Friday, September 30, 2022

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Kaun discusses his AEW appearances, ROH Trios Titles

Picture Courtesy: SP Media Graphics

Coming off of his run in Ring of Honor as part of Shane Taylor Promotions, Kaun has been featured three times on AEW’s Dark/Darkish: Elevation applications. He spent the final three years of his profession as part of Ring of Honor and was a co-holder of the corporate’s World Six-Man Tag Workforce Championships.

Kaun, Moses, Shane Taylor together with O’Shay Edwards used the ‘Freebird’ rule for the titles and as of this writing, they’re tied with The Kingdom (Matt Taven, Vincent & TK O’Ryan) for the second longest ROH Six-Man Tag Title reign in firm historical past. Whereas talking to Kaun, he expressed that S.T.P. will go down as best six-man (tag title) unit in historical past.

Oh yeah, we made historical past with that [Shane Taylor Promotions’ run with the ROH Six-Man Tag Titles] and I don’t assume the trios titles received as a lot respect as they deserved. I believe folks checked out them like a secondary title however but, we have been the one ones who have been actually defending these belts it appeared like. Each TV taping or we instructed them, ‘We’re taking these on the independents and defending them. If you happen to don’t have any six-man groups right here that may beat us, then we’re gonna go discover our personal competitors when you’re not gonna convey that competitors for us,’ and actually in my thoughts, apart from just like the MexiSquad holding these belts they usually by no means defended them over the COVID interval, we’ve the longest reign in my thoughts. We’re gonna go down in historical past as the best six-man unit in historical past and I’ve stated this earlier than, we made six-man wrestling related once more. So, I stand by that declare.

POST Wrestling was in attendance for the ROH ‘Free Enterprise’ show in February 2020. Previous to the occasion airing dwell on the HonorClub service, Kaun and Moses, collectively often called ‘Sons of Savagery’, competed in a darkish match. They appeared on the primary present as properly alongside Shane Taylor.

When Kaun thinks again to that predominant present second, he agreed that-that seems like one of many moments when Sons of Savagery formally arrived in Ring of Honor regardless of being with the corporate for months at that time. One other a type of moments got here when he and Moses wrestled The Briscoes.

I believe that was one of many first moments [where it felt like Kaun & Moses arrived in ROH — Free Enterprise 2020] as a result of such as you stated, we have been on TV simply form of squashing folks however we didn’t have any course, so that they had that darkish match which it’s hilarious to see [how] issues have occurred with Griff Garrison being at AEW and the way occasions have modified. Particularly being in Baltimore, you may really feel the power with the group there, however I do know for Moses and I, I don’t assume we felt it till we wrestled The Briscoes final yr as a result of that was the true check and people are the 2 folks that you just wish to get within the ring with like, all proper, when you can maintain your individual with these two males, the baddest tag group in ROH historical past, one of many best tag groups of all-time, ‘Okay, they’ve arrived. They’ve their place within the tag group division right here.’

Kaun was educated on the Maryland Championship Wrestling faculty. The promotion has been a staple within the DMV unbiased wrestling scene courting again to the late Nineteen Nineties.

The likes of Lio Rush, Renee Michelle, WWE referee Jessicka Carr and others have educated on the MCW coaching middle. One of many head trainers on the facility was the late R.J. Meyer. Meyer handed away in November 2020 after a battle with Leukemia. Kaun spoke extremely of Meyer and the impression that Meyer had on him and lots of others that got here via MCW.

I can communicate for myself personally and I believe most likely Moses too like, we most likely didn’t have the perfect relationships with our father’s rising up and to have — once more, and also you’re a grown man and also you’re studying this new factor and like, you’re getting yelled at on a regular basis however to see somebody who doesn’t even know who you’re, take such an invested curiosity in you and never surrender on you and push you and like, I bear in mind I went via some powerful occasions. I had folks commit suicide in my life or going via breakups and stuff and you may name him [R.J. Meyer] at any time, he’ll reply the telephone and discuss to you as a result of he genuinely cared about who you have been as an individual. Like cool, he’s attempting to make you succeed since you get to provide again to the varsity when you’re nice at wrestling, however he was only a nice human being, he was a dad to each scholar there and the truth that he would present up it doesn’t matter what. He was going via what he was going via. Even his chemo therapies, he was nonetheless attempting to be there. Folks would FaceTime, go to the hospital to go see him. I bear in mind once I first began — this dude’s intimidating as f*ck. He’s [this] massive ass wrestler, ‘The Bruiser’ screaming at folks and I bear in mind I simply form of began exhibiting up on my own and he was similar to, ‘Oh, you’re attempting to be a machine, proper?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah man, I assume so.’ He’s like, ‘All proper, you can begin doing additional cardio with these different dudes’ and like, the truth that somebody simply, once more, they don’t need something from you however they’re gonna push you and make investments this time into you and one thing from me, that simply meant a lot to me. I by no means felt like calling him however I used to be like, ‘Hey man, I’ve an issue, one thing occurred in my life’ — I bear in mind coming to coaching, that is your loved ones. Such as you’re round these folks a lot. I bear in mind him telling me, ‘When you get into wrestling, that is going to take over your life. That is the place your pals are, that is the place your loved ones is. If you happen to want anyone for something, you name a few of these folks up.’ It was such a community-based factor and he was the pinnacle of that desk. Nobody might substitute that man there and I can already inform that he’s like actually missed as a result of that was the place that R.J. constructed was MCW [Maryland Championship Wrestling]. That was his home.

