ANGEL CHRISTOPHER DANIELS is considered by many to be the best independent wrestler
in the world. He is a former two-time NWA World tag team champion holding the titles with Low Ki and Elix Skipper, collectively
known as XXX. He is a former NWA Florida heavyweight champion as well as co-holder of the Ring of Honor tag team titles with
Donovan Morgan. Mr. Daniels currently works for NWA: Total Nonstop Action, Ring of Honor, Major League Wrestling and in Japan for New Japan Pro Wrestling as the character Curry Man. This interview was conducted after his battle with IPW World Champion Lex Lovett on the IPW Hardcore/NWA
Florida entitled Unholy War on Saturday September
13, 2003. This interview is not a traditional shoot interview since Mr. Daniels
past has been well documented; this is a current events shoot, covering his career over the past two years.
NWA Total Nonstop Action
Alan Wojcik: When you joined Vince Russos Sports
Entertainment Xtreme (SEX,) did you think the fans received it well?
Christopher Daniels: I think they were definitely surprised. That was the reason they brought in three cruiserweight guys, it
gets in the face of sports entertainment meaning you wouldnt expect three X-division guys to join SEX. They expected the X-division
guys to be against the SEX faction. The fans appreciated the work that Ki, Elix and I did in the ring, they knew we were young
talents and that added a dimension to the tradition versus sports entertainment feud. I thought it was handled very well.
Elix and Low Ki were considered the NWA World tag team champions. Were you a fan of the idea that any two of you could defend
CD: Definitely, I thought it was a good idea. I wish we could have done a little more than we did. I
think the X-division Freebirds was the concept they were going for. I thought it went well because no matter the combination
we all worked well together and brought a different dynamic to each pairing.
AW: You were apart of what many people are considering
a match of the year contender as you and Elix lost the titles to Americas Most Wanted (Cowboy James Storm &
Wildcat Chris Harris) in TNAs first cage match. Have you watched it and what did you think of the contest?
CD: Ive seen it a few times and I enjoyed being
in there. Storm and Harris are two great athletes and it was fun working with them. We knew that TNA was putting the ball
in our hands and we ran with it. I think we put on a match that people will remember. It wasnt hard on my body and I dont
think anyone else got seriously hurt. People might think we went over the top with the top of the cage splash and the spear
off the top rope. Nothing had long lasting effects. I think its great that people are still talking about it as a match of
the year contender.
internet people who will go un-named have criticized the booking style used by Vince Russo and the Jarretts. What do you think
of their style and where do you think TNA can go in the future?
CD: I think TNA is in a slow build. In one year
we have grown and people have become aware of the product. There are places to go with the product. We are considered a top
group in the country. As far as the booking style of Russo and the Jarretts, people need to take a step back and understand
that there is lots of young talent being pushed by TNA. I think that is a big positive. Guys like me, Storm, Harris, Amazing
Red, Low Ki, Elix Skipper, Chris Sabin, Frankie Kazarian and Michael Shane. We are guys that are the future of wrestling.
We are getting a push we might not get if we were in the WWE. I think that why we are considered an alternative to WWE. I
appreciate all the opportunities TNA has given me. I cant criticize the way things are being done in the offices.
AW: Do you see yourself heading toward an X title
shot or possibly the NWA World title currently held by AJ Styles?
CD: Right now I feel I am in the mix with the
heavyweights. I think I can segue way between the weight classes if needed. The program with Jeff Jarrett gets me pushed in
the heavyweight vein and I need to show I belong with the heavyweights.
Major League Wrestling
AW: What do you think of the product run by Court
Bauer and the style of running once a month? Do you prefer their style of booking or the TNA style of the weekly show?
CD: Im sure it would be better if MLW could run
weekly, but they run as often as he can. Court is doing what he can to get enough promos and matches filmed at the shows for
a weekly TV program. It seems the TV is being well received, so he is doing well in that respect. Down the line they hopefully
will be able to run more shows.
AW: Whos idea was it to pair you with The Evil
FN Show Jerry Lynn and the Sinister Minister James Mitchell?
CD: That was MLW. They felt Jerry and I would
have a great dynamic. In the future we will get a chance to tag. The paring with Jim Mitchell came with the similarities between
AW: On the last MLW show you had a spike match
with Sabu. How do you feel the match went and is a spike match something you feel comfortable being in?
