Bleacher Report Photos/Brent Sobleski

Jake Roberts is not the same man that he used to be. He's improved. He is happy.

One of the WWF's biggest stars during the 1980's was "The Snake", who rose through the pro-wrestling territories. He pulled out one of his slithery pals and the crowd roared.

As chronicled in the documentary entitled The Resurrection of Jake the Snake, his career fell apart as he became addicted to alcohol and drugs. He bared his soul for the world to see when talking about his father and broken family in Vice's Dark Side of the Ring.

Roberts got sober and resuscitated his career. He was in the company's Hall of Fame. He was the manager of LanceArcher. During his debut, his promo was one of the best in the company's brief history.

Roberts hasn't been involved in creative recently due to a respiratory ailment. He can return to his job after five months of rehabilitation. The Snake Pit was started by the wrestler.

The rejuvenated 67-year-old sat down with Bleacher Report to discuss where his life currently stands, what he's seen in the AEW locker room, his reactions to some shocking moments this year and what comes next.

Jake 'The Snake' Roberts Opens Up on Tony Khan and AEW, Life After Addiction and More✨ Watch more top videos, highlights, and B/R original content

The issues that were aired in the Jake the Snake and the Vice episode are difficult to discuss. How has your relationship with your family changed since you addressed the past problems?

Jake Roberts said it had gotten better. We are now golden. One of my daughters is golden. Twin boys who are golden are mine. Four of my children are still holding their ground. I know what I'm talking about. I'm not trying to put something in their mouths.

I'm guilty of everything I've done. I didn't do a lot of things because I wasn't around when I was drunk or messed up. Thank you very much. It would have been terrible to see me that way. It was my wife who made it happen, and I'm thankful I wasn't there. She said she didn't want drugs or alcohol in the house.

I wanted to show how powerful drugs and alcohol are. That's insane. I wonder what was going on when I looked back. I wasn't paying much attention. The only thing that matters is your drug. It's all done.

Have anyone reached out to you and told you how helpful your story has been to them?

A lot of people.

One of the people I am working with is Buff Bagwell. We are trying to get him on the straight and narrow. It isn't easy and it is a process. It takes a lot of time for people who did it for a long time. There's a little thing in your brain that says, "Hey, where's the next drink at?" when you stop doing something religiously. This is where? It's not a good thing.

I've spent time in jail and rehab. When I was a kid, my dream was to become a drug addiction and alcoholic. No one dreams of that. Along the way, it happens. You take a left instead of a right.

You are in trouble once the hook is set.

It took me a long time to get to the bottom. I got rid of everything. I took the car away. Drugs were traded for a car. I've accomplished everything. I didn't go shopping until 2 or 3 a.m. because I didn't want people to see me. That is how bad I looked.

We went to the top. I was the best. They may have had belts but that doesn't mean they are any better. The very best was me.

I was at the bottom of the barrel. I am eternally grateful to Diamond Dallas Page for saving my life. He gave me the chance to get sober.

You returned to an on-screen role with AEW in 2020 after getting yourself right and doing everything you needed to do. How did that moment affect you?

One of my best moments was that. I will always remember it.

The opportunity to live in Salt Lake City was more than I had ever imagined. I thought it would be one day. They decided that it was worth a couple of years.

emption is what it was.

It was amazing to be the focus of what's there and still being able to deliver. When I touched the ring, I thought my hands would catch on fire. The temperature was hot. Something came through me.

It was amazing. You have to have that moment to explain it.

CLEVELAND, OH - JANUARY 26: CM Punk in the ring during AEW Dynamite - Beach Break on January 26, 2022, at the Wolstein Center in Cleveland, OH. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

CM Punk's post- match press conference continues to dominate the discourse around professional wrestling despite you stepping away for health reasons. What was your initial reaction to what he said?

JR thinks it's disgusting. I didn't like the whole thing. You don't want to hear what I think and I won't tell you.

You spent time in the locker room with Matt and Nick Jackson and Kenny Omega. The three were involved in a backstage fight with Punk. What are the opinions of AEW's executive vice presidents about the situation?

I don't believe they did. It's all on Punk. I think that's my own opinion.

What has the backstage reaction been like for you?

The younger talent don't come to me and ask for advice because they are intimidated by me. They don't come to me with a request for assistance. Some have. I would be in the middle of it if the shoe was on the other foot. I'm there for that. I'm here to assist them. My job is that. I'm able to help them a lot.

B/R says it's not just about wrestling. In an industry that is hard on its workers, you have other experiences. There has been no progress on that front.

JR said that he saved one man's marriage by helping him with his addiction. He was on the straight and narrow. He told me that life is better than it has been before. I feel that way as well.

