Credit: Richard Trionfo
This week on Between the Ropes, Andrew ‘Test’ Martin joined Fritz, Dickerman, and Vito DeNucci to discuss his recovery from his neck injury, his time in the WWE including his release, what is in his future, and many other issues.
He said that he has not been doing too much because you cannot do too much after having the neck surgery. After four months, he has been traveling and enjoying some time off. He said that the injury was a result of the wear and tear of working five or six nights a week for six years. He said that he took a bad bump in Baltimore. He was given an MRI and he shown a cracked vertebrae. He was told that he needed to take time off. He said that he waited for eight weeks because he did not want to have the surgery. However, the first bump that he took gave him a charge down his arm. He was told that it was a matter of time. He had two disks removed from his neck.
He said that he had to wait three or four months before he could take off the collar. It was driving him crazy. Once he got the collar off, he started working out five or six months. Then he has been working out for two to three months. He said that he is in the best condition of his life, but it is tough to get back.
Test said that he was with the company for seven years and he broke his neck in the ring for the WWE. He thought that the WWE should have stood by him, but he did get to live his dream. He was a big fan growing up. He got to make a lot of money and traveled the world. He is not going to be bitter about things.
Test said that things are ‘business decisions’. He said that the business has changed because when he started in 1998, the arenas were sold out. Now the crowds have decreased. He thought there was a better way to handle things. Test said that while he might have issues with the way he was released, the WWE has good lawyers and he does not have the money to fight a billionaire.
Test said that he was supposed to join DX when he started. He was supposed to do a run in at the PPV in Vancouver on Big Bossman, but he was told that he did not need to do the run in. He understands why he was kept out of DX. However, he was placed with Vince McMahon. Test talked about how his first match was a tag match with the Rock.
He talked about how there were ideas to turn him heel during the Stephanie angle, but Vince Russo and Ed Ferrara left for WCW in the middle. He said that Vince and Ed were hands on, and that was not happening towards the end of his time in the WWE.
Test was asked about how his mindset has changed. He said that he does not have to worry about high flying moves, but it is in the back of his mind. His neck feels better and he does not regret having the surgery. He mentioned that everyone who has had surgery with Dr. Youngblood, they have come back.
Test was asked about working with Albert and Trish Stratus. He said that it was one of his better moments because he was friends with Albert. Test said that he did not like Trish at first and he did not know if she would make it. However, she turned out to be one of the best female wrestlers in the WWE.
Test was asked about what he did to gain the wrestler’s respect. He said that it was an example of right time at the right place. He went to a show in Toronto at Skydome to talk to some of the wrestlers. He found out from someone with security where the wrestlers were going after the show. When he got there, he was let in by the security and was escorted into the VIP area because they thought he was a wrestler. He was introduced to Bret Hart by Carl DeMarco. He said that Bret talked to him for 15 minutes and he gave Test a phone number for the WWE and a wrestling school. He was told that he had potential so he was invited to train with Bret. He was told that there were no guarantees that he would get a job through the training. He said that Bret told him that he was learning well and would be successful. He owes everything that he has done in the business to Bret Hart. He mentioned that he was at Bret’s house during Survivor Series 1997.
Test was asked if he had issues with any of the wrestlers because of his training with Bret. He said that there was animosity between the workers when he came in and he understands it. He was asked about working with the McMahons. Test said that Shane is a friend of his. He had his favorite match with Shane McMahon. He said that he still keeps in touch with Pete Gas. He was asked if being teased by Mick Foley was better than the ‘Testicles’ gimmick. He was asked about the rumors that Mick wanted to bring Test in to Ring of Honor and he said that it was only discussions about whether he was interested, and nothing concrete.
Test was asked if he left on good terms with the WWE. He got a call from Johnny Ace about his release. He thought that Johnny felt bad when he was released. He was told that it was a financial decision and they would consider bringing him back. However, he said that this is probably what they tell everyone. Test wonders if his release might prevent people from getting surgery.
Test says that he has kept close with Christian, Val Venis, and Albert. He also keeps in touch with Kane and Undertaker. He said that there are a lot of good guys. Test was asked about Christian and how well he is doing. Test said that Christian is the most underused piece of talent in wrestling. There is no reason Christian shouldn’t be heavyweight champion of the world. He puts a lot of asses in seats. Everything he does is funny.” “Why, just because he’s not 6’7” and 300 pounds?” He said that Christian is finally getting to be who he is because that is the way he is outside the ring.
Test was asked about dealing with Triple H, and he joked about how he could have been in that position instead with Stephanie because of the storyline. Test said that he would not be a person he would call up and talk to, but he would talk to Hunter in a business context. Test was asked about the politics and he said that he did not like dealing with the politics
Test said that he is not going to rush things. He wants to be 100%. He is going to be working in Italy. He said that he was smart with his money so he is able to go overseas and wrestle in places like Italy and Australia.
Test mentioned his upcoming appearance at Wrestle Reunion II, August 26 to 28 in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.
Test was asked about his relationship with Stacy Keibler. He said that Stacy is one of the most wonderful people you would want to meet in your life. He said that he is still friends with her.
Between the Ropes airs every Wednesday from 10:00 p.m. until Midnight on 740 The Team in Orlando, Florida with Brian Fritz, Dickerman, and Vito DeNucci. Check out www.betweentheropes.com to listen to the live stream of the show every week. Archives of past interviews with Paul Heyman, Terry Funk, Rob Van Dam, Tully Blanchard, Mick Foley, Ric Flair, Matt Hardy, A.J. Styles, Jerry Lawler, Bobby Heenan, Steve Corino, Shane Douglas, Elix Skipper, Harley Race, Bubba Ray Dudley, and many more people in the world of professional wrestling can also be found on www.betweentheropes.com.