NXT 10-Count: Sami Zayn
Who is Sami Zayn's celebrity crush? How does the Montreal native feel about comparisons to Seth Rogen? And could we see Zayn vs. Cesaro one more time? Sami Zayn is in the hot seat this week answering questions from you, the NXT Universe.
WWE UNIVERSE: How do you prepare for your matches?
SAMI ZAYN: Sometimes I listen to music on my headphones and walk around backstage acting weird. But in recent years, I’ve found it better to avoid trying to “get in the zone” so I just stay loose, go out when it’s my turn, and feel the moment as it comes.
WWE UNIVERSE: I've noticed that you're a punk rock fan. What bands would be on your fantasy lineup?
ZAYN: Rancid, Against Me!, The Bouncing Souls, Street Dogs, Dropkick Murphys. It would be pretty sweet if Operation Ivy also re-formed for this one fantasy evening.
WWE UNIVERSE: Could you see yourself facing Cesaro again?
ZAYN: There is no doubt in my mind that our paths will cross again one day. It just won’t be on NXT.
WWE UNIVERSE: What’s your favorite thing to do in your free time?
ZAYN: I go to a lot of concerts, that’s one of my big outlets where I can just turn my brain off and be a fan. I’m also a really big hockey fan and the Montreal Canadiens are my team. I try to catch all the games.
I like to stay active. Adrian Neville and I actually discovered a roller hockey rink not too far from the WWE Performance Center and we sometimes go to play there. It’s a great workout, and a great stress release!
WWE UNIVERSE: What's your favorite WWE match of all time?
ZAYN: I really can’t answer with just one match as a favorite because so many have touched me in different ways, but the first one that jumps to my mind is Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin from WrestleMania 13. I’ll go with this because even when I watch it today, I can still recall the wide array of feelings that match stirred up in me when I first watched it as a kid.
WWE UNIVERSE: Who would your dream match be against, and why?
ZAYN: If I ever wrestled Daniel Bryan or Cesaro at a WrestleMania, that would be awesome. Those are two guys I’ve known for a very long time. Cesaro in particular would be awesome because of all the history we already have.
My other dream match would be a WrestleMania match against Adrian Neville. I’ve traveled the world with him. I've wrestled Neville in eight or nine countries and all over the United States. We’ve had similar journeys and gone through a lot together. I can’t think of anything better than stealing the biggest show of the year with him as millions watch.
WWE UNIVERSE: Who was your hero growing up?
ZAYN: My heroes evolved as I got older. When I was young it was Hulk Hogan, without a doubt. He was what I used to (and still do love) about wrestling, the spectacle of it all. As I got a little older, I grew to appreciate the technical wrestlers and Bret Hart was my guy. Eventually in my preteen years, Mick Foley became a huge influence on me and became a big part of the reason I thought I could be a wrestler. Then the Hardy Boyz came around and I was dead-set on becoming a wrestler. Those five influenced me more than any others.
WWE UNIVERSE: What has been your favorite country to wrestle in?
ZAYN: It’s so hard to say. Japan will always have a special place in my heart. One hidden gem that not a lot of people would think to guess is Sweden. The fans are absolutely amazing there!
WWE UNIVERSE: Who is your celebrity crush?
ZAYN: I’m not much into celebrities. I’ve always thought you see girls downtown in Montreal hotter than the girls on all the magazines, so I never got the hype. However, I recently saw an interview with Gillian Jacobs from NBC’s “Community” where she talked about not drinking alcohol and being a fan of an independent wrestling promotion in Los Angeles. I became absolutely smitten! I want to buy her lunch.
WWE UNIVERSE: How do you feel about being compared in looks to Seth Rogen?
ZAYN: I don’t mind it, but my goodness do I get it a lot! I don’t really see it to be honest, but I get it a lot. I guess it’s alright. The good thing about Seth Rogen is that he doesn’t look like your conventional movie star but he’s just breaking those boundaries and doing really great. Sound familiar? Also, he was in the Beastie Boys’ “Make Some Noise” video, and [the TV show] "Freaks and Geeks” so maybe we’d be friends.