I am Maven Huffman, a former professional wrestler with World Wrestling Entertainment. I was a three-time Hardcore Champion and named the PWI Rookie of the Year. In addition to winning the inaugural season of Tough Enough, I famously eliminated The Undertaker at the Royal Rumble and trained under WWE superstars Tazz and Al Snow.

I have also appeared on VH1's The Surreal Life, served as correspondent for HSN and host for BET. Currently, I (along with Shawn Michaels and Gene Snitsky) am available for personal appearances through www.thuzio.com.

Ask me anything.

Follow me: @MavenKHuffman

Proof: http://www.thuzio.com/blog/maven-ama-nov-20-at-100-pm/

UPDATE: Unfortunately, we've run out of time. I just want to thank all the wrestling fans out there. You are what makes this business possible. You made me want to live out my dream. From the bottom of my heart, I appreciate your loyalty.

Comments: 215 • Responses: 35  • Date: 

chemical_echo45 karma

I met you once when you visited my cousin in the hospital (Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto in 2002/2003) after he suffered a spinal cord injury doing backyard wrestling. A lot of wrestlers actually came out to see him and the WWE really went all out for him, sending people like Edge and Torrie Wilson also out to visit him.
That was a tough time for him and our family, but seeing him smile when some of his favourite WWE personalities went out to visit him really helped.
I know it wasn't a question, just wanted to say thank you.

MavenWrestles44 karma

Appreciate it! Thank you!

whitestripes4life43 karma

Kind of a taboo issue, but did performance enhancing drugs seem to be an issue when you were in the WWE? How much of that stuff did you see going on?

MavenWrestles202 karma

I can only speak of myself. I took them. They were great for me, and for what I needed. I weighed 205 going against 270-300 lbs. I needed to get bigger, and I had to get bigger in a short period of time. Naturally I wasn't going to get ther. It paid by bills and helped me survive for a living. I'd do it again. People think it's the worst, but if it's done with doctor supervision, it aided my career.

Ostabby40 karma

You had on of the best dropkicks I have ever seen, did this come naturally to you or was this something you had to work to perfect?

MavenWrestles47 karma

It became natural to me. It was on Tough Enough, we were working on it. Al was a great teacher to help our arsenal. The very first dropkick I did, it was higher than anyone. The more you do something the better you get at it.

GTAnal36 karma

What are your feelings on Triple H? I still remember a match from Smackdowb years ago when you came close to winning the championship from him in a spectacular match. I feel like a few more matches like that and he could have gotten you over on the fans.

MavenWrestles70 karma

I agree 100 percent with that statement.

The times that I was able to wrestle him, these long 18, 19 minute matches, he always made things easy. He finds a way to communicate with you the entire match.

The way you move your way up is to work with the best and he was the best. I think he would have given me more of a chance. I think I could have gotten over a little bit more.

Tom_Smith_36 karma

Being Hardcore Champion three times must have been tough on your body. Did anything ever go wrong when weapons were involved?

MavenWrestles66 karma

Something goes wrong every match. It's our job to not let the audience know what's going on.

The night that I won the Hardcore Championship against The Undertaker in LA, the trash can lid sliced the hell out of the top of my head. It was bleeding pretty bad.

Most of the props we have, trash can lids, chairs, tables, they're all real.

GTAnal17 karma

Are the tables prepped in anyway, or is the fact that most of you are 200-350 lbs that allows them to give so spectacularly?

MavenWrestles45 karma

If someone is going through the table, their is a crash pad underneath. I would rather go through table, then be slammed on the mat. The table breaks your fall.

randompaul126 karma

Do you remember anything from the moment in the RR when you eliminated 'Taker, and seen that look on his face?

Specifically, at 1:42 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qpJshxa7ryM

MavenWrestles49 karma

I just remember, watching back now, I hear how loud it was. In the moment, it was as quiet as I've ever seen everything.

The fact that I landed the kick, hit it and he went out, it was such a relief. I remember jumping up, looking around and it was quiet. It was super quiet.

I didn't realize at the time what it had done for my career, but it was like Tom Brady winning the Super Bowl his first year, he reached the pinnacle so quickly and he immediately became a household name. Without that, I don't think I have the career that I have.

