Exit Interview: Chris Adonis on Working for Impact Wrestling

Nick Mayberry

Chris Adonis just turned 35 and has spent nearly half his life in pro wrestling starting early on in WWE. The former Chris Masters took what he learned against the likes of John Cena and Shawn Michaels to other promotions he has worked for since then.

Among them Impact Wrestling, which is where Adonis had been until recently. The performer, real name Chris Mordetzkyannounced his departure from the promotion via social media. A day before the tweet, he sat down to discuss a number of topics backstage at the Impact television tapings at Universal Orlando. This included how the latest run with the company began.

“It kind of happened almost by accident,” he said.

“I was with Global Force Wrestling when they were branding with Impact under one umbrella for a little while. I didn’t know if I would end up here, honestly, but I know that it’s a good place to work. Things are looking really bright for them. And the fact that it was in Florida most of the times I enjoyed compared to Toronto, Canada where I was at. I’m an L.A. guy but moved to Toronto about six months ago, so that’s been an adjustment.”

Adonis was optimistic about the behind the scenes developments happening at Impact. The purchase by Anthem Sports & Entertainment Corporation, as well as the hiring of Scott D’Amore and Don Callis to management. He could feel the atmosphere beginning to stabilize a bit more than before.

“It has been a crazy year with all the changes in the company and guys and guys out,” he said.

“…There just needs to be some consistency. Consistency went out the window in the last year, but you couldn’t help that with all the changes. You just have to get some consistency going, which I think they are in route to doing. The sky is the limit.

“…I’ve only just met Don and conversating over the past couple of days, but I have heard good things about him. It seems like he has a bigger pulse on professional wrestling, which is good. He knows the trends of what’s going in and out and how to maybe adapt to the new environment we live in with technology and how the world is evolving in general. Scott D’Amore brings a lot of experience and a good figure to help head it up at the helm. Sonjay [Dutt] is here too. Time will tell, but it seems they have the right players here in place to capitalize on the talent involved.”

Adonis was one of those veterans in a locker room full of emerging superstars. He was once on the other side learning from those who paved the way. The WWE alum remembers starting out before everyone had camera phones and navigation systems were common. With experience, the known “Masterpiece” saw the pieces of the puzzle coming together.

“Booker T., Arn Anderson, Shawn Michaels, those were instrumental guys who helped me with my early development and along the way,” he said.

“Shawn was there early and Arn was there throughout. As things started to make more sense to me, it just became that more useful to have those brains around. You always feel good when you hear their thoughts if I was going in the right direction or not. They are a peer who has gone so far in the business and lent so much to me.”

Prior to his Impact exit, he served as support for Eli Drake on his ascent to the main event. They developed a rapport to the extent that Adonis got a lesson in not judging a book by its cover.

“I just never knew before I came to Impact Wrestling about Eli Drake that well. I didn’t really have an impression of him,” he said.

“Then after I got to work with him, I began to realize who he was. First, I thought he was an a—hole. I didn’t know him that well, but saw the way he carried himself. But I came to find out he is a good dude. He worked really hard. I didn’t really know how hard until I’ve been around him. It gives me faith that when you work hard and come into your own that the opportunities can be there for you. Fast forward to now up until recently he was the world champion. You could have never convinced me of all that until I was around him and saw the work ethic and how much he pays attention to details.”

Outside the ring, the two shared the same interests such as hip-hop and basketball. Adonis looks to Kobe Bryant and the intensity he brought to the court for inspiration. They are also both from the West Coast. Adonis appeared to enjoy his time with Drake. At the same time, one could tell he was hungry for more.

“I don’t always want to be Eli Drake’s sidepiece,” he said.

“I went into this with an understanding of that and hopefully it can evolve into something that will benefit both of us.”

Adonis remains passionate about wrestling after around 16 years lacing up the boots, showing no signs of stopping any time soon.

“I want to do it for as long as I possibly can,” he said.

“Until they tell me I can’t do it anymore. That’s how much fun I have doing it right now.”

Another strong interest for the star is politics. He wouldn’t mind following in other wrestlers who have gone on to serve public office. Glenn Jacobs, who wrestles in WWE as Kane and is running for mayor of Knox County in Tennessee, is one he admires.

“I would definitely be a democratic political candidate,” he said.

“I’ve always loved politics and right now it’s such a crazy time in the U.S. with passion burning. It would be nice to do something where you at least feel like you’re making a difference…Kane has always been a smart man. I hope he win. He is very intellectual and had an interest in politics. I want to be part of the process myself, most likely centered around California. Might just be a pipe dream. But I it has been an interest of mine because I care about social issues and people and figured it’s something I can have a passion for doing.”

History has shown never say never in Adonis’ eyes. Nothing is out of the realm of possibility.

“It’s really not. I mean look who our president is at the moment,” he said.

Impact Wrestling airs 8/7c Thursdays on Pop TV