My life is ten times better than it was at my peak, because I'm enjoying it. I don't carry a lot of guilt and shame. It gets heavy as you carry it around. It hits you in the head. Slapping you, saying that you are not worth it.

You are worth it, that's what I said.

B/R asked if there was a problem with the younger generation not taking advice from veterans of what to do in the ring.

JR thinks it is. The sword has two edges. The business is not what it was in the past. It isn't the same. Kids are under a lot of pressure to do well. They go out and do crazy things. Their bodies were tossed around and flew. They're missing a lot when it comes to characters. Which one are you? All 10 of them will do the same thing if you put them into a room. They need to learn how to be a good person. They need to make sure they are on time. They need to know how to communicate. I am not sure if they will ever get that chance.

There are a few people who take it, including Jon Moxley, Bryan Danielson, Chris Jericho, and many others. They are familiar with what to do in that area. There are a lot of people who are not getting it.

OSAKA, JAPAN - AUGUST 07: Lance Archer enters the ring during the New Japan Pro-Wrestling - G1 Climax 32 at Edion Arena Osaka on August 07, 2022 in Osaka, Japan. (Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images)Etsuo Hara/Getty Images

B/R asked if you were happy with the direction of the show after you were introduced as a duo.

I don't understand why I would be that way. It wasn't for Lance. Lance is one of the greatest athletes the world has ever seen. For Christ's sake he's a monster. He's not doing anything that he needs to be doing. He wants that spot up above.

It's not happening. You are not the chosen one. If you weren't a wrestler, you weren't a wrestler. It was all done. He finds himself there. He isn't the person.

I'm not sure whether that changes or not. Is it correct or incorrect? If I were in their shoes, I would want to do what I thought was right.

He would be a champion. He is a murderer.

When you return to your onscreen persona, do you want to work with archer again or do you want to go somewhere else?

JR said it was with him or not. I will not go elsewhere. Lance is my favorite person. He's a good person. He's a good man. He was with me when I was a wrestler. He might have been able to help me. He could have told me not to go down the road. I have a good relationship with him. Before you follow someone, you have to be respectful. I think he's a good man.

A wise man once told you to never turn your back on someone you respect or are afraid of. After turning your back on him, you walked to the backstage. You don't feel like you have a personal relationship with him. He helped bring you into the company.

It was big. He's very close with the person.

People were supposed to make a splash in order to get some attention. Is anyone better than me? Not any more than me. Are you talking about Sting? It's definitely true. I think the impact I had on them was just as great as Sting's.

The Aew locker room seemed to be influenced by another person. Two years ago, his passing shook the industry. How large of a presence was he behind the scenes?

He was a great influence. He was a member of the younger group and they looked up to him.

What happened is a shame. Nobody thought that would happen. I think AEW is doing a great job of helping his family. Tony Khan is a man of his word, so they won't have to worry. He is gold. He's a good person.

Tony Khan, founder, co-owner, president, and CEO of the All Elite Wrestling attends an NFL football game between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Tennessee Titans, Sunday, Oct. 10, 2021, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton

These bad moments should not sour him. Certainly, they could. He might eventually get used to it. I'm not sure how long he can push it off. I pray that it isn't an issue.

He has a lot of things going on as he gets more focused. It isn't just AEW. I'm not sure how he does it. It wouldn't be possible to me. I wouldn't try it.

You worked with Vince McMahon for a long time. How big was it for professional wrestling when he resigned?

JR claps if it was true. Do you believe he left? He doesn't have anything to do with their product. He's the head of the company.

What are your first impressions of HHH?

They are doing well. I think HHH is doing a good job. People will take time to forget what Vince did. It's time for dirt to wash off or fade away. Wrestlers are very nice to one another. I would like to thank the Almighty. I believe HHH is doing a great job.

The in-ring product is the next thing to move to. How does the continued evolution of the move make you feel?

It's great." I'm often asked how I feel about it being used. It makes me look better. People are now saying that it's a pesticide. You did not get up when Jake Roberts did that.

You are correct. You didn't get up because you weren't able to.

It's finally time for one young wrestler to take this industry to the next level.

"Hangman" is a movie written by Adam Page. He's doing a good job. The man has a good look to him. A handsome man. He can do it. Hook is capable of doing it. It could. Sammy is a big player if he doesn't get arrested. I think he's going to be arrested.

I don't like that for these guys. At 67 years of age, I am here. I haven't wrestled in 30 years. I make lots of money doing signings. I got over, that's the reason. Everyone knew who I was.

For Bleacher Report, Brent Sobleski covers professional wrestling and the National Football League. Be sure to follow him on social media.