by Daniel Johnson
Interviewer’s Note: Shawn Nautilus is a brawler based out of Iowa with nearly seven years of experience in the wrestling industry. At 6’7″ and weighing around 300 lbs., Nautilus is an intimidating force and tends to be bigger than most of his opponents. Some of the promotions Nautilus has worked for include Magnum Pro Wrestling (MPW), Central Empire Wrestling (CEW) and Adrenaline Pro Wrestling (APW). Nautilus has also held some championship gold over the years including time with the CEW Heavyweight Championship and two reigns with the APW Tag Team Championship. Nautilus has also had the chance to work in front of WWE officials. This interview was completed on November 8, 2013. In this interview Nautilus and I focus on the topic of being a brawler in 2013.
Daniel Johnson: In a nutshell how would you describe yourself as a performer?
Shawn Nautilus: I’d like to say I’m a “jack of all trades” however that isn’t the case, I can get a littler technical, but nothing crazy. I like to make people laugh, so there’s usually some comedy in my matches, and if you’re looking for a fight I’d like to say I can hang with the best of them. So “jack of all trades” but master of none.
Daniel Johnson: For those unfamiliar with your work when and where were you born and how long have you been wrestling?
Shawn Nautilus: I was born here in Iowa and I’ve been wrestling for about seven years.
Daniel Johnson: Who was the first wrestler who really interested you through their work? Do you feel they have shaped your career at all?
Shawn Nautilus: That’s hard for me to answer because I don’t have a “favorite wrestler.” I love wrestling for all that it is, and who’s all involved. Everybody does something that you can learn from, so I try and see if I can learn from anyone.
Daniel Johnson: When did you make the decision to become a pro wrestler and how did you find a place to get trained? Also, what was a regular day of training like for you?
Shawn Nautilus: I knew a friend who was looking at a camp and asked me to go, so he and I went, the promoter said that he was going to take tuition for a new class and asked if we wanted to enroll. A typical day for me was much different than for other people. I lived about three hours from the school. And I worked on the weekends, so I’d get done with work at about 11 PM I would go home, shower, pack some clothes and hit the road. I would drive about half way and sleep in my car. Training started at 9 AM so it was easier to sleep in my car than to get up super early in the morning. I did this for a year straight and put 30,000 miles on my car. A typical day at training is learning the fundamentals then progressing to moves then practice matches.
Daniel Johnson: How long had you been wrestling when you had your first match and what memories stand out from it for you?
Shawn Nautilus: I had probably been wrestling six months before my first match, and all I remember is being blown up the whole time.
Daniel Johnson: How, if at all, do you feel you have grown as a performer since this first match and what do you think most helped you in this growth?
Shawn Nautilus: I feel as if I have learned how to work, and not just perform. Making sure I tell a story in the ring and not just do spots. I’ve learned so much from other people I’ve met along the way and through trial and error that’s what’s helped me grow the most.
Daniel Johnson: You have described your style of wrestling as brawling. What made you decide on this style as opposed to another form of wrestling?
Shawn Nautilus: Well, nine time out of 10 I’m going to be bigger than my opponent, I don’t really have to get too technical so I guess being a power house, and brawling can usually get me by. Not to mention if I do fight someone my size I know I’m going to have to brawl.
Daniel Johnson: If you had to sum it up, in a few words what do you think makes a good brawler?
Shawn Nautilus: Physical, brutal, power, hard hitting.
Daniel Johnson: When one hears the word “brawler” I think it is easy to attach a sense of danger to it. Do you think being a brawler is one of the more dangerous approaches you can take to wrestling?
Shawn Nautilus: Not in a sense, I think of boxing, or someone with powerful strikes when I think brawler, no more dangerous than another aspect of pro wrestling.
Daniel Johnson: On that note is there anything you can do to make brawling safer and have less of an impact on your body?
Shawn Nautilus: It’s brawling, it’s hard hitting. That’s all there is to it.
Daniel Johnson: Would you say there are any more approaches to wrestling that can be more dangerous than brawling?
