Sin Cara opens up about his relationship with Chris Jericho, Enzo Amore's heat and more
WWE’s partnership with Foot Locker continues in the next installment of the Reebok Classic WWE footwear and apparel collection. The clothing line was released this past Friday and honors the late, great Eddie Guerrero, who was born in El Paso, Texas. Like Guerrero, WWE’s Sin Cara was also born in El Paso and grew up idolizing the work of Guerrero.
Translating to "Faceless" in Spanish, Sin Cara is a luchador who wears a mask that completely covers his face. The man under the mask since 2013 is 40-year-old Jorge Arias, and he connected with SI.com to discuss the new apparel, Enzo Amore’s emergence in WWE’s cruiserweight division, and if there is any truth to the rumors of friction between himself and Chris Jericho.
SI.com: Could you touch on Eddie Guerrero’s influence on your career? Where did you first watch Guerrero wrestle? And how much of an impact does Guerrero still have on WWE, Latino wrestlers, and Lucha Libre culture?
Sin Cara: Growing up in El Paso, Texas, which is where Eddie grew up, I spent time as a young kid watching Eddie wrestle. I was about 8 years old when Eddie started wrestling at 18, and I got a first-look when he began to wrestle. It was awesome to see him evolve as a performer through the years and see what he became as a WWE world heavyweight champion.
In the Latino culture, Eddie is still remembered. In the case of some of my coworkers, like Sasha Banks, Bayley, and Kalisto, we still talk about the impact Eddie had and certain things he used to do in the ring. He was one of those guys who went through the whole indie scene, also coming through Mexico City, AAA, ECW, New Japan, WCW, you name it. Eddie went all over the world trying to improve his craft. He influenced a lot of us through the years. In the case of myself, I was able to do a lot of things throughout my career admiring Eddie Guerrero. I’ve always worked hard and tried to be the best, and that’s the legacy Eddie has left behind.
SI.com: How did you get involved with the Reebok Classic WWE footwear and apparel collection?
Sin Cara: Foot Locker and Reebok contacted me. Then we had a meeting talking about ideas and what would be cool for the people who want to buy the product. I was very blessed that they asked me to do certain things hands-on, and my ideas are a part of what they put on the t-shirts. It was a really fun thing to do.
SI.com: Kalisto just joined the cruiserweight division. Would you consider wrestling full-time with the cruiserweights?
Sin Cara: I wouldn’t mind it. As long as it’s an opportunity, it can be the cruiserweight division, it can be Raw, SmackDown, or anywhere they need me. I’m here to perform and be the best that I can be. If it’s in the cruiserweight division, I’ll be more than happy. Anything can happen. Right now, my goals are to become U.S., Intercontinental, or heavyweight champion. But if I was needed in the cruiserweight division, I would go there and have some great matches with some of those talented kids.
SI.com: Why does so much of the division seemingly dislike Enzo Amore?
Sin Cara: To be honest, I’m not sure, exactly, what is going on. Maybe they’re thinking he hasn’t gone through enough to have the successes he’s having, but who am I to judge? All I can say is about myself. The only thing I can say is I wish him the best. Hopefully, that helps his career and makes him better, not just with his promos, but his in-ring work, too.
SI.com: There was a Raw in May when Chris Jericho wore one of your masks in an on-camera attack on Seth Rollins. There were also rumors that you and Jericho had issues backstage. Can you set the record straight between yourself and Jericho?
Sin Cara: Me and Jericho are good friends. He actually asked me if he could borrow one of my masks for that segment, and I said that it would be an honor. There is no heat between him and I. Nowadays, with social media, there are always a lot of rumors, but we are fine. That’s why I let him borrow my mask. If that wasn’t the case, I would have said no.
SI.com: Would you ever consider a return to wrestling without a mask?
Sin Cara: To be honest, I feel at home when I wear a mask. I feel at peace. Without it, I feel like I’m missing something. It’s crazy to think that way, but it becomes part of you when you’re wearing a mask. The funny thing about it is Eddie Guerrero was the first one ever in professional wrestling to take the mask off voluntarily. He used to wrestle under a mask, and he was successful without wearing a mask. But I love wearing a mask. For Eddie, though, it was important he took it off. I don’t mind not being recognized. I want people to recognize the mask, not me.
SI.com: How many masks do you own? And how do you store them?
Sin Cara: Over 300 masks. I keep some of them in my office at home, and I keep the others in zip-lock bags and containers so they don’t fade. I try to protect them as best as I can. I would also love to have lucha masks for Reebok. Right now, the mask is [on display] on the front of the box.
SI.com: You have worked a distinguished career all over the globe. In your opinion, who are the top three wrestlers in the world?
Sin Cara: Obviously, me, and Nakamura is another one. Nakamura is amazing. And I’ve got to say AJ Styles. Those are my top three: AJ, Nakamura, and Sin Cara.
SI.com: The roster in WWE is incredibly talented. What are your goals for the remainder of 2017? Are you working toward a singles match at next year’s WrestleMania?
Sin Cara: My goal is to retire healthy. That is the most important thing. I have children, and my kids depend on me. I want to be able to play with them. My son wrestles. He is 8 years old, and he has been wrestling for three years. I want to be able to travel with him to tournaments. The main goal for me is to finish my career healthy. I’ve had a good career. I still want more, but my main goal is to give my children a good life.
Justin Barrasso can be reached at JBarrasso@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @JustinBarrasso.