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Aries title on the line tonight

Friday, August 17, 2012

Confident in chances against Battle Royale winner

The Clay County Regional Events Center will host the Total Nonstop Action Impact men's championship match Friday night when the professional wrestling company comes to town.

TNA champion Austin Aries is ready to step into the ring for the main event, where he will face the winner of a Battle Royale event for his title belt.

The Battle Royale is presently scheduled to include some of the biggest names on the TNA roster, all seeking a chance to take the large belt from around Aries' waste in the evening's big match.

Aries and Battle Royale contestant Magnus talked about the night's scheduled events from Orlando, Fla. Thursday afternoon.

Austin Aries
How do you like your chances tonight?

"If I was a betting man, I'd put my chips on Double-A."

What's the biggest challenge you face when dealing with an unknown opponent?

"The Battle Royale makes it very unpredictable. You have to pay attention. I imagine the Battle Royale will go on first, and give me some time to prepare for my opponent."

Does the fact that you can't prepare for who you will face until the night of the event have any impact on you?

"I'm feeling pretty confident in my abilities. Being in the Battle Royale will take a bit of a toll on them."

Among the many talented competitors in the Battle Royale is Magnus. Does the relatively young wrestler have a chance against the veteran competitors in the ring?

"You don't want to overlook him at all. The guy physically is a specimen. He just got done with a successful tag title run with Samoa Joe, so he learned a lot. And he's got youth on his side. Guys who have been doing this for a while get some aches and pains and things. He's got some fresh legs."

How has the past year of your career been?

"Last year I was at Destination X (a pay-per-view event) competing for a contract. Fast forward a year to Destination X and I'm competing for and winning the championship. I'd say it's been a pretty good year."

So what's next?

"To be real honest, I just had a rematch with Bobby Roode and defended the title. Now I'm just looking ahead to a lot of guys up and down the roster."

You're getting a chance to wrestle for the heavyweight title tonight, but first you have to get through a list of top veterans in the Battle Royale.

"It's pretty loaded in terms of talent. There are some scenarios that play out in a Battle Royale. It's just getting the guy over the rope. I'm one of the biggest guys in there."

Looking at former champion Bobby Roode, Olympic gold medalist Kurt Angle, Jeff Hardy, Cowboy James Storm and the others, who would you feel is the favorite tonight?

"There are no favorites in a Battle Royale. It's do or die."

Are there any strategies to competing in a Battle Royale?

"Everything changes depending on who's left. There is no weak link in there. Everybody is dangerous. Truth is there are no alliances, it's every man for himself. Anybody looking for allies doesn't have his eyes on the prize."

So, winning the battle is your immediate focus?

"I'm 6-4, 250 pounds. I'm one of the strongest guys in the company. This is for a chance to wrestle for the heavyweight title tonight -- not some other night, but later tonight. The most important thing is to win the Battle Royale."

What do you know about the champion Austin Aries?

"I have faced him once before in a six-man tag team. We had a brief encounter. I know what he's all about. His ascension is nothing short of the top. He's had to fight for it."

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