WWE's Cameron Grimes Talks Great American Bash, Going All-In on NXT Championship, and More

WWE NXT's Cameron Grimes is on a mission to defeat Bron Breakker and win the NXT Championship at the Great American Bash, but it's more than just a hunt for the Title. Grimes wants to show that it takes more than raw power and strength to truly represent NXT, and tonight he'll have a chance to seal the deal and become NXT Champion. It's been quite a year for Grimes, and this would be one awesome way to kick off the next chapter of his story, something ComicBook.com had the chance to talk to him all about before his big match. During that conversation, we also talked about how this win would compare to winning the North American Championship earlier this year, a win that was quite personal to him and was in many ways fulfilling a promise to his father, but he looks at this much in the same way.

"Yeah, so at the beginning of this year, the North American Championship opportunity was the biggest opportunity I had ever had in my entire life. We all know how emotional it was for me going into that, making it for my father. I always said that I would be a Champion for my father. I did that at the biggest show of our year, standing and delivering in an arena full of people. I did that. I accomplished a North American Championship and I reached the highest of highs," Grimes said. "But then shortly afterward, I kind of dropped the ball. I lost the North American Championship, but it's okay because I'm just going to focus on Bron, right?"

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(Photo: WWE)

"There's a bigger Championship and that's the deal. This is the NXT Championship. All those emotions and all that is still there for me. I mean, honestly, I need that because I still made that promise. I still told my father that I would be a Champion, and now here I am not a Champion. So I still need this. I may even need this more because if I lose this opportunity, I can't just go crawling back to the North American Championship. You know what I mean? I've put all the chips in on this. There is no other backup plan now. It's huge, I think."

In last week's episode, Grimes didn't mince words with what he thought of Breakker, including a rather fire "it's just genetics" line. When I asked if he always meant to take things to that personal level, Grimes said there was no doubt it needed to go there, because that's how passionate he is about it.

"Yeah. It should hit hard. That's where I'm at right now. Let's talk about it. Let's be honest," Grimes said. "After I won the North American Championship, I came back to my home of the CWC, the Capital Wrestling Center. And you hear the crowd. For what? They just turn on me now for some reason because I accomplished the goal? So yeah, I'm going to be a little bit more bitter. I come back thinking that the crowd's going to be happy with me. Then all of a sudden they just turn on me. I'm not really sure what that's all about, right? So then when I'm coming at Bron Breakker, well, let's be real. At 28 years old, I have been wrestling for 14 years. Out of those 14 years, seven of those years have been on a national television program."

"I should be talking down to this kid. He doesn't deserve to be where he is even at," Grimes said. "I mean, let's be completely real. We know that name has got him in these positions. Yes, he is a freak. He is a monster. He is a stud. He is all those things. But do you think that he would've put the work in on those years on the Indies that I put in? Do you think that he was sleeping on the concrete floor? Do you think that he was having to scratch for money to be able to do this? No. He was sitting in a college dorm room getting free meals to play something that isn't even wrestling. So yeah, maybe I took it a little far, but I am very passionate about this business, and I will protect this business. And winning the NXT Championship is how I'm going to protect that."

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(Photo: WWE)

While he's felt the love from fans at times, these days he did admit to feeling a bit underappreciated. "Maybe, right? I feel like I definitely, with the CWC, the Capital Wrestling Center, I feel underappreciated with them. But that's just how they are. They like to look at the new shiny toys, and then once the toy gets its reward, they think it's a bad toy. But that's okay. I'm completely fine with it because I'm going to keep that grind that got me here. The people fell in love with me because of my passion and that passion's not leaving. So I'm going to just keep pushing it forward. I may be underappreciated, but I've been underappreciated my whole career. I've always been the underdog. I've always been the ugly duckling. The scruffly beard, the crazy body hair, I've always been looked at as less than when ultimately I'm better than."

Grimes has been part of NXT throughout its transformation from the Black and Gold to NXT 2.0, and along the way he's not only enjoyed the new talent that keeps him on his toes, but also how NXT has helped him grow as a person and a wrestler.

"Honestly, I like this current era of NXT. I like having these young passionate guys that are freak athletes because that inspires me to work harder. As for what I've gotten the most out of WWE, I feel like I've really matured as just an adult. You know what I mean? Like I said earlier, 28 years old, so I'm still kind of growing. I'm still learning how to just be an adult, and at NXT is a perfect place to learn that when you have coaches like Shawn Michaels. We have these guys to learn from, so I would spend my whole life in NXT if I could just to keep learning under these people. But the problem with the new NXT is like having these new hungry guys is they just don't know any better. That's the best way I can say it is they just don't know any better. That could be a good thing or it could be a bad thing,"

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(Photo: Ringside Collectibles)

Now, there are so many milestone moments in any wrestler's career, but one of the coolest moments has to be seeing yourself as an action figure. Grimes however didn't just get the action figure treatment, as his new Ringside Exclusive WWE figure is a special edition that comes with all sorts of accessories, including the Million Dollar Championship, and he couldn't have been more over the moon about it....yeah yeah, I couldn't resist a Moon reference.

"So I learned about it, I think, when everyone else did, right? It was WrestleMania weekend. They did the debut of the new figures at Axxess and everything. That's when I got to see it for the first time. That's when I even knew about it for the first time. I had no clue about it at all. But then I got to go to Axxess and I got to actually meet those guys. They were so excited to show it to me. They told me that this figure had been in the works for an entire year. It's a Ringside exclusive, so all the detail is there. Then the new box art, there's so much detail in the box art and everything. It's crazy, to not have an action figure at all, and then for that to be your first one, it's amazing. You couldn't ask for anything better, right? I feel like it only goes downhill from here," Grimes said.

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You can catch Grimes in action when The Great American Bash airs tonight at 7 PM CST on USA Network.

What do you want to see next for Cameron Grimes? Let us know in the comments and as always you can talk all things wrestling with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!