Former WWE Superstar Mike Bennett was interviewed this week on The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling podcast.
The former ROH and IWGP Tag Team Champion talked about his recent WWE run, his release, winning the 24/7 Championship, his wife Maria Kanellis, Vince McMahon, his move to 205 Live during his final months in the company, his battle with addiction, the current independent scene, New Japan Pro Wrestling, Steve Bradley and a lot more.
Bennett confirmed that Paul Heyman helped him get signed by WWE and Heyman did a lot for him and his wife behind-the-scenes.
Bennett said, “It is true that Heyman helped me get signed. I’ve reached out to him and he has always been a really big mentor. Him and Maria go way back, so when me and Maria started dating, I started talking to him and he helped me out a lot. There is a lot of Paul Heyman influence on me and he did help me out quite a bit reaching out to people and helping me reach out to people with emails and phone numbers and putting me in touch with the right people. He was extremely helpful when he was there. He was always brutally honest with me.”
Bennett talked about his release and said that he spoke to Heyman before asking for his release last year.
“[Heyman] was the one I talked to right before I asked for my release because he was always brutally honest. He told me straight up that they view me as a good hand and that’s all they will ever view you as. I thought at least somebody had the balls to tell me that. I was always thankful that he essentially told me how everyone felt. I’m not going to work for somebody that views me as a good hand. I want to be more than that and that was where I had the turning point and the change in my brain where it was time to ask for my release for the third time.”
There’s a lot more covered in the interview including Bennett’s thoughts on the decision to give him his wife’s last name.