Eli Drake has no time for flips.
Speaking to Alicia Atout of AMBY, the IMPACT wrestling star went off on a rant when Atout mentioned that she's been into watching "flippy wrestling" as of late. Drake, a 15-year veteran in the sport, took this opportunity to explain everything he hates about the "flippy style" prevalent in today's wrestling.
"I hate that (flippy) stuff. It's made me start hating the business. The business that I fell in love with was big characters, strong masculine men who looked like they were fighting and they had characters. Even the worst promo guys were good. Now, holy shit, good luck at anybody being able to handle (a mic). Everybody relies on Goddamn flips and cirque du soleil spots and all that shit. I kinda hate what it became. There's my pet peeve. I hate it," said Drake. "It caters to the niche audience of "nerd wrestling fans." I love all wrestling fans. But there's a very small niche audience that that's going to cater to. Where, let's say there's a fan who hasn't checked in since 2001. They're going to turn on today's product and go, 'What the fuck is this?' The casual audience was never turned on by crazy moves, they were turned on by crazy characters. That's why you had the big swell in the '90s with Rock, Austin, NWO. Character has been devoid for the last 10 years. You have to talk people into the match. People are going to remember moments. This whole business is telling a story and we've gotten lost somewhere and it's showing."
Drake went on to explain that "people are saying, 'Well the Indies are bigger than ever.' Yes, they are. That's a niche audience. But is the WWE product bigger than ever? Is IMPACT product bigger than ever? I'd say no. Sure, WWE is more global, but if you look at television audiences, they're having a tough time filling seats. IMPACT is having a tough time filling seats. It's a direct response from the fans. They want to see big characters and storylines. Moves are cool, but that's a supplemental thing, not something that brings the casual audience in."
While Drake isn't a fan of "flippy wrestling," he's also not a fan of the overabundance of superkicks used in a match and up-and-down the card. Drake called the move his least favorite to take and believes that kicking someone in the head should have more impact than it currently does.
You can listen to Drake's entire rant in the video above.