EndOfaBell26 karma

Hey Maven, massive fan back in the day and me and my friends were so physced when you eliminated taker, for years it was one of my favourite rumble moments. I've always wondered what's its really like in a wwe/wwf locker room, and could you give us any insight into wrestlers court?

MavenWrestles60 karma

I can't do wrestlers court. That's one of those sacred things and I'm not going to be the one to spoil it.

Know this though, Undertaker sits as judge, jury and executioner.

Inside the wrestlers locker room, it stinks, it's like any other locker room.

Imagine the locker room from your high school days. You go in the gym and there are all the jocks, the cool kids. Everyone thinks they are THAT guy. Everyone thinks they are the guy that keeps the show going. Some are, some aren't.

MANCREEP24 karma

  1. Bro, you're super good looking. I firmly believe that had it not been for the Rock, you'd have been the People's Champ.

  2. Thuzio is fucking brilliant. Do you think it will eventually branch out towards actors, and internet celebrities in the future? Would that ruin it?

  3. Who are the nicest wrestlers in real life, and who are the douchiest?

  4. Who is most like his/her WWE persona in real life?

  5. Ever think about coming back to wrestling?

MavenWrestles56 karma

  1. Nicest - D Vonn Dudley I talk to on a daily basis. Randy Orton, Batista, Hurricane, Stevie Richards, Val Venis. When I first started, I had no money, none whatsoever. WWE will pay for only certain nights for your hotel. I was traveling with D Vonn and The Rock, and The Rock paid for things for a few months food, rentals and hotel to help me out when traveling. The Rock is a genuinely good guy and helped me out when I was in need.

  2. Everyone has a bit of their personality in their persona. It's just turned to the max. So everyone really. What you see is what you get, just more heightened.

MavenWrestles15 karma

regarding Thuzio...their management tells me the plan is branching out to multiple areas...the idea is giving fans and businesses better access to publicly recognized individuals

mbow198222 karma

Who was the quote unquote locker room leader during your time in the WWE

MavenWrestles55 karma

By far, no question, hands down and probably still is when he's there, it was The Undertaker. He ran the locker room.

nchammer32624 karma

A recent issue of WWE Magazine had a section where various wrestlers talked about their experiences with the Undertaker (similar comments from other wrestlers can be found here). Based on what they've said, he seems to have a reputation as both "an incredibly intimidating person you don't want to piss off" and "the best wrestling teacher you could ask for". What has your experience/history with 'Taker (outside of the ring) been like?

MavenWrestles80 karma

My very first Wrestlemania, I'm a rookie/green, scared to death to be backstage with those guys. I'm in my hotel room, and I don't want to I get in any trouble. Got a call to go down to the lobby. At the hotel lobby bar is Understaker, he had a bottle of Jack, lucky for me Jack was my drink of choice. It was a night I won't forget.

beef334418 karma

Did it take you a while to "get wrestling out of your system" after you stopped?

MavenWrestles53 karma

It's still not out. I still dream about it every week. Several times a week.

I don't watch it anymore. I can't watch. It's too hard to watch. I still see people and we still talk over stuff. In my mind, I'm always putting matches together. Still.

ThySmithy18 karma

Ever had a fight with someone backstage?

MavenWrestles41 karma

Never got into a fist fight, but they happen all the time. Rule #1, never ever do anything in the ring (don't ever mess up a show)...that's the quickest way out of the WWE. Whether you like or hate someone, don't mess with a man's ability to make a living.

steelbydesign16 karma

Have any stories to share on this front? Any guys that toed that line? I think I remember some rumor about Booker T beating up Batista backstage.

MavenWrestles36 karma

cannot confirm or deny the Booker T incident

Cobrakai8317 karma

How real was Tough Enough? I've heard they setup story lines and such on Total Divas and i'm just curious if it was the same back then.

MavenWrestles32 karma

Everything was authentic...we were the first season, none of us knew what to expect. Nothing was staged/choreographed. Some things were planned, but contestants didn't know what was going to happen.

rbhindepmo16 karma

What was the most surprising thing you learned in general (or about a specific person/s) as a WWE Superstar?

