Drew McIntyre says working with Roman Reigns taught him about the nuances of performing at a top-level.
Drew McIntyre is heading to WrestleMania 36 to challenge Brock Lesnar for the WWE championship. This is a position that Roman Reigns has been in two times at WrestleMania. Last year, at WrestleMania 35, Roman Reigns defeated Drew McIntyre. However, through defeat, Drew learned more about the next level of wrestling.
Speaking with Newsweek, Drew McIntyre praised Roman Reigns, recalling watching Roman Reigns compete years ago in Florida Championship Wrestling, and even then, McIntyre was already learning from Roman Reigns.
“It's crazy. To watch Roman go from an FCW developmental [star,]” Drew began. “I remember one of his earliest matches when I went down to FCW, and I was about 25 at the time so around nine years ago. And I was in a tag match with him and the trainers told me to keep an eye on this guy, he's going to be good. But I didn't realize how good he would become and how far he would go. I was away from the company for a few years and came back and had the opportunity to be around him and work with him. And I was "wow this guy has advanced faster than anyone I've been around." I was learning from him even though I've been around a lot longer than him, and I was actually learning from Roman. So I was like 'okay, this guy really gets it.' Obviously it's in his blood and he's such a phenomenal performer and leader I can learn a thing or two about this guy. I was the big feud for him coming back from his illness, and we got a lot of time to work together and he was helping me out to learn how to be a top-level WWE Superstar. And one year later it's crazy that I got to eliminate him last from the Royal Rumble and now we're both going for our respective titles. If I can be a champion like Roman has been it's something to be proud of.”
Continuing on, McIntyre would say that Roman Reigns has mastered the nuances of what it means to be a professional wrestler. McIntyre would also say that Roman Reigns passed onto him the knowledge that was passed onto Roman by veterans that Roman was able to work with.
“Yeah, there's a lot of nuances that he mastered. A lot of people can get good at this job and get a crowd to react. And when I say react I mean clap their hands for that particular moment or match and have people truly invested and care about you,” he continued. “The room feels different when you walk into it, that's a true top-level superstar. Like I said, even though he hasn't been doing it as long as myself, a lot of people around at the time [felt] it was in his blood and he got it very quickly. And it's about how you present yourself as that top-level superstar It worked for so many of the legends in this business, and he was a sponge the whole way. He got the opportunity to work with a lot of guys who aren't around anymore, and to have that knowledge that was passed onto him passed onto me, he was willing to teach.”
Roman Reigns was supposed to be in the Universal Championship match at WrestleMania 36. However, that has changed. If you are not bothered by spoilers and would like to know who Roman Reigns replacement will be, click this link.