Swagger Speaks—America Listens

Swagger Speaks—America Listens

First things first: Where did all this Real American sentiment come from? Was it something that was always a part of you, or was it dredged up by your pairing with Zeb Colter?
I was off television for five months, so I had a lot of time for soul-searching, you could say. I was beyond frustrated. At first, I tried to go back to my roots in amateur wrestling. Along the way, I realized that it’s not me that’s the problem. I realized that it had to be something larger at play keeping me from the success I deserve. Then I found Zeb. Together we found Jack Swagger’s America.

What are Colter’s strongest qualities? What do you think are the things about him that are taking you to the next level?
Zeb Colter is certainly a man of great conviction and passion. He has so much conviction and passion for the things that he says and the things that he actually believes in—and those are the types of things people really take hold of. They make people believers. And, of course, Zeb has decades upon decades of experience, which Jack Swagger directly benefits from: the knowledge and the tutelage. Honestly, that kind of experience translates through me, and it gives me that extra little oomph that I need in order to get over the hill to the top of the mountain.

Let’s talk about the World Heavyweight Title. If 2013 sees you recapture the gold, what will you do to make sure your title run makes more of an impact than your previous one?
Winning the championship the second time in any sport, whether it’s wrestling, football, basketball or baseball is definitely harder. Once you get there, staying there, and staying relevant and being able to make an impact, is tough. I worked very hard last time, but maybe I wasn’t working smart.

That’s surprising. It would seem like the opposite is true—that your first experience would make it easier the second time around, no?
I truly believe that it is harder to win the second one because you already have that target on your back, and people are looking for you a little bit more. But then, once you get there, the experience can help. Getting back is the big challenge.

How are you more of a “Real American” than Hulk Hogan?
I think I’m more of a real American than Hulk Hogan because he was doing what he did for the Hulkamaniacs. Not everyone is a Hulkamaniac. I’m doing this for all of America. I’m putting the country on my broad shoulders and carrying them to the promised land. America needs a Real American now more than ever.

To read more from this exclusive interview, pick up the June Body Issue of WWE Magazine today or SUBSCRIBE HERE and save 70 percent off the newsstand sale price.

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