Here are some highlights:
TJP was asked about his interactions with Vince McMahon:
“One thing, Vince has never chewed me out. He’s never even been mean or stern. He’s kind of just a normal dude. I don’t think enough people just treat him like a normal dude. I honestly feel that part of him is like this lonesome dude inside that’s like, ‘Why won’t anybody just talk about AC/DC and football with me.’
I’m not wired for nerves or anxiousness or things like that. I don’t get starstruck by people or anything. So building a relationship with him or knocking on the door if I had a question has never been an issue. Most people are so intimidated by his door, they won’t even knock. I think another reason why I always had pleasant interactions with him is because every time that I knocked on his door, maybe once a month or once every few weeks, I would just sit down and have a conversation with him.
Sometimes I didn’t even need anything from him. I just wanted to talk to him so that he gets used to being around me. Every time I sat down with him, he was so soft spoken. He always talked second. He always wanted me to talk first. He would answer my question. He was never mean. If he corrected me, he was always fair. So I never had that weird, ‘Get out of my sight.’ I never had any of that from him. I think that my biggest takeaway from being around him is that he is a normal guy and I feel like people don’t let him live like a normal guy.”
TJP talking about his Ironman match with Josh Alexander in Impact Wrestling:
“I think the frustration for the programming stuff mostly was because I wanted to give Josh a great match because he is one of the best opponents you could ever ask for. I think he’s also in a place where he really deserves the best out of whoever he’s in there with. I was like, ‘I want you to have a good day.’
I’ve had plenty of moments in the sun, but this is Josh’s coming out party right now. To me, I was mostly frustrated because I don’t want to have a bad day on his behalf because he’s the king that we’re all trying to feed here. He’s our guy. Knowing I’m still going to go in there and be the quarterback of the thing, now I’m going to have to deal with so much stuff. That’s the highest level baseball you can have is to do an amount of time that’s physically impossible for most people to do.
Most people just can’t physically do that match. Most of the time though when they have that match, it’s on a PPV, there’s no cuts, and you can go straight through and you have freedom. A lot of people, once you go to the major league level, realize that even a 5 minute match with a commercial break is very hard to do on live TV. Knowing we were going to go in there and we were going to do it live to tape because they wanted to air it a certain way, it was going to be presented live, but then we’re also going to give you these commercial breaks. I think we ended up having two or three more planned or something like that. They came in different spots or intervals. That’s about as high level baseball as you can possibly play.
Any hurdle you can possibly put in our business was there. That’s what was frustrating, and it was mostly because it was last minute hurdles. It was almost like somebody showed you the track, and then right before they’re about to blow the gun, they’re like, wait a minute. We’re going to add a hurdle, a hurdle, a cone, and a cone. It’s like, wait a minute guys. You still expect me to run a perfect race? But, Josh is incredible to the point that I would say you can’t have a bad match with him.
Thankfully, we handled it fairly easily. I think the hardest part for me, maybe other than navigating some of that stuff mentally, was that I had a broken nose. I broke it the week before, and this was not day one of the TV tapings. This was in the middle, so it had been getting hit more and more, and maybe more broken leading up to the days of it. I had half a working septum. Josh is a really physical wrestler. He’s a legitimate heavyweight and I’m a junior. That’s bad enough as it is. That's like Mayweather fighting Tyson. I can hold my own with him physically, but he’s going to be rough. I couldn't breathe and it’s painful, but it was an experience.”
Click below for the full interview.
If you use any portion of the quotes from this article please credit "Wrestling Perspective Podcast with Jason Powell" with a h/t to WrestlingNews.co for the transcription.