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Friday, February 22, 2008

Ricky Vega Interview On BTR

Courtesy of Adam Wilcox:

Between The Ropes
February 20th, 2008
Archived online at BetweenTheRopes.com

New International Wrestling Association Champion Ricky Vega (also known as Machete in TNA) joined Between the Ropes in-studio on February 20th to discuss working for TNA, wrestling in the IWA, and more.

Vega spoke about his time in Total Nonstop Action. “TNA was a really good stepping stone for me, because I was able to get connected with IWA in Puerto Rico. I don’t know what’s going on there (TNA) now, but I’m certainly fortunate for the opportunity to have been there. I got my name out there a little bit there.”

From there, Vega discussed his current employers, the Internation Wrestling Association. “I started with the IWA, went down there in August of last year. They have a great talent pool - a lot of internation talent, maybe some local people don’t know the names, but guys like Glamour boy Shane, who is a really big star in the Caribbean … he actually was tag team partners with Val Venis - they came up together. And Venis eventually got the deal with the Fed. They were The Glamour Boys out there. That’s actually how I got hooked up with IWA; I actually teamed up with Shane, we teamed up at an NWA show in Las Vegas. NWA Pro has actually teamed up with IWA, so I’m actually working for both promotions and actually will be defending the IWA World Title in Vegas March 8th. So that will be pretty cool, I’m looking forward to that.”

Although professional wrestling has experienced a cold spell in North America since 2001, Ricky admits that WWE has affected business in Puerto Rico for the home promotions. “For anyone who follows wrestling in Puerto Rico, it has been on a downslide the last couple of years … WWE, they’ve made a lot of tours out there, so now the people sort of identify more with John Cena, identify more with these guys.”

Vega detailed the interpromotional war between the IWA and Carlos Colon’s World Wrestling Council, and firmly believes his company offers the better product. “The last five years, the IWA has really taken over wrestling in Puerto Rico. And just the last year is really when they took a big hit. And that was because - for those who know Victor Quinones, he was the owner of the IWA and he passed away. So with him passing away, IWA shut down operations for about a good four or five months, which allowed the WWC - which is Carlos Colon’s company - to gather up some of that talent that was left over and they started making a great run: They got ‘Moody’ Jack - who used to be one of the guys that worked with TNA for a while - and he was doing the booking there. And they really picked up steam, and they won outright last year. And now with everything that’s been going on, ‘Moody’s’ actually booking down in AAA now … he left WWC. So really the status of WWC … I’m not there, but you can see from the ratings, you can see from their roster, their pool of talent that they just simply cannot compete with what we got going on with the IWA.”

You can hear this interview in its entirety - including conversation on the overzealousness of many Puerto Rican wrestling fans, how Ricky Vega got his start in TNA, and more - at www.BetweentheRopes.com. Between the Ropes can be heard Wednesday nights online and archived at BetweentheRopes.com twenty-four hours a day.