During the biggest show of the year for Ouest Catch, a promotion based in Brittany, WeSportFR had the chance to talk with Travis Banks, a wrestler at WWE NXT UK. He also wrestles for other English promotions, such as PROGRESS, where he won the Super Strong Style 16. This show was his first in France, and as you will see, he was not disappointed by his performance. After a match worthy of the best against Tristan Archer, a wrestler already used by WWE (during the CruserWeightClasic), Travis Banks very kindly took his time to answer our questions.
Hi Travis, why and how did you become a wrestler ?
So, I must have been about eight years old and I watched WCW Nitro and there was two wrestlers, Glacier versus Mortis and there was the best of mortal combat then and he looked like Subzero. So, from the moment I watched that and I don’t know what the hell this is but that’s what I want to do. I loved the big characters, from that moment I saw Glacier which is so funny, I was like I’m hooked,I need to pursue whatever this is. It was awesome.
NXT has recently developed a new brand, NXT UK of which you are a part, do you find that the british wrestling is developing well ?
So when I first got to the British scene, 2016, there wasn’t any WWE, there wasn’t anything and, for like three, four years that the British scene‘s like skyrocking the men, it’s just been awesome, the talent‘s been awesome, and I now like I come over here and I see the Coupe de France and it’s like Trisan Archer here and all that. So much talent everywhere. But like there wasn’t anything like that, there wasn’t like any avenues to get to WWE or anything so. It’s been hard, it’s been a lot like hard work like for a few of us; there has been a call group like Pete Dunne, me, Tyler Bate, Mark Andrews, it’s like there’s a whole call group. I’m not naming everybody that I should but but I’m saying that there’s a lot of guys even like guys before me like Doug Williams and all that I really like who worked hard to get eyes on the British scene and I’m just happy to be a part of the whole thing. I came over at the right time when the scene was blowing up and I kind of rode the way for success, you know, selfishly.
At PROGRESS Wrestling, you’ve been champion, you’ve beaten the greatest, do you still have goals to achieve at PROGRESS Wrestling ?
Yes, I do. I want to be champion again. I want to beat Walter. I want to win Super Strong Style 16 for a second time. I want to win it again. I would like to win the title again. Now that we’ve reformed the South Pacific Power Trip with NIWA and TK Cooper, I’d like to win Tag Team gold as well. That’s on the bucket list so to speak .
Travis Banks, after his win in SSS16, two years ago.
Are there any differences between French wrestling and New-Zeland wrestling ?
I would be back for one day or on a tour, as far as I can tell the scene’s doing good but it’s nothing compared to the French wrestling scene. I did not expect the crowd tonight to be as crazy and as hot and as wild as they were so I was very pleasantly surprised with the French wrestling scene. I guess like New-Zealand is quite a pretty young scene, so I would assume in time it’s like the better’s come through and like it would come to that level as well. But tonight was amazing. It was awesome.
You almost participated at the first ever NXT UK TakeOver in Blackpool, would you like to participate at the second NXT UK Pay-per-view ?
I was very gutted, I was very heartbroken to only have such a small piece of vibe on TakeOver but I was so happy to a part of the whole thing. Yeah, like all the team, all the NXT UK worked very hard to get to where they are. And to have a Pay-Per-View for the UK with the WWE brand on it’s scene, it’s awesome. I think it’s just a testimony to everybody’s hard work. Yeah I would defitnitely like to be on the next TakeOver. I would like to wrestle Pete for the title and become a WWE UK champion. That would be my goal. That would be my ultimate goal.
We know how it ended…
Do you have a dream match in WWE ?
I think I want to challenge Brock Lesnar to become Universal Champion (he laughts). I could beat him. Brock Lesnar and John Cena because everybody considers him he’s like he’s one the like being used like kinda legends. So I like John Cena. I know a lot of people don’t like him but, he’s like the standard when it comes to professional wrestlers. So I’d like to test myself against John Cena.
Currently, many people say bad things about WWE, do you have anything to say to them ?
Yes, they’re wrong. To be honest I don’t really pay attention like I literally just work and I just try to represent the brand the best as I can. WWE have been amazing to me like I dislocated my shoulder in September and they looked after me completely, they gave me doctors, they gave me everything I needed to get back on track and also they gave me a salary which is a nice part of wrestling. But as far as like people talking bad about us, it’s my place to work in this and I love it and it’s literally what I’ve dreamt of being for ten years so you know, I can’t say anything bad against them really.
Tristan Archer is a great wrestler who will go to PROGRESS and who did the CruserWeightClassic, do you have any advice for him to reach your level ?
Whatever like if tonight’s anything to go off like he’s already got the start potential to be in NXT. He can just be anywhere he needs, he just needs that exposure and now he will go to Progress Wrestling. And as he got the CruserWeightClassic you know this guy is a performer. I told him that after the match. I was like you could be anywhere, I was just like you just need that platform and you know also again he’s here building French wrestling. So I always try to like take the positive out of everything so like he’s here for the French wrestling for everybody maybe there will be at WWE NXT UK or maybe one day at NXT France or something like that. Maybe who knows like Archer would be like perfect but again he could be at RAW, Smackdown, he could be at PROGRESS , he could be anywhere and he is and it is only a matter of time before he is, you know everybody’s like “oh, he’s awesome”.
Respect between the two superstars… It’s beautiful. (Darren Fog)
We thank Travis Banks for taking the time to answer our questions after a tough match against Tristan Archer. We hope he will suceed in all his future projects. We hope that he will be champion at WWE NXT UK or in PROGRESS Wrestling. We hope that he will win the Super Strong Style 16 too. We hope that he will continue to entertain us as it does so well. Be proud to be a wrestling fan.