Hammerstone talks about wrestling's evolution.
In the eyes of many, Alex Hammerstone is a throwback to an older era of wrestling when men of a great and imposing stature ruled the squared circle. However, over time, wrestling has evolved and is now a hybrid of fast-paced competitors as well as large statured storytellers.
Speaking with Spencer Love, Hammerstone opens up about how wrestling has evolved over the years and how his moves have evolved with it.
Thanks to Spencer for passing along the following quotes.
How he feels pro wrestling has changed:
“It’s hard to pin down. There’s definitely a sense of the young kids - not even the young kids, just wrestlers have this ‘okay, boomer’ (mentality), where they would get anyone old and say ‘oh, you’re just saying this because of this, or that,’ but it’s like, no. There are a lot of things in wrestling that it really is, like, I could tell you the stove’s hot, but you still have to touch yourself and burn your hand. Those old vets, yeah, some of them didn’t move on to WWE and some of them didn’t do all of this and that, and some of them are bitter and mean, but with all that time comes wisdom and knowledge. A lot of people don’t listen to any of it, but I’ve been lucky enough to have some really good mentors to help me.”
“I’m not going to say things are changing for the worse, it’s just changing. You can’t argue it. A lot of people like to act like pro wrestling is changing, but it’s not pro wrestling, it’s the world. It’s music. Is current music worse than the Beatles? It’s very easy to say of course it’s worse, but it’s all subjective. It’s all down to taste. There’s a business for it. There’s money in it. There’s fans in it. It’s just a constant changing thing, and for you to try to fight the change is a battle you’re going to lose.”
If he prefers working opponents of a particular size:
“I’m definitely an ‘anybody.’ I like all shapes and sizes, all styles. I think early in my career, I had a specific type of match I liked to do, but as you carry on, not only do you get bored and you want new challenges, but as you get more demand people want you for different things. So, I think the best approach is to be flexible. Whether it’s wrestling heavyweights that are my size or even bigger, wrestling little guys, luchadors, high-flyers, or even - one of my favourite matches this year was with Nick Gage. You’d see that matchup and you’d go ‘that’s not Hammerstone’s style,’ but I like doing a little bit of everything. I like testing myself. But, I’ll always have a soft spot for breaking luchadors in half.”
His recent Iron Man challenge:
“It was one of those things where we didn’t know how long this lockdown was going to last. When it first happened, I thought it was only going to be a week or two. Then, I hear ‘okay, end of April,’ and then I thought we were going to wrestle again. But now, it’s looking like even longer, so when I first put it out I didn’t even think MLW was going to run out of pre-taped shows, but now it’s looking like a possibility.”
“I kind of put it out half-knowing that the company wasn’t going to want to go through that. Just knowing Court, he’d rather compromise and play some reruns or repackage a highlight show rather than put any of his staff at risk. But, at the same time, I’ve always wanted to do an Iron Man match just to test myself. Like you alluded to, (it’s) just a new thing, a new ‘hey, let’s try this out.’ If it ever did go through, I think what better way to keep as safe as possible but still do something interesting for the fans.”
How he came up with the Nightmare Pendulum:
“There was a move called the Shouten from Japan, and it’s very similar. He ends up going down to his knees rather than sitting out with it, but I just remember seeing it and thinking ‘that’s the most impactful thing I ever could see.’ The thing about me is my knees are pretty banged-up, so coming down and doing a knee bump hurts. So, I ended up trying sitting out with it, and I thought it looked a lot more vicious that way. First of all, it looks a lot more impactful. Second of all, there’s no confusion of whether or not he countered it into a DDT. I’ve seen people do a similar move where they come out and kind of Rock Bottom the guy, and it almost looks like the guy countered your vertical suplex and DDT’d you. So, I think the sit-out was the right way to go. For some reason I just love sit-out moves. I think they look very impactful (and) very cool. If you watch what I do, a lot of my high-impact moves, I actually sit out with them. It’s very comfortable, it saves my knees, so that’s the story there.”
“Funny enough, when I first started using that move, I wasn’t even using it as a finish. I was using something else. One match I did it, I think maybe we double-downed off it, and I got through the curtain and the promoter goes ‘dude. That move you hit in the middle of the match was the coolest thing anyone did all night, and you didn’t even pin the guy!’”
You can view the full interview at this link.