Tensai takes his talents to the NXT announce desk

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January 23, 2014

Career longevity is an attribute that nearly every WWE Superstar seeks. Those who achieve it often do so by adding a new element to their skillset. In recent months, Tensai has embraced that new element by joining the NXT broadcast team. WWE.com sits down with Sweet T to discuss the newest chapter in his WWE career.

WWE.COM: How did you get your start in the industry?

TENSAI: I was a fan of wrestling from the first time I saw it on my television in the early ’80s. When college and football ended, I stepped into the real world and I began teaching. A few months into the school year, I heard there was a wrestling show coming to our auditorium. Keep in mind; I never knew exactly how to get my foot in the door to become a wrestler. I used to go to ECW events and sit in the crowd, hoping to get noticed. That never worked, by the way.

Eventually, I went to our principal and asked him if it would be okay if I had some sort of contest to bring three students with me to the show. My secret plan was to maybe get noticed, as well as enjoy the show. The principal agreed and I took the three kids that won a contest to the show that was being promoted by WWE Hall of Famer Killer Kowalski. We got to the show before the ring was set up and I introduced myself to Walter. He looked me up and down and told me about his school and invited me to give it a try. The next day I went to his school, and the rest is history.

WWE.COM: Tell us about your first experience joining WWE nearly 15 years ago?

TENSAI: My first run with WWE was definitely a learning experience.  I went from wrestling in arenas that held 1,000 people to sold-out arenas that held 20,000-plus at times. It was a dream come true but at the same time, it was a huge wake-up call. WWE is a big business. With age comes maturity and I may have gotten a bit too complacent at the time. There is always someone out there who wants your position and I learned that the hard way. 

WWE.COM: After about eight years away, you returned to WWE in 2012. What kind of changes did you notice in WWE when you came back?

TENSAI: Coming back to WWE after eight years was eye-opening in so many ways. The biggest change was the age of the talent that was working. I was the older guy in the locker room now. Minus a few guys, I was working with young men most of the time, but the work ethic was just as high as it was during my first go around.

Social media is also a huge change. WWE is a full-time job. When you are out in public, you’ve always got to be aware of how you are being perceived. With Twitter, Facebook, Tout and mobile phones, not only can everything you do be seen, it can spread to millions within minutes. There is no shutting off who you are. Good or bad, social media has taken WWE to a new level.

Most people and most young talent have no idea what travel entails. The majority of people think Monday and Fridays are the only days we work. It is a schedule that is, the for the most part, the same as with my first run, as we typically spend 250 days or so on the road a year. Friday through Tuesday is the typical schedule. That doesn’t include personal appearances on our off days.

Check out Tensai's WWE Superstar profile.

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