CD: To the first part of your question, I thought
the match went well. As for your second part, not really but I like to think I am versatile enough to handle anything thrown
at me. I thought Sabu and I put together a good idea on how the spike match should go. I was disappointed and felt bad that
Sabu had to perform with an injured arm. I am glad we both came out of it as healthy as one can. I hope he heals quickly and
I hope we can work together after he is completely healed.
Ring of Honor
AW: How did you come to join ROH and what do
you think of Gabe Sapolski and Rob Feinstein?
CD: They approached me for the first show last
February. I appreciate what ROH has done for me as they are a growing company. Im glad to be a part of it and helping them
grow towards bigger things.
AW: You held the ROH tag titles with Donovan
Morgan. How does he compare to your XXX partners?
CD: We worked well together; he has a different
style than Elix and Ki. We meshed well together. We had some good matches and it was our versatility that made us good.
AW: You were part of a 2002 match of the year
contender wrestling Low Ki and American Dragon.
CD: It was fun to work with those guys. It forces
me to step my game up a notch. Working with them is hard work and fun at the same time. I think we made a great match. I think
that match helped ROH set the bar and helped them get their name out to the media.
recently tagged with Raven in a match against Colt Cabana and CM Punk. What is it like to be Ravens partner and do you have
any thoughts on Cabana and Punk?
CD: Raven is fun to work with. He has tons of
experience and he takes it upon himself to give advice to anyone who wants it. He is a positive influence on my career. Cabana
and Punk are great wrestlers that have experience from the Midwest promotions and are getting a chance to shine in ROH.
AW: You have a title shot with ROH champion Samoa
Joe on September 20th.
CD: Joe is a hell of a wrestler. He is a big
guy with great agility. I hope we can put together a great match for the Philly fans.
AW: What is your current work schedule between
Japan and the US?
CD: Right now I go about every three months and
work for three weeks. I work exclusively for New Japan. I will return to them in November. I am trying to tone down my Japan schedule to concentrate
on working for the US-based promotions.
AW: You work as Curry Man in New Japan. Will
the fans in the US ever get to experience the Curry Man?
CD: No. Thats a straight out Japanese gimmick.
It is not mine to bring here and I dont think the US fans would understand and appreciate it like the Japanese fans do.
AW: Is the competition between Zero-One, New
Japan, World Japan and All-Japan as fierce as the US promotions?
CD: Not really. There is more inter-promotional
stuff as opposed to the US. I dont think it is as strict in Japan. They work together on occasion and I think they do what is best for their businesses.
IPW Hardcore/NWA Florida
AW: You have worked for IPW and NWA Florida before.
What is it like to work for (IPW owner) Ron Niemi and (NWA FL president) Joe Price?
CD: Its lots of fun, they have been successful
over the years in giving the fans a great product. They have great talent in
their locker room like Scoot Andrews, Lex Lovett, Billy Fives and Mike Sullivan. I always have fun here in Florida.
AW: Tonight you wrestled IPW World champion Lex
Lovett. Any comments on Lex?
CD: I think he is a great talent. We worked together
in the NWA Florida Super Junior Open. He has really improved over the last couple of years. He is making himself more rounded
and going to Japan helps that process. It was fun working with him again.
Comments on professional wrestling
AW: Do you see an independent rising to the level
of the former WCW or ECW and challenge the WWE?
CD: I dont see an independent doing it. I think
TNA is the next big challenge to WWE. As long as they keep growing at their current rate they will be the number two promotion
in the US.
AW: Many fans and writers consider you the best
worker not working for the WWE. Do you think the WWE is afraid of the Fallen Angel character or do you feel there is some
other reason you do not work for the WWE?
CD: There is no real concrete reason. A basic
reason is they might not think my character can be a money maker. They have so much talent right now. They dont need to add
talent since they dont have a good idea what to do with what talent they have. It
isnt in their best interest to hire me. I am concentrating on the things that are going well for me. I have never based my
success on if I am working for the WWE. If I get to work with them in the future that would be great. Things are going well
for me with New Japan, TNA, ROH and MLW and thats where my focus is
AW: If there is an independent booker out there
wanting to book Christopher Daniels, do you have any criteria they need to pass?
CD: They need to be a professional company and
be able to pay me. Ive worked for guys just starting up to established promotions. Its all about the business side of things.
AW: In closing what do you hope the future holds
for Christopher Daniels?
CD: More TNA, more New Japan and more ROH. They are
my top three priorities. I am trying to help build those three groups.
Much thanks to Mr. Daniels for his time. Check
out his personal website, www.christopherdaniels.com.