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Otis downplays report he & other big men were ordered to get more training

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Reports about Keith Lee, Otis and other main roster hosses getting training at the WWE Performance Center because Vince McMahon “threw a fit” about their in-ring work have been a topic of conversation since they came out last week.

We hadn’t heard from any of the big men involved speak on the topic, though. That changed a bit when Fox Sports’ Ryan Satin interviewed the former Mr. Money in the Bank.

It’s worth noting that Satin doesn’t mention some key elements of the reports, namely things like Vince ordering the sessions, or there being concerns backstage about Otis’ ability to keep his opponents safe during matches.

But here’s what Otis said when asked about if it’s true he’s been doing more training at the PC:

“I think it’s always been there. I mean, I don’t know where specifically the, like - how do I explain this? It wasn’t like, ‘Hey, we were told this and that,’ like there will always be - that Performance Center is a tool for us to get better, and my seeing on it, if a big man wants to come up to me and wants to work on stuff or, you know, vice versa? I mean, we’re always working. So that report was kind of funny, at the same time, you know, we’re never not working here...

“Especially now, we don’t have live events, so we can’t really get our stuff out, you know what I’m saying? It’s just bottled inside into a little bottle, so... we’re not getting that stuff out there. So we’ll find more and more ways to get in the ring, which obviously, nothing beats a crowd. And that’s one thing I miss to this day, is that crowd - feeling that rush from there, the acceptance… it’s just we’re not getting that out much. So now it’s time to get better, time to get things in, so there really hasn’t been set dates or there hasn’t been set anything. It’s just like, ‘when you want to come in, brother,’ and either, I’ll talk to Braun about something, and me and Braun [Strowman] will do curls for 30 minutes and then it’s ‘let’s talk about something over here.’ So it’s always been there, I don’t know why it became a big report gimmick. But yeah, I don’t know [laughs]”.

Unsurprising considering the interview is being conducted on behalf of one of WWE’s broadcast partners, there’s no follow-up on the topic after Otis’ answer. Satin says that backs up a theory he tweeted, Otis says he heard about the dirt sheet stories from his dad, and they move on.

Which is fine, as it absolutely does make sense that WWE wrestlers would always be training, and that workouts at the PC are that much more important with house shows out of the picture. But the reports from Wrestling Observer and PWInsider and Fightful weren’t simply that Otis was doing curls with Braun, or running the ropes with Chad Gable. It would be interesting to hear him confirm, deny or even have to dodge questions about new training sessions, or McMahon’s role in his taking part in them.

But if Fox Sports was going to press those buttons, they wouldn’t get the interview. That’s corporate PR for you.

Check out Satin’s entire chat with Otis here, and let us know if any of this changes your mind about the whole controversy?