1. Welcome to TheBritishWrestlingRevival Blog Raphael thank you very much for agreeing to take part in this interview, first of all could you please introduce yourself to the readers??
First, I’d like to say thank you for having me! I appreciate the opportunity. My name is Raphael King A.K.A “Big Brother King” and Matthew on BET/Centric’s “My Current Situation: ATL”.
2. Let’s first of all talk about growing up for you, did you watch wrestling growing up and if so who inspired you at the time to train to become a wrestler??
I grew up in a single-parent household, so it was just me and my mom. I first laid eyes on professional wrestling when I was 5 years old. I was at a friends house while my mother worked and we were channel surfing when all of a sudden, we came across a man standing on a stage in a bright silk shirt and designer shades. We were amused my the fact that he so eloquently said that he would shine his designer shoe up real nice, turn that sum-bitch sideways, and stick it straight up his opponents “Candy Ass”. That man was The Rock! I remember laughing at that for the remainder of the week! But every since then, I was hooked. By the end of the episode the following week, I was convinced that I was going to be a wrestler one day. Wrestling was always so special to me (and still is) because we moved around a lot when I was a kid, so in a world that was constantly changing for me, wrestling was always a constant. When my mother and I were struggling financially, wrestling was there to take my mind off of my worries and fears. There were points in time where we couldn’t afford electricity, so I would imagine myself as a superstar. I was always daydreaming in school about everything from how my entrance would look, to what my music would be, I would even sit in class and draw what I would wear. In a way, wrestling raised me. I would imitate my favorite characters such as The Rock, Triple H, Jericho. How they acted, I would act. How I thought they would respond and react to situations is how I would. Believe it or not, wrestling has brought me through a lot. I faced some pretty dark times when I was younger, at times, I didn’t know how or if I would make it. The only thing that kept me going, was my intense desire to see this dream of mine come to fruition.
3. Next of all let’s speak about training for you, what are your thoughts on your training experience, who trained you and if you could train with anyone dead or alive who would it be and why??
I went to high school in a town in Missouri called Jefferson City. At the beginning of my senior year, in the face of ridicule and disbelief from many of my peers, I started planning my future in wrestling. I was researching tons of places to train and ended up narrowing it down to about four. It was either going to be with Lance Storm in Canada, the WWA4 in Atlanta, GA, 3D Academy in Florida or the Ring of Honor Dojo in Philly. Unfortunately, I was in a toxic relationship with a girl who wasn’t the best for me, so the money I was making working as a manager at a Captain D’s Seafood didn’t get saved the way it was initially planned to. My plan was to move and go to one of these training facilities literally THE DAY AFTER I GRADUATED in 2011. It didn’t work out that way and to my dismay, I actually ended up staying in Jefferson City for another year. In the meantime I attended university. I had had enough of putting my dreams on hold, and I actually ended up finding a training school in St. Louis, MO known as the South Broadway Athletic Club. I wasn’t aware that I could be any more hooked to this than I already was until the first time I stepped into that building and saw that ring. My trainers were nobody famous, but they were solid local workers who veterans and were very good at the basics. From basic holds to showing emotion. I will forever be thankful to those three: Jeff, Dave and Ian, I will always be grateful. I started making the two hour drive from Jeff City to St. Louis three times a week (every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Sometimes Sundays). I have a sister that lives in St. Louis, so sometimes I would crash at her place, but most of the time I would drive straight back after training because I had to work the next day. I did that for a month, almost two. Then I moved to St. Louis. I started working with the famed Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW) in Louisville, KY. I would attend some of Al Snow’s training Seminars he would have in Wednesday mornings before the tv ratings later that night. If I could train with ANYONE, my top pick would be the late, unimaginably GREAT, Eddie Guerrero. When you talk about the the absolute greatest all-around “Professional Wrestler/ Sports Entertainer”, in my opinion you can look no further. Just thinking about how good he was gives me chills. I would also love to train with The Rock. Focusing on Character and mic work. Triple H because he was so good at telling a story with his body. Still one of the best. I have had the honor of having my work critiqued and praised by Mr. Harley Race which is a great honor.
4. You are part of My Current Situation with your wife who is also a wrestler Devyn Nicole, how did this come about and do you think being on TV will help your wrestling career in the future??
