Legends With JBL: Ron Simmons Interview
Mark Hodgins

The WWE Network is bombarded by all the original material it has to offer and some of it really isn't that good but if you can search through all the bad and search for this episode of Legends with JBL, you will not be disappointed. Throughout this episode Ron Simmons discusses his upbringing, his industry changing world championship win, his time with John Bradshaw Layfield (JBL) as the APA and much, much more.

Rough Upbringing 

JBL touches upon what kept Ron going despite his rough upbringing. Ron tells us about how his mother and grandmother passed away when he was eight years old and how his dad left him and he still pictures the car going round the corner to never come back again. This alone shows us how hard it must've been for an African American with no parents to have made it as far as Ron did. It's a true testament to the drive and motivation that Ron has and that should be mentioned a lot more on WWE television.

He used his past to teach young kids that there's always a way to get what you want and, that just because you are black, you shouldn't use that as an excuse to why you haven't got things. These things that Ron teaches and says should be echoed very loudly as a lot of young people, not just young people of color, need to hear these things from someone that has been at the lowest and gotten through it. Ron reiterates that hard work is the key to success and without hard work you won't get anywhere. 

Getting into the Wrestling Business

We hear that is was Lex Luger that got Ron into the wrestling business and that he recommended a trainer called Hiro Matsuda to Ron. He recalls a moment where Hiro broke Hulk Hogan's leg and tells us of how rough the training was with him. He says that this type of training separated the people who didn't have the drive to do it from the people who did. Once again, this shows just how determined and motivated Ron really was to succeed. Ron also touches upon how despite wrestling not being his first plan, he watched it as a child and cites Tony Atlas and Dusty Rhodes as his favorites growing up. 

Blue Helmet Disaster

JBL goes on to mock a huge fashion disaster in Ron's character Farooq. He goes on to say that Ron was the only man that could walk out in something as embarrassing as that and no one said a bad word about it, even in a mock way. This shows just how well respected and possibly feared Ron was in locker room. A very funny moment for all fans of backstage stories

The Championship Win That Changed the Business

JBL goes on to ask about one of the most famous and game changing championship wins of all time, Ron Simmons pinning Vader for the WCW Championship. They play the end of it where we can see and hear the huge pop Ron got after winning. A very touching moment for all fans to relive and you can spot a young African American man/boy so overjoyed that he jumps up and down for several minutes. This highlights just how much influence that title win had on young African Americans and shows them that anyone can be the man if you work hard enough. He says people need to stop using their race as an excuse to why they haven't got what they wanted and that they should just work hard and stop making excuses for themselves before they've even tried. This message needs to be heard all around the world as Ron Simmons speaks nothing but the truth.

The APA

JBL carries on to talk about the team of both Ron and Bradshaw and how they were one of the first interracial tag teams in wrestling history. JBL says the WWE wanted to use the fact that a black man and white man teaming up as sort of a gimmick, but Ron wouldn't allow this as JBL and Ron were together as a team because they were friends backstage, not because of their race. He also says that Ron was the reason that he was allowed to talk as Vince Russo thought Bradshaw's accent was southern and sounded dumb, but Ron just handed him the microphone mid promo and of course no one said a word to Ron because he is Ron.

Influential

Ron Simmons has had a huge influence on many stars, including one of the biggest of all-time, The Rock. He shares a story of how he used to say to the Rock just know your role and how later The Rock started using this as a catchphrase. A very interesting and funny fact for all wrestling fans. He also touches upon how he tried to help Ahmed Johnson but his ego was too big and eventually that showed when he left the WWE. Ahmed Johnson wanted to be the leader of The Nation of Domination which would never have worked as he didn't possess the star power at that time. He states that Johnson wanted it all without having to work for it and that he and the boss Vince McMahon both tried to help him.

Is Ron Simmons Happy?

A very touching moment in this episode is when JBL asks whether Ron Simmons is happy and he says yes. When asked about what he wants to be remembered for, Simmons say not for his accomplishments inside the ring, it's being a good father and grandfather. This truly shows the character of Ron Simmons and how inspirational he is. This writer believes his story should be given a bigger platform to show the whole world because his story is one of the most inspirational of all time.

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