On his the current status of his wrestling career: "I've been fun--employed, living life and enjoying it. As far as the musical single, it's a hobby that I've been having fun with, if it catches on and something happens, that's cool. It's just an outlet for me. I've been in touch with my people from Lionsgate developing this TV show that's in the works, not a reality show! It's a documentary show and taking some time off from wrestling. Let my body heal up and checking out the scene."
On leaving New Japan Pro Wrestling: "I wanted to stay closer to home to work that's in development which is pretty cool. But besides that just recharging the batteries. I love New Japan (Pro Wrestling). People that know me and know my story and know that Japanese wrestling is the apex of pro wrestling for me. To have been in Japan, to have been the inaugural IWGP Intercontinental Champions, to have been accepted in there wrestling culture and to have spent the time there was a dream come true and I needed to back up for a second, reassess the scene and decide what I wanted to do."
On whether he would rather wrestle in Japan or the United States: "That's the beautiful thing of having options. As I understand it, when I gave my notice to New Japan they made it very clear when I wanted to return, the door was open for my return. Now that All-Japan (Pro Wrestling) is trying to kick things up, (Masahiro) Chono is there, my good friend Low-Ki is there, I understand that D-Lo (Brown) is there, I've been told there is some interest on that side of the street. Domestically, when I left WWE, I was told that the door is still open. I was there when they were here in Houston recently for Smackdown and I came by and said hello, gave hi-fives to everybody and there was no serious conversation about a potential return but if there was a discussion and I would be defiantly willing to talk and that's kind of where we left it. Same thing with TNA. I'm always willing to talk but it's just not there right now. The scene is real interesting. WWE is banged up with injuries and a lot of young guys that they are trying to make. TNA seems to be restricting financially. Domestically, it is an interesting time right now to see what happens now. I'm just kicking back with my feet up and seeing how things develop but there's no telling."
On if TNA is an option?: "It's an option for two reasons. Your wrestling fans will understand me but your WWE fans will have no idea what I'm talking about. The first reason is when I started training in Duke "The Dumpster" Droese's warehouse wrestling school, I was training to be a professional wrestler and I thought at that point of my career if I had the chance to wrestle in Puerto Rico that would be pretty damn cool. Then Norman Smiley took me under his wing and started polishing me up about Japanese wrestling and that was my goal. I wanted to wrestle in Japan that was my dream! As luck would have it, I was able to spend time in WWE. So for me, I'm a professional wrestler, I'm not a "WWE superstar", that's where I made my name and that's where I had most of my fame and success but before that I wrestled in the territories of Puerto Rico in the independents, had my time in WWE, had my time in Japan, so if I were to go to TNA, TNA would be another chapter of my wrestling career like the guys back in the day that did territories. You did time here and time there and that was your career and that's kind of how I see myself. I don't see myself as Coca-Cola or Pepsi-Cola, I see myself as Cola, I'm not branded and I go wherever I want to go. The second reason why I would go is Samoa Joe. As far as the Japanese style, wanting to go and having that kind of match, Samoa Joe is a guy that I wanted to wrestle for ten years and I think Joe and I can do some epic, epic damage to each other."
On TNA changing its public perspective: "Wow, how much time do we have? It's weird cause it's difficult to give criticism without being labeled a "hater" or I've had people tell me: "You sound salty" or "Your criticizing WWE", I give criticism where I see its due and I think TNA has made the mistake of focusing on older guys for the sake of nostalgia or name without spending enough time building younger stars and that's the kind of stuff that WWE is dealing with now. When you don't spend enough time grooming and developing younger stars then there tends to be a backlash. I think the problem is and I heard a lot of people say this and some of guys there say this but it kind of seems like WCW light and what WCW was like at the end and as far as the fans are concerned, they want something else. The best and most lucrative time for the business was during the "Monday Night Wars" where there were twelve million people a week tuning into wrestling. Where did those people go? They are out there somewhere. What are they watching now? They are not all watching WWE and they are not watching TNA. I think in order for TNA to be a viable option for WWE is to go in a totally different direction. I think that a guy like AJ Styles was pretty much the backbone of the company, he is TNA Wrestling for all intents and purposes, and he shouldn't be upset. There is no reason for a guy like him to be upset, he should be well taken care of and happy and there shouldn't be guys questioning if they are getting paid and that's another big issue that I've been hearing about and it's there finances . So if their talent pool isn't happy and if they have guys that are grumbling because they are not being given an opportunity because of guys higher up the ladder that aren't making way for those opportunities and for being allowed to make those opportunities for the younger guys then you tend to run into some trouble."
On whether TNA or the WWE Performance Center makes more sense for a young wrestler:... (Continues on next page)