by Dave Pendleton
Interviewer’s Note: I had the opportunity to interview Victor “Mr. Everything” Andrews at the end of 2013. Andrews had a wonderful 2013 traveling throughout the southern United States wrestling for Allied Independent Wrestling Federations (AIWF), New Skool Wrestling (NSW), Championship Wrestling Entertainment (CWE) in Florida among many others. Andrews has trained with CW Anderson and caught the eyes of Bret “The Hitman” Hart at a training seminar and Kevin Sullivan at last year’s Wrestlecade in Winston Salem, North Carolina. Andrews is still very young in the wrestling industry and is one of the hardest working men on the North Carolina indie wrestling scene.
Dave Pendleton: That’s fine, I didn’t know if you were comfortable talking about your military service. I saw that you graduated high school in 2001 and it looked like you may have enlisted right after. Of course we all know what happened in 2001 and I was wondering if you joined for opportunities like school and GI funding or did you join out of a patriotic necessity after 9/11?
Victor Andrews: I was actually in during 9/11. I joined because I really didn’t have a plan after high school.
Dave Pendleton: I can’t imagine what the atmosphere would have been like on 9/11 being in the army. As a civilian it was the most frightening day of my life. Were you deployed overseas after 9/11?
Victor Andrews: It was the most on edge experience I ever encountered. I was medically discharged from advanced individual training for stress fractures.
Dave Pendleton: I started watching wrestling at a very early age and we weren’t able to pick up WWF until about 1989. I watched Jim Crockett and World Class on basic channels. I was more or less wondering if your exposure was limited back then because not everyone had cable back then and most promotions were definitely not on every station. Our age group kind of caught the tail end of the territories age. I used Pro Wrestling Illustrated to keep my knowledge up. Did you get into the old Apter mags?
Victor Andrews: Never got into the magazines. We used to get the cable stations from outside help. Lol.
Dave Pendleton: Was there a specific match or moment that made you sure you wanted to become a wrestler?
Victor Andrews: Not really. I just always wanted to do it. I got into wrestling through boxing.
Dave Pendleton: I know you said North Carolina was home as of 1997, why did you choose to train in New Jersey instead of training with say Jimmy Valiant or George South in Virginia and North Carolina?
Victor Andrews: I was living in New York at the time and boxing. Lee was a manager for a model and talent company I was under and that’s how I got linked with her. When I moved here I kind of just found my place in different promotions and made the connections I needed to get the fundamentals I needed.
Dave Pendleton: How long did you wrestle as Rage?
Victor Andrews: Just in New Jersey. When I got fixed with a promotion here I was Vector, then I graduated to Victor Andrews. I went back to boxing when I moved here before I began wrestling here.
Dave Pendleton: You moved back to North Carolina in 2008. How long were you strictly boxing before you started wrestling again?
Victor Andrews: I moved back in 2009. I did boxing for three years alone then I did both together until I started getting continuous bookings with wrestling.
Dave Pendleton: What promotion did you start wrestling for in 2010? Why did you decide to start wrestling again after being out of action for so long? Why didn’t you just continue boxing full-time?
Victor Andrews: ICW [Impact Championship Wrestling] and GOUGE [Gimmicks Only Underground Grappling Entertainment]. I didn’t know who or where to start when I moved back. I lived in Selma and didn’t have the money to start over at another school. I stopped boxing because I got bored. I was just training and wasn’t really getting any fights. When I sparred I had to spar with guys 100 plus my weight just to have a workout. And even that wasn’t enough at times.
Dave Pendleton: I saw something on your Facebook page where you wrestled with OMEGA [Organization of Modern Extreme Grappling Arts] in May 2012 and were introduced as CW’s student there and you met Steve Corino that day as well. Did I get the date wrong?
Victor Andrews: That was this year.
Dave Pendleton: Okay, awesome. Sorry I got that info wrong. I saw that you trained at a seminar under Bret Hart in 2012. I find that extremely exciting. Tell me about that experience and what you learned under him.
Victor Andrews: Oh man. That was a spectacular experience. I got connected with that from TNA’s Chase Stevens. I went to Nashville, Tennessee, very first time there, and loved the whole experience. I worked a quick five minute match and Bret loved the way I worked, my athleticism, and ring awareness. The only criticism was as always is my size. If I could just gain weight or look bigger I’d be set.
Dave Pendleton: You debuted with the AIWF in July 2012 and wrestled your first cage/ladder match in August in the money in the piggy bank match. What was that experience like and how did you get involved with Rick Deezel and his crew?
Victor Andrews: A great experience. I got started with them at a show they had in Winston Salem at the Infinity Mini Flow Dealership. I faced Sgt. Stryker.
Dave Pendleton: They started in my little town Martinsville, Virginia. I used to watch them every Saturday on our local cable station based about five minutes from my house. Rob Van Dam and Chyna came through at a very young age. Since the AIWF has become a governing body of promotions how would you compare them to the NWA of old?
