How he got into pro wrestling: The first time I saw WWE was in the mid ’90s and I was immediately fascinated by the mix of entertainment and sports. I was always a very athletic child and when I finally had the chance to try (sports entertainment), I was hooked. I just fell in love and I’ve been doing it ever since. … It wasn’t very big in Switzerland, but I started training there on blue mats like the ones we have on the outside of the ring. That’s where I learned moves and how to fall and stuff like that. Then I had to move out of the country to train in an actual ring and that happened in Germany and Austria and Italy and so on. I moved to the U.S. in 2004 and started my road to WWE, so to speak.
On winning the United State Championship:“It felt great because, like you said, it was a very long road to get there and I was able to win the United States championship fairly soon after my debut. If you look at the United States championship history, there are many legends that held the title, and to me it’s a very special title because it’s kind of like a TV title because it’s defended a lot and I was able to have a lot of memorable matches over the 200 days that I held it.”
On when fans realized that he could be a “prime time player” in the WWE: “Oh, I would never want to be a prime time player (laughs). I take this very seriously because it’s given me a lot of opportunities and I’ve realized all my dreams, so I think when you see me, you see that I’m having fun and you see that I’m doing this very well and that I’m very skilled at it. Because of that, I would like to think that the fans saw pretty quickly that I’m not somebody to be taken lightly. And I know all my opponents that I’ve been in the ring.