Arda Ocal sent in the following highlights from an interview he did with Zach Gowen:
Arda Ocal (@arda_ocal) and Jimmy Korderas (@jimmykorderas) of #Aftermath Radio on thescore.com and iTunes chat with former WWE superstar Zach Gowen. Highlights:
What made him decide to enter Professional Wrestling despite losing his leg to cancer, and what kind of reaction did he get from his family and friends when he told them that he wanted to be in the wrestling business:
“I made the decision when I was 16. I knew that wrestling was what I was going to do because my love and passion for wrestling was unparalleled. Basically there’s nothing in life that grabbed my interest or mesmerized me as much as Professional Wrestling. I just knew I would somehow be involved in it.”
Signing with the WWE for the first time. There was originally a mix up with the signing because there was another one legged wrestler that was mistakenly brought in to sign with WWE. How did the mix up on that come about.
His debut with the WWE on the May 15/2003 episode of Smackdown with Mr. America ( Hulk Hogan ), Sean O’Haire, and Rowdy Roddy Piper, where Piper pulled his prosthetic leg off. Explains how Piper originally tried pulling the wrong leg by mistake:
“I hit him (Piper) with Mr.America’s flag pole and then Sean O’Haire tackled me. Piper was gonna come over, rip my prosthetic leg off, cause no one knew at the time I had a missing limb. When he was pulling my real leg, he was pulling extremely hard too and yelling at me “why wont this thing come off kid (laughs)”
Facing Vince McMahon at WWE Vengeance 2003. Speaks about how he accidentally busted Vince McMahon open in the match, and his thoughts on facing Brock Lesnar on a episode of Smackdown in his hometown of Detroit:
What lead to his release from his WWE contract, was it his backstage attitude? What was his circumstance like, and what extent does he remember going vs the perception he received:
“I didn’t know how to conduct myself as a WWE superstar, I didn’t know how to conduct myself as an employee of that organization, I didn’t know how to conduct myself as a man at that point cause I wasn’t a man (Gowen was 18 at time of signing). I guess I acted out a little bit. Thing is I didn’t want to, that’s just what was going on in my head at the time. What was going on inside of me was the complete opposite, I felt like I didn’t belong there, I felt I wasn’t as good as these guys, I felt like I didn’t fit in at all.”
What are his goals today, doing motivational speaking, and explaining how he got into drugs and alcohol. when he was at the lowest point with the drugs and alcohol, what got it to turn it around for him:
” I would like to say I have a spiritual intervention basically. I don’t know what happened, I was sick and tried of being sick and tired, and I was living one lie after another. I remember I came to my mom about everything because I was trying to leave this double life, everything just came out. Basically I dropped to my knees and asked for help for the first time in my life. My mom suggested I go into the WWE’s rehab program and thought it was a great idea, so I called the WWE office and told them I needed help and didnt know how to stop. It was the best thing ive ever done”
To listen to the full podcast, click on this link.