– Santino Marella recently spoke with Newsday to promote an anti-bullying event in New York City this week. Below are some highlights:
Connecting with fans:
“I always had a special relationship with the fans because I came from the audience, and we’ve shared a lot of laughter together. So it’s not like they put me on a pedestal. They believe I’m one of them. So instead of fans and a role model, it’s more like we’re friends. So to have one of your friends come that close to becoming world heavyweight champion, it was exciting.”
Recent WWE releases:
“The guys who were released maybe were not as flexible. They couldn’t fit into everywhere. I’m versatile. I can do anything. I can sing, dance. I can do it all. I can stay here for another 20 years.”
Comedy in wrestling:
“We have to take you on an emotional roller coaster through the entire match — have you screaming, cheering, emotional, and you have to laugh too. It’s an essential part of the program. And that’s why I don’t get nervous that I’m going to get fired — because that’s my role.”
His future with WWE:
“I realize I’m one of the older guys in the locker room, and I’m 5-foot-10. These young bucks are 27 years old and 250 pounds. That way I’d be able to stay on the program and entertain people and be an even bigger part of the show . . . I’m definitely winding down.”
Santino added that he’s interested in non-wrestling roles in WWE, including as a possible general manager on RAW or SmackDown or hosting a talk show on the WWE Network.
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