Interview: Former WWE Superstar Austin Aries

Austin Aries recently released the much talked about brand new memoir entitled “Food Fight: My Plant Powered Journey from the Bingo Halls to the Big Time” which details the self-confident, full-of-it Midwesterners less-than-legal post-college career choices, the life-changing moment when the ever-smug Wisconsin native began his professional wrestling training, and the adventures “The Greatest Man That Ever Lived” has encountered throughout his journey in the world of professional wrestling.

In “Food Fight: My Plant Powered Journey From the Bingo Halls to the Big Time”, the ever-cynical and sarcastic Aries narrates insightful details on his ongoing food education and the personal awakening that gradually led the wrestling superstar to stop eating any and all animal products.

“The Greatest Man That Ever Lived” Austin Aries has worked for WWE, Impact Wrestling, Ring of Honor and Dragon Gate in Japan, whereas the very talented and successful Austin Aries is a one-time Impact Wrestling World Heavyweight Champion, a 6x and longest-ever reigning Impact Wrestling X Division Champion in history, a 2x Ring of Honor World Champion, a one-time Ring of Honor Tag Team Champion (with Roderick Strong) as well as a one-time Impact Wrestling Tag Team Champion (with “The It Factor” Bobby Roode).

FOX Sports 96.9 FM/1340 AM’s Dean Perretta caught up with professional wrestling superstar Austin Aries to discuss “Food Fight: My Plant Powered Journey from the Bingo Halls to the Big Time”, his favorite matches in his successful career, his favorite cities to perform in as well as talking about the present and future.

Q: First and foremost Austin, “Food Fight: My Plant Powered Journey from the Bingo Halls to the Big Time” is title of your much talk about brand new memoir. How was the creative process when creating this very engaging and insightful book?

AA: Oh man, I had a complete and total blast writing “Food Fight” as it pretty much details a whole unique blend of so many interesting stories and health related advice and tips in a sort of non-preachy kinda way as a vegan, you know, as well as documenting my career journey first the first-ever time coming up from the bingo halls to the big time (WWE), of course a highlight of the big time being a part of this years WWE WrestleMania 33 against Neville, which was great as the fans there in Orlando, Florida were so into it despite the match being on the pre-show.

You see, here’s the thing, there used to be a real kinda stigma attached to being a vegan once upon a time for professional wrestlers particularly when I started, but that has sort of changed with time, do you know where I am coming from? Also, can we put the whole “The Greatest Man That Ever Lived” thing to rest once and for all? I believe we’ve now put that whole deal to rest. Thanks. Much appreciated. I am now “The Truth” Austin Aries. We don’t wanna lie to the good folks at home now, do we?

Q: “Food Fight: My Plant Powered Journey from the Bingo Halls to the Big Time” details your life as a vegan as well as incredible tales from the indies to the mainstream. What do you feel separates “Food Fight: My Plant Powered Journey from the Bingo Halls to the Big Time” from other books published by professional wrestlers?

AA: “Food Fight” is not all about pro wrestling, you know? For instance, it’s not your average book published by a professional wrestler either, that’s for sure. “Food Fight” is very inspirational and motivational, whilst providing a very relatable and truthful narrative from start to finish to create a real page tuner for the reader. See, Growing up as a kid in the Midwest, in Wisconsin, you know, its all about the dairy product, always has and always will. So, its pretty ironic being a vegan, but at the same time I’ve spoken with so many other guys (professional wrestlers) in the industry who have now become vegan, so it’s extremely refreshing and cool to know that I am not alone on all of this (vegan).

Q: Throughout the course of your highly decorated career professional wrestling career, which professional wrestlers have you enjoyed working with most and why?

AA: Daniel Bryan and Samoa Joe are right up there, for sure. That’s a no-brainer. I mean, I worked with Bryan and Joe in ROH and had an awesome time in the ring with them every single time we worked. I am a multi-time ROH World Champion and former ROH Tag Team Champion with Roderick Strong during my time there (ROH). But back to Bryan and Joe, we clicked bell-to-bell and had truly great matches which the fans in ROH absolutely loved and still to this day. Those are some pretty great and fond moments in my career, no question about it.

Q: You’ve performed all around the entire world. Of all of the cities which you’ve performed in, which city left the greatest impression on you in terms of atmosphere?

AA: It’s gotta be New York and Philadelphia, hands down. I performed at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York one time and also for some real raucous, intense fans in Philadelphia when working for Ring of Honor. The (Ring of Honor) fans are always super into it and have so much passion, you know? Funnily enough, I will be heading on over to Philadelphia for Tommy Dreamer’s big House of Hardcore show this coming week, so I for sure am really looking forward to it and stoked as always to be back performing in Philadephia.

Q: Last but most certainly not least Austin, you will be heading to the UK for the much-awaited IPW event to appear as a very special guest of honor. How excited are you to be a part of the forthcoming IPW super show?

AA: Absolutely! Super excited. Well, Billy Wood who is the Founder of IPW is an amazing guy doing a lot of really, really great things and the United Kingdom is always memorable experience when performing. Once again, I too am looking forward to experiencing IPW and the fans in the UK are also great to perform in front of.

Dean Perretta

Dean Perretta is a 2x SEA Award-winning creative, Broadcast Journalist, Reporter, Courtside Analyst for BBC televised London Lions and Executive Producer who currently contributes to FOX Sports Radio, FourFourTwo Magazine and Muscle & Fitness Magazine.