X-Pac opens today’s show by speaking about last Sunday’s Elimination Chamber PPV.
He thought the Women’s Chamber match was very good, and he thought all the women had a good showing in this match. He specifically mentions that Mickie James looked really good in the match. He also adds that Alexa Bliss’ promo at the end of the match seemed to surprise a few people, with her teasing a babyface turn before reverting back to a heel. He notes that it’s great to be surprised as a wrestling fan, and we rarely get that feeling anymore.
He also really liked the Asuka/Nia Jax match. He points out that it has taken some time for fans to get behind Asuka, but he thinks they’re starting to really dig her vibe now. He adds that it can be tough for performers making the transition from NXT to the main roster, but after having some time to prove herself to the WWE Universe, Asuka appears to be well on her way.
X-Pac thought the Matt Hardy/Bray Wyatt match was pretty entertaining for what it was. The live audience weren’t as invested in this match as one might have thought, but he thought both those men handled that situation about as well as they could.
He points out that Stephanie McMahon knows how to lay in a slap, and it was very evident that she didn’t take it easy on Ronda Rousey during the contract signing segment. He points out that Stephanie has the hardest slap in wrestling, and being slapped by Stephanie was the hardest he’s ever been hit in the head in his life, by a man or a woman.
X-Pac welcomes Shelton Benjamin to the show.
Benjamin speaks about his working relationship with Jim Cornette in OVW years ago. He says he never had a problem with Cornette, although some other people did. He adds that he rarely has issues with people, he just tries to keep his head down and keep moving forward. He adds that Randy Orton made a sly remark towards him one time in OVW which resulted in a pull apart, but eventually it all blew over. He did not want to ruin the golden opportunity he had at that time.
Benjamin mentions that he started amateur wrestling because he wanted to be a professional wrestler from a very young age. When he finally made it to WWE he considered himself to be a fan who had backstage access all of a sudden.
Benjamin mentions that his OVW graduating class was really special. He considers it to be the greatest class of all time, featuring talents like John Cena, Randy Orton, Brock Lesnar and Batista. Victoria and Jazz were just a couple of the females that were in his class as well. He points out that all of them felt over-prepared for their jump to the main roster, and everyone was very supportive of one another.
He points out that he wasn’t sure if all of those talents were going to make it initially. At first he thought Orton might end up getting fired, and Batista was injured quite frequently, making him think that Batista was fragile. He was soon proven very wrong on both of those fronts. He points out that Orton’s dropkick was so beautiful at that time that he stopped doing dropkicks because he couldn’t do them as well as Orton.
He informs that he knew right away after hearing Cena talk that he was going to make a huge impact in the business. Some people consider Cena to be one of the all-time great talkers now, but Benjamin mentions that Cena was just as good back then. He asked Cena at that time what made him so good on the mic, and Cena mentions he’d spend hours talking to himself in front of a mirror.
Benjamin notes that the physical aspect of the business came very easily to him, and he was never nervous before big matches early on. He realized quickly what it meant to work against main-event-level performers, because working guys like Triple H was always easier and it felt like a night off for him. The only time he ever got nervous was working his first match against Ric Flair and Undertaker because he idolized those men.
After leaving WWE initially he took a year off to do as he pleased. From there he went to work for ROH and reformed the World’s Greatest Tag Team with Charlie Haas. He would then transition to Japan where he worked for a couple of years and then he received the call to return to WWE.
When he took his tryout to return to WWE he found out that he had a torn rotator cuff and that was something that he had to address before returning to work for the company. He points out that it’s been great to be back and while some things have changed within the company, more things have stayed the same.
Speaking about the recent incident when he found a loaded gun in his rental car, Benjamin mentions that he reached an agreement with the rental car company, and everything has been worked out. He says he’s thankful that things didn’t end up differently in that situation, because there were a lot of scenarios where things wouldn’t have ended as smoothly.
That sums up this week’s episode of X-Pac 1, 2, 360. You can listen to the show yourself anytime here, and I’ll catch ya next week for another recap!