MavenWrestles55 karma

Wresting becomes the easy part.

For months and months of training, I was worried about the wrestling part of it. That's the easiest part of the job. The job starts when you are on the road, away from your family, living on airplanes. Things like grabbing dinner and seeing someone that just paid for a ticket, wanting a photo or asking for an autograph. You know they help pay your salary and take care of you. It's your duty to oblige. But it's not the easiest thing, especially when you need to be someplace in 10 minutes, or when you are starving. Those little things..

I would be home for two days a week, trying to get bills paid, trying to stay active in the gym. It's tough life. It's why you always try and mix an injury in here or there.

Gravy-Leg__15 karma

How well is your body holding up? Do you have any chronic disabilities from you wrestling days?

MavenWrestles28 karma

It's holding up, but there are a lot of injuries ... mainly the back. I have a lot of problems with my lower and middle back.

With all the stuff going on with concussions, I'm glad to have not had any problems there. As of right now, there's nothing there.

You know what you are getting into in that business. Chronic aches and pains are really it for me.

Thenervemann15 karma

Whats the song that gets you pumped?

MavenWrestles49 karma

It's not my entrance music. Everyone loves my entrance music, but it's not me.

Remember when The Undertaker used to come out to 'Rollin' by Limp Bizkit? That's just a kickass song as is and to have him come out on a 30K Harley, circling the ring. I forgot I had to wrestle him.

thejmc2315 karma

how did the veterans in the locker room treat you your first days?

MavenWrestles57 karma

They treated me like a rookie, they ribbed me, they did everything to make me earn it. There's stuff you have to go through. You have to earn your respect. It's okay. After you perform and pay your dues, you'll get your respect. I've been in the locker room when I've heard the most horrible things said, but if it's not physically damaging to you, laugh it off. If I told you some of the things I've heard backstage, it would make Incognito sound like a choir boy.

Defenestrator6614 karma

Your match with Triple H on Raw for the World Heavyweight Championship still sticks out as one of my favorite matches I when I was a kid because I wanted you to win so badly.

I also enjoyed the more light-hearted stuff you did with Simon Dean. I know that wrestlers like Colt Cabana and Santino have said that they enjoy doing the comedy bits as much (if not more) than the serious stuff. Did you have a preference? Obviously one angle had more of the limelight and glamour, but I can also imagine that sort of thing putting you under a much more intense microscope.

MavenWrestles17 karma

I loved that stuff! If I would have been able to do more it, I think I would have been able to flourish more in wrestling.

bigsherm5913 karma

If you were put in charge of WWE for a day what's the one thing you would change about the current product? Something I always wanted to ask someone who wrestled for wwe thank you

MavenWrestles59 karma

I'd go back to the way it was in the attitude era. You've got to get rid of the PC crap. It's easy for me to say, because I'm not the one worried about paying the lawyers if something goes wrong, or if someone is offended, or bothered by something. If you don't understand what it is, block it. Don't watch it.

It's entertainment. If you don't take it as that, don't watch it.

UGAdawg3090713 karma

Who is the nicest wrestler that is portrayed as a heel?

MavenWrestles48 karma

Kane is the nicest guy...in the locker room is great. Mountain of a man, both are soft spoken, nice and gentle in real life.

stealthismatt13 karma

Besides Ken Shammrock, who do you think could kick the most ass in a real fight from the wwe?

MavenWrestles51 karma

From my days, Kurt Angle. He's legit, no joke...here's a good story, me and Bubba Ray, we're going out in a club in Baltimore. As we're walking in and there's a group of 8 guys acting like ass holes to us trying to get in a a fight with us. A few minutes later Bubba flipped the switch, scared the shit out of them, and the 8 guys were no longer interested in bothering us anymore

steelbydesign12 karma

What were you interactions w/ Vince McMahon like?

MavenWrestles46 karma

Heh. Vince signs the front of the check, he signs the back. It's that simple.

Vince is all about the bottom dollar. You can't have a billion dollar company and not work that way. If you make Vince money, he loves you. If you don't, he's done with you.

haig012 karma

How did you get into wrestling? What was the worst thing that happened to you in the ring?

