Joe Hendry spoke it into existence.
"The Prestigious One" Joe Hendry is known for his skills inside of the wrestling ring and he is known for his skills in the amateur world of wrestling. Hendry is a two-time British Senior Championship gold medal winner in the freestyle wrestling category and he obtained those medals in 2017 and 2018. Hendry also represented his home-country of Scotland in the 2018 Commonwealth games in Australia earlier this year. Joe Hendry has a deep connection to amateur wrestling and he was influenced by WWE Hall Of Famer Kurt Angle who has an impressive collegiate wrestling background on top of finding great amounts of success in professional wrestling.
Hendry named Kurt Angle as one of two wrestlers that played a instrumental role in his wrestling career taking off. Hendry had always wanted to step into the ring with Kurt Angle and in 2016 he made it happen. While Joe Hendry was doing a Q&A on social media, someone asked him what his dream match would be and he responded by noting that a match with Kurt Angle would be it, and Hendry soon received a message from the Olympic-gold medalist and he told the rest of the story when he joined IMPACT's 'Behind The Lights' show with Anthony Carelli and Alicia Atout.
“When I wrestled Kurt Angle, I had a really active part in setting that up. It’s probably the balliest thing I’ve ever done in wrestling was basically the path that it took to get that match, and I tried to do the same thing with Chael [Sonnen]. You know sometimes the stars don’t align. The crazy thing with what happened with Kurt was somebody asked me, ‘What’s your dream match?’ And I thought why not? I just tagged Kurt and I didn’t think anything of it and I get a DM and I’m like, ‘Gee, this is actually happening’. This is early on, and it’s one of those things you put out to the universe sometimes [and] these things just happen and he says to me, ‘I’ve heard of you. I know you’re working hard, you’re not ready. Keep working hard, maybe one day you’ll get the match’." Kurt wrote to Hendry. "So basically I’m working hard and I start joining this company called What Culture - they run as Defiant, but basically they're saying that they tried to book Kurt and they couldn’t get him and I was like, ‘You know what? These guys have got… well let me just send a message’ and I was like, ‘I’ve been working hard, I’ve got a financier, you interested?’ And he’s like, ‘Here’s what we need..’ so I went back to them and I said alright, ‘You wanted to get Kurt Angle didn’t you?’ And they were like, ‘Yeah’ and I was like, ‘What did he say?’ and they said, ‘I couldn’t get him’ and I was, ‘I can get him, but if we bring him in, I have to wrestle him. If you give me your word on that, let’s see what happens’, and that’s how it happened and that match changed my career." Hendry shared.
Hendry made his dream match happen at 'What Culture Pro Wrestling's' 'Refuse To Lose' show in 2016 and after he stated the quote above, Hendry went on to speak about how stepping into the ring with Kurt Angle made him realize that where Angle was, was where he wanted to be in terms of intensity and skill. Joe added that former NXT Champion and fellow Scotsman Drew McIntyre played a major role in his wrestling career as well.
“It's really weird when I saw that poll that you had about the match and I’ll get into that later but when I saw Kurt and Drew against each other, those are two of the most instrumental people in my career, and both guys just couldn’t have been more giving and more generous, and Kurt when he came in, all he was concerned about, he was so selfless." Hendry explained. "He was like, ‘What do we need to do to elevate you to the next level? How are we gonna do this to make sure that you have momentum going forward that we can boost your career?’ And when I got in the ring with Kurt I realized… you know when CM Punk talked about [how] he thought he was good until he wrestled Eddie Guerrero? When I wrestled Kurt I was like, ‘Oh this is intense. This is where I need to be’, and I knew immediately what I needed to work on more. That really changed my life, and Kurt and Drew are both instrumental in me getting to where I am." Joe said.
IMPACT Wrestling airs tonight on POP at their new start time of 10 PM EST so keep an eye out for Fightful's live coverage article of tonight's show.
If you are going to use the quotes above, please credit 'Behind The Lights' with an H/T to Fightful for the transcriptions.