Nick Aldis

Nick Aldis On His WWE Producer Role, Leaving NWA, Mickie James, Favorite TNA Moment

Nick Aldis (@realnickaldis) is a professional wrestler known for his time in IMPACT Wrestling and NWA. He sits down with Chris Van Vliet at his house in Nashville, TN to talk about his recent trial as a producer for WWE, he clarifies that his in-ring career is not done, what’s next for him after his recent stint in IMPACT Wrestling, why he decided to leave NWA, being the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Champion for 1043 days, his iconic match with Cody Rhodes in 2018 at All In, what his favorite memory from TNA is, what it was like working with Sting, the best advice he received from Bret Hart, turning down an offer from AEW and betting on himself, his wife Mickie James and much more!


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Quote I’m thinking about

A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of the branch breaking, because its trust is not on the branch but on its own wings. – Charlie Wardle

Clarifying his status with WWE:

“They just invited me to come and, you know, see how everything works and, you know, shadow as a producer and see and just sort of be part of the meetings and oversee the whole, you know, the whole television operation, which is, I mean, it’s, again, it’s, I’ve done a lot, I’ve worn a lot of hats. I think people who have followed my career, particularly in the last few years know that, in addition to wrestling, I was wearing a lot of hats behind the scenes, you know, at my last place. So, I certainly don’t feel like it’s a completely new sort of situation for me. Having said that, there’s pro wrestling, and then there’s WWE. So you know, just taking in just the sheer sort of volume of the operation, and just, you know, the number of people involved in that this, the scale of everything is like, just that alone is has been the basis of like, my time so far. But it’s like, it’s all very much, it’s all very much a sort of handshake situation at the moment very much a, hey, why don’t you come in and see how all this works? See, if you like it. I will say this. They’ve been very, very good to me, and very, very accommodating. As far as they’ve said, Look, this is as much about whether you like it, you know. Now, where that goes, I don’t know, and I’m okay with that. Like, it’s tough with, with the internet, you know, and social media, because people want to put this sort of definitiveness on everything. And this finality like, Oh, that’s it. He’s with WWE. That’s it game over, you know. And so now, you know, people say are you not wrestling anymore? Have you retired? Are you not wrestling? I mean, even the boys are saying that, like, are you done wrestling? You know, and it’s like, slow down.”

On unfortunate timing:

“The timing of that I can, I can accept and concede that. And I knew that even when I did it, you know, it was kind of like mad at the timing of this isn’t great, because now people are going to put two and two together and go holy, you must be injured, you must have a back problem and can’t wrestle anymore, that’s not the case. [So you can still wrestle?] 100% I just took a couple more dates recently. You know, I have a few days in September, like, I know that Mickey and I doing a show in Canada at an Indian Reservation. And it’s another show in Ohio that we’re both doing and you know, so I mean, I’ve had stuff on the books, and I’ve already and I told Bret [Hart] that I would whenever he has a date for Calgary Yeah, that because I’m the Stu Hart you know, champion for his son’s promotion for Dungeon Wrestling. So it’s like, I was like, Look, I’ll always be there for that. You know, so it’s not like, you know, that’s the frustrating part, right? Is when you just got you literally go and try something and just go and you know, see, try it on, see if you like it. And next thing you know, it’s like, oh, that’s it, you know?”

On keeping options open:

“Yeah, well look and everything could change next week or the week after or anything like that. But I guess to sort of, to put a pin in this because obviously, there’s only so much we can discuss. And it’s not like I’m trying to be secretive or anything. It’s just not that interesting. It’s just like, yeah, they called me and said, Hey, how would you feel about coming in and, you know, seeing how things operate on the production level, and, you know, shadowing the producers. And I was like, That would be interesting, that would be fun to see how that works, even if nothing comes of it. Or even if, even if I and again, I have to make this point. They also were very open with me about it and said, Look, if you don’t want to do it, like if you’re not cool with this, like, absolutely no hard feelings, you know, like, if you don’t, right now, the same for me or not, I’m not ready to do this yet. That’s totally cool, too. May as well say it, obviously. I would love the other thing. But until that day comes or doesn’t, you know, it’s I’m gonna explore other opportunities. Because ultimately, that is absolutely something that I would want to do. In the end. I just, it’s, you know, the question it will be, I guess, whether or not I’m ready to do it now. You know, and we don’t know that yet.”