MavenWrestles32 karma

I was a fan. Went to my first show when I was 7 or 8 years old, watching Ric Flair. Then in college, my roommates and I used to watch Raw vs. Nitro in the mid to late 90's. Two TV's set on top of each other for Monday nights. That's no BS.

I was just watching one night as a sixth grade schoolteacher when I heard Jim Ross saying 'if you've ever wanted to be a wrestler.' Obviously they were advertising Tough Enough. My roommate at the time, he was like, 'why not?' and I sent in a tape. Highly embarrassing if you want to go back and find it on the first season.

When I got the call, I was in the classroom and there was a girl who works there named Karen, and I thought it was my roommate playing a joke on me and I hung up. Luckily she called me back later.

nchammer32611 karma

trained under WWE superstars Tazz and Al Snow

Can you give us an outline of what exactly a wrestling trainer does? Like, is it practicing moves, taking bumps, general exercise stuff, learning how to do moves without legitimately hurting the other guy, etc? Was there anything related to talking on the mic or doing a character/gimmick, or do they focus on the more "physical" aspects?

Also, did Snow and Tazz have different teaching methods or focus on different areas of training?

MavenWrestles23 karma

Both had very different philosophies. Snow and Tazz actually got into it, because their philosophies are different. Tazz is all about tough business, and pushing through. One of the things most proud of at Tough Enough, I never took a day off, exercise off, or sat out. I'm the only contestant from Season 1 that did that. Everyday I did that. I went in to work and to make it. I'm proud of that.

GTAnal11 karma

Plan on making a comeback with a new gimmick anytime soon?

MavenWrestles21 karma

no plans...but you never know

Philloposaur11 karma

Do you feel like tough enough properly prepared you for life in WWE? Was there any label in the locker from coming from the show?

MavenWrestles21 karma

Nothing can compare you. That's like asking if Training Camp can prepare a rookie for the NFL. Tough Enough got my foot in the door. It gave me a base. It let me keep my job so I could learn more. Wrestling is one of those jobs where you've got to learn on the fly.

randompaul111 karma

Would you do it all again?

MavenWrestles31 karma

Going back to my 20's, absolutely. As a 36 year-old, I'd probably have to think a little bit.

I would. I have a lot of great memories and many good positive thoughts. I thank the Lord every day that I had the opportunity to be there the five years I was there.

nchammer3269 karma

Do you keep in touch with any of the wrestlers from your time at WWE?

Also, what advice would you give to people who'd want to wrestle professionally, or to the folks down in NXT.

MavenWrestles14 karma

Anyone that wants to do it professionally, make sure you love it.

On Tough Enough, there were 13 people who started who loved the business. They realized they loved the TV aspect of it, not necessarily what was needed to have long-term career success. If you don't love it. If you don't have a passion for it, odds are you'll quit or you'll fail.

Once you realize you do love it and understand the sacrifices, like the aches and pains, the travel, the leaving your family, find someone to train with. There are a few good schools out there who will teach you the ins and outs of the business.

NekoQT7 karma

Whats the best match (in your opinion) you've been in??

MavenWrestles19 karma

A couple of matches I had with Hunter were always fun. I enjoyed working with Christian on a lot of house shows. They just made those matches go off as seamless as possible.

LeagueofDraaven6 karma

Hey Maven Do you still like or respect the wrestling industry? And who was someone you wanted to work with but you didnt get the chance too?

MavenWrestles15 karma

I never got in the ring with Hulk. I always wanted to do something with him. He is a legend.

MehPsh6 karma

What's Al Snow like in real life?

MavenWrestles16 karma

He's like a big brother. Great practical joker...Al, DVonn and Taker helped the most with my career. He taught me the technical details of wrestling, life on the road, and all through my career. Even when I got released, he told me "these jobs rarely end on our terms"

Lvenice886 karma

Who were you're favorite wrestlers growing up?

MavenWrestles18 karma

Where I grew up in Virgina, I watched a lot of the Mid-South. Loved the Four Horseman. In fact, I still watch a lot of the old promos from the 80's. Those are the best.