World Wrestling Entertainment announced today the 32 competitors that will take part in the WWE Crusierweight Classic, a 32-man tournament to take place over four dates (June 23, July 14, August, 26 and September 14, 2016) involving wrestlers from all over the world at a weight of 205lbs or less. The tournament is expected to be shown on WWE Network.
While some participants like NXT wrestlers Rich Swann, Tommaso Ciampa, and Johnny Gargano have already been announced while wrestlers such as Jack Gallagher, Noam Dar, T.J. Perkins, Lince Dorado, Drew Gulak, Zack Sabre Jr. and Tony Nese won spots on independent wrestling shows, the rest of the wrestlers have been only rumours until today.
One of the competitors ended up being Tyson Dux, a long-time Ontario independent wrestler who has been often considered one of the best unsigned wrestlers in the world for years. Dux has in the past received try-outs with the WWE, worked for a short time in Team Canada for TNA Wrestling and wrestled in Ring of Honor on multiple occasions. Few wrestlers have the resume that Dux brings to the table.
After the breaking news, I sat down with Tyson Dux to discuss the inclusion into the Cruiserweight Classic.
What does it mean to be selected for the WWE Cruiserweight Classic?
It’s a great honour to be a part so something that is another ground breaking feature in WWE. I am humbled to be picked and represent my country.
When you look at the 31 other competitors, who are you most looking to face?
Honesty I like the idea of wrestling anyone on that list. They are all there for a good reason and it’ll be awesome to learn new things from some talented people.
You represent Ontario independent wrestling in this tournament much like former ring opponent Tye Dillinger has represented Ontario independent wrestling in NXT. What does that mean for this tournament? What advantage does someone in the Ontario indies have against other participants?
Ontario has groomed some of the best talent for years and it’s a shame more people don’t get to see it. Media coverage is just starting to see some of our best. Best part about the Ontario scene is we can wrestle anyone with any style.
For someone who doesn’t know Tyson Dux, how would you describe your in-ring style and general attitude? What does it mean to Textbook?
My style is truly Canadian. It’s a hybrid of the United States, Mexico, and Japan. Hard and gritty but still very educated in delivery and execution. General attitude is all about hard work. I am who I am not through born talent and athletics; it’s because of the work I put into it.
The road to the WWE is different for every competitor and yours has been a lot of miles on that road. What’s going to be your strategy to stand out among the 32 best Cruiserweights in the world?
I’ve asked myself that question for years. In the last couple weeks I’ve been racking my brain with what I should do and the answer is easy: Just be me. plain and simple I go into this thing being who I am what people have seen me do for countless years and have followed my career.
Photos by Holly Lengyel