Impact Wrestling has lately been running a special episode every Friday. Not only featuring some of the strongest wrestling on television, they’ve been focusing on aspects of professional wrestling that other promotions tend to ignore.
Two weeks ago, TNA featured a live tweeted episode of Impact where fans could live tweet the episode and they would show tweets from fans on the show during matches. Last week was a tag team edition of Impact and featured a tag team tournament. This week’s edition features a focus on the women of TNA- the Knockouts- with only one match not featuring the Knockouts in the main event, which sees TNA Heavyweight Champion Kurt Angle defending his title against Eric Young.
Current TNA Knockouts Champion Taryn Terrell took some time recently to talk about this week’s Impact broadcast.
FRR: This is a big week especially for the knockout’s division. We’ve got “TKO”- the Knockouts edition of Impact this Friday. As the current Knockout champion how big of a deal is this for you and how important is it because not many promotions would go and do something like this?
Taryn Terrell: Right, oh my god, it’s a really cool opportunity. I don’t know of any other TV wrestling that gives women the opportunity that TNA does. We have some really amazing women and it’s just an entire show dedicated to that. Honestly, how cool is that? If you’re a wrestling fan, if you’re a women’s wrestling fan, this is a not to be missed night! A night of Knockouts, it’s super incredible, I’m super stoked!
FRR: TNA, you guys have one of the best rosters as far as women wrestlers go, there’s yourself, Gail Kim, Awesome Kong, Madison, Angelina. The wrestling on this roster is so tight, so I think this is the best time to have the Knockouts edition of Impact because the roster is so good.
Taryn Terrell: I think that everybody is so good but then everybody challenges each other too. We have these opportunities to bring women’s wrestling to a new level and a level that hasn’t been seen before. And the second that one Knockout does it, the other Knockouts are there to continue giving everything that they have, so I think it makes for something really special, something really different. It gives wrestling fans in general something to tune in to and you never know what to expect with a Knockout. You know it’s going to be great but we’ll keep you on the edge of your seat.
FRR: Last week all of the knockouts were in the ring at the same time, there were a couple that weren’t in there at some point but you all had a chance to take the mic, say something about this upcoming week, how much preparation did that take for you to know exactly what you were going to say or did you just go on the fly when you got in there?
Taryn Terrell: It was really cool because we all have such different personalities, so it was an opportunity for everyone to really showcase who they were and say what they wanted to say. Normally, not that many girls get to stand in the ring and talk and I mean there were five of us, six of us with Christy.
I think that it’s definitely a lot of preparation and any time you’re speaking in front of an audience you want to make sure what you’re saying is heard, that what you’re saying means something, so that always takes a little while to figure out exactly what it is that you want to say and make sure it comes across in the exact way that you want it to.
FRR: This week you’ve got Kong, who’s probably one of the strongest Knockouts on the roster. How do you prep for somebody like Kong? She’s strong, she’s powerful, and you guys go back a little bit too.
Taryn Terrell: Yea, she is certainly powerful, certainly strong. I think for me my personality is that I’m a fighter in every aspect of my life. If I get knocked down I get right back up and just keep coming at you, coming at you and that’s the exact way I have to look at this with Kong. She’s definitely gotten me down and I haven’t really been able to get the best of her yet and this is my opportunity to show that I earned this title, I deserve this title, and I’m not going to let Kong take it away from me.
FRR: Right, and you have one of the longer reigns as Knockout champions, if not the longest. It’s been an interesting journey, can you tell me what the journey has been like since the beginning in TN to being the champion?
Taryn Terrell: It’s been a crazy ride. It’s funny actually, my journey started a year before I even debuted on TV and I got a call saying that they were interested so for an entire year I remember just picking up the phone and talking to Bruce Pritchard at the time and just being like “Okay, when is this going to happen?” and they thought they had a place for me but then they didn’t and then finally a year later I debuted as a referee, and I have to say that’s probably one of the more difficult things I’ve been faced with in wresting.
It sounds crazy but after I did it I was like “wow, I have so much more respect for the refs.” It’s not easy, it’s not an easy job. You train for something, you train to be a wrestler. I didn’t train to be a referee, so I was like “Oh my gosh!” All of a sudden I’m thrown in to this position where I’m like “woah, I don’t know what I’m doing” so it was definitely funny, it was definitely an adjustment, but the entire time all I wanted to do was wrestle.
Even though I was super grateful and thankful for the opportunity to be on TV I wanted to wrestle. I remember talking to the office and saying “I’m gonna go out to OVW, it’s been a little bit since I have wrestled so I want to knock the dust off so I got in OVW for a few weeks I got in the ring, rolled around, and got comfortable again.
So it led to the story with Gail and I and then that was unbelievable, obviously. That was an incredible experience that I could’ve never imagined with wrestling, so that was really cool and then I had a little less than a year off for my baby then I’ve come back and now I’m champion. It’s kind of a roller coaster, but it’s been the absolute most amazing ride ever.
FRR: When that moment finally came when you held that knockout title over your head for that first time what did that mean to you after everything you’ve done, coming in as a referee, going back down to OVW and finally holding that title?
Taryn Terrell: It’s everything. If you’re in wrestling that’s your goal, you want to be champion. You fight tooth and nail every day, you train every day to get there and to be a champion. To hold that belt means that the company believes in you, the fans believe in you, it just means so much. So it’s years and years of hard work. For me, I didn’t just come in and get the title, I earned it. And I’m glad I did. I’m glad I worked for years and I’d never been a champion ever. So for me it was everything. I just remember holding it and being like “This is not real. This is insane” I’ve always wanted to be champion but I never knew it was going to happen and the fact that it did and the fact that I’ve held it for this long is just a dream come true.
FRR: One thing that I think is really cool about TNA and I think this works to your advantage- like you’ve said you’ve had a baby, you’re a mom now, it’s really in one location for an extended period of time, you’re not traveling 300 days a year. How has that helped you now that you’re a parent?
Taryn Terrell: It’s huge. It would be very difficult and I believe near impossible to be a mother and be on the road 300 days a year. There’s no way. But this schedule really allows me the time to spend so much time with my daughter. I think about it and in fact if I had a normal 9-5 job I would spend less time with my daughter, so TNA really just gave me such an amazing opportunity to be able to be a mom and still do what I love and create matches and the potential there is absolutely unreal. It’s crazy because there are so many times that you hit roadblocks and you go a different direction, and I’ve been able to continue with my dream, ant not only did I continue being a wrestler, I got to be champion, I’m still champion and it’s so cool. I can’t think TNA enough for giving me that opportunity.
FRR: Finally, this Friday, Awesome Kong, defending the title. I want to give you one chance to tell fans why to tune in and what it’s going to be like to get vindication and beat Kong.
Taryn Terrell: Kong and I have had some history and I have fought and fought and fought and I have given it everything that I have and I’m just going to have to continue to give more and I don’t know yet where I’m going to pull that. I know that I have to. I know that I have to beat her, I know that I have to pull from somewhere, so I’m just going to use the motivation of her throwing me through a table, beating me, throwing me against stairs and everything that she’s done to me, I’m going to use all that. I’m going to channel it into beating her and keeping my title the way that it should. I don’t want to win the way Gail and Kong and I did in the three way. I didn’t to take the title. I don’t want to have a title like that. I want to beat her.