During a recent interview with Comicbook.com, former WWE NXT Superstar Johnny Gargano commented on the changes being made to the NXT brand, whether he plans to reinvent himself, and more. You can check out some highlights from the interview below:
On if he will return as Johnny Wrestling or reinvent himself: “I’ll always be Johnny Wrestling. It was such a fun thing, especially for my last TakeOver and I guess my last appearance on NXT television, to be able to come out to “Rebel Heart” and have that back because I feel like that’s the pure Johnny Wrestling at his core.
And I feel like people missed that so much, and that was on purpose. I felt like for a long time I did the pure Johnny Wrestling thing… I did the pure Johnny Wrestling thing for so long that if you’re a character for such a long time, people grow stagnant of it, people get tired of it. If you watch a television show, you read a comic book and the same character’s around and he’s doing the same thing all the time, (it) gets tiring, you know?
So I wanted to get people a break from that, but it was so rewarding for me to be able to hear people want that again. That was really fun for me to be able to read the comments. And when I teased “Rebel Heart” coming back, people were so pumped and it was really cool to kind of bring that back for one final go-around. But like I said, I will always be Johnny Wrestling, no matter what.”
On the changes to NXT: “It’s just one of those things where I don’t think there was any moment in particular that was like, ‘Oh wow, things are way different now.’ We knew that a rebrand was coming, but like anything in wrestling, things change all the time. Things constantly evolve. We just talked about earlier in this interview, how if you do something for so a certain way, things get boring and you kind of need to refreshen things sometimes. I think honestly, it definitely needed a little bit of a kick. I feel like they’re incredibly happy with how things are going and you have to be happy with how some of those guys have already developed on, in front of your very own eyes. Like I mentioned Bron Breakker for instance. Bron Breakker’s a guy that I think I mention all the time, you can pay people to learn how to wrestle, right?
You can pay people to do this, but you can’t pay someone to genuinely love it or you can’t pay people to want to be better at it. There’s one thing to say, “Okay, teach me how to do a wrist lock” and you’re going to pay me to do that. And I’m going to learn the wrist lock and that’s all I’m going to do. It’s another thing to genuinely want to be better. And when you find someone who has both those qualities where they want to be better and they are getting better, that’s a diamond. I feel like Bron Breakker is a diamond. There’s so many people I can name that I feel like are really taking advantage of the opportunities they’re given right now but Bron is definitely one of them that I believe in.”
On Austin Theory working with Vince McMahon: “It feels like Austin just kind of went from me being his father figure to Vince McMahon now being his father figure. But yeah, it’s wild, man. I’m so happy for him because he does work really, really hard. And Austin and Indi (Hartwell) both, it was always my mission this past year to put them in a position to where they could be Superstars. And they’re so young and they’re so talented, the both of them, and I feel like WWE has such a gold mine in Austin and Indi that I hope they take advantage of it because I feel like they can make that company a lot of money for many, many years. But yeah, it’s so cool to see. I left a comment on one of his Instagram posts and told him to go become WWE Champion because he’s got all the tools to do it. So it’s just very cool to see him get that opportunity.”