How staying in ECW in it’s last few years helped develop RVD into what he is today: … WWE didn’t want RVD to get over when I was there. They tried so much to… to… not get me… to…to… keep me from that. They didn’t understand why the fans liked me because I don’t fit the cookie cutter formula because I am a non-conformist. I’m so confusing to wrestling promoters, and I’m used to that, but because I stayed in ECW and learned how to express myself the way, ah, that I could connect with my fans, it made my strong Rob Van Dam character uncompromising… and I owe that to ECW. If I would have left and went to WCW way back then, they were gonna make me… they were gonna put a mask on me and make me one of those Glacier characters… “
On whether age has affected his physical condition and does he have to stop doing some moves because of it: “Not even in the slightest… not even a little bit. … as a matter of fact, every once in a while, I’ll pull out a move because I haven’t done it in awhile. I was wrestling Jeff Hardy, I think this was, like, two months ago, I went up to the top rope and I went, ‘you know what, I don’t think I’ve done a 450 splash in like 10 years’. Boom… I just bust it out.
“…I haven’t cut anything out, and if it was up to me, ah, I would change that X-Division title into hardcore rules and I would have 20 minute matches every night, bouncing off the guardrail, bring in a chair… and hell yeah, that’s what I got to show still!”
On whether being “420 friendly” has kept him from being “the man” everywhere he has been: “I would think, ah, with TNA, probably not so, because they, they usually like to make those references, ah, whenever they can. and I think they appreciate the extra, ah, the extra cool attention that it gets them. Obviously, my… high profile bust, when I got pulled over in Ohio with possession of 18 grams, uh, and..and… resulted in suspension and loss of the titles… I mean, there is no way in denying that that definitely knocked me off from the track that I was on. Ah, at the same time, I don’t mind going down in history for that or drawing attention to, ah, a cause that I believe is worthy…”
Van Dam also talks about the political climate in WWE vs. TNA, his current relationship with Paul Heyman, and more. The audio interviewis available at www.facebook.com/extremeprowrestlingradio