Exclusive Interview with Kevin Steen

Kevin Steen debuted in Ring of Honor back in 2005 at ‘Do or Die IV’ and went on to become one of the most feared men in the locker room. He won his first title in ROH alongside best friend and tag team partner El Generico. The Canadian duo would hold the belts for seven months before losing them to The American Wolves. At Final Battle 2009, Steen turned on Generico and this led to one of the bitterest feuds in memory. The year long war ended at Final Battle 2010 and due to the stipulations of the match, Kevin Steen left Ring of Honor. Fans have missed Steen since his departure and his name has been chanted at various events since. We were fortunate enough to have a chat with “Mr. Wrestling” about his time in ROH, El Generico and the future, here it is:

– How’s life post-ROH?

Kevin Steen: Life is good. I get to work for PWG more often now which is a blast. When I started full time with ROH, I had to cut back on going to California so I could spend time with my family as well as concentrate on wrestling.

That’s another good side to the reduced schedule. I get to be at home with my son and wife a lot more and that’s great too.

I also got the chance to start giving wrestling seminars here at home in Montreal and around Quebec, which I really enjoy. I was lucky enough to break out on the U.S. indy scene and hone my craft all over the world. There’s really only 2 guys from Quebec that can make that claim. Everyone else here is secluded and doesn’t have the chance to work with amazing talent like I have and learn from these people. So I’m trying to pass that on to the local talent here in the hopes that one day, maybe one of them will get the break I did.

That’s not to say I don’t miss ROH because I do, immensely. I never truly wanted to leave but sometimes, things just happen. Now I have to live with it.

– Compared to other promotions you’ve worked for, how does ROH rate in your opinion?

ROH is the cream of the crop. There’s good to great wrestling in every company I work for but ROH is recognized all over the world as the top WRESTLING company in America and there’s a reason for that. PWG could certainly make that claim as well but in ROH there’s a certain pressure to perform that is very particular to the company and that pressure gives wrestling in ROH a whole different vibe.

– Your mentor Steve Corino said that you were frustrated when you joined forces again in ROH back in 2009. Do you think your lack of singles title shots contributed to that?

No. I got plenty of title shots. But I felt I should have been showcased at the top of the card, and I felt I could be showcased at the top of the card on my own more than in a tag team. I still believe I belong in the main-event scene of ROH as much as anyone else.

– Your exit from ROH must have left a bitter taste in your mouth, what are your fondest memories?

It definitely did. I was bitter about it for quite a while but eventually you learn to let things go. I also took a look at what I did wrong and in the end, I can’t blame anyone for trying to do what is best for their company. People believe in different things. That’s just the way it is.

As far as good memories, I have too many to name. I have so many good moments to look back on, both in and out of the ring. Some of the guys in the locker room were nothing short of brothers to me, and I miss them deeply. If I had to pick some of my favorite memories though, I’d say any time I got to step in the ring with the Briscoes, regardless of who my partner was, is at the top of the list. Winning the tag team titles in Boston was an absolutely mind-blowing experience as well. And of course, getting to team and be mentored by a legend like Steve Corino for a whole year is something I will always cherish.

– Do you still have unfinished business with El Generico or is that chapter now finished?

It’s very much finished. Done. Buried. On my end anyway.

– Steve Corino told us that you don’t want to be in a company that El Generico is in, is this true?

It was, for a long time. People have to understand that we were joined at the hips for our entire careers, and not by choice. When I started wrestling and pictured myself in the future as a successful wrestler, I never saw a masked, lanky, pasty white motherfucker by my side, ever. But that’s the way it was for the better part of 8 years before I finally managed to put an end to it. So trying to get away from him was definitely a goal. I realized since then that I can still be in the same company as him, as long as we’re not put in the ring together.

– If ROH offered to bring you back tomorrow, what would you say?

Well, there’d be some things to discuss with certain people, but my attitude would probably be, ”Where do I sign?”

– Is there anything you miss about Ring of Honor?

The crowd, the locker room, the goosebumps I’d get when all the lights went out and the intro of the show would hit…and Todd Sinclair. I miss that dude maybe more than anything else about ROH, haha! Best referee ever and a great friend.

– Finally, do you have any words for the Ring of Honor fans, especially those who were chanting your name at ‘Manhattan Mayhem IV’?

I heard about it and I would lie if I said it didn’t mean the world to me because it did. To know that I’m not forgotten, even with all the new talent coming in, and guys like Christopher Daniels, Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas sticking around for the long haul, is a great feeling.

Next time maybe chant it a little louder though, haha. Make it undeniable, impossible to ignore. Then we’ll see what happens.

But thank you all and keep supporting indy wrestling.

We’d like to thank Kevin again for taking time to out of his busy schedule to answer our questions. You can keep up with Kevin by following him on Twitter @KillSteenKill. You can also find the latest news about Kevin at http://www.steenwrestling.com.

Steven Coney

"Stuff Pants" Steven is the co-owner and editor of ROHWorld.com. He founded the website in February 2011 with Harry. Last spotted trying to take down ROHCast with his SCUM faction.