Alexander Wolfe on Nikki ASH, SAnitY, NXT UK, WWE Release and What’s Next

Alexander Wolfe (Axel Tischer) is a professional wrestler known best for his time in WWE and NXT UK. He joins Chris Van Vliet from his home in Germany to talk about what’s next for him after being released from his WWE contract, being part of SAnitY, what he learned from Eric Young, his thoughts on Nikki ASH’s new gimmick, how he got discovered and signed by WWE, the original gimmick they had planned for him and more!

On learning English:

“Of course you start in school. I think it was maybe in the 6th grade, no sorry 4th grade here. It was mainly just colors and counting. You really have the topic in school at 5th grade. But I believe that I really got into English in the early 2000’s when I got into professional wresting. I was watching it and screaming all of the catchphrases, but I did not know what they meant. I would say ‘If you smell what The Rock is cooking.’ and I would believe it was the coolest thing ever. That and torturing my English teacher with ‘What?’ So many phrases in English make no sense in German.”

On learning to wrestle at a young age:

“I started wrestling training at 13. So in Germany, wrestling is uncategorized. It is not with sport and it is not with art. It is right in between but you can’t say that it is either. In Germany, they still don’t get it. They love their soccer and badminton, but they don’t get wrestling. Becasue of that, you can train early becasue it is under the radar. When people realized that wrestling was fake here, they stopped going to the shows back in the day. It took a long time to get back after that. But now, especially after COVID, the scene has been growing. WXW had 3 shows where there was over 1,000 people in the building each night.”

On loving wrestling at an early age:

“I started watching wrestling at 5 or 6 years old. My parents used to watch it and I was fascinated right away, I’ve always been a fan of anime and comics. I remember the first pay per view I watched was WrestleMania 9, from there I just fell in love with wrestling. I had to stop watching it becasue of school, but I got back into it in 2000. So I always had the goal of not being the normal 9 to 5 worker, I want to become a professional wrestler. The reality was I had to finish school and study something. But then I realized I can have wrestling as a side job and make a living. Not a fortunate living but have a kind of income from it. When I got to sign with WWE that was the dream come true.”

Credit: Instagram

On getting to WWE:

“So WXW is the biggest promotion in Germany. Before 2015 when I started my journey with WWE, I started in 2009 and regularly with WXW in 2011. The company grew becasue we did tours around Germany. We did the weekend on the east part, then the north part etc. In one month you had one free weekend, but in that weekend you are on other shows. The commentator for WXW sent me an email saying that WWE are looking for German talent, would I like to do a try-out in London? It was 2014, I had a lot of time to create myself as a wrestler due to all the experiences I collected. Then WWE contacted me, I sent some promo pics and they invited me to a try-out. We had 2 days of drills, I guess I did a great job becasue 2 months later I got invited to NXT.”

On returning to Germany after his WWE release:

“I had my plan B ready. I tried to ask them if I could completely move back to Germany. The plan B was what if? What if that happens? Nothing is for sure and nothing is guaranteed, especially in WWE. There is no guaranteed contract becasue they can release you like that [clicks fingers], and we have seen this in the past week. I’m not stupid, I know I have to plan for the future, especially with a wife and a kid. I can’t rely on empty promises, and I did that too many times in WWE. That being said, when I got the call and they let my contract expire, I said I wanted to move back to Germany. I did not have the time to talk to Hunter about that. So they gave me my wish earlier but with the slight difference of not renewing my contract.”

On travelling back and forth:

“The majority of my work was in England with NXT UK. I was in Germany from December 2019 over the holidays, then we decided to stay in Germany, it was nice to stay home. My wife said to get an apartment here in Germany. For 6 months in the winter we would live in Florida, in the summer we got to Germany. That was the plan but we had to travel to America, but couldn’t becasue of COVID. But then the rules changed. If you have a child born in America, which my son is, you can move back and forth. We did that becasue I lived in Miami and payed a lot of rent for that house. I tried to stay busy, talked with Shawn, asked to do stuff with the guys in Imperium. But a couple of months ago I got the call to not renew my contract. But I tried to talk to them and move back to the States.”

On signing with another big promotion:

“Yeah I would love to. Why not? In the end that is the goal. I am happy with having my freedom back, but also it is the goal of every wrestler to have the big contract with guaranteed money. Also where the work is appreciated and they have a good spot. If I want to go back to WWE, if the contract is good then sure. But right now it is not that interesting. I am more interested in Japan and somewhere where I can be myself. WWE tried to kill my passion for it and they were nearly successful at it. I learned a lot over my 6 years there, like empty promises. If it is not written on a piece of paper then it is not guaranteed. There’s NWA, IMPACT, ROH, but that’s just the States. There are promotions in England and Europe, it’s just such an exciting time for me. But international travel is not that open right now. But there are so many great promotions and talents, so if the right fit is there then maybe.”

