One-half of the WWE SmackDown LIVE Tag Team Champions Luke Harper was a guest on E&C's Pod Of Awesomeness. Among many other things, Harper discussed his tumultuous journey to WWE, the WWE Superstars who helped him reach Titan Tower, and disliking his tag team partner Eric Rowan when they were first paired off.
During the podcast, Harper shared some of the "leaner times" he experienced on his pro wrestling odyssey. According to the Bludgeon Brother, he received his WWE tryout while his wife was nine months pregnant and received a contract offer while his wife was in labor with the couple's first son.
"I remember vividly, I was working for Dragon Gate in Japan, and I came home, and I wasn't making tons of money by any stretch of the imagination, and my wife was eight months pregnant. And I said, 'man, I've got to stop doing this' because six months earlier, I tore my knee up and was supposed to go for a [WWE] tryout and then, Joey Mercury called me. He said, 'can you come down?' I said, 'no, I'm hurt. I can't.' So that just went into thin air. I was like, 'whelp, there it goes.' Then, I came home, I told her, 'I think this is it. I'm just going to [stop wrestling].' Like [Christian] said, I've got to support my family somehow. And then, of course, WWE called and said, 'oh, we want to bring you in for a tryout.' Went down, and now my wife was nine months pregnant, and had the tryout, came home, got the call while I was in the hospital having my baby, from Johnny Ace saying that they wanted to hire me. So it all worked out and I'm notoriously pessimistic, so I thought for sure I wasn't going to get hired, my knees weren't good enough, the doctors are going to tell them, 'no', all this s--t. Like, look, I like to be negative, so when something positive happens, it's way better." Harper continued, "I thought for sure they would be interested, but again, I was 32 [years old] at the time. It's not like it is today, so having a name on the indies was kind of not good at the time. And then, I got the call and I had to go to Pittsburgh [Pennsylvania] for the medical, I thought for sure something was wrong with me because the doctor literally kept checking my knees. He was like, 'man, I don't know. They're really loose.' And I was like, 'what the f--k does that mean?' I go, 'is this going to hurt my chances?' And he's like, 'I don't know.' So after that, I went home and told my wife, 'there's no way. I'm done. That's it.' And then, of course, they called, so I was happy."
Harper divulged that after he missed the call from Johnny Ace, a.k.a. former WWE talent relations head John Laurinaitis, Cesaro texted it to him.
"The other thing is, when Johnny called, I missed the call because I had no reception." Harper recalled, "and then, his voicemail cut off. It cut his number off. And so, I looked up a number and called an office. I googled and somebody had registered their number as… I don't know how, but I got somebody else. It was not WWE. So then I was like, 'oh,' and again, I was like, 'whelp, they're not going to hire me now, like, I missed the phone call!' And then, [Cesaro] texted me Johnny's number, and I called, and it all worked out. But yeah, it couldn't have been better timing."
Also during the conversation, Harper shared that WWE Superstars Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, and Cesaro helped him get signed by WWE. Additionally, Cesaro put Harper in touch with Bray Wyatt about his idea for the Wyatt Family before Harper was even signed to the company.
"[Cesaro], Rollins, and Ambrose kind of helped put it in their ear that I was good and worth another shot." Harper explained, "so those three kind of helped me get signed. So I got a call before I was even signed, before medicals or anything, [Cesaro] goes, 'hey man, I need you to talk to this guy.' And I go, 'okay,' so he puts Bray Wyatt on the phone and I've never met him. And this guy talks to me for 20 minutes about this idea he had, and how I would fit in perfectly, and how it's going to be great, and the best thing that [has] ever happened. And, literally, my head was spinning. I don't know if you've ever talked to Bray, but he can talk. So I wasn't even signed yet! So by the time I got down there, like the first couple of weeks, we tried it out. We used to do it for promo class for Dusty [Rhodes] and he loved it. And then, we got Rowan involved and the rest just fell together."
Apparently, Harper and Rowan disliked each other when they were first paired; however, they realized they were stuck with each other and decided to try to make it work.
"When we first started, me and Rowan hated each other." Harper admitted, "oh yeah, I don't know what it was, but we didn't get along. And then, we were forced to room together." Harper continued, "he's a f--king giant and he snores, so I didn't sleep a lot. And, yeah, we just didn't get along. And slowly, again, that became the realization of, 'hey man, we're stuck together. Are we going to fight against it or are we just going to do it?' And it took me a long time to realize that, but once I did, it made it work way better."
Check out the show here. If you use any of the quotes from this article, please credit E&C's Pod Of Awesomeness with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Source: E&C's Pod Of Awesomeness