Seth Rollins will battle Finn Balor at SummerSlam on Sunday for the newly created WWE Universal Championship. Rollins visited the ESPN campus and sat down for an interview on the match, that fan rushing the stage at Raw, and more.
Ben Houser: SummerSlam, what are we going to see from Seth Rollins?
Seth Rollins: Mostly what you can expect — a big match, Seth Rollins, WWE Universal Championship, first time against Finn Balor. Aside from him being a tremendous opponent, I just think you’re going to see me go out there and deliver in big match situations, so I’m looking forward to the energy and the crowd and the match itself.
Houser: It wasn’t that long ago that you came up; what is it like that you built the brand for yourself as Seth Rollins and you’re about to take on a younger talent in his first big match?
Rollins: It’s super-exciting for me, actually, to be on the other side of the coin. You know even last year, you go back to SummerSlam and look at my match with John Cena, and I feel like we’re in a complete role reversal. I feel like I’m in the John Cena position this year and Finn Balor is in my position, so it’s crazy, you know, how much can change in a year. I’m looking forward to that challenge because it’s a new challenge for me; it’s not something I’m used to. And now in the locker room, I’m almost a veteran at this point, which is just wild with all the new guys coming up and stuff like that. For me it’s a tremendous honor. It’s cool to be looked at that way, as a leader and as someone who’s going to help take this generation to the next level.
Houser: What are Finn Balor’s talents that you see?
Rollins: In the ring, Finn Balor is one of the most polished performers that we have. He’s got a uniqueness about him the way he moves; obviously, the Demon King side of his persona is very interesting and differentiates him from a lot of the other talent that we have right now on the roster. I just think there’s just something about him; he’s just one of those guys where you can’t put your finger on it. He’s got that, that “it” factor, that I can’t miss a Finn Balor match. Continue Reading
Despite traveling all around the world with World Wrestling Entertainment, Colby Lopez, better known as the professional wrestler Seth Rollins, has not forgotten where he came from. The 30-year-old wrestler is billed as being from Davenport when he approaches a WWE ring, and that is no gimmick. He was born and raised in nearby Buffalo, Iowa, and now lives in Davenport. Even after reaching the top of the wrestling mountain, he hasn’t been drawn to the bright lights that big cities around the country offer. That fact sometimes prompts strange looks from fans who question why he lives in Iowa.
“I always tell them it’s a great place to live. … Everyone’s very polite; there’s just enough to do; and traffic is at a bare minimum, aside from when the bridge is being worked on,” Mr. Lopez said. “It’s easygoing, chill Midwest life. And that’s kind of what I grew up with, and that’s what kind of keeps me grounded, keeps me balanced when I’m off the road.”
Mr. Lopez is fresh off six months of rehabilitation after tearing his MCL, ACL and meniscus in his right knee at a live WWE event in November. He was able come home and do a lot of things he wouldn’t have been able to do while on the road, but it came at a price. He was forced to give up the world title that he won at Wrestlemania 31 without officially losing it. He returned to work in late May and last Tuesday, during the WWE draft on “Smackdown Live,” he was selected as the first overall pick by WWE’s flagship show, “Monday Night Raw.” The draft allows the WWE’s two main weekly shows to recruit separate rosters of superstars as part of “the new era,” as WWE bills it.
“Over the years of the WWE drafts that we’ve had, there’s been less than a handful of No. 1 picks, so to be included in that group is very nice,” said Mr. Lopez. “The top echelon of the roster, there’s a plethora of guys to choose from — Roman Reigns, Brock Lesnar, John Cena, Randy Orton, all those guys. None of those guys went ahead of me, so to be able to have that feather in my cap is very nice.” Mr. Lopez will jump into the Rollins persona again tonight, when he squares off with Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose in a triple-threat match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, being broadcast live on the WWE Network’s Battleground Pay-Per-View at 7. Continue Reading