Chris Hero, formerly of NXT and NXT UK, was full of high praise for NXT tough-guy Ridge Holland during the first instalment of Ad-Free Shows ‘Can Chris Hero Save Wrestling‘. During the show, Hero also revealed that he once pitched the idea of utilising the former Luke Menzies on NXT’s ‘Coconut Circuit’ as his bodyguard and tag partner.
On Ad-Free Shows latest venture, a dual-hosted video podcast with Chris Hero [formerly Kassius Ohno] and Conrad Thompson, the duo discussed Hero’s NXT schedule and if he harboured any frustrations to the brand when he was not being utilised on NXT TV.
Responding to the query from Conrad, Hero revealed that he was grateful for the freedom of schedule that he was afforded during his time in NXT also speaking on the classes he would often frequent and the fact that on certain days he would not attend the Performance Centre at all.
Speaking to Conrad Thompson, Hero stated:
“I got to the point where I only had to come to the Performance Center if I wanted to. There were some days where I was like, I’m not going in today. Then other days where I’d come in and roll in the ring for a couple of hours or sit in on [Steve] Corino’s history classes or they’d have a PC Live, which is a live event for young wrestlers at the Performance Center. I had a really easy schedule…”
Hero, who has not wrestled since his defeat in the March 2020 NXT UK #1 Contender Battle Royal, continued discussing teaming with Holland on his final Coconut Show [NXT’s version of House Shows] and praising the former Rugby League Prop highly:
“My last show at Coconut was myself and Ridge Holland against Shane Thorne and Cal Bloom. Ridge Holland, he’s a guy I like a whole lot. He looks like a million bucks, has a great work ethic, and a great love for wrestling.”
Holland was reportedly set for a major NXT push in 2020/2021, most notably being revealed as the Powerhouse of Pat McAfee’s dominant heel faction ‘The Kings of NXT’. However, an untimely injury sustained during an NXT TV match against current NXT Tag Team Champion Danny Burch would leave Holland with dislocation and fracture of left ankle, patellar tendon rupture and patellar dislocation.
Recent reports suggest that Holland’s recovery period may be anywhere between six-to-nine months, speaking to Alex McCarthy of Talk Sport in January, Holland stated:
“It’s early days yet, but the doctor has said six to nine months, so I’m just taking it day-by-day and see how the knee and ankle feels.”
Hero would close the Podcast segment discussing a pitch he made to NXT following their Tag Match against Shane Thorn and Cal Bloom. The former PWG World Champion revealed that he had suggested he and Holland work together on the Coconut Circuits with Holland playing the role of Hero’s Bodyguard, however, Hero expands that NXT stated they had other plans for Holland at that time.
“I pitched for him to be my bodyguard before they were using him on NXT. They had other plans for him. I pitched to team with him on the Florida shows and give us 20 minutes. I wanted longer matches on the Coconut shows.”
Based upon the time scale given to Talk Sport during their January interview it is unlikely that we will be seeing Holland until at least April although this is simply speculation at this time and as wrestling has shown many times recovery is a very personal and unpredictable process.