Shawn Michaels weighs in on the current generation of professional wrestlers and whether or not they should be as outspoken as he was back in the 90s.
Shawn Michaels in his heyday is a complete 180 from Shawn Michaels in 2021. Shawn Michaels in the 1990s was seen as one of a brash, arrogant, and difficult people to do business with whereas Shawn Michaels in 2021 is seen as an easy person to get along with and help develop the talent of the future in NXT.
Currently, there is a large discussion about the difference in the attitude of the wrestlers of the past and the wrestlers of today. Shawn Michaels is in a unique position to weigh in on that subject as he is training the superstars of today and was one of the most problematic superstars of the past 25 years.
Speaking on the Getting Over: Wrestling Podcast, Shawn Michaels would say that he does encourage the talent of NXT to speak their mind, he just tells them not to do it in the same way that he did 25 years ago because the world has evolved.
“I still encourage participation, let's say. Again, I always try to make it very clear, please try to understand it's not the same world, it's not the same business. It's so much bigger. Nobody should handle it the way that I handled it. But, I have to balance that with honesty and that is letting them know that I can't say for sure that if I didn't at least push myself and push the system a little bit, I don't know if I would have gotten where I got.
“It’s always important creatively to be finding the next big thing, the next movement. If you're standing still, plateauing, that's okay, but I would always encourage our guys and gals to push for more. I always use the line that Vince gave me years ago, which is, ‘Look, Shawn, I want you to just go out there and go for it, and I'll reel you in.’”
Shawn continued, “This generation does it with a lot more sense and sensibility, certainly, than I did. Again, I think they've got a nice balance. To answer your question, I do encourage them to push themselves and to continue to evolve and try to grow as performers because I feel like they would get stagnant and, as you say, complacent. look, that's a delicate balance for them to have to adjust to and they have got to do it on their time. I always make sure to tell them, don't do it if it's out of your nature. But if it's something you passionately feel and think you're going to feel better, at least expressing it -- as long as it's expressed professionally and well-mannered-- Certainly, and NXT everybody's allowed to have a voice. You just can't have the voice that I had 25 years ago.”
Bill Goldberg, who is still stepping in the rain with the superstars of today, recently called the WWE locker room “soft.” Learn more about that at this link.
If you use any of the above quotes, please credit Fightful for the transcription by linking back to this article