Regal ready for action
By GREG OLIVER - Producer, SLAM! Wrestling
Steven Regal at the NWA 50th Anniversary show. -- Greg Oliver, CANOE.
CHERRY HILL, NJ -- It wasn't WCW or the WWF or the travel schedules or the bad booking that finally drove Steven Regal insane. It was too much time off.
"In fifteen years, [I've] never been out for longer," said Regal at the NWA 50th Anniversary show. The time off drove him "totally around the bend."
The former 'Lord' and 'Blue Blood' is set to finally start up with the WWF as a 'Real Man's Man'.
And he can't wait.
"It's been ten months since I've wrestled, done anything because I've had pneumonia three times, and I broke my leg and my ankle. So, I'll just be glad to get back."
During his time off, Regal spent a lot of time with his family. "I've never really spent a lot of time with my family and children, apart from a few days here, a few days there. So that was nice. I got to spend a lot of time around the house, doing things I haven't done for years. It was hard for me because I've never really done anything, apart from 16 at full-time, doing this. I've never done anything else, so it was really difficult to handle it."
At the NWA 50th Anniversary show, he went up against NWA champ Dan Severn, and lost in an old-style scientific match. He relished the chance to fight Severn.
"I've never been an amateur champion or anything, but I've got a background of straight fighting with people," he explained. "I started in carnivals taking on people for a living. I've fought all my life and never backed down from a fight or a straight wrestling match with anybody"
Regal travelled the world before settling in WCW in the early nineties. He was never a top tier star in WCW, but did hold the TV title on numerous occasions.
To an outsider, it seemed that Regal and WCW parted on bad terms, but he insisted that was not the case.
"I had five good years there," he said. "They brought me to America. They didn't have to bring me to America. They took care of me, paid me for five years. I'm never bitter. ... I always got paid, so that was the main thing. Some things I didn't like, but it doesn't mean I'm bitter in any way. I certainly would never say a bad word about WCW because they didn't need to keep me. They didn't need to keep me under contract. When my time was up, my time was up."
He hopes that things go better in the WWF.
"[I want to] be given a fair chance to be the best I can. That's basically ... I had that chance for a while, I had that chance for a couple of years in WCW, then I didn't. I just kind of lost interest for quite a while. If you know you've got so much talent, and you're held back, you get very frustrated."
Obviously Regal, whose real name is Darrin Matthews, has his sights set on the WWF European title, currently held by X-Pac. He attacked the champ on this week's RAW.
"To me, how can you have an American who's the European champion? It doesn't make any sense," he said. "That's the ideal thing to me is to be the European champion to start with. That's what I've set my hopes on, that's I'm going to set myself towards."
William Regal bio and story archive
More on the NWA 50th Anniversary show