Zack Clayton is bringing The Reality to a town near you.
“The Reality” Zack Clayton recently spoke with WrestleZone Managing Editor Bill Pritchard about his recent appearances on AEW television. Clayton made his Rampage debut and faced off with HOOK for the FTW Championship. Despite not walking out with the title, he said he’s feeling good coming out of it.
“It’s obviously a good way to debut, right? I mean, I had two good promos on national TV. So that’s a good way to come out and make yourself known to the world and the wrestling universe of AEW,” Clayton said. “I’m feeling good about it.”
Asked how he plans on capitalizing on the recent opportunity, Clayton said that he’s on the road full-time with AEW now and hopes to make the most of it as fans will be seeing him more often.
“Right now, I’m full-time on the road. I’ve been for the whole month of August and for the foreseeable future. So we’re going to see what the plans are moving forward,” Clayton said. “You’re going to be seeing me a lot more. That was something we came to an agreement with and now I’m on the road. [I’m] at every TV. I’m going to be at every Dark and I’m going to be seeing a lot more, which is good.”
— Zack Clayton™️ (@zackclayton) August 22, 2022
Prior to his Rampage debut, one highlight of his AEW career saw Clayton pick up a big win in Atlantic City against Serpentico on AEW Dark. Winning a match is a great feeling, but Clayton explained how he used the Rampage experience to introduce himself to fans on a larger level.
“I haven’t been on television in that manner before, so that was my first appearance in front of a live crowd that was on TV,” Clayton explained. “When I first went out to Rampage, I was getting the chants of ‘Who are you?; Which is good, that was good heat. They were reacting to my promo in a good way that I wanted them to. But it dawned on me that, AEW Dark Elevation, it’s the YouTube show. So those get around 300 [to] 400,000 views a week, which is great. That’s better than some TV shows that are on cable right now.
“But if you reference that [compared] to the Dynamite audience who goes there and that’s in the live crowd, which does eight [hundred thousand], 900 [hundred thousand], a million views a week,” Clayton explained, “there’s a discrepancy in viewers there. So you’ve got to figure several thousand viewers at each city have no idea who people are that only wrestle on Dark. I took that into account before I went out there on Rampage. It was important to introduce myself, who I am, why I’m here, and what I’m going to do. And obviously, the FTW Title match was a great way to make that first appearance.”
Clayton said that he knew he needed to sell himself to fans and make them care, and it puts talent in an interesting position.
“I thought it was the best way to do it. Introduce myself, who I am, why I’m here, and why you should care. It’s like you’re selling anything else, a business or a product of any type. Why do people want to care about you? Then it’s up to you to be good and make them care about you. If they don’t, then, well, you’re not good and they don’t care about you. But that’s really it’s really at that point to the performer.”
Check out our full video interview with Zack Clayton at the top of this post, where he also speaks about getting fans to follow talent from the web to cable, which Jersey Shore castmate he’d team up with, balancing his wrestling career with the MTV series and more.