EXCLUSIVE: Scotty Davis on Scrappermania 6 cancellation, Jushin Liger, NXT UK

The current OTT No Limits Champion Scotty Davis chatted with POST Wrestling's Andrew Thompson about Scrappermania 6 being cancelled, his experience working with Jushin Liger, thoughts about the NXT UK brand, Jordan Devlin and much more

Over The Top Wrestling based in Ireland is/was home to the likes of David Starr, The Kings Of The North (Bonesaw & Damien Corvin), Session Moth Martina, Jordan Devlin, Sha Samuels and Sammii Jayne. OTT is also the home of the 19-year old Scotty Davis who is the promotion’s ‘No Limits’ Champion. Scotty began his career in pro wrestling in his early teens as he would take on jobs such as being as runner backstage, working security or took on other jobs at shows until he was able to compete inside the ring. At the age of 19, Scotty has continuously added to his resume in the business and has more goals and aspirations that he wants to tack on to that resume.

On top of being the OTT No Limits Champion, Scotty is also a co-holder of the PROGRESS Tag Team Championships along with the current NXT Cruiserweight Champion Jordan Devlin. With all that he’s done in wrestling thus far, Scotty is not letting his success take his eye off all the other feats he wants to accomplish. I had the opportunity to interview Scotty and he shared that he does take the time to reflect on what he has done and it was this past September during PROGRESS Wrestling’s Natural Progression Series that things began to kick off for him.

“Somewhat. There was a huge burst last September when I won the three titles at the Natural Progression Series and all of that. Prior to that, I was getting a lot of success but it was that month where everything started blowing up really, and since then, I’ve just been in all these different countries all over Europe and obviously in Japan and stuff since then and its just been wild.”

The world is currently in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic that has greatly affected people’s jobs, financial stability, family, health among other important life factors that have also been affected. While specifically speaking on the topic of pro wrestling, the likes of All Elite Wrestling, WWE and for a period of time, Game Changer Wrestling are running/were running empty arena shows. There have been many takes on the topic of empty arena shows as most believe that wrestlers should not be put in the position to risk their health and with that comes appreciation for the wrestlers who are willing to put their health at risk to entertain the viewers.

WrestleTalk put on a showcase that streamed on their YouTube channel and it was to raise money for independent wrestlers whose WrestleMania week and future bookings were in jeopardy due to the pandemic. Scotty Davis was a part of the show and he spoke about that while sharing his thoughts about empty arena events.

“Obviously to me, our fans are a huge part of it, but I’ve done empty arena shows. The last show we did, it was a WrestleTalk show and when I was doing that, beforehand I was kinda thinking, ‘This is gonna be a bit awkward,’ but then when I was out there, I just realized, ‘Oh, I’m wrestling and I’m having fun.’ I didn’t feel any pressure because there was no fans there so it was actually more relaxed and more chill so I could focus on my selling and my movement a lot more, and actually I feel it benefited me in the ring. It felt strange at first but the second I was moving around the ring, I was like, ‘This is like training. This is fine, this is grand’ and then obviously looking at it, it’s cool because you can focus on what people are doing in the ring a lot more. You’re focused on the little things, the little movements, the footwork, all of the little things. I think it draws attention to that more so…”

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic putting a halt to all things in pro wrestling, Scotty had the chance to partake in wXw’s 16 Carat Gold weekend. He described the environment as one of the most joyous and energized environments he’s had the pleasure of being in/around. During that weekend, Scotty mixed it up with Shigehiro Irie, competed in two four-way matches and took on Daniel Makabe as a part of the AMBITION show that also took place in Germany that weekend. Davis also spoke about getting to wrestle Mike Bailey and how their different styles meshed well when they stepped in the ring.

