An Interview With Martin Stone

martin Stone

Credit to David J Wilson for the image.

When Martin Stone made his return to ICW and Fear and Loathing, ICW got to see the real Martin Stone. The guy who took on Jack Jester a few months earlier was still a hard bastard. He gave Jester a fight, but the real Martin Stone is a man on a mission. The real Martin Stone came back to British Wrestling to prove his doubters wrong. After 2 years in WWE Developmental without one decent opportunity to shine, Martin Stone is hungry. If any promotion out there has a bit of a name, he’s coming to land a right hook on its jaw. A Martin Stone/Sha Samuels alliance in ICW is frankly a terrifying prospect, but its a breath of fresh air for ICW. Proper hard bastards who do fuck all to endear themselves to the natives. Sha and Stone aren’t there to make friends, they exist in ICW purely to take the fucker over.

Martin Stone has more to talk about than just ICW though. I fired a few inane questions at him about wrestling and all that bollocks, and he answered them brilliantly. So I’ll shut the fuck up and let you read what the big man had to say eh…

1. You were in WWE Developmental for two years, and you weren’t really afforded many opportunities to shine. Do you feel that WWE got to see enough of what you can do? 

Getting signed by WWE should be the aim of any independent workers. The WWE is the largest and most successful company going along with NJPW. It was an amazing time in my life when i had my try out and got called into the office and told we want to offer you a deal…

I agree with not being able to showcase my skill to the best of my ability, it’s hard to do that in a 2 minute squash against Bo Dallas Who’s fault is that? I have no idea. I always gave my best in the classes during the day and always delivered in promo class, but for some reason i could never get away from being the bloke that was always used in the enhancement role of other people. Maybe they didn’t see anything in me, i have no idea, but all i can say about that is yes, it was a very frustrating time as i began to question if i was any good or not, and after ten years in the job, i had never doubted myself or my ability up to that point. The hardest part about the whole situation for me is i was trained by William Regal, he put his stamp on me as a ‘Regal guy” and i didn’t deliver, and i feel in some way i let him down.
That being said it was an amazing two years, I got to meet some great friends, some complete cunts who have no business lacing up a pair of boots, so-called friends from the days before that let money turn them into backstabbing pricks, I got to train under Norman Smiley and joey Mercury both of whom taught me so much and apply their knowledge of wrestling to my work.
I don’t feel that the WWE really got to see the real Martin Stone. They got the watered down version of Danny Burch. One of my aims now is to make a big enough noise that they have to take note!

2. You made your return to ICW at Fear and Loathing, to aid Sha Samuels in victory over Grado. How much did you enjoy being back and what does the future hold for you in ICW?
The day i got released, i went to the petrol station with another lad who had been released, we got a shit ton of beer, went and saw an old mate and got absolutely fucked! In that haze of drinking and going out i was recieving a ton of messages from friends in developmental and friends in Britain and i can’t remember who, it was a Scotsman, said to check out the ICW documentary from the bbc on youtube. I did and thought fuck me this place is the bollocks! The wrestling was gritty, the crowds were amazing, the venue was packed to the rafters, and above all else every fucking worker has a character and that is the missing piece of the puzzle if England wants to go forward and get wrestling back in the public eye and on national TV.

So for me, getting to run out on Grado, lamp him with a chair to no avail then drop him on his head with my finish and show the Scottish fans what they’ve missed out on while i was gone for two years and teaming with a man who i have known for ten years is FUCKING AMAZING!!! I’ve loved every minute so far and can’t thank Mark Dallas enough for the opportunity. All I can say is sit tight…coz someone’s gonna get their fucking head kicked in!!!

3. Is there anyone in particular you feel you’d match up well with in ICW? Someone you cant wait to wrestle?

Everyone busts their arse. As a performer i can feel that ICW is going to be special, just something about the atmosphere, can’t put my finger on it, but it’s magic. My favourite guy to watch thus far is Big Damo. He is the best big man I have seen in a long time. He’s agile as fuck, has a great look and just commands the ring. I would love nothing more than to lock horns with that big bastard in an ICW ring. BT Gunn always delivers as does Kid Fite and Liam Thompson. Kay lee Ray has to be the toughest bird I’ve ever met. She takes a beating from the boys but has no problem smashing the fuck out of them back. Joe Hendry is entertaining as fuck and the Coffey brothers are dynamite. Noam Dar…fuck wow. First time i saw him wrestle all i saw was a little skinny kid that loved Nigel Mcguiness. Now I see a man who has listened to every bloke he’s worked and used their knowledge to become one of Britain’s best talents

Grado is one of the most entertaining fuckers I’ve ever met. He gets wrestling! I can’t wait to get in the ring with him.
However, I would love nothing more than to get in the ring with the current ICW champion Drew Galloway. We’ve worked in the past but now I want to work him so we can show every fucker in the wrestling world and on the planet just how far we’ve both come.

