During a recent interview conducted by Justin Barrasso for LEEInks.com, while TNA was in Lowell, Mass taping the Hardcore Justice One Night Only PPV, TNA star Kurt Angle spoke on a number of topics including his life post-rehab, his relationship with Vince McMahon and more. Below are some interview highlights:
“I fell into depression after the Olympics,” Angle said. “How do I go above what I did? That’s a lot of the reason I’ve had so many personal problems. I was only trying to outdo my Olympic gold medal experience, and nothing would give me the satisfaction.”
Without his dad and his coach, Angle began to look toward WWE CEO Vince McMahon for advice and an example.
“Vince is all business,” said Angle, “but when the curtain goes down, he’s also a great friend. He was like a father figure to me. I have a lot of respect for him. I have to give him credit for taking what I had and producing it the way he did. It was a blessing. If it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t be sitting here right now.”
While Angle originally envisioned himself as a fan favorite in pro wrestling, McMahon knew immediately that would not be the case.
“It was Vince’s idea,” explained Angle. “He saw what happened with The Rock when he started. He tried to start him as a baby face and it blew up in their hands. With me, he knew what was going to happen. When I started to get booed, he had me respond to the fans. He was looking for any kind of chant from the fans that I could respond to negatively and get myself much more heat. Vince is brilliant. He knew that all along, even though I didn’t, but that’s why he’s the man.”
“The divorce and my personal issues have been a blessing,” Angle said. “Now my life is in a much better place. I’m clean and sober, and I don’t want to go back.
“I have a beautiful, wonderful wife. She’s the love of my life. Everything actually worked out, more than I ever thought it would. I’m in a better place now than I’ve ever been in my whole entire life. I’m 45 years old now and you’d think I would be at the end of my career. Now I feel like it’s just beginning.”
Angle was honest when asked if he would ever return to McMahon and the WWE.
“I can’t say I’ll never go back,” Angle said. “My contract is up in eight months, so we’ll see.”
You can read the entire interview, which contains much more from Angle, at this link.