An old podcast interview with Dolph Ziggler has resurfaced, in the wake of Ziggler's recent heel turn in WWE.
Sam Roberts has shared the interview, which was conducted prior to WrestleMania 29 in 2013, during a recent episode of the Sam Roberts Wrestling Podcast.
During the interview, Ziggler said he hated John Cena "and everything he stands for. I hate how awkwardly he runs. I hate that I'm better at wrestling, but he has this awesome connection with the fans and I'm so great at wrestling and I haven't made that great connection with all the fans that aren't in New York. Tthere has to be some substance to a character and we know John. We know his 'Hustle, loyalty, respect'. We know he's not going to back down. He's the face of the company. What do we know about me? I'm jacked, shredded, look like a movie star, and have great matches. That doesn't connect with everyone."
Ziggler went on to say that his hatred came from wanting Cena's position as the top guy in WWE.
"I want to be in that spot and one day I'm going to be. It is so frustrating, especially when I'm like, 'but I'm so good!' It drives me. It's fun and we have a nice little rivalry where he does things his way. We don't always see things eye-to-eye and it makes things that much more fun."
Ziggler also expressed his frustration, during the interview, with part-timers returning to claim spots on the WrestleMania card every year. In 2013, WrestleMania 29 was headlined by a rematch between Cena and The Rock. Undertaker, Shane McMahon, and Triple H all returned last year for WrestleMania despite minimal in-ring appearances prior to that.
Ziggler said the following regarding part-timers:
"It drives me. It really makes me mad. But everything my whole life has been a chip on my shoulder, like, 'Ah, you're too short,' or 'We're going to keep you here,' or 'We're going to make you a cheerleader; good luck getting out of that one.' And then it's like, 'Oh yeah? I'm going to be better than everybody else.' And you get there and you see there is a draw, a reason these guys come back every time because we, I, grew up watching those guys. I feel that connection that you don't always have with younger generations right now and they're, business-wise, it's a smart move. It makes the biggest movie star in the entire world who is main eventing our pay-per-view, our WrestleMania, so that's eyes that we somehow don't see, who don't know who Dolph Ziggler is, they're going to get a chance to see me, so you have to see the positives in it. Man, it makes me so mad, but there is a positive spin to it in the end for business, in the long run. Hopefully, it make me a bigger star down the line."
Ziggler turned heel on the January 3 episode of Smackdown, when he attacked Kalisto after losing yet another match, this one to Baron Corbin.