In the first part of our in-depth conversation with EC3, we learned about his views on TNA, his training and more. In this, the second and final part of our interview, he reveals his thoughts about TNA's future stars, the internet fansites and more - read on and then make sure to watch EC3 on Impact, Sunday nights at 9pm on Challenge TV!
People point to you as TNA's MVP (no pun intended). Who will be the next breakout star?
The TNA locker-room is vast and rich with talent. As far as me being a newer guy and hopefully breaking through, that's great praise and I couldn't be more humbled by it. But if you look at the top of the card, we have legends like Kurt Angle and Jeff Hardy. I mean Jeff Hardy is one of the most popular wrestlers of all time and it's great to have him on our team. As far as newer, younger talent, I think it's undeniable that Bram came out strong in a similar way to how I did and also having Drew Galloway come over is a huge coup for us.
How much creative input do you get?
Creatively I don't dictate the stories we're telling but the difference between what I've been given in TNA and elsewhere is that I've got the freedom to develop a character and explore how he would act. That's as opposed to trying something elsewhere and being admonished or written off immediately or thrown right away. At TNA it's a collaborative effort between creative and talent and everyone wants to see success while over there maybe somebody wants you to succeed, somebody wants something else out of you, somebody wants someone else to succeed, and somebody doesn't want you to succeed. So there's a lot of chefs in that kitchen and you can very easily, like a lot of guys, get lost in that shuffle
TNA seems to have somewhat of a revolving door of talent. What's that like for the locker-room?
I think it's a great thing that people can come and go and still make a statement in the industry and make a living doing it. You look back at the days of the territories where people would leave and come to new territories all the time. I think it's unfortunate we don't have Samoa Joe anymore but I think with him going on and doing other things, he'll be re-invigorated and successful (and there's no doubt in my mind he'll be successful) and if, well when he does come back to TNA he'll be a hot property and commodity and fresh. I think in this business it's important to always stay fresh. Sometimes we're chess pieces and you've just got to place them in different places but as long as the business is good and strong and is doing well, there's no problem with that.
TNA has moved away from the Impact Zone in Orlando, wasn't it a benefit being in one place?
I think it doesn't hurt to have a home base that you can rely on, like we do in the Impact Zone in Orlando. But we also want to evolve and grow and get our product out there and you want to be in front of as many different people as possible and engaging them. So I think it's important to be in New York or Bethlehem or to look into other cities and countries like the UK. You can tell the ambiance is a lot different in the UK than we have in Orlando. There you get a lot of the same people and its just constant so they see a lot, constantly, all the time, so the natural reactions kind of dissipate a little bit. So I think we need to be out there as much as possible. I love getting out to different places, travelling, seeing different things and different people.
Do the 'dirtsheets' (internet wrestling sites) inform your product? Do you read them?
I think we should look at it differently than we did in the past. Its 2015, with social media and the internet, everybody has it. Everybody has access to what's going on. In the '90's or before then, there were the dirtsheets but now its media which we can use to our advantage to get eyes on our product. Some are disreputable. I think there's a couple that would check claims and have sources and can stand by their works and those ones are good but then I think there's a lot of miscommunication, lies and copying and pasting but it is what it is. You've got to take a lot of this stuff with a pinch of salt but times have changed and the internet exists and you need to utilise it
TNA looks to appeal to the family audience with 'Xplosion' but Impact can be a more hardcore show - is that compatible?
You've got to hook them when they're young and a morning TV programme like Xplosion we should do more with and put a lot into because building a fan base from the younger years carries over into the future. You know you can't give them the full gamut of what we do on Impact, as it's a little edgier. Under their parents discretion they're more than welcome to watch it but we also need to build young fans, use Xplosion and programmes like Spin Cycle - that was great!
EC3 and the other stars of Impact wrestling appear every Sunday night at 9pm on Challenge TV.