Show: Interactive Wrestling Radio
Guest: Tim Storm
Date: 10/11/17
Your Hosts: James Walsh

NWA World Heavyweight Champion Tim Storm is a time tested veteran of ring wars. But, after over 20 years in our industry, he is finally enjoying his greatest success as the champion of the NWA. The NWA, by the way, has recently been purchased by rockstar Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins. This change of administration in the NWA has brought the promotion more attention in the past few months than it has had in the past few years. And, we discuss the changes of ownership and direction of the brand in detail with the company's top guy, Tim Storm himself.


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On Billy Corgan purchasing the NWA:
"You know, I was a part of the prior administration. Now I'm a part of the new administration. I'm really excited about the new direction. I know that Mr. Corgan, I think it was a week ago or two weeks ago, came out with a 20 year plan. What I'm most impressed by Mr. Corgan and Dave Lagana is that they have a true respect for the history of the NWA. When I found out we had new ownership, that was my biggest concern. It was not necessarily direction and all those things. I'm a true believer in what the NWA stands for. Both of those guys, both of those men, truly believe in it and want to preserve that legacy. I'm on board!"


On the honor of being NWA Champion:
"I think I made this statement in a promo that is making the rounds right now. This truly is my mountain top. I grew up an NWA fan. I was very fortunate being in the area of the United States that I was that I got a lot of wrestling every weekend. But, the NWA was where it was at for me. I still look at that as the best time in wrestling history. I know there are a lot of great eras and a lot of the younger people would see other eras as the thing that drew them in. But, the NWA and the talent roster they had is what pulled me in. When I got into wrestling 20 years ago, I didn't necessarily say I want to be world champion like Ric Flair or like Harley Race or like the Funks or Brisco. It was just something that I had a passion about and that I wanted. Reaching that is beyond any kind of goal or dream that I set 20 something years ago. I made the statement that it truly is the most important thing that I've ever done in professional wrestling. It is my mountain top. It is the pinacle of wrestling for me."


On the respect of being the NWA Champion:
"Absolutely. Without a doubt! I can give you a couple of examples. One was earlier this year, I had a title defense in Japan. The gentleman who was promoting the show, I came out to the same music Harley Race used when he was over there. I guess they've used it for every NWA champion. He fully expected, against a local... A guy who ahd worked New Japan and NOAH and truly made a name for himself. They truly expected the fans to be behind him... It was strange. The music playing, I stepped through the curtain. I kind of expected to be boo'd. I stepped through the curtain and the Japanese crowd started chanting "NWA". The respect that the title carries in Japan is amazing. In the States, there's no doubt the NWA is not where it was 30 years ago and I would argue wrestling itself is not where it was 30 years ago. But, I'm not going to name names, I've had very well known, very well respected guys who have been in a lot of different organizations, seen the title on top of my bag as I'm getting dressed and almost stopped in awe. "Is that really it? Can I hold it? Can I touch it?" Rob Conway, Rob's a friend of mine and I've learned a lot from Rob, Rob told me that he's gone a lot of places and in a lot of ways, the title itself is the star.(laughs) It's funny and it's also a little humbling."


On James Beard's status with the NWA:
"No, no. James has not stepped out at all. In a lot of cases, James is my travel partner. We go a lot of places together. In a lot of places, he's my roommate. It's funny. I don't want to get into the whole age thing, as long as I've been in this business, as long as I'm with James, I'm the young guy in the car! It's always fun. James is something special. He's a special person. He's great at what he does. He got an award last year at the Cauliflower Alley Convention. One of the statements they made that really got my attention is that James has literally referee'd and worked for every major organization in America and Japan. That's a pretty strong statement!"


