TJP weighs in on recent comments made concerning the mentality of today's professional wrestlers.
Professional wrestling, like all forms of subjective media, caters and speaks to each generation of performers and audience members differently. In recent months, legends such as The Undertaker, Jim Ross, and Bill Goldberg have commented on the current state of wrestling.
In particular, Undertaker and Goldberg have commented on what they feel is a lack of toughness in today's wrestlers. Undertaker would go so far as to say when he started in the business, “men were men.”
Speaking on the Generation Of Wrestling podcast, TJP, former WWE Cruiserweight Champion and current star in MLW and IMPACT, commented on the comments made by these respected personalities, noting that he doesn't fully disagree with The Undertaker even though he thinks that the former WWE Champion was shortsighted in some respects.
“Well, I remember hearing about this stuff that Undertaker said and it actually reminds me of the Jim Ross thing from a little bit before that. People were kind of upset Jim Ross was saying some stuff -- I mean, it's advice. Things you felt about her the younger generation on the show that he works on. They remind me of each other.
“I'll preface this first by saying I'm absolutely not like the alpha type of person, especially not when I think about wrestling. I'm not the type of wrestler, especially not the type of old school wrestler dad says stuff like, ‘it’s not ballet, kid.’ I think that's a little archaic and a little stupid. Nothing screams ‘I’m a tough guy’ more than saying some crap like that. But I will say I do think there's a lot of validity to what the Undertaker is saying. But, I think it's a cultural thing. It's not just physical toughness. A lot of it is mental toughness, it's a little bit of both.”
He continued, “So like the thing with JR, maybe he doesn't need to say that stuff publicly. He works there, he can pull a kid aside and say listen, this is what I think. But here's the thing, he doesn't need to say that publicly but I'm going to bed, if he said that privately, the same kids would have given their rebuttal publicly and would have run immediately to Twitter [to say,] ‘You’ll never guess what I got told by so and so… F that guy!’ That's mentally weak.
“Again, I'm not an ‘it’s not ballet’ type, but, it's a business and this is still a jungle and you have to have a little bit of a lion in you. Back in the day, it would have been a lot tougher. I'm not saying that you should compare to that, but I am saying that as an adult with a job to do, you need to be able to get chewed out sometimes and you need to be able to take that and not complain and cry about it. There is a lack of Integrity, I guess, culturally. You don't go up to somebody and look them in the eye and say something and handle something, whether it's with your brain, your mouth, or your fist. Now, it's like, ‘I have a problem with this guy I'm going to go tell 300 people online instead,’ and they're going to complain about it until 1000 people are doing it and then this poor person is helpless to fix the problem because now even if you two hash it out, 3000 people hate this person and they're never going to change their mind because they're not in your lives. So they're going to forget about it, but now whenever they're reminded about this person, they think, ‘Oh yeah, F that guy! I don't like him’ But it's like, well that problem was handled. You're just part of the snowball that will always exist. That's what I think is sort of missing. There's integrity lacking with people.”
Continuing on, TJP spoke about the misconceptions of today's generations and their reliance on social media and video games saying that it is no different from Andre The Giant playing cards and checking the newspaper back in his heyday.
“Generationally, things are relative. In WWE, I remember meetings being called before shows. One time at a house show, ‘You guys are playing video games and screwing around before the show,’"TJP mimicked. "Dude, Hogan and Andre played cribbage in the locker room back in the day. Today, guys’ phones, Instagram, and Twitter, that's their newspaper. That's where you learn ‘[How the Lakers did] last night. What happened today in the news? I'm following this court case. What's the weather?’ That's what we're looking at on Twitter, Instagram, and all that. That's our newspaper. So, you criticize guys for playing a game to pass the time and catching up on current events but that's what guys were doing in the seventies and eighties too. They didn't have a phone, so they had a newspaper. They didn't have a PlayStation, so they had a deck of cards. So I think in that way, maybe Undertaker is a little bit shortsighted because he doesn't understand that's what this is.”
Triple H, somebody who knows the Undertaker very well and who presented TJP with the WWE Cruiserweight Championship after his victory in the Cruiserweight Classic Tournament, also weighed in on The Undertaker's comments. You can check out what he said at this link.
Nowadays, TJP is the veteran in the promotions that he works for, Major League Wrestling and IMPACT Wrestling. On the next episode of MLW FUSION, TJP will go one-on-one with his protege, Bu Ku Dao. Then, at the next IMPACT Wrestling pay-per-view, Rebellion, TJP will attempt to recapture the X-Division Championship in a triple threat against Josh Alexander and Ace Austin.
Fightful will have live coverage of MLW FUSION every Wednesday and live coverage of IMPACT Rebellion on Sunday, April 25, 2021.
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