. To me, I think that could be quite interesting to have Bobby part of the Revolution."

His feud with Magnus and a potential match at Slammiversary:

"Yeah, I believe that’s where they’re headed. I've worked with Magnus ever since he came into the company. When he first came in they put him with Doug (Williams) and then he and Doug always worked with me and Bobby a lot on all the live events and TVs just to get him used to the American style, because I don’t think Magnus had really been working that long when he came to TNA, maybe three years or something. It’s night and day with him now. He goes in there and he puts everything into his matches. He’s a student of the game. It’s really a testament to him to show that he’s not here to just collect a paycheck. He’s learning and he wants to be the best."