On the rise and fall of TCW Traditional Championship Wrestling:
"TCW was, and I've found myself in this situation 2 or 3 times over the long term, when you're in the middle of it and you're shooting TV and you're doing shows and you're having matches and all those things that go along with it, you kind of take things for granted. You think it is going to last forever. You don't... I appreciated what we were doing. But, now that I look back, I even more appreciate the quality of the matches, the quality of the production, and more than anything, the way it was run and the way it was managed, and the overall quality of the locker room. Our locker room was fantastic. The blue print it was set up on was truly designed to be more of an old school, a more physical style of wrestling. Not as many promos, not as much talk, more wrestling. It was incredibly physical which is fine because that's my preference. It was unique. It was special. I thought it was an excellent product. I was very sorry to see it end. I'm still friends with and work with a lot of those guys on a regular basis all over the country. It truly was a nation wide roster."

On TCW being a blue print for the NWA:
"As far as it (TCW) being a blue print for the NWA, I don't think so. In talking to and listening to different things from Billy Corgan and Dave Lagana, I think they are going to have their own unique way of doing things. I read something Mr. Corgan said today where he intentionally set this up because he got frustrated with having to deal with 7 levels of management. So the way he's going to set this up and manage it, this is going to be his baby. The success or failure of it will be purely based on his ideas."


On the problem with modern wrestling:
"We are after instant gratification. So often we see an angle develop over 6 weeks that should have taken 6 moths."


On why he feels the NWA under Corgan will succeed:
"How often do we see a new promotion with X amount of dollars, they go out and recruit these guys, they run 3 shows and they're broke and it's gone. Everybody goes, "Oh, but it was so good!" Well, there was no planning to it. They threw the money out there and it was gone. The plan the NWA is putting together right now is just the opposite of that. It is going to be a slow roll out and they're going to do things right. They're not going to make a statement on what they're going to do if they can't follow through on it. That's why, I think, they laid out a 20 year business plan. Because they want long-term success."


On Corgan's continuing to be involved in wrestling after the Impact Wrestling debacle:
"I think that's a reflection of his love for the business. I heard him say that he would never say "I know everything about the wrestling business." but what he would stand up and say is he understands entertainment. Through his music influence, he can have people listen to him that might not listen to anybody else. They are in the process of making contact after contact after contact. There are still people interested in professional wrestling!"


On being compared to Mr. Wonderful Paul Orndorff:
"I got to be friends with Brian Blair of the Killer Bees. He kept telling me... They were best friends, he (Brian Blair) and Paul orndorff were best friends. He kept telling me, "You remind me so much of Paul. You remind me so much of Paul!" This is one of the best honors. I was at a banquette. Brian (Blair) comes over and says, "Come here, let me introduce you to Paul." "That's great! Love to meet him!" He walsk over and he, (laughs), he says, "Hey Paul, I want you to meet the new Paul Orndorff." What a huge, huge compliment!"


On if his age and experience are a negative or a positive:
"I think my experience is a positive. I know I have more road in the rear view mirror than I do in the windsheild. I know that. That doesn't mean that I'm coming to the end of the road! I got into wrestling at a fairly late age. I probably got in when a lot of guys were getting out. I think Ricky Steamboat uses the term, he knew when his bump card was filled. You only have so many bumps in you. He took a bump and he knew that he had taken his last bump. I played college football. Anything competitive that you could imagine, I did. I followed my passion, something I always wanted to do. I think I had saved up quite a bit in the tank, I had never taken a bump! I think my experience helps me a lot. I've been put in some fantastic situations. If you're smart, you keep your mouth shut and you listen. I've had the opportunity to what I consider to be some of the greatest minds and greatest wrestlers in the history of this business and sit in a car with them and pick their brains. There's lot a lot of guys who can do that with, and God rest his soul, he's no longer living, that was at WrestleMania 1... That can ride with Skandor Akbar, with James Beard... With Matt Bourne who I was talking about a moment ago. To sit with Buck Robley, Jake Roberts, Tim Brooks. To sit with those guys who molded what the business was at that time... Gary Hart! To pick their brain and even get input. Even recently, guys like Lance Hoyt who I traveled with and get instant feedback in the car. That's invaluable! So, to answer the question, that was the long version, I think my experience is a plus!"