Big E is proud to see his close friend Kofi Kingston be WWE's first African-born champion.
Just days before Kingston defends his WWE title against Randy Orton at SummerSlam, his New Day stablemate spoke to Uproxx on Kingston adding diversity to the WWE Championship lineage. Big E said while he was a fan of wrestlers such as Goldberg when he was younger, it was nice seeing a black wrestler like Ron Simmons succeed at the level that he did, winning various championships across a number of companies.
"We have a history within the company that I think we need to acknowledge at times, where we had black and brown performers, and a foreign performers, as well, who were put into these roles that were very stereotypical. And I’m not trying to cast judgment on anyone who played those roles, but for us to be able to break out of that box of what it means to be a Black wrestler and do something unique, I think it’s important to us. So we want to be able to demonstrate that, “Hey, you can be a Black man, you can like anime, you can play video games, you can have all these different interests, and be unique and feel free to express yourself in whatever way feels natural, and still make it to the heights of an industry like pro-wrestling and WWE," Big E said.
Big E added that diversity is important in WWE and that seeing Kingston in the position that he's in gives him a sense of pride. Big E also noted how Kingston's title reign is something that will have a positive effect on children seeing a black world champion.
"So there’s a certain pride in that, in seeing Kofi in his rise, and being able to be proud to be the first African-born champion. For him to be able to go back to Ghana was incredible. To watch that footage of him going back to the place where he was born, where his people hail from, where he himself was actually born, and to go back to Ghana, I think it’s really incredible, because you see the effect it has on kids, on people that look like him, and his championship means something. In an industry where we acknowledge that it’s about entertainment, I think what he’s doing and what we’re doing as a collective if feels meaningful," Big E said.
Now Kingston is set to defend his WWE title against Randy Orton at SummerSlam on August 11 at the Scotiabank Arena. Fightful will have live coverage of SummerSlam. The full interview can be read at this link.