There are few professional wrestling factions in the industry today that are as talked-about as the Dynasty. Since their debut just over a year ago, the group has gone on to hold nearly every championship in Major League Wrestling and consistently produced some of the most entertaining segments of each episode of MLW: Fusion.
One of the staple members of the Dynasty is the Most Marketable Man in Professional Wrestling, Richard Holliday. Holliday recently joined me to discuss working with the Dynasty, as well as his feelings on working with Alexander Hammerstone and Maxwell Jacob Friedman specifically.
Working with Alex Hammerstone as a member of the Dynasty:
SL: “You’ve brought him up a couple of times, I’ve brought him a couple times, Alex Hammerstone. Obviously, a huge part not only of the Dynasty, but of Major League Wrestling as a whole. Now, what’s working with him been like in your personal experience? When I spoke with him, it was interesting for me to hear (that) he said that he felt when you first started out with Major League Wrestling and with the Dynasty, you really weren’t getting a fair shake. You really had to go out and make your own opportunity of it. Do you think that’s a fair assessment or something you’d agree with?”
RH: “Yeah, I would agree with that. I think – like I said, I think the expectations for when I was signed were low. I think they – maybe they just looked at me and said ‘hey, this is a guy who looks good, and I’ve never really heard him talk or anything like that, but he looks good. Maybe this is a chance where we find something, a diamond in the rough.’ And, in the beginning, that’s kind of what it was. They didn’t really know what they had. To Hammerstone’s point, in the beginning, it was very much focussed on Maxwell (Jacob Friedman) and Hammer. People, consumers, management, they didn’t really know where I fit into this equation, and I kind of had to put it out there for myself and take some chances and do things to make myself stand out, and soon that’s exactly what happened.”
SL: “How do you think you sort of took that opportunity? Was there something that you had to consciously sit down and say ‘look, this is what I need to work on,’ or, did a lot of it come naturally with working with guys like Hammer and MJF like you previously mentioned?”
RH: “Well, you know, getting to know Hammerstone and really bonding with him, he really pushed me to be better and want more. We would talk, and he’d say ‘hey man, listen. I know what you can do, you’ve just gotta do it. Take it.’ That’s kind of the mentality that he always has in his individual work. He’s a guy who takes extraordinary pride in the way that he is presented and the way that people recognize him, and that’s vastly important in being successful in professional wrestling. He kind of gave me that push, that little quality I needed to say ‘hey, you know what? I do have the skillset, I’m gonna take it to the next level, and we’re gonna make this Dynasty thing the best thing that it possibly can,’ because if it’s gonna be three of us, it has to be three of us. It can’t be two and somebody else. It has to be all three cohesively working.
RH: “Add Maxwell in the same breath. He’s somebody that he marches to the beat of his own drum, and it really is a beautiful thing what he does. Both of them have pushed me and helped me to be who I am.”
How he feels MJF’s departure will affect the Dynasty:
RH: “Well, it’s an opportunity for us to prove that we can still survive, and we can thrive. Maybe ‘survive’ isn’t even a good word, because thrive is really what we want to do. The Dynasty – what me, Maxwell, and Hammer made the Dynasty – is we made it a brand. We made it something bigger than just three guys. People just talk about the Dynasty. How many people do you see on social media saying ‘Dynasty, bro!’ Like, it’s become something within pop culture almost, and now it’s our job, it’s my job, it’s Hammer’s job, and it’s Gino’s job to make sure that we take the Dynasty to another level. I hand-picked Gino to be in the Dynasty. I felt like we needed the Latin demographic to be targeted, and I don’t think that anybody can represent it better than him. I think consumers are looking – it’s very eerily similar to the original Dynasty, where people were looking at Hammer and Max and saying ‘alright, these guys are going to carry it, let’s see what this Richard guy can do.’ Now, it’s like ‘Richard and Hammer are going to carry it, let’s see what this Gino guy can do.’ Is it sink-or-swim for Gino? Potentially, but I know he’s gonna swim.”
How previous sports experience impacts the Dynasty’s team mentality
SL: “I love that you mentioned earlier that the three of you guys really saw yourselves as equals, and the need to see yourselves as equals. How much of that comes from playing team sports and playing football when you were in high school and that sort of stuff? Is it a bit of a team mentality? I’ve never stepped in the ring, man, (and) I don’t claim to know anything about that, but wrestling seems like it’s a very individualistic sport.”
RH: “It is. It really, really is. It’s an ‘I wanna be number one, and whoever’s number two, good for you’ kind of industry. I think that’s what makes the Dynasty so unique in that sense, is that Maxwell on his own has that mentality, Hammerstone on his own has that mentality, and, newsflash, myself on my own, I have that mentality as well. But, when you’re – when the opportunity to do something like that is presented to you, well then it’s like ‘alright, hey guys, listen. On our own, we’re going to be great. But, together, this could be something that could really, really change the game.’ Do I think sports have that – I know I can speak to myself. I know that, for sure, one-hundred percent, my career in sports – you know, I played NCAA football, and I know Maxwell was quite the football player as well. Hammerstone’s just a natural athlete, so yeah, I think that teamwork mentality plays into it subconsciously. I don’t think it’s something that’s surface-level where we recognize that and we relate to that, but I think subconsciously it’s there.”
The Dynasty’s goals in the near future:
RH: “There’s several things that we can do as a brand and as a unit to take ourselves to the next level, but it’s all progression. It’s all-natural progression. I think the Heavyweight Championship within the Dynasty would be a welcome addition. The Tag Team Championships should be back within the Dynasty. Maybe that’s something that either – two of the three of us can take on. Could be Hammer and Gino, could be myself and Gino, could be myself and Hammer. The Caribbean Championship becoming legitimized, I think that would be something that would obviously take the Dynasty to the next level, the fact that we could just do that. After that, at that point, we might as well just name the company to Dynasty League Wrestling, because that’s what it’s going to be.”
Please credit Spencer Love/Love Wrestling with any transcriptions used.