Braun Strowman is the Monster Among Men but there was a time when he was learning the ropes of the pro wrestling business just like any other green newbie in NXT. Former NXT and WWE commentator Rich Brennan recently spoke to MLW Radio and discussed some of his early memories of Braun Strowman before the rest of the WWE Universe ever saw him in a black sheep mask as a member of the Wyatt Family.
“Doing NXT house shows when you bring up the lights, sometimes you’d have to fix something. You’d always have to go grab a ladder and a chair or stand on a table or whatever” Brennan said. “But when Strowman was there: ‘Strowman come here!’ And he’d come over. You’d just lower the thing down just a little bit and he’d just reach up and he could fix it. That’s one of the reasons I like him so much because like when he came in, he worked. He worked in the ring, he worked at the Performance Center.”
“But even the setup stuff, he was always the first guy to be offering a hand. Because when you go to those NXT house shows the wrestlers are the people setting up the ring with the help of the refs and people like myself […] But you’re setting up the show, you’re setting up the ring, you’re setting up the lights, you’re setting up the audio, you’re doing all that stuff and Braun — I can still see him wearing a tank top and he’d wear these neon yellowish green shorts, like running shorts that were like short. It was kinda like a rib that he’d wear them — the old running shorts.”
“And to see him walking around and you’d be like, ‘hey Strowman can you help me with this?’ And he’s got the North Carolina draw he’s just a big ‘ol country boy and just a really fun dude to be around and obviously I haven’t seen him in quite a while. I hope that the success hasn’t changed him because he’s just a lot of fun.”
MLW Radio host Court Bauer asked Rich Brennan if Strowman always knew he was going to be a big star and Brennan replied by discussing some of the early thoughts surrounding Braun when he first came to NXT.
“You know what? He was in a lot of ways, he really didn’t — I don’t know if he even worked an NXT house show. He may have. He was there to learn the business and really understand things. And I remember very early on the word being — I think Bill DeMott was still there, the word being that Braun was being fast tracked. But I think it was a matter of — he had some injuries he had to get taken care of. But I think the idea was ‘let’s keep him hidden’ and ‘let’s really develop him’ and again a big guy like [Braun] doesn’t have to work a ton. But a guy like that has to psychology-wise — psychology is more important for a big guy than what he does in the ring. So I think there was a lot of that learning that had to take place.”
“He never acted to me like he was a superstar in waiting. He was just a good dude to be around and worked his ass off and was always super helpful. But my gut tells me the idea was ‘we’re gonna do something with this guy.'”
If you use any portion of this article please credit MLW Radio with a H/T to Still Real To Us for the transcription