Scott Steiner has never quite been media friendly during his career. So, when he told Jeff Jarrett he wanted to do a lot of media to promote Slammiversary XV, Jarrett thought he was joking. He was not. All he was asking is to do it his way. So a larger-than-life Steiner shared his thoughts about Impact Wrestling, his upcoming match with Josh Mathews against Joseph Park & Jeremy Borash and his legacy in professional wrestling during a media conference call.
His intentions for his Slammiversary match are clear: “Somebody’s going to get punched, and it may be all three of them. Josh Mathews called me up, and wanted to know if I could do what I do best, beat people up. The money’s right, I said yes, and that’s how the ball got rolling.”
He minimised his hatred against Jeremy Borash: “It’s not a deep-rooted hatred. I just wanna roll the butter ball. I speak to chosen, and I hate fat asses and Jeremy’s put on some weight. It’s not deep-rooted, it’s just to where I want to bitch slap him a little. No punch but a big slap for Jeremy.” And also Josh Mathews wrestling abilities: “It means nothing to me. I’m here to punch people, see him fall face-first, that’s all I care about and the referee counting 1-2-3.”
Comparing his time with TNA to the current Impact era, Steiner saw a lot of changes. “If you talk to anybody, there’s a huge difference. I think when people see Jeff, they know that he knows what he’s doing. It’s night and day. People want to come to work, they’re excited about what everybody’s doing and it’s a totally different atmosphere.”
But he has a good memory of his TNA time: “My favourite moment was the Main Event Mafia. The champions were all together and that was a lot of fun because you had a lot of history in the ring every time we stepped in the ring. A lot of us had been around for a long time, so the stuff that we did backstage, the stuff that didn’t make it on TV was also entertaining and funny. To date, that’s been the highest rated portion of TNA’s existence. A lot of people bought into it because of the reality of everything, it was a lot of fun.”
When the voice of Joseph Park appeared on the phone line, asking for any possibility to cancel the whole thing for Sunday, Steiner enraged: “You thought we were jokin’ around, Joseph? Let me tell you something, Joseph Park, I’m going to make you scream for your brother! One thing I don’t like, Joseph, is a lawyer. And that’s why you’re the scum of the earth, Joseph. Because you’re a lawyer. I know it’s you, and I’m going to beat your ass!”
When asked about any possible chance for Borash and Park to win the match, Steiner laughed his odds: “Unfortunately, I don’t have a number smaller than zero. It’s hard to come up with an interesting way for something less than zero. It’s tough to come up with a more interesting way to say zero. They have ZERO chance.”
His legacy in the business is for him far away from anything huge: “I’m in the Hall of Fame at Michigan (University where he amateur wrestled) and the Dan Gable Hall of Fame. But, when I go out to these independent shows and talk to the fans, that’s good enough for me. It all really comes down to how the fans remember you.”
He adds a lesson that his fans can take from his journey in pro-wrestling: “Persistence, as nobody starts at the top. It requires a lot of hard work, stubbornness and patience. Wrestling is a tough sport. It takes a lot of persistence to stick to this.”
His recipe for what makes a good wrestler is simple: “It takes a combination of a lot of things. Time, good presence, having the ‘It factor’, looking good, in-ring ability, and a lot of luck. Not everybody starts so great, it’s a process that takes years to perfect. It’s a profession that you can always get better at.”
About his future on Impact Wrestling, Big Poppa Pump is going one match at a time: “I just focus on one punch at a time, one match at a time, one person at a time. But anything is possible. I haven’t had any talks on anything past Slammiversary, but I’m open to the fact, where if someone wants to hire me again to beat up somebody they don’t like. I’m open to suggestions. Call me up, I’ll beat somebody up.”
And he may be back as, when he was asked about a dream match with any of Impact Wrestling wrestler, he joked: “Any of the KnockOuts. That would be a dream”. But more than anything, the respect he has for Jeff Jarrett, the Impact roster and the industry he’s been working for more than 25 years could be an even more important motivation.
Slammiversary XV takes place this Sunday, July 2, (Monday at 12.30AM UK time) live on PPV channels and on Impact Wrestling Fite TV service. It will available on SPIKE UK at 9pm on Monday 3rd July.