Following Shane Taylor and Kenny King’s one-on-one match at ROH Final Battle, they have been joined within the ring by Kaun, Moses, Ron Hunt, O’Shay Edwards, World Well-known C.B., Eli Isom and Caprice Coleman and collectively, they stood within the ring in solidarity as Black males with their fists within the air.

Within the second, Kaun didn’t notice how impactful the second was and the way it will make others really feel, however as the times went on after Remaining Battle, he quickly found the constructive second he was a part of.

I don’t assume I noticed the impression of what we have been doing till like two days later, as a result of while you do wrestling poses, it’s at all times just like the fist within the air. Like okay, Black energy, fist within the air and I do know for me particularly, with my background, my dad’s from Cameroon so and I’m biracial. My mother’s from a small city in Wisconsin. I by no means grew up with Black cultural issues. I by no means actually understood these issues. They went over my head as a result of my dad’s an immigrant. So I grew up round afro-centric stuff, music, meals. I had no thought what, I don’t know, these iconic Black exhibits are, I don’t know. However simply seeing the impression that we’ve had on youngsters, particularly, that’s enormous to me as a result of I do know — one of many the explanation why I needed to get into wrestling is as a result of I by no means noticed anybody like myself actually doing this. Such as you had Farooq, you had The Rock and Booker T however The Rock was by no means positioned as a Black wrestler. It was at all times like his Samoan heritage. I do know most likely like Rikishi, there’s a pair others that I can’t bear in mind for the time being. However like, seeing how far we’ve come now and seeing your friends like Huge E, Kofi [Kingston], Bobby Lashley, seeing [them] on the highest degree on this enterprise and nonetheless at this age, I’m getting tears once they win championships as a result of once more, I by no means noticed that stuff rising up. It’s simply so profound. Like these items is admittedly altering folks’s lives. I’m seeing that we’re like folks’s banners on social media and I’m like, ‘That was only a pose to me’ however that is a lot extra for therefore many extra folks in order that form of places some weight in your shoulders however to see the impression that you’ve got and that you may make on this enterprise for folks, I imply that’s life altering.

On the subject of illustration and variety in wrestling, Kaun feels that by all accounts, from the exhibits he’s tuned into on the unbiased scene, the expertise roster and playing cards look numerous. In the case of having extra Black expertise on exhibits, Kaun thinks that may at all times enhance and be higher.

That’s powerful [to answer, in response to if things are fine concerning representation and diversity in wrestling]. I believe on the indies — I by no means did the indies, so I believe the place the unbiased scene is now, I believe it’s fairly okay. It’s fairly numerous. I’m down in Texas, there’s much more Black wrestlers than I’ve ever seen earlier than in my life so, no less than in that method and I believe there’s like a dialog between range after which like Blackness in wrestling as a result of I believe wrestling is tremendous numerous and it actually truly is. I get the place folks are actually speaking about AEW and like having Black wrestlers. There’s Black wrestlers there and it’s an excellent numerous place. Jade [Cargill] simply received the TBS Championship. It’s positively modified from the place it was, I assume like ten years in the past once I began — possibly 15 years in the past once I began watching wrestling. It positively can change much more and be higher, however to say it’s not good the place it’s and it’s not numerous, I don’t assume that’s true.

Again in November 2019, Ring of Honor introduced their ‘Unauthorized’ present which featured a card that was put collectively by followers by way of a voting system. Kaun was part of that present and he teamed with Brian Johnson together with fellow Shane Taylor Promotions members Moses, Ron Hunt and Shane Taylor to tackle Digital camera Man Gator, Colt Cabana, Gary Juster, Ian Riccaboni and Todd Sinclair.

Shane Taylor Promotions left Brian Johnson to fend for himself and he misplaced the match. Upon the announcement of the match, Kaun admitted that he had blended emotions about it earlier than being knowledgeable that he and his secure mates wouldn’t truly be wrestling in it.

I believe again then, it was most likely like two-fold [how he felt about the match]. At first I used to be like, ‘What the hell are we — are we truly gonna need to wrestle these folks? As a result of I don’t understand how I’m gonna be capable of do this.’ I’m most likely most annoyed about placing my gear on, which takes a while to place my boots on and all that after which I used to be like, ‘Oh, Brian Johnson’s gonna be the one wrestling? Cool. A minimum of I’m not bumping to Todd’ however on the similar time, we did the total entrance. Persons are like, ‘Oh, they’re gonna homicide these dudes’ after which we simply hop off the apron and stroll to the again. I used to be like, ‘If y’all are paying my flight to come back out right here and do that, I assume I can’t complain.’

Kaun’s final three matches have taken place underneath the AEW banner. He has wrestled Andrade El Idolo, Frankie Kazarian and most not too long ago Adam Cole. He mirrored on these experiences and mentioned his time collaborating with AEW to this point.

He talked about that Mark Henry has been a supporter of his for a number of years and recounted receiving props from Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian after his match with Kazarian.

So I used to be truly speculated to wrestle Frankie [Kazarian] the primary time however his flight, one thing occurred along with his journey so he got here to the present late. It’s humorous as a result of I’m like an enormous fan of Andrade [El Idolo]. I used to be an enormous fan of his in NXT and I’m like, ‘Okay, I’m wrestling this dude.’ However I’ve been watching AEW Darkish since they began and I’ve been finding out these match buildings and I do know they don’t get a whole lot of time and I believe lots of people do a whole lot of stuff that doesn’t actually imply an excessive amount of so in my thoughts, all proper, I’m like, ‘I’m simply making a second. I’m simply making a second.’ After I was working with Andrade, fortuitously we didn’t do an excessive amount of as a result of why? It doesn’t imply something. There’s solely three or 4 minutes. If I’m attempting to point out off my physicality and make a second. This dude pulls my hair, I slap the sh*t out of him. He can slap me again, however, I be certain I had that second and look, I’m not right here to play both. That is my alternative to attempt to get signed. Got here to the again, Mark Henry’s been like an enormous fan of mine for a few years so I talked to him briefly. He put me over on commentary too so I positively admire that. He’s a legend so, him saying that I’ve an incredible physique and I’m an athlete, thanks. Identical factor with Kazarian… speaking to him about the best way that I used to be educated by Joey Mercury and he was at ROH proper when — proper when he left ROH, that’s once I received signed there so I briefly crossed paths with him. However similar factor with him, ‘Hey, we don’t have a whole lot of time. Let’s take this sluggish, let’s make this work, let’s present this battle, let’s make this imply one thing as a result of that’s gonna be a lot extra necessary to those folks than similar to doing all these items.’ I don’t even wrestle like that. I’d relatively showcase my physicality and got here to the again, similar factor, Mark Henry cherished it, Kazarian favored it, [Christopher] Daniels favored it so, I believe I’m going again for a pair extra alternatives. Hopefully some good issues come out of that. However it’s been nice. I do know a whole lot of these folks from ROH, I do know some folks within the workplace, I received to satisfy folks. Surprisingly, they bear in mind me once I was at ROH once they have been there. So it’s like an incredible vibe, it’s cool to see folks like Austin Gunn, Fuego Del Sol and meet up with folks so, hopefully good issues occur within the subsequent few weeks.

He went on to talk about the assist that he’s acquired from followers popping out of his AEW appearances. It means an incredible deal to Kaun, however he additionally doesn’t need the compliments to go to his head.

Oh positively [it felt good to receive support after the AEW appearances]. Once more, I’m tremendous crucial of myself so I’m like, ‘Oh, I might have did this higher, I might have did that higher.’ Then to see folks, the best way that they’re reacting, that’s at all times an incredible feeling. I simply attempt to retweet folks’s stuff. I’m like, ‘Ah, thanks.’ Simply stay humble as a result of I don’t need it to get to my head. However on the similar time, simply form of try of social media simply because it may be hella overwhelming simply to see that and persons are messaging you…

Kaun made the transfer to Texas and he and Moses are chasing after their respective singles runs. They nonetheless group collectively now and again and are consistently in touch.

He described Moses as certainly one of his closest associates and detailed how R.J. Meyer is partially chargeable for them turning into shut associates.