“Oh that was wild. I love wXw. Started there last October but 16 Carat was obviously a huge step up. It was the biggest event of the year. It was just wild. When I got there, I got there on a Thursday for the Inner Circle show. My flight was delayed by like five hours, so I only got in the door when the second match was on, and then I was told who I was wrestling. It was Shigehiro Irie, and I was so happy because I’ve been wanting to wrestle him for years. So meanwhile, we have a sick match. I loved it and he was super happy about it and he’s like one of the nicest people I’ve met in wrestling, and then day two happens and… I was in a Fatal 4-Way and that was just sick. I’m there with people who are just really cool but like the whole day as well, there’s like catering, like all these people from America, Japan, Canada, France, Germany, England, Ireland and all of these people from all around the world who never would’ve met each other. We’re all in a little area and we’re all just getting along great and it’s a great experience because then you’re with them throughout the whole weekend, then after the show you’re going for drinks and you’re going for food with all these boys and you make up these relationships and it’s really cool because they’re not just people you’re going to remember going forward. You’ll see them in different countries and then, you already have that relationship there and it’s sick to meet so many people.

The whole roster was backstage watching on the monitors. It was a couple of monitors backstage and the whole roster was watching and you’d come back and everybody would be like, ‘Ah! Sick match. I like this, I like this, I like this’ and you get feedback from so many different people from so many different backgrounds, and it’s a great learning experience too. Like probably my favorite thing from that weekend was the AMBITION show because, obviously it’s more shoot-orientated wrestling and that’s my bread and butter and I’m in there with Mike Bailey who’s a Taekwondo lad, which is a completely different style to my freestyle wrestling, and we just meshed really well and it was great clash of styles and then I’m in there with Daniel Makabe next and it’s another great mesh of styles so I got two fantastic matches there and again, it’s away from home and it’s in front of a completely new crowd and it’s sick then, because that’s just more experience and more exposure so I was super happy with that weekend.”

There have been varying opinions about WWE’s NXT UK brand. There are a handful of talents who are assigned to the brand that were staples of the independent scene throughout Europe. With the loss of some of those talents, there were worries about some of the damage that-that could do to the scene. There have also been a crop of wrestlers who have turned down deals to work with the brand. Back in February, Session Moth Martina spoke to POST Wrestling and told us about her decision to not join NXT UK. Scotty Davis, who’s a close friend of Martina’s had similar thoughts when it came to the brand.

He thinks it’s great that some of his friends are able to be spotlighted and grow their respective brands but in that same breath, he knows that there are some wrestlers in NXT UK who are frustrated with their position[s]. Davis doesn’t think NXT UK might ever be in his sights and is happy with the direction his career is headed in.

“I see a lot of people in NXT UK, obviously a lot of people who I’m friends with who I’m super happy to see them get the platform to perform in front of. Some swim and some sink. I feel like a lot of people have benefited from it and there’s the few who haven’t. But, I feel… I don’t know. I’m not promoter so I don’t know business-wise. I’m seeing a lot of people do very well from it. Some people who were struggling to find themselves, weren’t really sure who their wrestling character was yet and then they go in and they’re getting advice from the likes of Shawn Michaels and all that and they’re catching on and you can see the progress on NXT UK. As [far] as Jordan [Devlin], when the U.K. [Championship] tournament came around, it brought a whole new level of motivation to him, and it’s a reason why he’s one of the best wrestlers in the world now is because of the motivation that has come from that brand. It wouldn’t be for me right now. I’m not sure it if may at all. Obviously there’s a lot of talks about it and there’s been some talks going back and forth from all the PROGRESS stuff but overall, I feel like I’m so young and, I’d rather build my name up and build my brand up. Then when I do make a big move somewhere, it’s a big deal. Like it’s something to talk about, but in terms of the people who have signed, in terms of the people who are currently training away and doing shows, I’m happy for a lot of them but, obviously there’s some that are frustrated. I’d just say go with your gut and speak out about what you feel you’re worth, pretty much, because that’s a lot of the problem with the lads who are [signed]. They’re not speaking up. They’re not pushing themselves forward, but overall I feel like its been beneficial to a lot of people.”