Credit: Instagram

On the coaches at NXT and how they influenced him:

“Specifically for me, it’s not that I couldn’t do what I wanted to do, but sometimes somebody telling me not to do something becasue it is not right or not good. But the good part is you never stop learning, when I watch back matches from 2015 I hate myself. You evolve as a performer and learn new techniques. being around the amazing coaches like Shawn Michaels, William Regal, Bobby Brookside, Fit Finlay, Norman Smiley. Finlay is amazing, he is the guy to go to if you want to learn how to wrestle the proper way and learn the European style. Shawn teaches you the psychology and how to get people involved in the match, get it in the right order and get the most out of the match. Being able to do that and not think about it too much, I am forever grateful.”

On losing his passion in wrestling:

“But losing the passion is sometimes someone telling you something isn’t going to happen. But it is not necessarily their fault. With COVID, they had big plans for everything, but then they had to switch plans. Right now we have to follow the protocols. If someone get tested positive then we can’t do the story. After 7 weeks the story is not good anymore. It’s a passion killer but nobodies fault. What I think is their fault is making empty promises, especially during my time at SmackDown. They made a lot of unrealistic promises, which never happened, but they always tried to keep you positive. In Germany, we have a very honest way of doing things, we don’t beat around the bush. But it was a case of someone saying ‘I was in a meeting, and somebody in that meeting said that you were sh*t.’ OK now I have to follow the lead and best case go to that guy. But they don’t want to be honest with you becasue it is not professional. Also things like ‘Don’t worry, everything is fine.’ Like when we lost our debut match they said that and people will forget. But it’s the internet, no one forgets.”

On Nikki Cross now becoming Nikki A.S.H.:

“I love it. Nikki is such an amazing person in life, she is one of my best friends. I toured with her together. I never met her before, but I met Damo [Nikki’s husband and fellow wrestler] before. They are both awesome people. When Nikki came to NXT, I knew that was Damo’s fiancée. We clicked right together and became best friends. Then when she joined us in Sanity it was the perfect fit. Seeing what she is doing right now on RAW as the Women’s Champion, having this gimmick where you are like superhero? But then when you see it, it’s perfect for WWE. Everyone can be a superhero if you believe in yourself and work hard. That message is so powerful and fits perfect for WWE.”

Praise for Eric Young:

“I loved it. I learned to work the crowd better. Eric has done everything in TNA, he was even a Women’s Champion and Super Eric the superhero. He taught me about promos and working the cameras. Before that I would just be doing dark matches and live shows. But starting as a member of Sanity, having him in the group was a big advantage. he told me to follow a camera, wait a bit, just little details I didn’t know. He is a perfectionist in a lot of things. I love what he is doing now in IMPACT, it is his version of Sanity. he is painting his canvas under the IMPACT umbrella. I think without him, Sanity would not have been so successful.”

On the origin of his name:

“When I got to WWE, the wrestling scene is Germany was so small. I did wrestle some of the guys before, like Apollo Crews in WXW. In Germany I was one of the top 5, but nobody knew me in America. The company that hired me just mentioned I was a good wrestler and I was a German soldier. So I did not come in with the big buzz like some American or English people did. I remember they pitched some names to me, which were utter nonsense. One was Hans Von Wuss, something like that. I do not remember the whole list, but you wear a uniform and wear a sign that is forbidden in Germany and should be forbidden around the world. It was just the stereotypes, but Germany has more history than the war. [Chris asked if it was similar to a Nazi gimmick] Probably not that they said. But I have a name from that time, Germany is very sensitive about that topic.”

“Patriotism is not that big in Germany. I think it’s a good thing but I understand why people in Germany do not wave that flag. It’s good if Germany wins in soccer, but if not it can feel like it’s from the right side. A lot of times if I did something on TV that was German, the people in the comments mentioned a Nazi character. I wore a grey coat on one occasion, no Germany colors, but people thought I was a Nazi officer. It’s a weird topic, but anyway, WWE did not say they wanted to have a soldier gimmick. I remember with Imperium, Triple H did not want to get into the military section. This is becasue people will think an Austrian guy, a German and an Italian… He was like don’t use bombs or any military in promos, he did not want that material. I told Matt Bloom I did not want to have any of those names. It’s an old school name and if people are still alive from that time, they may think WWE made me a Nazi character, which I would have refused 100%. But I had a name list, the first name had Alexander, the second had Wolf, no E on the end. Luckily they said they wanted to use Alexander Wolfe, becasue they can copyright Wolfe.”

On having more to prove following his departure from WWE:

“For sure. My time in WWE was great. But before I switched over to NXT UK, I never had a singles match on TV. In Sanity I was between the leader and the big guy, so I was the weak link. I always felt left on the side, but that’s the role. I always tried to showcase myself and the group. When I went to NXT UK I had a chance to show off my wrestling ability. I never really had the chance to have bigger matches. I tried to get on a TakeOver with Ilja Dragunov, but we were in the position of just highlight the shows more instead of the TakeOvers. But right now I have a lot to prove, I want to get myself in the indies as an established brand, thanks to my time in WWE.”

On what he is grateful for:

“My family, my wife and still being healthy.”

Alexander can be found on Twitter here and Instagram here.

Featured image: The Sportster

Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email
Share on whatsapp

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *