Exclusive: Joe Hendry Opens Up About Returning to Impact Wrestling, Still Living in Scotland, His Future, and More

(Photo Credit: @joehendry)

Joe Hendry is a wrestler on a mission to be the absolute best he can be.

After being away for over 3 years, the IMPACT Wrestling star returned to the company at Bound For Glory 2022 and won the Digital Media Championship soon after, defeating Bryan Myers to capture the gold.

In an exclusive interview, PWMania.com got to sit down with Hendry this week and asked him about his road back to IMPACT, that title win, and his thoughts on the company and where it sits within the world of wrestling in 2022.

Joe, it’s been quite a time for you since returning to IMPACT Wrestling at Bound For Glory. How you finding your time back with the promotion?

“It’s awesome, man. It’s a dream job, dream company, it’s where I wanna be. How many people can say that in life? I feel very fortunate after having wrestling taken away from me for such a long time with covid. I’ve got a new sense of gratitude towards pro wrestling. When I imagined the dream of being a pro wrestler, this is what I imagined, so I’m very happy.”

How has it been, with the traveling and adjusting to getting back to work in a major company?

“I love it. I still live in Scotland and travel out to the States, so I’ve got this weird double life where I can go and travel across America, and I love America, but then I can then come home, go do my local shopping and live a nice life in East Kilbride, stepping away from it all. I’ve had 10 flights in 10 days, so I am a little jet lagged, but I’m clocking up the air miles and loving what I do.”

It was all worth it as you win the Digital Media Championship. How did you feel when your time came and you beat Brian Myers for the title?

“It was wild. I didn’t think for a second this would all happen. Actually, I thought to myself, maybe in 2023 maybe I’ll have a run at going for the Digital Media Championship, but then to do it at my second set of tapings was ludicrous. But, I have worked very hard to get to this position. I’ve reinvented myself in the ring, I’ve reinvented my look, I’ve busted my ass with my physique. I’ve worked so hard and so I think I’ve deserved this shot and I thank IMPACT for feeling that I had this shot in me. They delivered on their end and then it was time for me to deliver on mine.”

IMPACT is over 20 years old, with an amazing legacy. In an industry that is thriving in many ways, with a lot of good wrestling and prominent mainstream and independent companies out there, where do you feel IMPACT sits in the world for wrestling fans?

“It’s the best wrestling show on TV as far as I’m concerned. It’s my opinion now and was my opinion before I got there. We produce the best weekly wrestling television show. As the weeks go by, more and more people are going to see that and believe that. We offer something different and the energy and vibe backstage is so collective and collaborative.

“When I arrived back, everyone was supporting me, retweeting my stuff, looking to help build me up as soon as I’m back. And that’s with everyone supporting everyone. It’s a great culture and creates an awesome feeling. Every single person involved is so committed to putting on the best show, and getting better each week and for me, being one of the champions means big responsibility. It’s on my shoulder to deliver the absolute best product I can and that the fans are entertained in the best way they can be.

“I take that responsibility very, very serious indeed, and therefore, I work to be the very best I can be every single day.”

You’ve wrestled all over the world, making your name in ICW before What Culture, World Of Sport, ROH. Do you think Joe Henry 2022 is the best you’ve ever been?

“100%. I’m ten times the wrestler I was in ROH. I feel I’m ready now, ready for the opportunity that I probably wasn’t ready for the first time I was in IMPACT in 2018. I needed to go away and sharpen my tools, build my physique, create a unique look, work on my character, work on my promo, get more viral videos out there.”

Who’s been the best within the company at helping you do this?

“I collaborate a lot with writer, Robert Evans. He gets what I really want to do, so we will really go in-depth on all my promos and we will spend hours talking about a 90-second promo. We will go back and forth, thinking of when and where to use words, and how to deliver each section, all to get it right.

“Jimmy Jacobs, Scott D’Amore are big parts of that also. It’s so difficult because when I mention names, I’ll inevitably forget some, but everyone is so so cooperative and supportive.

“The creative team are amazing and as soon as I get back behind the curtain, I get feedback from Tommy Dreamer, who is a legend in the game. He is so strong in a lot of areas I need to work on. So to get feedback from him is invaluable.

“Eric Young is amazing, he takes so much time to give me great feedback. Chris Sabin, Alex Shelley, they will sit and talk with me about ideas for moves and helping me with ring craft. There’s just so many people, it’s hard to name them all. We are so lucky to have the world class talent we have backstage.”


So, everything seems in place. You’re in a great position right now, but what does the future hold for Joe Hendry?

“So, this is the thing I’ve said to a lot of people. I used to have all these goals, like I have to main event here and there, win this and that title, but now, I don’t think about those goals. If you focus too much on what should be ahead, you forget the here and now.

“It was made clear to me, don’t worry about what you’ll be doing in a year or two, worry about the reactions you’re getting right now! I’m the champion, so it’s up to other people to call me out. I want to have a really strong reign with the Digital Media Championship, but then I want to work my way into the upper card of this company.

“I want to be a draw for the company. I want to entertain the fans, I want them to remember everything I do on a show and I want to really draw and give something back to this company.”

For sure, and it’s a great company to give back to. With IMPACT PLUS and IMPACT INSIDERS making the product so accessible for the fans (as little as $0.99c a month), what do you like to look back at from the company’s history to learn and enjoy from?

“I mean, for me, the angle with Kurt Angle and Samoa Joe is just amazing. The time Kurt arrives, headbutts Joe and Joe replies with the kick. Amazing. Perfect build up, crowd are so engaged and a feud is born. For me, looking back at that on IMPACT PLUS is a joy.”

Message from IMPACT Plus – IMPACT Wrestling

And as we see out 2022 and go into 2023, where can fans see yourself and the great IMPACT roster?

“Well, alongside IMPACT PLUS and IMPACT INSIDERS where you can watch our weeklies, ppvs, documentaries and archive events for as little as a pound a month, you can see us live on Dec 9th and 10th in Pembroke Pines, Florida as part of our Winter Warfare tapings. That’s at the Charles Dodge centre.

“We’ve got Hard To Kill on January 13th in Atlanta, Georgia at the legendary Centre Stage. That’s going to be amazing. The fallout of that will be on the 14th, so if you’re free, please check impactwrestling.com/events/ for tickets.”

Joe Hendry deserves the success he currently has. Seeing him from a great talent in ICW, through his WCPW and ROH stints to now being a champion at such a prestigious company is a joy and long may it continue.

(Pictures: IMPACT Wrestling)