The reality show, #MyCurrentSituationATL was truly a blessing. It really came out of nowhere. It was one of those situations where we knew the right person who knew our story and how unique it was and how much depth it had. That person took it to the right person and we literally got an email asking if we wanted to be a part of this project that would be broadcast worldwide on a major network. So of course our answer was, “Uuuuuhhhh, Yeah!” Haha! I absolutely feel that it has and will continue to open doors for us in wrestling as well as other avenues of entertainment. It has put a completely different set of eyes on us. People who aren’t necessarily familiar with wrestling are now tuned in to it and are watching with eyes wide open. I also feel that it has helped to reintroduce professional wrestling to the black community which had kind of fallen out of touch with it for the most part over the past decade or so. Especially with our show being on BET/Centric, networks that cater more to that demographic, it’s helped get more eyes on it. One of my favorite parts of working on the project were actually things that we we got to do when the cameras weren’t rolling, such as attending the BET Awards. The events we got to do to promote the show and the community outreach like “Rock The Vote”, were all great experiences that not only helped us to grow, but hopefully touched others and helped them to grow as well. That was really our main goal in working on the project: To reach people and touch people with our stories. With Devyn being a victim of domestic violence in past relationships, she really wanted to be a face for women everywhere, young and old, to show them that there is light at the end of that dark tunnel. All you have to do is walk towards it. And with my story, growing up for the most part without my dad and my struggles as a kid, I wanted to show young men that just because you start life at a disadvantage, your only option isn’t to turn to drugs or gangs or violence. All those options were definitely presented to me, but I’ve always wanted better. So I went out and got it. If I can be the face of success to at least one young man, I feel as if I’ve accomplished something monumental.
5. You are part of Ring of Honor’s Top Prospect Tournament for this year, how did this opportunity come about and are you looking forward to showing the ROH fans what you can do in the coming weeks as part of it??
The opportunity to be a part of this year’s Top Prospect Tournament with Ring of Honor came from what I think was getting in front of the right people and showing them that, despite my in-ring actions, I am humble, a hard worker, professional and committed. I would attribute a lot of my opportunities with Ring of Honor to Mr. Bill Behrens who gave me the opportunity to come to his promotion in Cornelia, GA. It really grew from there. The opportunities came more and more. I was able to wrestle in front of over a thousand people for ROH during WrestleCon/ WrestleMania weekend last year in Dallas. I took part in one of the ROH tryout camps, and now I’m here. I’m beyond grateful for the opportunity to not just showcase for the fans in attendance, but for the fans worldwide and prove to myself and my two sons that I belong on a stage as big as this one. If I win I most definitely believe that doors won’t just open in Ring of Honor and elsewhere, I believe that they will blow off the hinges.
6. Looking at the past people who have won it being Lio Rush and Donovan Dijak, do you think that if you do win it that lots of doors will be opened for you both in Ring of Honor and elsewhere??
If I win I most definitely believe that doors won’t just open in Ring of Honor and elsewhere, I believe that they will blow off the hinges.
7. What are your future ambitions in wrestling and where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time??
My future ambitions in wrestling are to become better and better day by day and to one day be able to perform on the most grand stages in front of the world. To one day be an inspiration to someone else the way The Rock was for me.
8. Of course the blog is called TheBritishWrestlingRevival, would you ever come over to the UK if given the chance and if so who would you have your eye on facing??
If given the opportunity, I would be on the very next flight to the U.K.! Wrestling across the pond is something I’ve always dreamt of doing and someplace I’ve always wanted to visit. I know I wouldn’t necessarily have to come to the U.K. To do it, but I would love to square up with Marty Scurll or Will Ospreay. Wrestling them here would be great, but the ENERGY that we would generate in the U.K. would be absolutely ELECTRIC and that would make it ten times better!
9. Where can the readers follow the progress of ‘Big Brother’ Raphael King on social media and where can promoters book you for shows if they are reading this??
Readers can follow me on Twitter and Instagram @RealRaphaelK and doing so would be greatly appreciated! Devyn is @OfficialDevyn. Please refer all booking inquiries and friend requests to THIS page (www.facebook.com/KingSportsEntertainment) It’s the only one I answer messages from. The other is my fan page which readers are more than welcome to like.
10. Do you have any future dates or projects that you want to plug to end the interview off??
I am currently working on progressing my acting and modeling careers as well as going full steam ahead with wrestling. I am the brand ambassador for a fine neckwear line called P5Designs! The finest scarves, neckties, bow ties, etc., you can get there! It’s owned and operated by Alvin Perry who you can follow on Twitter @AlvinPerry. You can tweet him any inquiries there (be sure to mention my name, and orders can be placed at p5designs.com. I will also be working with Shawn Denise designs as a model for their male line rolling out in 2017. As far as acting goes, I have done script reads and auditions so hopefully that works out for me! Season one is wrapped, but you can catch full episodes on BET on demand or on CentricTV.com-shows-My Current Situation!
Thank you again for the time and opportunity! I look forward to hopefully making the trip to show the U.K. what #BigBrotherKing is all about!
I hope you enjoyed this interview and I would like to thank Raphael for answering the questions for you to read, please go and support him on social media if possible!
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If you want to check out our other new ROH TPT contestant interview so far with Chris LeRusso go to : https://thebritishwrestlingrevival.wordpress.com/2017/02/08/interview-the-heir-apparent-chris-lerusso/