It’s actually most likely due to R.J. [Meyer that Kaun & Moses are a team]. I bear in mind, he began a yr earlier than me once we began wrestling after which I believe my first or second day, he received damage and I believe he tore his meniscus. So he was out for a bit bit. However I bear in mind when he got here again, I used to be trying on the panorama of MCW [Maryland Championship Wrestling] and I used to be like, ‘Okay, there’s no tag groups right here actually and there’s no Black tag groups. So if we group collectively, they’re gonna need to put us on the present. Like they’re going to have to try this. There’s a spot that must be crammed.’ So I bear in mind speaking to him about that concept and to see the fruition of that occur, however I bear in mind once we pitched the concept to R.J. and being like, ‘Hey, we form of wish to tag’ so we began tagging a bit bit, doing these birthday events [house shows] and R.J. can be like, ‘Did y’all discuss right this moment?’ And I’m like, ‘No, we discuss at follow.’ He’s like, ‘You guys want to speak each single day. I don’t care what you’re doing.’ He’s like, ‘You might want to textual content one another, you might want to name one another. Y’all want to love — that’s how good tag groups – turn into an incredible bond, turn into nice tag groups is that they discuss on daily basis, they turn into precise associates,’ so like, in my head, it was simply, ‘Oh, we’ll be wrestling tag group companions’ however then as soon as that occurred, we truly began to get to know one another. We’re like tremendous comparable, form of like similar method that we grew up with {our relationships} with our mother and father and stuff that we’re to the purpose the place like Joey Mercury was like, ‘Wherever one you’re, the opposite must be. You at all times need to be with each other as a result of you might want to be introduced in these folks minds as a tag group’ so we began understanding collectively, going to exhibits collectively, driving collectively and all that point you spend with somebody the place you’re similar to, you construct this bond, you could have this friendship after which like, it’s humorous as a result of folks might be like, ‘Are y’all brothers?’ I’m like, ‘No.’ We each occur to have locs for a similar period of time. Now he’s getting tatted up. We simply occur to be into the identical stuff [and] we’re at all times round each other.

I do know for me too, moving into wrestling is such a scary factor while you’re by your self on the market. So to be in a tag group and like, I bear in mind once we first began wrestling, I’m like, ‘Oh no, you may go first.’ I used to be hella uncomfortable however it felt a lot extra comfy having, such as you stated, somebody proper there in my nook. Like me being in his nook simply having somebody with you on a regular basis. To now, we form of are simply brothers. We nonetheless discuss on a regular basis. I do know that I moved right here [to Texas], however speaking on a regular basis, rooming collectively once we do ROH. Now we’re each form of doing like our personal little indie factor attempting to get some expertise doing singles stuff. He simply had a championship match at MCW towards Brian Johnson twice. He’s doing CZW, we’re each form of getting out right here and it’s cool to see, simply each of us, like how far we’ve grown within the five-to-six years since we’ve been in wrestling and like, he simply got here down right here just a few months in the past. We simply tagged on some indie scene stuff. He’s most likely certainly one of my best associates. It’s humorous that we similar to — we’ll see humorous stuff, we’ll simply textual content one another. We’ve the identical form of humor so, hey man, he’s an incredible dude.

Though Ring of Honor is on hiatus until April 1st, Shane Taylor Promotions plans to proceed working collectively at factors and supporting fellow members of the group. Kaun stated it may be tasking to maneuver 5 folks without delay on the unbiased scene.

He understands that it may be troublesome for a promotion to herald all 5 members however provides that they may open the proverbial doorways for one another when the chance presents itself.

Oh yeah, I believe the largest factor we run into generally is like prices actually [moving all of Shane Taylor Promotions around at the same time]. Undoubtedly touring locations however it’s — we’re a collective, proper? It’s like 5 folks so a whole lot of these indie exhibits, they don’t have the funds. I perceive the place that might be probably a battle. We’ve talked about it. If something, we attempt to hold S.T.P. collectively. I perceive the politics — not the politics however just like the battle of bringing 5 folks into wherever. However I’ve stated this with them, if folks get alternatives [at] locations, why wouldn’t you assist your brother getting these alternatives? And this opens the door. Like you may’t assist folks get into the door if the door’s closed, so somebody might open that door for you, then you may assist pull your brothers via.

To maintain up with all issues associated to Kaun, test him out on Twitter @thekaun and on Instagram @the.kaun. His merchandise retailer web page may be discovered at this link.

Our full interview may be watched by way of the participant at first of this text or on the Andrew Thompson Interviews YouTube channel.

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