I had the opportunity to speak with indy wrestler Dan The Man last month at Central Illinois Pro Wrestling’s “Aftermath” show in Kincaid, Illinois, to talk about his career, who he looks up to, WrestleMania 31, and much more. Below is an entire recap of the interview:
How did you get your start in wrestling?
Dan: Well, kind citizen, I tell you this: I started wrestling when I was in high school. Then when I got older, I wanted to apply my craft professionally, so I sought out the company of NGW and MSBW, and that led me to Bobby Houston. He taught me how to get it done in the squared circle!
What has been your favorite match of your career?
Dan: That is a tough one. One of the ones that comes to mind is beating Tyler Priegel for the Central Illinois Championship at Lanphier High School. Another one is beating Waylon, and busting his head wide open at the Anniversary show last year in LaSalle. The list is long, but those are the ones that come to the top of my super brain.
Is there anyone is particular that you have modeled your in-ring character, style, etc. after?
Dan: I think that displays very prominently on who inspires DTM. There's Rey Mysterio, I love to fly high with a mask on. I love to get out the super powers like The Hurricane, and use the benefits of my mask. I also like to keep the mystique of The Undertaker, and a mouth like The Rock.
Is there someone that you watched that interested you in pursuing a wrestling career?
Dan: That was The Rock, Rob Van Dam, and honestly Kurt Angle, because Angle is one of those guys that I saw go through school, go through the olympics. I never went to the olympics, but I went through school and then switched over to become a professional wrestler to win the WWE Championship. Hopefully I get to a level that high, but I've got a couple championships under my belt.
Did you watch WrestleMania 31? If so, what were your thoughts on it?
Dan: I sure did. I thought it was a great show. He may not be the greatest character in the world, but I was very proud of Seth Rollins. He's a guy I've known for a long time, and it's good to see him win the title.
Have you worked with Seth Rollins before?
Dan: Yes I have, I've been on many shows with him. I even sent him a congratulatory text telling him congrats, and if you put your mind to anything, you can accomplish it, and that was proof of it.
What wrestling promotions do you like to watch?
Dan: That's the WWE. That's the main stage. Anyone who is anywhere else is just trying to get there.
Heel or babyface?
Dan: Oh, I'm a babyface. It just comes naturally to me. I'm smart, good looking, and dog gone it, people like me.
What's your favorite type of music?
Dan: That would be rock and roll. The Beatles, Tool, Rage Against The Machine, those are all staples of good rock and roll music that I listen to to get into the "super zone" before I wrestle.
How are you preparing for your Contract on Pole Match?
Dan: I took a good, long look at that contract hanging above the ring in that corner, and I'm thinking of techniques on how I can fly high enough to get that. Am I going to have to keep my cape on? Am I going to have to bust out Dan the Sock to get high enough to get to the top? I don't know.
Do you have any advice for others that are breaking into the business?
Dan: Keep your ears open, always.
What do you hope to accomplish next in your career?
Dan: Monday Night Raw.
Dan The Man would go one to grab the number one contender's contract during his match, but Napier would ultimately steal it from him to score the win. DTM went one-on-one with Napier in a singles match with the contract on the line last weekend, but came up short again.
Below is a photo of Dan The Man making his way to the ring last Saturday at CIPW's "Survival," courtesy of NokoPhoto:
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