Mike Bennett and Maria Kanellis were signed by WWE as a couple in 2017, debuting at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view. They used Maria’s maiden name as she previously had a career in WWE, and were known as the Kanellis couple.
The duo were released from WWE on April 15 as part of the massive layoff because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bennett recently appeared for an interview on The Hannibal TV. He talked about several things, including his work experience with WWE and which Superstar is his dream opponent.
On working in WWE
Other than WWE, Bennett has worked with several promotions, including IMPACT Wrestling, ROH, and NJPW. When asked about his working experience with WWE and IMPACT, Bennett praised the latter for giving the wrestlers creative freedom.
He said that despite the pay issues, he had the time of his life working there. But the case was not the same for WWE, where the Superstars are expected to strictly follow the script as approved by Vince McMahon.
Performing in WWE is like putting up a show for only one person in the audience, Bennett said, and the person is Vince McMahon.
“At WWE it’s just like, this is how it is. This is the script, this is the story, this is what Vince wants and you can’t go anywhere off of that and don’t even try. If you try you’re in trouble and so that’s very difficult and I’ve said this before, at WWE you wrestle to impress Vince. It’s an audience of one. Everything you do is to impress Vince.” (H/t Sportskeeda)
“No one is wrestling for the fans at WWE where I feel like at Impact, we’re trying to put on the best product for the fans. At WWE you’re just trying to keep your job and impress…I shouldn’t say impress, you’re trying to just not pi*s off the boss.”
Bennett previously said in another interview that he had a much better time working with Triple H than Vince McMahon, and that The Game should be running the show instead.
Mike Bennett reveals his dream opponent
Bennett revealed in the interview that the opponent he wants to face inside the ring is Edge. He revealed that the Rated-R Superstar was not a big favorite of his growing up. But after he himself came into the business and understood what goes on inside the ring, he started to realize and respect the work Edge did, especially as a heel.
“It’s Edge. Edge, hands down probably for like the last….so, Edge, when I was growing up and was like a die-hard wrestling ‘fan’, was never like a big fan favorite of mine. Then when I became a wrestler and actually understood wrestling 101 and psychology and all the stuff that goes into being a wrestler, he 100% became my absolute favorite wrestler just by watching him move, his heel work.” (H/t Sportskeeda)
Bennett also added that he thinks Edge had a huge contribution as a heel to help Cena become the massive babyface that he did.
“To me, I don’t think Cena gets over much as he does without heel Edge, without Edge being that grimy, disgusting, just evil heel to Cena’s super babyface.”
Bennett revealed that during his time in WWE, he got to know Edge not just as a wrestler but as a friend. The latter was kind and helpful to him, and also gave him advice for improving his performance.