Being one of the top stars in WWE for over five years, Seth Rollins has earned the trust of Vince McMahon when it comes to his promos.
Rollins would seem to have more creative freedom on the microphone, relying less on a script than some superstars may have to.
Speaking to Richard Deitsch on the Sports Media podcast, Rollins discussed how much scripting is done with his promos.
"Lately, scripted is so tough because...I would say (I do) almost zero percent scripted in the sense that, I don't write things down on a piece of paper and read them and memorize them in that way. That doesn't really work for me. Scripted in the sense that, I have a pretty good idea of what I want to say when I go out to the ring and grab a microphone, but it's not written down. It's like it's written in a tablet in my head. There is no piece of paper for me. I can't do that. I tried it and it doesn't fly for me. I can't be authentic in that way, especially because when you're doing a play or a TV show, there are tons of takes. If you're doing a play, you're doing the same thing every night so you get accustomed to knowing how you should act. Wrestling is different every week, it's episodic television and changes so quickly. For me, script-wise, almost nothing is written on a piece of paper," he said. "Most times, I've run it out loud to myself or to someone I trust before I go out there. Oftentimes, before the show, if I just have a promo segment, most of the time is writing and re-writing in my head and coming up with different ideas of what I want to say or how I want to get something across or simplifying an idea or asking what works or (figuring out) the goal and the story I want to accomplish with the promo. As we get closer to the show, then I'll start running it with how I say it, my inflection, my tone, my mood. It's definitely not the first time (on TV) that I hear the words. I go over it a good amount of times."
Other wrestlers who have more creative freedom on the mic include Roman Reigns and John Cena. The two men used "shoot" comments on Friday's SmackDown with Cena bringing up Dean Ambrose (Jon Moxley in AEW) and Reigns mentioning Nikki Bella.
When asked how comfortable he is "shooting" on the mic, Rollins replied, "Everybody is different in that regard. They are all going to...the line is drawn in different places for each person. Cena, for example, when I've done promos with him, he always told me, 'I don't care what you say when we're out there. Anything in front of the camera, I don't care, I don't take it personal.' He's a guy who will let it all fly. It's work, not personal. Sometimes, other guys aren't like that and they are very protective about certain parts of their lives and they don't want that in the public and you have to respect that. The mileage varies from person to person. Most of us have been in the game long enough, especially when you get to the level of John and Roman where their promos break that wall, they've been in the game long enough where everyone sort of knows it's business. There are going to be personal jabs in there, but if you can't take that and your skin isn't thick enough, you're probably in the wrong business. It's all about conflict, conflict is what sells. That twist of real life can be the difference between a 'rasslin' story and a real story people get invested in, especially now when the curtain is pulled back so deep."
Rollins said he has a "whatever you want to say" mentality, adding, "There's nothing Roman Reigns is going to say in the ring that 6,000 people on Twitter haven't said to be in the last 24 hours."
Rollins is set to face Edge at WWE SummerSlam. You can check out the current lineup for the event by clicking here.
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