How Seth ‘Freakin’ Rollins’ big risk paid off: ‘Sometimes you just gotta dive in and see what happens’
A Seth Rollins loss can end an absence, but when you’re a superstar of a certain quality you can push boundaries. Rollins has spent the last several years bouncing in and out of the main event scene he once dominated. A wonderful new flame was the change necessary to stop stagnation.
Reinvention is the name of the game in sports recreation. Some of the most enduring forces in the industry have done so through evolution. “Hollywood” Hulk Hogan hit professional wrestling like an earthquake. The “Hollywood” version of The Rock is still a favorite of the reformed fan. Chris Jericho has changed his character more times in the last two decades than US presidents in the last two centuries. “Remodel. Rebuild. Reclaim.” That was the basis for Rollins’ rebalancing from cocky, black-clad assassin to sultry Met Gala model.
“I think I learned a lot about how to take chances and have a little more confidence in myself,” Rollins told CBS Sports while promoting WWE’s new product collaboration with C4 Ultimate Energy, the official sponsor for WWE SummerSlam. “I think it was one of those things where I stayed in my comfort zone for a while as long as I was thought i knew better. I thought I knew what I was. I was comfortable with my identity. And it was hard to look in the mirror and go, ‘Okay, this is working but what can we do to go to the next level?’
“It’s a difficult choice to reform your entire show. You think it won’t work. You think it won’t work, people won’t like it or they won’t you can do it. All these things. Sometimes you just have to dive in and see what happens and be confident in your ability to make anything work. You will find a way to make the best of it. do it.”
Check out the full interview with Seth Rollins below.
The unusual version of Rollins currently on display in WWE is a repeat of other flashy gimmicks used by Gorgeous George, Ric Flair, Rick Martel and Shawn Michaels. It is more personification of the cartoon Joker from “Batman: The Animated Series” than the complex psychological variants represented by Heath Ledge and Joaquin Phoneix. A little much? Maybe. But it has been a hit with fans who sing along to Rollins’ theme song every week.
Rollins’ swanky threads took their “baby steps” during the global pandemic. WWE built an audience-free arena called the ThunderDome in response to government restrictions. The lack of crowd required a different approach and allowed the superstition to push the creative envelope, but it’s hard to measure the ceiling of a gimmick without the ear of the crowd.
“When I really started to notice what I was doing it hit when I was competing with Edge because people really started to pay attention to the colored clothes,” Rollins said. . “They started making fun of them. They started having fun with them. I put on a silver, shiny aluminum suit on TV one time and got to sing ‘baked potato’. If you can get a baked potato to sing . based on the clothes you’re wearing, I think you’re going to wear something next week and it caught on fire.”
This month, WWE and C4 expanded their multi-year partnership with co-branded pre-workout powders and energy drinks. Available exclusively at GNC, the collaboration features unique product design and five special edition flavors, including Ruthless Rasperry and Berry Powerbomb energy drinks along with Pomegranate PileDriver, Bare Knuckle Blood Orange and powder Nectarine Guava Knockout.
There was no doubting Rollins’ quality as an in-ring performer. He was trusted over the past few years to welcome Cody Rhodes into the main event scene, give Roman Reigns a suitable challenge, United States champion Austin Theory and even lead Logan Paul through a match WrestleMania. The former WWE champion was relegated to bridegroom status, but his reputation as a workhorse and fan-favorite character was finally rewarded with gold.
Triple H revealed the new world heavyweight championship exclusively to Raw in response to Roman Reigns’ inactivity as the undisputed WWE Universal Champion on SmackDown. The introduction immediately framed the world heavyweight title as a secondary prize in the eyes of some observers. For Rollins – an athlete driven by a desire for more – that doubt was exactly the motivation he needed as he prepares for a second defense against Finn Balor at SummerSlam on Saturday.
“Oh, there’s always a chip on my shoulder. It never goes away. I’m never just cruising. I’m never okay with being okay,” Rollins said. “Unless it’s to win the world championship or set up a world championship. Now I have people calling my world champion the world’s top champion. So -now I’m out here trying to prove everyone wrong about that. I’m not going to be naive and think we don’t have a lot of work to do. It’s hard work. is to establish a new title. It’s hard work. Someone has to do it. And I’m very honored to be responsible for that person.”
Rollins drives motivation in the same way as sports legend Michael Jordan. By finding something, anything that ticks it off.
“Any time we go to any arena in the country and anybody gets credit for filling a house or being on top or ranking or anything like that, I always feel like I frustrated by it,” Rollins said. “Not in a way that I’m jealous. I am delighted. Business is huge. We are the hottest ticket in town wherever we go. We are sold out left and right. Houses are up. Levels are up. It’s crazy to be a part of WWE right now.
“But I always, always want to be a guy. Always want to be the marquee. Whatever it is. That’s where I want to be. And if I feel like I’m not there I’m gonna be busy I’m like Michael Jordan, man I’m gonna find something Even if there’s nothing Even if everything cooking and traveling and perfect, I’m going out and I’m going to find something to piss me off. I’m going to find something to sink my teeth into. I’m going to make an enemy out of somebody so I can get something to work because that’s just how I work. That’s how I flow. you know how to you it in any other way.”