ECW legend Blue Meanie has wrestled in WWE, AEW and beyond, but he’s also a trainer at Monster Factory – the wrestling school which has seen the likes of Sheamus, Riddle and Damian Priest walk through its doors.
Monster Factory has seen the likes of Bam Bam Bigelow, Chris Candido, King Kong Bundy, The Godfather, Sheamus, Matt Riddle, Damian Priest, Steve Maclin and many more step between the ropes in the infancy of their wrestling careers, and Blue Meanie has opened up about his role with the company.
Speaking with Inside The Ropes’ Lead Writer Gary Cassidy for Issue 17 of Inside The Ropes Magazine, Blue Meanie revealed the advice he gave to Riddle and Damian Priest many years ago, and spoke about why they’re thriving in WWE now.
“They’re doing fantastic. Damian Priest had been wrestling for a little bit by the time I met him, but in his case, what I would do is just give him practical advice. You know prepare him for a career to potentially try to get into WWE.”
“It wasn’t just me, it was myself and Danny Cage, owner of Monster Factory, and QT Marshall was there as well. It was a collective of coaches, but with a guy like Damian Priest, you just say, ‘Hey, this is what you’ve got to do, and this is what you need to work on.’ And I just work with people.”
Meanie went on to discuss how everyone is different, and that he had to adapt that training for Riddle.
“Everybody’s different, you’re coaching personalities and you’ve got to learn everybody’s personality.
“How to approach them with Riddle, it was just a matter of… I don’t need to teach him how to wrestle. He’s a championship amateur wrestler, accomplished mixed martial artist.
The ECW legend, who recently appeared in AEW, says the role was to help “reprogramme” Riddle to work a crowd and let hisopponent sell.
“The best thing I could compare it to is reprogramming a motherboard on the computer, you know, just he was trained to kill, kill, kill, go forward. If you see a weakness, attack it – to dial it back, let somebody sell and work the crowd. Just stuff like that.
“He had the tools, he has the personality! If you watch his UFC promos, he was very entertaining. It’s just a matter of reprogramming it towards pro-wrestling, and he’s done a fantastic job.”
Blue Meanie recalled the one piece of advice he gave Riddle, which he’s utilising now in WWE.
“The one piece of advice I gave it to him, and I give to everybody, is always be the professional wrestler that creative needs to tell to tone it down instead of being the piece of talent they need to try to motivate to do something.”
“Always try to think of new ways to do things. Always, always work on your promos, always have an idea, always have a notebook, you know? To this day, I still do promos just looking in the mirror, shaving or brushing my teeth or driving in the car. I’m looking in the rearview and, ‘What the f**k are you looking at?’ “
The ECW legend joked that everyone needs to know how to cut a promo in life, not just in wrestling, and also pointed at RuPaul’s Drag Race as the perfect place to learn.
“You never know when you need one. They don’t just apply to wrestling. I mean, people in the supermarket. A good promo will put them straight.
“One of the best places. And it’s going to sound crazy. But the best promo cutters are me and my wife watch RuPaul’s Drag Race. They just read people. The library is open, and that’s where you got to be as a professional wrestler.
“You got to look at somebody and read them up and down like Sherlock. You know, when he’s doing deductions, you know?”
Blue Meanie added that RuPaul’s Drag Race is wrestling without the wrestling.
“They cut promos. There’s plenty of spandex. It’s exactly pro wrestling. And that’s why I love that show.”