EB: What’s the one thing you learned while working in WWE that you don’t like to talk about but will if a student asks you about it?
KA: I would say my mouth was really a big negative. There was a point in time when I felt like, “Everybody needs to know what Ken Kennedy thinks about this topic right here!” I maybe would slow that roll a little bit. That did get me in a lot of trouble.
EB: Shawn, what was the one thing when you look back that’s a highlight that you like to relay?
SD: Ken knows this and probably a couple psychiatrists know this but I was really raised in the pro wrestling business. From a sophomore in High School I have pretty much been in wrestling. I’ve been really lucky in that when I was in high school in ’98, ’99 into 2000 the hottest thing in the world was pro wrestling. It kind of trickled down to the indy scene. Me and Ken used to wrestle on this local independent wrestling show in Green Bay, WI and in that town you were like a quasi-child star. We were like, “Man, this is awesome!” We were getting people’s numbers just because we were a part of this pseudo pro wrestling show just because it was a fraction of the pro wrestling audience and the pro wrestling audience on national television was huge. Being raised in that and getting to be around so many different people in WWE. I was having dark matches and try outs in WWE on Sunday Night Heat when I was a senior in high school. Right after high school I had to drop out of college because I was signed by WWE. I met you Eric when I was 19. I could not possibly have any sort of influence or prejudice of any kind. Status, racial, religion, financial or anything. Just being around this three ring circus has been a lesson.
Some of the other topics they discuss include:
Why Shawn and Ken have decided to open their Academy for pro wrestling in Minneapolis
How Ken has adapted to the midwest as opposed to the east coast
Eric and Ken’s experiences working together and elk hunting
The response the Minneapolis area has had to their Academy
Minneapolis not having a big name talent break out
How they prefer to train their students
Catering their curriculum to what the students want to achieve
Using improv comedy as a tool to help pro wrestlers in their training
Putting importance on storytelling over just “dives” and “spots”
How they help wrestling students develop promo skills
Variety being important in independent pro wrestling shows