In a recent interview on the Hitting The Turnbuckle program, Nick Aldis, widely recognized as the 'National Treasure,' credited the hard-nosed criticisms he received during his tenure with Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (now IMPACT) as instrumental to his personal growth and development as a professional wrestler.
Aldis, who performed under the ring name Magnus during his stint with the company, held the world championship title. His time at TNA was a crucible, shaping him into the performer he is today. A memory that Aldis particularly highlighted was a series of critiques from the industry veteran Billy Gunn.
"I had numerous instances in my early days with TNA where I had a lackluster match," Aldis recalled. "I'd botch it up at a house show, and then I'd return backstage to hear Billy Gunn, or Bubba or Al Snow, calling it like it was.
'That was terrible,' they'd say, with Gunn being the most vocal. 'You need to up your game.' But it wasn't a malicious remark but a call to improve. And they were right."
Aldis Questions Industry Feedback
Aldis then shifted the conversation to the broader industry, raising questions about the level of feedback young talent receives today.
He expressed concern about the absence of the same level of honest critique he once received and how critical it is for budding wrestlers. "I don't see young wrestlers getting the hard-hitting feedback they need today," Aldis commented.
"Quality control is paramount in our profession and should be conducted privately. It seems to me that many are too delicate for this business. Criticism isn't well-received, and many tend to flock to Twitter to rally support rather than improve." He discussed the trend of categorizing this necessary critique as generational differences or a lack of evolution, which he perceives as deflection.
"Many label these criticisms as generational differences or suggest that the critics are stuck in the past," Aldis added. "I wholeheartedly disagree. I needed those blunt appraisals. It's not about being mean; it's about honesty, growth, and evolution as an athlete."
Through this dialogue, Aldis reminds us of the importance of constructive critique, not just in wrestling but in any pursuit of excellence.