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Wednesday, April 8, 2020

WARRIOR SPOTLIGHT: Teal Piper, Wrestler

by Cyrus Webb

Strong. Resilient. Determined. Unstoppable.

These words and so many more can be used to describe the amazing women I have had the honor to recognize in this issue of Conversations, and they definitely fit the one and only Teal Piper.

I had a chance to talk with Teal before her very first live event in 2019. It was a wide-ranging conversation talking about her own life in professional wrestling, what it’s like for her to build her own legacy and the support from her community.

What an exciting time this is for you Teal. Talk to us about the experience since you announced you were going to begin your own wrestling journey.
As soon as I said I wanted to get into wrestling, I knew it would be very fast and you know, you just kind of get thrown into everything. I think that's part of why I waited so long to say anything. It’s surreal. I'm enjoying it because it's something that I can do and I'm kind of relearning a part of my dad's life. But instead of me standing outside of the ring, I'm in it and I kind of get a little piece of what he did all those years. And so for me it’s a lot about as it turns out I actually like doing it.

One thing that you said in an interview recently that really struck me that I hope our audience gets. I think it happens to anyone who might be involved in what's considered the family business, right? No matter what it might be, there are always going to be comparisons. But you really talked a lot in this one interview about being able to be yourself. How important was that for you? I mean you were entering an arena literally that your father was known for. How important was it for you to let people know that you are going to be just you?
For me, that's one of the most important things, because I've said it time and again, there's never going to be another Rowdy Roddy Piper. I'm not that. I will not be that person. However, I do want to continue the family legacy, and I think that's also a part of why I waited so long to get into wrestling as it helped me kind of find my own identity with movies and music and entertainment and myself. I feel like I have my own identity that I can bring into the ring now. And hopefully as I'm performing and going along and having matches and everything, people will start to identify me more as my own, my own person. There’s no longevity in being Rowdy Roddy Piper's kid as a career. I am focusing very hard on bringing my own new things to the ring.

In another interview, Teal, you talked about your father and women, and what he would have thought about women wrestling. WOW didn’t exist in his time, but what is that like for you to think of being a part of a platform that welcomes women.
I've noticed with WOW (Women of Wrestling) when I watched their first season, they cut to the audience. I saw so many young girls just like in awe at what they're watching and so engaged in these matches. I thought, “Wow! This is definitely something I want to be a part of.” I have a lot of nieces, and I've always wanted to be a positive role model to the younger generations coming up and now in wrestling--being a girl—this is the time. Women are killing it across the industry right now, and it's a movement that I didn't want to miss out on. I wanted to be a part of it and help it grow.

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