NXT Champion Bobby Roode recently spoke with USA Today’s “For The Win” to promote his title defense against Hideo Itami at Saturday’s NXT TakeOver: Chicago event live on the WWE Network. Below are some of the highlights from the interview.
On learning from at-the-time guest instructor Shawn Michaels while training at the WWE Performance Center: “In my mind, there is no better person to learn from than Shawn Michaels. One of the things I’ve never really learned a lot about was just the emotion of what you do with certain emotions at certain times, so we talk a lot about the character development stuff, how to carry yourself and honestly, just everything, really. Shawn is Shawn Michaels. Every time you can have him in your ear and sit down and hear what he has to say is beneficial.”
On his run with Impact Wrestling and being in a rut before joining WWE: “I was in a bit of a rut. Coming here has changed all that … With the company I was with before, we weren’t on the road as much. It was basically a television brand. … I got into this business to perform and that’s the most fun part about this business – being on the road and being in different cities and getting a chance to travel the world and do what you love to do. I just wasn’t getting that anymore.
“From the moment, I got to the hotel (at NXT TakeOver: Dallas last year) and then to the arena and started to meet the NXT talent and see the production of everything and having an opportunity to talk to Triple H that night, I knew then this is where I needed to be and this is where I wanted to be. The greatest decision I’ve ever made in my career was to come here. All I wanted from the moment I got here was the opportunity. One year later, it’s been pretty incredible.”
Check out the complete Bobby Roode interview at USAToday.com.