On back issues in the past:

“It was an injury. Like, you know, I mean, like, I’m not about to say that, you know, I’m sure I have any number of underlying long-term issues, like any wrestler who’s been doing it for, you know, 15 years would have but no, I had an actual back injury, I can’t remember the thing that I injured, but it was the way that they described it was like a sheet, like, there’s a thin sheet of muscle, like, your lower back, that can sometimes just get sort of strained and inflamed. So while it felt like a disc issue, and I’m, you know, I’ve had MRIs and stuff like that, to rule all that out, because of course, the first thing you start thinking of is oh, God, like, you know, it’s a disk. And by the time I went, Oh, like, I’m, I’m not alone on that, like most wrestlers, I would say, in this sense that by the time we go to the doctor, it’s like, well it’s serious. If we’re going to a doctor, it’s because it’s, it hasn’t gone away with ice and, you know, some Advil or whatever, right?” 

On missing shows due to the injury:

“I take a lot of pride in the fact that in most of my career, I think, with the exception of when I tore my bicep in, in Mexico, there’s not been many times where I’ve missed shows, like from being hurt. This was the first time where I sort of had to call up a couple of, you know, promoters, one in Chicago, one in Puerto Rico and say, I’m sorry, I just can’t make it because I was just, it was, just every time I would like, I’d worked the two weeks before, but one week, I was in England,  and then North Carolina. And, you know, the next day, I was just like, every day, I would every time after I’ve after the match the next day, I was just like struggling to get out of bed struggling to get dressed. And I was like, whatever this is, it’s not you know, this is this is a smart. Turns out that it was actually just, like, a huge amount of inflammation that we’re just getting aggravated, you know, from this injury. So, you know, just took some time off feels good.”

On All In 2018:

“Most of the time you know what people want, like at All In. We all knew what they wanted, we never had a discussion about the finish. [There was never] Hey, what if I win, brother? We never had that discussion. There was never a definitive discussion of, would you mind doing the honors? I was like, Don’t talk to me, I know what the people want here. We had to give it to them in a way that they couldn’t predict and weren’t fully able to expect and predict. That’s your job, give the people what they want in the way that they aren’t expecting.”   

On being the best-kept secret:

“I guess. The point I was making when I said that was just like, it’s subjective. Right, like, but wrestling fans, particularly the very opinionated ones, God love them, you know, they tend to conflate their opinion with fact. So it’s sort of like, everybody knows that insert name here is the best wrestler in the world. And it’s like, do they all know that? Because I think that’s what you think, right? Like, the same way that you know, a lot of the time, they’ll qualify it with that, like, Oh, everybody knows this is a thing or.”

On moving on from the NWA:

“Yeah. I mean, look, you know, I’ve moved on, right? I have, there are people who work there who I care about a lot, and I’m really, I’m really happy that my contributions to that company, sort of facilitated those guys earning a living. But, you know, again, there’s nothing I really need to say, you know. The evidence is, is there’s there for anyone who wants to, to look, you know. I’m sort of done talking about Billy [Corgan] and that, that whole thing, it’s like, you know, he sort of to me, I would just say that. He’s kind of shown everybody who he is. And that’s, you know, that’s unfortunate, but I’m not I’m certainly not going to spend any more time, you know, saying anything sort of denigrating about him or the company or anything like that. People can make up their own minds and it looks like a lot of them have, you know, and that’s pretty much it.”

On his proudest moment in TNA:

“Breaking the glass ceiling and winning the world title. No Brit had ever done that before. The irony is that guys like Russo and Dutch would laugh at that now because I always used to say that I didn’t want to be known as a British guy. It doesn’t matter if I am British, who gives a sh*t? I don’t want to be the token British guy, I want to be the top guy. It doesn’t matter where I am from. Then I won the world title and there was this outpour of love from British people of like he’s the first British guy to win the world title. Suddenly you are like all patriotic again, but I think both things can be true. That was part of it I wasn’t really thinking about.”

On LA Knight:

“Look, it doesn’t come as any surprise to me, and I don’t think it has come as a surprise for anyone who has followed his stuff in the last few years. I see it as a great inspiration and there is hope yet. He’s literally on the ascent and it is the run of a lifetime.” 

What is Nick Aldis grateful for:

“A happy, healthy son, a great marriage and opportunities”

Featured image: Post Wrestling

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