Interviews

WWE's Kofi Kingston on CM Punk, Walking Dead, The WWE Network, and His Royal Rumble Escapes

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Hence the reason why Kingston is considered one of the more eye-catching and high-flying stars in the wrestling realm, and why he caused jaws to drop inside US Airways Center this past weekend weekend during a WWE live event at the arena Saturday where he beat the ultra-prissy Fandago in an opening match.

We spoke with Kingston recently in honor of his visit to the Valley about his amazing performance in the recent Royal Rumble pay-per-view, as well as how he's looking forward to the upcoming debut of the WWE Network on Sunday, February 23, which will offer fans the chance to rewatch every single pay-per-view and television program in the company's 62-year history.

Speaking of television, Kingston is also a huge geek for The Walking Dead and told us how (like most of America) he hates waiting for new episodes. What's worse is that he has to wait a few more days than the rest of us, given that his Sunday night's are spent in a ring.

Kingston also spoke to us about his longstanding friendship with fellow wrestling star CM Punk (who's recently caused a major hullabaloo in the wrestling world after essentially going on strike due to a major beef with the WWE), as well as his bowling skills, which he got to use while filming a game against Chris Hardwick from the Talking Dead along with other WWE Superstars.

You've become famous in recent years for your impossible escapes during the Royal Rumble match. Do you try to one-up yourself every year? Well, I mean, honestly I challenge myself every day to come up with new and innovating things that the WWE Universe hasn't seen. But in terms of the Rumble, to be honest, I don't think of stuff to do all year up until like 24 hours beforehand. I definitely like the pressure and the challenge of just being able to come up with new and innovating things. Because, as time goes by, it becomes harder and harder to do that with all the exceptional athletes that we have in WWE.

First, you did the handstand in 2012, the thing with the office chair last year, and then that huge jump from the railing this year. If nothing else, you're running out of places around the ring. We got about 363 days to think about it. So, I'm sure it will work itself out.

There's a video of CM Punk a few years ago where he called you his "road wife." Before his recent departure, was that still true? Yeah, we were each other's road wives. With Punk, I consider him to be like a brother to me. He's one of the guys who took me under his wing when I first came. So we've been able to maintain a good relationship. And there are very few people in the business that you can call true friends, so I consider Punk to be that and more. So yes, "road wife" is the term we used to sum that all up.

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Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.