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Dolph Ziggler Interview


Dolph Ziggler Interview

Dolph Ziggler at the 2012 SummerSlam VIP Kickoff Party

Jason Merritt/Getty Images
On October 25, 2012, I interviewed WWE Superstar Dolph Ziggler as part of his media appearances to promote WWE's newest television program, WWE Main Event, which airs every Wednesday night at 8:00 PM ET on ION Television. At the time of this interview, Dolph Ziggler was in possession of the Money in the Bank briefcase and the company was just a few days away from Hell in a Cell 2012.

Eric: As the holder of the Money in the Bank briefcase, you find yourself on the cusp of being a main event-level star for the company. After seven years with the company, what will it mean to you when you finally achieve that goal?

Dolph Ziggler: First off, I honestly think that it is long overdue. We've had the same people in the same spots in the main event here and I think that it is long overdue that someone else gets a well deserved shot, whether it is a new guy like Ryback or a guy like me that has proven myself.

Eric: When you began with the company you were a lackey for Eddie Guerrro's nephew. Now you are managed by his widow. I was wondering if you ever got the chance to get to know Eddie before his passing?

Dolph Ziggler: I did a little bit. Obviously, I wish it had been more because of all the great matches, the great psychology, how good he was and what a great family he came from. I did get to learn from Chavo a lot. Of course I've been around Vickie a long time. I would have loved a chance to be around Eddie for a little bit longer.

Eric: After being saddled with the gimmicks of being a lackey for Kerwin White and then being a part of the Spirit Squad, what went through your mind when you heard the name Dolph Ziggler for the first time?

Dolph Ziggler: Honestly, I was crushed. I thought that I was going to be my real name because I had collegiate credentials. I had broken records in college, I was the all-time wins leader at Kent State. I assumed that I was going to be someone where you could Google me and you could find out actual stats about me so we wouldn't have to come up with a character. But eventually, I went on to embrace the character and went on to be someone who has a great collegiate background and can entertain like no other.

Eric: In a recent interview with PWTorch, Booker T said the following about you: "One thing I tell him is he has to be more selfish (in the ring). Until he starts doing that, he's not going to get over like he should." I was wondering if you could explain to my readers what he means by that?

Dolph Ziggler: What that means is that I am constantly out there trying to prove to everyone that I can have the best match every single night. And that's not me being selfish, that's me working for the fans and me working for the match. If I was more selfish, I would go out there and not care what anyone thought or my opponent and go out there for myself and show everyone how good I was every single night. The only problem I have with that is that there are too many good superstars doing that every night, who don't care about the matches, who don't care about putting on the best show and that is my goal every single night. Of course, I do need to be more selfish to be in the main event.

Eric: When I watch you in the ring, I see a lot of one of my favorites, Mr. Perfect in your work. I was wondering if he was one of your inspirations when you started out?

Dolph Ziggler: Obviously, he is a legend. He is someone I watched growing up. Obviously, he was really good in the ring and I pride myself at being great at what I do. I never really tried to take someones style but I guess subconsciously I have adapted to things from Mr. Perfect, from Shawn Michaels, from Billy Gunn, from Ric Flair and it just comes out in my work.

Eric: On RAW 1,000, John Cena became the first person to unsuccessfully cash in the Money in the Bank contract. When that happened, did you feel any relief that it would now be impossible for you to hold that dubious distinction?

Dolph Ziggler: No, because with the Money in the Bank contract, there are no guarantees of anything. There is a chance that we both can cash in and neither one of us can become champions. The fact that he was dumb enough to announce to the world that he put himself into a match where his opponent got to prepare for him, that's his own fault. That is something that he wanted to do to be the star of RAW 1,000. So, I'm smart enough to say that I can't wait for Sheamus and Big Show to beat the hell out of one another and then whoever is champion I will beat the crap out of them with my briefcase because the match has not started and it won't be an official match until I cash in the briefcase.

Eric: If you do wind up successfully cashing in the Money in the Bank title shot, would that be a bigger highlight for you than it was the first time you were the World Heavyweight Champion?

Dolph Ziggler: The first time, it was awarded to me and I don't even count that as being World Heavyweight Champion although technically the record books do. This will not change the way I think either if I end up cashing it in on someone who is beat up and down. Me proving my self every night as the World Heavyweight Champion, going out there and having great matches and great promos and becoming one of the best draws that the WWE has ever seen because of my great personality, because of everything that I do, then I will start congratulating myself and start patting myself on the back. Until then, no.

Eric: If you don't mind me asking, recently your ex-girlfriend, Amy Schumer, made some comments on The Howard Stern Show about your relationship. Did it bother you that something personal like that was told in public or do you think that it is fair game now that you are in the public eye?

Dolph Ziggler: In the public eye, you have to understand that the things you do will be in public. Even years later, people have the right to tell their stories. Me and my ex, we had a great time together. We made each other laugh a lot, we had fun. You know what, things like that are going to happen. She was pretty entertaining on the show so I can't say anything bad about her. It was all in fun. At the end of the day, we're in the public eye.

Eric: The question I am asked most often about is becoming a wrestler. What advice do you have for any of my readers that are interested in being a wrestler?

Dolph Ziggler: My advice, just like I told my brother [NXT Star Briley Pierce], no matter what you want to do in life, if you work harder than everyone else in every aspect of that job and somehow you still don't achieve your goals, at least you can go to sleep at night knowing that you worked hard at it. I pride myself on my hard work. I pride myself on barely sleeping at night if something tiny went wrong with one of matches. I'm a perfectionist and that is why I am so good at what I do. I'm never satisfied. I'm constantly trying to get better at what I do to become the greatest superstar of all-time.

Eric: Is there anything else you would like for my readers know?

Dolph Ziggler: You can follow me on Twitter at HEELZiggler where I constantly entertain people every single day. WWE has a new show called Main Event on ION, Wednesday night in prime time at 8:00 Eastern. I was actually on the most recent one against Ryback. There is constantly up and coming and great solidified main event caliber talent on that show. Of course, Hell in a Cell is coming up this Sunday where we may have a new World Heavyweight Champion.

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