Victor Andrews: They’ve definitely built themselves a large federation but not a carbon copy of NWA. They’ve built they’re own identity.
Dave Pendleton: I agree, do you think an AIWF title could ever have the same respect in wrestling as the NWA title? Do you see wrestling smarks talking about the AIWF like they do Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG) or Ring of Honor (ROH)?
Victor Andrews: If its represented right and placed on the waists of individuals who will give it a respected face. I hardly pay attention to what’s said about different organizations because its all a matter of opinion not definition.
Dave Pendleton: We could probably talk about this all night, but I know you have people to elbow drop later so lets move on, lol. I read something where you mentioned going to ZERO 1 in Japan but I never saw where you went. Did you ever get to go to Japan?
Victor Andrews: No not yet. My eyes were too big for my pockets. Lol. I’m still striving to make it happen.
Dave Pendleton: Is ZERO 1 the place to be? If you could wrestle anyone in Japan who would it be? Which promotion is your dream to work for in Japan?
Victor Andrews: All Japan [Pro Wrestling] would be my dream pick. If I could work someone it would be Shinjiro Otani.
Dave Pendleton: Did you suffer an injury at the end of 2012? If so, what happened?
Victor Andrews: I broke my left hand during training, practicing a top rope move I was comfortable doing but the guy I was training with wasn’t used to taking.
Dave Pendleton: You came back and faced Chase Owens for the NWA Junior title. What did challenging for a title steeped in that much history and held by the likes of Ultimo Dragon, Verne Gagne, Dory Funk, Jr. and Otani mean to you?
Victor Andrews: It wasn’t the matter of challenging for it but being looked at as a respectable opponent that really gave me a great honor. I had to beat Chris Banks and Cedric Alexander on separate shows to get the opportunity and I didn’t hold nothing back when I got it. I’d be honored to be granted a rematch.
Dave Pendleton: You attended a seminar with Ricky Morton in 2013. How much tag team wrestling do you do? How was the experience of working with Ricky Morton?
Victor Andrews: I don’t do much tag team work. I’ve had guys request to tag with me and I don’t mind doing it because its losing its label but the guy I tag with has to have more than ability. The seminar was a great experience. We sharpened the basics and whatever we were having trouble with.
Dave Pendleton: I read that you won the championship in the NSW. Was that your first championship? Who did you defeat?
Victor Andrews: New Skool Wrestling. Yes my very first. I won it in a triple threat match against Ooga Booga and Lou Marconi.
Dave Pendleton: The latter half of 2013 really seems to be heating up for you. You won titles in CWE and Ring Wars Carolina (RCW). Do you feel that something has changed these last six months or so or that you are gaining more momentum?
Victor Andrews: I didn’t win the title at CWE I advanced to get the title but the match never happened. Winning the No Limits title at RWC and getting positive feedback from Steve Corino was a great way to close out the year with RWC for me. I feel my continuous training is really standing out more along with my natural athletic ability is catching more positive attention and is helping with more and more opportunities as time goes.
Dave Pendleton: Of getting positive feedback, I read what Kevin Sullivan said to you after your Wrestlecade match. How was the whole Wrestlecade experience for you and did you receive any more feedback from the legends?
Victor Andrews: An amazing experience. Spectacular talent, legends, and opportunities in the entire building. I spoke to Carlito, [Michael] Tarver and [The] Hurricane after the match. Just picked their brains a little. I mostly grabbed feedback from my indie peers especially the ones I was in the match with and they loved and appreciated everything I did.
Dave Pendleton: It was an amazing match and great performance. You made an instant fan out of me. I know you have the AIWF cruiserweight tournament next February and your last show of the year tonight. If you can give me a plug for the AIWF tournament and any closing thoughts you may have. I’m sure you need to get ready for the show since we’ve been talking for like four hours.
Victor Andrews: Don’t show me what you can do unless you can show me what I can’t.
Dave Pendleton: Nice. Victor I really appreciate you taking so much time to talk with me and I’ll be sending you a couple of different articles more than likely since we talked about so much and I have a couple of different angles with the NWA stuff and the AIWF stuff. I can’t wait to see you in person again and best of luck tonight. I did mean to get around to your personal life and your daughters especially your oldest’s gymnastics and your work in anti-bullying. Anything you want to add on those subjects?
Victor Andrews: Yes, they can follow my oldest’s fan page at Journhi Conyers “Future Olympic Gynnast.” She’s eight and loves gymnastics. My youngest daughter Honesty is four and she’s building her character.
Check out Victor Andrews in action! In this match from Xtreme World Wrestling (XWW), Andrews takes on Chase Owens for the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship at XWW 2013 Tournament of Champions:
Categories: Wrestling Interviews