This year at OTT’s biggest show of the calendar year in Scrappermania 6, Scotty Davis was going to defend the No Limits Championship against Omari. The event was set to emanate from National Stadium in Dublin and was going to be headlined by OTT World Champion David Starr vs. AEW World Champion Jon Moxley in a non-title match. Just two days before the event, the government issued a decree which was against all indoor gatherings of more than 100 people. Scotty Davis was highly disappointed that the event was no longer taking place when he initially found out about the cancellation. In preparation for the event, Scotty said that he was in the best shape of his life, went to purchase new gear and merchandise that he was planning to sell at the event and he reflected on what he felt as he found out about Scrappermania 6.

“Yeah, Scrappermania is always the highlight of my year, pretty much — like of my wrestling year. Last year, I got to wrestle Jushin Thunder Liger there, but I was so looking forward to this match because me and Omari have so much chemistry and I feel like there was a really good build going into it and people weren’t really sure which way it was gonna go and there was a lot of excitement going into our match and seeing people online saying our match was the match they were looking forward to the most. So I was dieting, like mad. I was going to the gym twice a day and my conditioning was through the roof. I was probably in the best shape I’ve ever been in-in my life and then, three days before the event, I get the call being like — it was the government that issued no events over 500 people and all that, and my heart was sunk. I was like, ‘F*ck,’ because I had bought new gear, new entrance jackets, a whole batch of t-shirts, the whole [nine]. I was fully invested in this show, and yeah. My heart just sunk and then the dieting was gone out the window. I was eating chocolate and all the [snacks] I could find. That was a big hit to me but then, I got a call, the day Scrappermania was supposed to be on. It was Will Ospreay [who] sent me a text and it was about being in the WrestleTalk show over in London two days later, and I was planning to go out there anyway. So, I heard that and I was like, ‘Yeah, yeah. I’d be happy to be a part of it’ and then, went off to London, did that show and it got over 10,000 viewers when the match was on, stuff like that so we got new eyes on me and a positive came from that negative situation.”

Although he was not able to have his moment at Scrappermania this year, Davis did have a special moment at Scrappermania 5 when he took on the recently retired, former 11-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion and soon-to-be WWE Hall Of Famer, Jushin Thunder Liger. Scotty looks back at that experience as one of the best of his young career. Scotty admitted to being caught up in the moment when Liger’s theme music hit over the speakers and he saw the streamers come flying in when Liger stepped in the ring. Davis said that Liger was happy with the match and it was an honor for him to be in the ring with who he believes is the greatest Junior Heavyweight to ever do it.

“Yeah, it was madness. I still think he’s the greatest Junior Heavyweight of all-time, and leading up to it, it was just wild and I was like, ‘This is happening, this is happening. This is wild,’ and then when I met him, he was one of the nicest people I had met in wrestling and yeah, he was just so nice and I was just so chill because of how nice he was and it wasn’t really sinking in. I was super buzzed and I was mad hyped going out there. It was one of my favorite entrances I’ve ever done as well. The whole stadium was buzzing, but it only kicked in when his iconic music played and I’m standing there in the ring and he’s making his entrance and I’m like, ‘Oh f*ck, this is happening. Like sh*t’, and then his music’s playing and the crowd is going wild and he stands in the ring, does his pose and the streamers come in, which was always a dream of mine to be standing in the ring with streamers flying in. It was always one of the coolest visuals to me, wrestling-wise, and all that’s happening and I’m like, ‘Sh*t. Here we f*cking go,’ and it’s just getting me all excited and then throughout the match, I just learned so much. I just learned so much from being in there with him, and then afterwards, he was super nice about it, he gave me any feedback that I needed and obviously I’m still learning and trying to pick his brain more and more. I’m like, ‘Anything. Is there anything I could pick up on?’ He’s being really nice, and he was just super nice. He was happy with the match and it was just an unreal experience. It’s still surreal at times to think about it.”

