With WrestleMania just around the corner, Sport360 caught up with Drew McIntyre and spoke about his thoughts ahead of the show of shows, and his aspirations for the future.
Here’s what he had to say….
Q: What is the vibe like when everyone under the WWE umbrella manages to get together, in this case Dallas. How does it feel to have everyone back together?
Drew: It’s awesome! It feels like the biggest reunion of all time, having everyone in the company back together again. Having all the fans traveling from across the world again to the same location and enjoying the thing we all love most is incredible too. Two years ago, we had an epic WrestleMania with nobody there, limited capacity and nobody traveling. But this year, we get back to normal with people from around the world, and potentially 100 thousand people going to be there each night over the weekend. I’m really looking forward to it.
Q: You have been away from the title fight since losing to Lashley, so after WrestleMania, is that something that would be the goal again, to set the sights on a title?
Drew: Absolutely. That’s the number one goal at all times! It’s been so long since I’ve competed for the Heavyweight Championship, so that’s definitely in my sights. When I was drafted to SmackDown, my eyes were on the Universal Championship right away. But I understood and was perfectly fine with doing whatever it took to get that opportunity. It’s not like Roman was going to jump up and offer it to me when he knows what I’m capable of these days – we all saw what happened at Survivor Series in 2020.
When the whole family got involved, I got low-blooded and choked out. He’s (Roman) definitely aware of what Drew McIntyre is capable of these days compared to our battles in the past. And as I said, I’ll start from the bottom, fight everybody and I’ll work my way up.
At this stage of my career I understand that I don’t need it all. Now, I am a 52 weeks-a-year product, I’m 36 years old. I’ve got plenty of years left in my career and I’ve just been biding my time, building my victories, waiting for my moment. We’ve got this huge match with Roman versus Brock in the title vs title match at WrestleMania and I can assure you, I’ve got my eyes on who’s going to win that match because I’m coming for them.
Q: This is now going to be your seventh WrestleMania, and your resume at the show of shows is pretty damn cool. You’ve been the main eventer with Brock Lesnar, you were the first WWE superstar to perform in front of fans during the pandemic era when you took on Bobby Lashley. Even a Money in the Bank Ladder match at WrestleMania 26, so you’ve pretty much ticked off every major thing you can do at WrestleMania. Do you still get that excitement, that nervousness and those goosebumps during WrestleMania season?
Drew: Yeah, for sure. I get the excitement and goosebumps for all weekend shows, even the ones that aren’t televised. So certainly, for WrestleMania, I already mentioned that now we’re getting back to the way WrestleMania is supposed to be. I know how many people are going to be there, I know our most passionate fans travel from all across the world to get together and bring that energy. I know how loud it’s going to be, so I’m absolutely buzzing to hear the excitement on the streets and feel the excitement in the arena. I don’t know, since I returned to WWE match wise, it might seem interesting, I wrestled Roman at my first WrestleMania and I’ve wrestled with Lesnar, Lashley and Corbin.
A lot of people might say “well, one of these is not like the other”, but at the same time, as the rest of the matches were more about the glory and the championships. The contest with the big Roman, a top superstar, and maybe more so than the title matches.
But with Corbin, it’s different, as he tried to take me out at the start of the year.
This one’s personal and I’m very much planning to either, take them out quickly and embarrass them or drag the beating for such a long time and truly embarrass him. I’ve been studying is past matches including Brett Hart versus Stone Cold or The Undertaker vs. Sean Michaels. I’ve been studying Vince McMahon versus Brett Hart from WrestleMania 26 where it was just a really long, uncomfortable 40 minutes. Those are inspirations for sure.
Q: It’s just recently past the second anniversary of the first lockdown across a large part of the world. For a lot of people, you’ll be a symbol of that period really thanks to your fantastic title victory. I know emotionally and in terms of the individual moment, it might not have been the circumstances at the title when you’d have imagined or you grew up dreaming about that moment. But it’s quite the legacy when you think about the mark that you’re leaving, isn’t it?
Drew: I’ve talked about this a lot and it’s not what I dreamed about when I was a kid, because who on Earth would dream about winning the title and the main event in WrestleMania in front of nobody. Nobody could have predicted the times when we were going to be in, especially that specific moment, that specific time, that specific weekend when it was the height of the pandemic and everyone around the world was genuinely scared. We didn’t know what was going on. Every other sport entertainment company had shut down, but WWE pushed ahead. And I was the main event, you know, I was a part of the feel good story and could take people’s minds off of what was going on. And seeing the feedback meant the world to me.
We really did make a lot of people happy and I know this because I saw the numbers going up 60% on social media from the prior year. I’ve talked to people countless times now, through virtual in person and I’ve had them tell me just how difficult things got for them and how the escape that WWE gives can literally save people’s lives.
