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Road Dogg On Why He Stepped Down From WWE Creative, Challenges of Writing Smackdown

June 14, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Road Dogg Brian James

– Brian “Road Dogg” James appeared on the latest X-Pac 12360 and discussed leaving his job as Smackdown’s lead writer, working at the Performance Center and more. Road Dogg took a month-long break from WWE in April, leaving the creative team and began working in the Performance Center in May. Highlights and the podcast are below::

On working at the Performance Center: “It’s definitely a different environment [from writing Smackdown]. But it’s also something where I realized that like, I got caught up in running so hard that I didn’t make time for myself, and make time to do the things I needed to do to maintain my sobriety and my serenity. So what this has given me, and believe you me, I realized it was nobody else but me. It was me who was almost keeping myself under water and gasping for air every now and then. Now I feel like I can come up and breath a little bit, and do some of the things I was lacking to help me kind of stay mentally stable.”

On the stresses of being the lead Smackdown writer: “So look, it’s a hectic schedule. Writing a live two-hour television show weekly is not easy. And I know that a lot of people on the internet think it’s just the easiest thing since sliced bread. But it’s difficult when you have to think of keeping the lights on and pleasing sponsors. And everybody wants it to be rated R. And that’s a time that’s gone by, and it’s not coming back. It’s difficult.”

On needing a break from the creative team: “People have to protect you from yourself and that’s a sad thing. I had people trying to protect me, but I’m so hard-headed, I wanted to keep going. I didn’t want to feel like I tapped out. I didn’t want to feel like I gave up. And I don’t feel that way, I don’t feel guilty about it. I’m glad, I think it’s a sign of maturity that I stood up for myself and kind of said, ‘Hey, I’m gonna crack if I don’t do something differently right now. So that was on me, and now I’m trying to do something differently. The job here is not etched in stone, it’s kind of still evolving and still oscillating. [It’s time to get some] fresh attitude, fresh eyes, fresh creativity [on Smackdown].”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit X-Pac 12360 with a h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.