4. You’ve told me before that you started out as a boxer. How did you make the transition from boxing to pro wrestling?
The transition was easy to a certain extent, all i had to do was not knock people out haha. Those years boxing have kept me in good stead. That’s the reason that bar none, I have the best punch on the British scene! It’s also handy when some fucker tries to take advantage of ya in the ring.

5. TNA are currently running British Bootcamp 2. A show which you appeared on, and arguably cut the best promo in the early stages.  How was that experience for you, and did you feel like they made the wrong choice not putting you in the Final 6?

I wasn’t too sure about the whole Bootcamp thing at first, but thought fuck it, regardless of the outcome, it’s a payday with some decent exposure and a platform to push the brand of Martin Stone out there. That being said I would love the opportunity to work for TNA as they do have some guys that i know i would would tear it up with in the ring, and i would love to work Bobby Rode. He’s the best they have and that ‘IT Factor’ is no gimmick

The London auditions came across by far the best, and what i’m going to say now may offend a few people but I really don’t care. If your honing craft in the ring, training your arse off in the gym, watching your diet, getting a tan and wanting to work for a TV orientated wrestling company, WHY THE FUCK ARE YOU NOT STANDING IN FRONT OF A MIRROR WORKING ON PROMO’S, WORKING ON FACIAL EXPRESSIONS AND THE TIMING AND DELIVERY OF A PROMO???.

That for me was the most embarrassing part to watch, people were fucking cringing and that is the chink in the armour that will never get british wrestling on TV. I know hands down I had the best promo of the entire show and knowing I can definitely work I was very pissed that i didn’t make it to the final 6, especially as I wasn’t told why? But hey ho ce la vie and all that bollocks.

It was however a great experience as for that one night an all british card got national exposure and we showed the world that the brits are some of the best talent around!

6. Wrestling has gone through a bit of a boom period in the U.K since you signed with WWE, and you’ve come back to see British Wrestling arguably stronger than ever. How much have things improved in the 2 years you’ve been in the U.S?

The British scene is amazing to come back to. I was so scared for my first show as i was standing behind the curtain waiting for my music to hit and I did have the thought, Fuck…what if no one wants to see Martin Stone anymore? I have my haters and detractors but I do like to hear them piss whinge and moan as they keep me on my feet. They keep me in the mind set of You think i’m washed up and don’t deserve the opportunities i’m getting and only getting those because i’ve been in WWE??? Fuck you you simple minded cunts!. Before I got signed I worked my arse off all over europe and a part of me really hopes that i had a minute part in helping the british scene become what it has, i may be too bold to say that, but let a man have hope lol

ICW have scorched the Scottish Scene on fire! The first thing I’ve noticed about all the shows is that the production values have gone up. The days of promoters having nothing but a stage curtain to walk out from and a shit PA system are well and truly over as everyone has a decent set up that is as good, if not better than the NXT live events.

The biggest thing I see is that everyone is having fun working shows and in this job that is the most important thing.

7. What are your aspirations for the future? Would you like another chance to show the big companies in America what they missed out

I have to be realistic for my future. My next point of call is Japan. I would love nothing more than to start working for a company over there. I’ve always admired the wrestlers work capabilities and they have some of the most exciting matches. One needs to Look no further than Fergal ‘Finn Balor’ Devitt and Zack Sabre Jnr to see how exciting it is over there.

I always set myself a goal. I said to myself that when WWE was an option for me that i would give it till I was 30 to get signed and if not i was done. I got signed at 28. I’m giving myself three years to crack japan, as i have to face facts that i’m getting old. If i haven’t by that time then i guess this broken down piece of meat will be hanging his boots up.
Would i go back to WWE?…If i was given a fair shot so that the WWE can market a london lad of course i would. As i said earlier, it’s the biggest entertainment/wrestling promotion in the world.
I have met an amazing girl who lives in Florida and I can’t subject her to the ups and downs of the wrestling world for the next ten years….
8. Who has your favourite opponent been to date?

My favourite opponent to date is a tough one. There are so many. There is however one person who sticks out in my mind as the person who was pivotal in helping mould me into the performer i am today and got me working the style that got me noticed by WWE and that is Kid Kash. The match was blur as it was the first real experience i had of calling nothing but the finish and going with the crowd. He caused an absolute riot and got genuine heel heat which will always be the bench mark for heat in my eyes. A great bloke and so willing to pass on his experience. I was so pleased with the finished product when I watched the match back.