There were people in tears telling me that’s the stuff that makes me realize just how important what we did during that period was, and I’ll never take it back. I was very proud of it. In the end when WrestleMania comes and goes, people remember those moments from WrestleMania and if you’re lucky, people will continue to remember it for a few months. But the product keeps going, the machine keeps pushing ahead. Those moments may end up in a video package or on the network or on Shahid even, but the reality is nobody will forget the WrestleMania when the world stood still and that’s when Drew McIntyre won the title.
Q: Aside from your own match, which match of the current confirmed WrestleMania card excites you the most?
Drew: Well, there’s definitely a few. I’ve got my eyes on Brock Lesnar Vs Roman Reigns. Obviously, I want to see who is going to win that because then I’ll be gunning for them.
We’ve got Charlotte Flair in the event too, and I know it will be amazing to watch because she always puts in some big-time performances on the biggest stage. She’s such an incredible athlete. Then she’s up against Ronda Rousey who is an unbelievable athlete, and she’s also thrived in those big time matches so that’s going to be fun to watch.
For Becky vs. Bianca, Becky just did one of my favorite promos she’s ever this past Monday, on RAW, along with Bianca who’s come into her own and is such a superstar.
She’s such a phenomenal athlete and so together those two will produce magic.
Q: Regarding that title unification between Brock Lesnar & Roman Reigns from WrestleMania Sunday, who do you think we’ll come out with both championships? And would you like to face the winner for both titles?
Drew: Yeah, whoever wins. I definitely want to face them but I can’t really predict who’s going to win. I have got history with both as I defeated Brock for my first WWE Championship at WrestleMania 36, although Roman has always been my Kryptonite and I have never been able to defeat him. I came close during Survivor Series 2020 champion versus champion, but the whistles got involved when the low blow happened.
But Roman’s aware of what I’m capable of these days.
I’m excited to see the winner and Brock’s not the same Brock he was – his cowboy Brock right now, is somehow more terrifying when he comes out and he smiles, and he has a good time. He just destroys everybody and runs into them and that’s even more terrifying than angry Brock. I’m curious to see who’s going to come away with a victory, and I’m going to watch it like everyone else as a fan. At the same time, after that match finishes, whoever is standing there with those two titles, I’m going to be gunning for them.
Q: The main event for this year, Reigns Vs. Lesnar. It’s arguably the biggest match of all time and it seems as though all the other cards have been in its shadow. Do you believe you can get to that level and how do you plan on reaching that status?
Drew: Yeah, I do believe I can get there. 100%. I could lie and say, “it’ll be this year”, but it wouldn’t be that because the level of superstars involved, the build-up to the match and just the years and years and years of equity that both Roman and Brock have. Honestly, nobody across any of the brands can touch that right now. It is genuinely the biggest match we might have ever seen. Right now, both titles are on the line. This build-up makes it the biggest match of all time and rightfully so. And when we look at all the attributes of both superstars, you can have a debate if there’s a match in the past that was bigger, but it would be a silly branding thing to see like the second biggest match all time.
And it can be debate as the biggest match time because of the superstars involved because of the titles on the line. Obviously, I’m watching with everybody else, just not only, like I said earlier, to figure out who the winner is and who I’m going for, but also to figure out what I need to do to get to the level they ‘re both at.
The progress I’ve made the past couple of years, I’m going to keep getting those reps and watch both those superstars’ study both of those superstars and figure out how they got to where they’re at right now.
Q: What does WrestleMania mean to you and what are your expectations for this great event?
Drew: WrestleMania means everything. It’s the biggest show of the year. It’s what we all work towards from the day after WrestleMania all the way through the year, hoping to stay healthy, hoping to be lucky enough to get a match on WrestleMania.
It’s the dream for superstars like myself who always wanted to be in the WWE as a kid.
Always dreamed of being part of WrestleMania in any capacity. Everybody including me is absolutely buzzing for this year’s WrestleMania.
My expectations for the match are high. I obviously have been running my mouth about Corbin and all the horrible things I’m going to do to him, “I’m going to hurt him, and I’m going to embarrass him” but at the same time I could take a second to say some slight positives about him.
Realistically, he is 6 ft 7′ tall and almost 300 pounds heavy. As a former football player, he’s willing to do whatever it takes to win. He’s got the experience now that he’s been around for a few years and the biggest thing of all is those physical attributes. Aside from the fact that he’s a terrible human being, as this confidence right now as “Happy Corbin” since he’s undefeated. There is a difference in his confidence because he is on a roll.
His confidence is matching his physical ability, although he seems like he is afraid of Drew McIntyre, and there is always a danger as I am going in with a game plan. I am going to embarrass him, and I’ve got high expectations for after the match as well.
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