Shawn Nautilus: Like I said the whole businesses is dangerous. Some of the top stars have gotten hurt on the simple things.
Daniel Johnson: On a similar theme what has been the roughest match you have ever been involved in? Ever wake up the next morning and not believe how sore you were?
Shawn Nautilus: I would say, an anything goes match I had with Abu Colossus and the anything goes tag match I had versus Marcus Holiday and Joey Anderson, my partner was Brian Gott.
Daniel Johnson: For young wrestlers interested in taking a brawler’s approach to wrestling what is one piece of advice you would give them?
Shawn Nautilus: You’re going to get hit in the face, learn to tolerate it.
Daniel Johnson: I just had a few more questions about brawling before I wanted to get into some more general questions. To start off with a random one what are your thoughts on the Brooklyn Brawler?
Shawn Nautilus: Brawler is a cool dude, met him a couple of times, can’t say I had watched any of his stuff but good dude none the less.
Daniel Johnson: If you could wrestle any brawler in the wrestling world past or present who would it be?
Shawn Nautilus: Just because that’s my style I wouldn’t pin those being the only people I want to wrestle. I’d love to have any good match with anyone past, present or future.
Daniel Johnsion: On a similar note do you enjoy working with wrestlers with a similar style such as other brawlers or do you like more of a contrast?
Shawn Nautilus: Doesn’t matter as long as we tell a good story.
Daniel Johnson: For your money who is the best brawler in the wrestling world today?
Shawn Nautilus: I have to say Brock Lesner given his MMA experience.
Daniel Johnson: Is there anything you would like to add about brawling as it relates to wrestling?
Shawn Nautilus: Nope.
Daniel Johnson: I also wanted to ask some more general questions. What has been your favorite match of 2013 so far and why do you think that match sticks out?
Shawn Nautilus: I would say anything Joey Anderson and I have done this year.
Daniel Johnson: What are some short term goals, if any, you would like to accomplish in the next year or so?
Shawn Nautilus: Get my body where I want it as far as weight and look, and have another WWE tryout.
Daniel Johnson: I always like to hear ribs and road stories. Do you have any that you would be able to share?
Shawn Nautilus: If you want to hear a good rib check the Buck and Boom podcast. The story I had for them is by far one of my favorites.
Daniel Johnson: I also like to ask five non-wrestling related questions just to bring a little uniqueness to the interview. Outside of wrestling, what television shows do you enjoy watching these days?
Shawn Nautilus: White Collar, House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, Arrested Development, The Walking Dead, Breaking Bad. Just to name a few.
Daniel Johnson: What was your favorite movie that came out this year?
Shawn Nautilus: I’m looking forward to Anchorman 2.
Daniel Johnson: What is your favorite food that you tried for the first time this year?
Shawn Nautilus: Went to a Mongolian grill for the first time this year.
Daniel Johnson: What is your favorite song to come out this year?
Shawn Nautilus: Oh just about anything.
Daniel Johnson: What is the last book you read and would you recommend it?
Shawn Nautilus: I can’t remember the last book I read.
Daniel Johnson: I wanted to close with just a few more brief wrestling questions. What is the weirdest part of being a pro wrestler?
Shawn Nautilus: I would say getting recognized when someone sees me some place other then the town I wrestle in.
Daniel Johnson: Who is one wrestler 25 or under that you think readers should be aware of?
Shawn Nautilus: I’d say any of the people I roll with, Derek Cornell, Brian Gott, Supafli, Joey Anderson. JJ Garrett is a good up and comer.
Daniel Johnson: Is there anything you would like to promote?
Shawn Nautilus: I’ve got a big show Saturday November 9 in Oskaloosa, Iowa for CEW. It’s the company’s final show, and at the end of the month with two shows for Magnum Pro.
Daniel Johnson: Is there anything you would like to add?
Shawn Nautilus: Nope.
Check out Shawn Nautilus in action! In this match that took place in front of the WWE’s Jim Ros and Gerald Brisco, Shawn Nautilus wrestles Preston Maxwell for Pro Wrestling Phoenix (PWP):
Categories: Wrestling Interviews