Only four days away from the G1 Supercard at Madison Square Garden, the wrestling world waits with anticipation for the Ring of Honor world title bout—which is a ladder match between reigning champion Jay Lethal, Matt Taven, and “The Villain” Marty Scurll.
Scurll is best known for the work with his “Being The Elite” brethren in the Young Bucks, Cody Rhodes, and Kenny Omega, but he is also an extremely talented pro wrestler who is hungry for a chance to carry a company as its world champion. Scurll is a former IWGP junior heavyweight champion, but a run with the ROH world title would elevate him to a new status in the industry.
Speaking with Sports Illustrated, Scurll discussed the upcoming MSG ladder match, whether the departure of The Elite from ROH can be turned into a positive, and the evolution of his “Villain” character.
Justin Barrasso: Is the story of “The Villain” complete in Ring of Honor without a run carrying the world title? And is it extra meaningful that you have the chance to win the title against two of ROH’s longtime stars in Jay Lethal and Matt Taven?
Marty Scurll: Last year I headlined Supercard of Honor in my quest for the Ring of Honor world championship against Dalton Castle and came up short. I’m not prepared to let that happen again.
This year is different. There’s no distractions, no “clubs.” Just me and my quest to become ROH world champion. I believe the reason I lost last year was because I was meant for something even bigger, and I cannot think of a more spectacular way of becoming world champion than at the “World’s Most Famous Arena.”
JB: Madison Square Garden is home to an incredible lineage of wrestling history, including the first WrestleMania and the WrestleMania X ladder match between Shawn Michaels and Razor Ramon. What does that history mean to you, and how do you intend to make history on April 6?
MS: I feel a lot of wrestling in the last few years has been about trying to “make history” without letting it happen authentically. If I make history, I don’t need to blab about it. My first concern is not “making history,” it’s myself and becoming world champion. That’s all I care about. I’m “The Villain,” after all.
JB: Speaking of Shawn Michaels, he was devastated when Scott Hall and Kevin Nash left WWE for WCW. You are in a similar spot, considering Kenny Omega, the Bucks, and Cody Rhodes are all now part of All Elite Wrestling. But Michaels also created some of his most magical moments after they left, stepping away from his traditional character and leading an anti-establishment revolution in DX. Do you view this as a time in your career to create something meaningful with Villain Enterprises?
MS: I’ve always had a saying, “Change is good.” I don’t shy away from it, I embrace it. Make the most out of everything. Sometimes change is a blessing in disguise. I’ve really enjoyed working with Brody King and PCO, and offering a different side of “The Villain” to the audience. You always have to evolve in this business. I’ve never been one to want to stay the same. Quite the opposite, I relish the chance to be different and unique.
JB: There is so much great wrestling taking place during WrestleMania weekend, but why should fans make sure they are watching when you challenge for the Ring of Honor world title at Madison Square Garden?
MS: I’m not going to lie and say that ladder matches are my specialty. Far from that, but I know there isn’t anything I won’t do to become world champion. I’ve waited too long. If not now, when?
I can’t think of a more authentic story going in to this weekend than this. I think we’re going to blow the roof off the place and this show will be talked about for a very long time to come. People aren’t going to want to miss it.