Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Interview: Tommaso Ciampa

The Sicilian Psychopath. Also known as Tommaso Ciampa, is a up and coming, nay, an established indy wrestling superstar for Ring of Honor wrestling. I first noticed him when Ring of Honor was still on HDNet and his brutal move-set and distinct look, think Stone Cold Steve Austin mixed with Woody Harrelson in Natural Born Killers, instantly made me think that he was destined for greatness in the wrestling business. And that was before I even heard him cut a promo. You see, he is part of the stable "The Embassy", where Prince Nana and Barrister R.D. Evans do most of the talking. It wasn't until earlier this year that Tommaso began to release promos on Youtube that it became clear that not only could Ciampa wrestle, but he was also getting comfortable cutting promos. He is becoming next level great. Here's an example of one of his latest promo.

Ciampa, being the cool cat that he is, accepted an interview request on Twitter. The biggest interview for the site yet. I am extremely happy to bring you an interview with someone who I really do think will be one of the biggest stars in the history of the business. Enjoy.

Popping The Crowd: When did you realize that you wanted to be a professional wrestler? 

Tommaso Ciampa: When I watched Papa Shango vs The Hitman on Saturday Night's Main Event- I was a big Hart mark and Shango was one scary dude. I remember being in tears, in fear, that he would hurt Hitman.

PTC: Were your parents supportive about the idea? 

TC: I think they kinda just viewed it as something I would grow out of at first, but both were fans at some point in their lives,my dad still is, so overall they were always really cool about it.

PTC: What did your friends think? 

TC: Who knows? I think once I got into wrestling my friend circle changed. It really consumes you. Every now and again I see people from my past and they seem to just think my life is odd.

PTC: What was wrestling school, or training, like? 

TC: Hard as shit!

PTC: Were veterans in the business quick to take you under their wing or was there a "I'm gonna protect my spot" mentality? Who were some of the guys who really helped? Also, who were the guys who blew you off? 

TC: I always kind of hoped a true veteran would take me under his wing, but I guess in some ways it's a good thing I had to figure things out on my own. Guys who helped me early on were Handsome Johnny and Arch Kincaid from Chaotic Wrestling. Can't really say anyone "blew me off".

PTC: Shortly after you debuted you were making appearances with the WWE, did you expect to be in the WWE so soon? 

TC: Not at all. I just got real lucky I guess. Right time right place.

PTC: What was OVW like? 

TC: Really really shitty. I was a small fish swimming with sharks.

PTC: You were somewhat involved in a program with the Undertaker during the controversial Muhmmad Hassan angle, what was it like working with the Undertaker?

TC: Amazing. In a short 4 minute segment where we didn't even wrestle a match I learned a ton. No doubt he is the best I've ever stepped in the ring with.

PTC: When you were released from the WWE were you thinking it was the end of your career or did it make you want to work even harder to prove to them that they made a mistake? 

TC: Definitely never thought it was the end of my career. I think I booked a couple indy shows on the drive home after finding out I was cut. I don't think they made a mistake firing me. They made a mistake hiring me. Ha! I was way too young and new to the business to be playing with the pros. Now is a different story.

PTC: After working in the WWE system and appearing on some of the programs how was the transition back to the indy scene? 

TC: The hardest thing I've ever had to go through. You are looked at differently when you return - by the fans, but even moreso by the boys and promoters. I think if I had made it onto TV it would have been different.

PTC: Eventually you made your way to Ring of Honor, what sets ROH apart from other promotions? ROH is the most technically sound roster from top to bottom in all of pro wrestling. Every single guy is an athlete and more importantly every guy has passion.

PTC: I have seen a drastic improvement in you ability to cut promos, is that something you have been working on intentionally? 

TC: I love promos - possibly more than I love wrestling. I appreciate a guy that can talk people into a building just as much as a guy who can wrestle them in. I always work on every aspect of my craft. I think recently I have just decided to let my guard down. I am talking freely and from the heart for the first time in my career - just being myself. And I think people can sense that.

PTC: You're currently feuding with Jay Lethal in Ring of Honor, and recently challenged Sami Callahan, who else would you like to challenge? 

TC: Always wanted a match with Chris Hero. Would love to face Eddie Edwards as well. And I consider Steen and Generico two of the best alive so either of them.

PTC: Who has been your favorite people to wrestle? 

TC: Adam Cole always seems to bring a lot out of me. Jason Blade has been one of my toughest challenges as well all throughout New England. And Handsome Johnny and I have put on one the most competitive matches I've ever had.

PTC: Wrestling is in a weird place right now. Some people say the business is weak. I say it is on the cusp of flourishing like it did in the mid-90's and early 00's. Where do you see it, and what would you do to improve it? 

TC: I love it! FCW is better than ever before. WWE has tons of stars. TNA's roster is stacked with talent. ROH is top notch and creating new stars as we speak. And the independent scene is filled with guys looking to make names for themselves. I think it would improve if ROH could get a cable television deal or TNA could somehow recreate the ratings wars.

PTC: What is weirdest thing to happen to you in ring?

TC: I once had a post match pie eating contest at a local indy show on Thanksgiving Eve. I also tar and feathered a dude after a Thanksgiving Eve match.Who are the biggest influences you have had in wrestling? None really. When I'm searching for motivation I typically look to my family moreso than any wrestlers or sports heroes. 

PTC: You have a very distinct look, are you as crazy as you look? 

TC: Pretty nuts. At least that's what I'm told by my colleagues.

PTC: Where do you see yourself in three years? 

TC: Hopefully defeating Undertaker at Wrestlemania.

PTC: What advice would you give to anyone who wants to become a wrestler? 

TC: Work your ass off, be respectful, and believe in yourself because no one else will. 

Word association:Vince McMahon - Mastermind
Ring of Honor - Creating stars
Jay Lethal - Machismo
Davey Richards - Japanese American
Kevin Steen - Zoo Enthusiast
Triple H - Hunter Hearst Helmsley
TNA - Talented roster

*Tommaso Ciampa - Sicilian Psychopath

I added the * one myself. 

Please follow Ciampa - @projectciampa -  And subscribe to his youtube page -

P.S. from Ciampa: And if your readers want to see @projectciampa face @samicallihan then they need to let their local indies know!!!

I would like to thank Ciampa for taking time out of his schedule for this interview and look forward to him dominating in the ring.

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