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Where Are They Now? Billy Kidman, Part Two
For Billy Kidman, becoming a WWE Superstar was the only dream he ever had in life, but the competitor was more apprehensive than excited when he joined the company in 2001.
“I was very nervous coming here,” he admitted. “It was like starting over in a way.”
Like many others in the WCW Alliance that invaded WWE that year, Kidman struggled to adapt to his new environment at first, but the cruiserweight began to find his legs through battles with Superstars like X-Pac and Tajiri. Soon, Kidman flourished and scored major success in SmackDown’s tag team division alongside partners like Paul London and Rey Mysterio. (PHOTOS)
"it’s really hard to have a bad match with Rey Mysterio," Kidman said. "He's one of my favorite guys to be in there with, whether it’s tag team or opponent."
After four strong years, the former WWE Tag Team Champion was released from his contract in 2005. It was a disappointing reality at the time, but Kidman now views that day as a blessing.
“I was pretty burnt out, so I needed to recharge mentally, which I did after a year and half or so,” Kidman admitted. “Then the opportunity came up to be a trainer at FCW.”
Looking to get in some mat work before an overseas tour, Kidman went to the Florida Championship Wrestling gym to use their ring and ended up working with some of the rookies who were training there. He enjoyed the experience so much that he started returning on a weekly basis to help in any way he could.
“I loved being there,” Kidman said. “Just to see the younger guys and that fire they had and how they wanted to learn, I really enjoyed it.”
When he wasn’t training current WWE Superstars like Sheamus, Kofi Kingston and Justin Gabriel, Kidman became serious about learning the television production aspect of broadcasting a sports-entertainment show — an interest which eventually led to his current position as a producer with WWE. (PHOTOS)
The former Superstar may have the same job title as legends like Arn Anderson and Dean Malenko who work directly with talent, but Kidman's day-to-day responsibilities differ greatly from those two. Taking over the position long held by WWE Hall of Famer Jerry Brisco, Kidman collaborates with the director and producers of Raw and SmackDown to insure that events fit into their allotted time slots. This can mean cancelling bouts on the fly or even adding matches to a live show at the last minute (there’s a reason the phrase “Card subject to change” is synonymous with sports entertainment).
“We are running a live television show,” Kidman stressed. “Really anything can happen."
Now in his late 30s, Kidman has adapted well to his role outside of the squared circle. Although he revealed that he could still mix it up in the ring like he did during his time as Cruiserweight Champion, he is grateful to have found an important role with WWE.
“I never thought I’d get here,” Kidman admitted. “To still be involved is a great thing.”
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