I have great chemistry with Sha Samuels in the ring when I’m working blue eye and the matches are always top-notch. I loved working Marty Scrull at Rev-pro and had one of, if not my best match to date, i would’ve loved to work Fergal to see if I could hang with him, I had the chance to work Big Damo for Rev-pro this past weekend and that is up there as one of my best and favourites, but realistically for me i want the chance to work people who actually want to listen and learn. I know when i was coming up through the ranks i was like a sponge working guys with experience chewing there ears off asking questions after the match. So far Big Damo has been the bloke to ask the most questions. If i’m on the bill with ya and you want an honest critique please come ask me.
9. Who would you say is your biggest influence in wrestling?
I have a few influences. I want to say right now right off the bat that the actions of the first person mentioned arein no way condoned by myself and I’m talking about his inring work. I remember clearly watching Monday Night Raw wheni was 21, I remember it like yesterday. The Radicals were in the process of splitting and the bloke that gave me the passion and the bug for wrestling was Chris Benoit. He was working Eddie and they had an absolutebelter of a match, that many times while Benoit was doing his thing I questioned if wrestling was fake? Never has a performer made wrestling look so real and intense as he did. I got to do what many never do getting into this job and that is train and wrestle their hero’s. In 2004i was training at the blue bloods wrestling academy in Atlanta Georgia under William Regal and Dave Taylor and Benoit turned up. He pulled me out the ring, introduced himself and then proceeded to circle and work on my lock up for 45 minutes. I then got in the ring and started training and working with him for over 3 hours it was a truly amazing experience. He left that day and said to me kid, there’s gonna be times when the business will get you down, but no matter what don’t quit. Youre gonna be great one day. The news of the horrific tragedy was very, very upsetting. It’s funny how you put your hero’s on a pedestal and they often always end up making you question that. It took me two years to watch a Benoit match again as I couldn’tbare the thought of looking at unfortunately, the monster within that the whole world got to see.
My next biggest influence is Steve Austin. I was drawn into the whole gimmick of the regular man hating his boss and deciding to say bollocks and kick fuck out of him. Charisma off the charts and hell of a worker to boot and the biggest star to ever have been in wrestling.
Fit Finlay. Again not many workers can make wrestling look legit but Fit, in my opinion, is one of the best there has ever been and can still go to this day. I had the opportunity of working him in a 30 minute match 2 months before I left for developmental and all we had was the fact that fit was going over with a tombstone. Fucking blinding experience!William Regal has been a huge influence and a good friend. I always enjoyed watching him being a villain and everyone throws around the term “British wrestling ambassador’ and none come close to how much of an ambassador he is for british wrestling…none. He was always helping me in developmental, always my biggest supporter in production meetings and i will always be in his debt when at my tryout in 2010 he went into the office and told a who’s who in WWE to come watch me in the ring. He said to me the rest is up to you mate. I will never forget that because at the end of the day, who am i to deserve that? He saw something in me that WWE missed. A great friend a great man and a fantastic all around performer.
10. Your character is a bit of a London hardman, who takes no prisoners. How close is that character to how you are in real life? You strike me as a guy who can definitely handle himself (that’s me saying im scared of ye btw)
Funny thing with me is also maybe what potentially kept me from breaking out in WWE. WHAT YOU SEE IS WHAT YOU GET and I think personally that is why i have had a lot of success on the british scene. If someone is playing a character and it’s shite, you can see it, when something is organic you can’t help but feel it. I have no problem telling people to fuck off and i will never kiss arse to get ahead, so yeah mate the in ring character is me. People say oh you turn the volume up, fuck that I’m either nice as pie,someone you want to go and have a beer and a laugh with or if provoked and it’s needed, I would happily stamp someones teeth down their throat.
11. Last but not least, anything you want to tell us about here, feel free. Upcoming shows, social media stuff, the Martin Stone range of hologrammed sport socks you have coming out etc. Anything you like.
I can’t begin to thank the fans of the British scene for supporting this kid from londons journey when he first set foot in a ring in front of a crowd 10 years ago. I would like to Thank Andy Quildon and Dan Edler for providing me the platform and the first people to really take a chance with me as an unknown and put me in the match with Samoa Joe that made me and made people start to take notice.I would like to seriously thank Mark Dallas for the start of something special with ICW and the opportunity of being apart of it. I want to thank my family for putting up with the missed birthdays and anniversaries and family get togethers that I’ve missed over the years. I want to thank the haters and detractors as i really enjoy sticking it up their arses doing what i do, but most importantly i want to thank my mum. It was her that said to me, why don’t you give a wrestling a go son, i reckon you’d be good at that. She planted the seed to which has now spread and has been a passion of mine for the last ten years.I would like to thank from the bottom Mr William Regal for everything he has done for me and my career. Help a man out and follow me on twitter @TheFnGuvnor and my facebook page.

Big thank you to Martin Stone for some fucking brilliant answers. If you want to see him chuck Grado about, that happens at ICW Fear and Loathian 2 on Sunday in Edinburgh.

Otherwise, he’s booked all over the place down south, so get to those shows. If you want to watch his ICW return, thats on the ICW On Demand service too. Get in amongst that.

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