Scotty continued to speak about the match with Liger and recapped how it was pieced together. Scotty went into the bout thinking that he was going to be following along with what Liger wanted to do. When Scotty approached Liger, Liger told Scotty to piece the match together and come back to him when he had everything finalized. After chatting about it, Liger agreed to everything Scotty said but there was one thing that Liger specifically wanted to do, and that was deliver to brainbuster to Scotty on the floor. Initially, Davis was taken aback but added that if he’s going to trust anyone with a move like that, it was going to be Jushin Liger.

“And throughout that day, as you were saying, he has no right to be as nice as he does, but… he’s super nice because I was thinking, ‘He’s an old Japanese guy and he’s gonna be a bit difficult to call the match with’ but it was so easy because I was just ready to go up and learn from him. I was ready to do anything he wanted to do. I just wanted to learn from him, and when I asked him about the match and the structure and stuff like that, he told me to come up with the whole match, and then bring it to him and see what he thinks. So then I went off, and I’m there thinking of a match and eventually I put one together, and I go up to him and he’s super happy with it, and he says, ‘Yup! We’ll do that whole match,’ and he slotted some bits in here and there. One of the funniest things he said to me was about a brainbuster on the floor. I was like, ‘What?’ He was like, ‘Oh, I protect!’ And I was like, ‘Okay. If I’m gonna trust anybody, I’m gonna trust Liger.’ Obviously it went perfect, but he was so nice. Obviously I won the match and it’s a testament to how nice he is.”

With the plethora of shows that were cancelled and/or postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak, one event that myself and Scotty Davis fantasy booked was PROGRESS Wrestling’s Super Strong Style 16 tournament. Travis Banks, Gene Munny, Chris Ridgeway and Jonathan Gresham were slated to compete in the tourney and while chatting about it, Scotty and I weighed in on the possibility of himself and Jordan Devlin being on opposite sides of the bracket and meeting in the finals as a clash of the PROGRESS Tag Team Champions.

“Yeah, I’d be super happy with that. As I said, me and Jordan have so much history. I got my first-ever victory in pro wrestling against Jordan on my 16th birthday, and then I had my first match in Fight Club: PRO with Jordan, and then I had probably my favorite match ever against Jordan on an OTT Belfast show. I think it’s free on YouTube and there was a really cool highlight video of it by Crooked Gentlemen. If [I’m ever] not feeling motivated about wrestling, I’ll watch that back again and I’m like, ‘Right, that’s the sh*t. That’s my job. This is the coolest thing ever,’ and I love it. So me and Jordan have so much chemistry so if it did come down to me and him at Super Strong Style… it would’ve stole the show. I just know it would’ve been the barn burner and it would’ve just elevated me to another level in England.”

Towards the conclusion of the interview, Scotty was asked about some of his goals in wrestling once the pandemic begins to slow down. He shared that he’d be interested in competing in New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s Best Of The Super Juniors tournament that is set to commence on May 12th. NJPW recently announced that they’ve cancelled all of their events through May 2nd and the status of the BOSJ tourney is up in the air as a result of that. Nonetheless, Davis thinks the tourney would be the perfect platform for him to showcase what he can do in the ring.

“Yeah absolutely. I feel like the Best Of The Super Juniors would be a perfect place to showcase my style, everything I’ve learned from my twelve years of freestyle wrestling, six years of pro wrestling. I feel like like that’d kind of be the perfect platform to show the world who I am, what I’m made of and obviously there’s so much great talent in that division too that I’d have a lot of great partners to bounce off of.”

 

With the growing pandemic, Scotty launched a merchandise store on Big Cartel. Davis can be found on Twitter @ScottyDavisSSM and on Instagram @scottyd353. The full interview with Scotty can be watched via the video below or on the Andrew Thompson Interviews YouTube channel.

[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwovGtkcFdc[/embedyt]

About Andrew Thompson 2272 Articles
A Maryland native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.