Q & A
January 7, 2007
Q: What do you think of the idea of making the WWE schedule more like a hockey
schedule in terms of giving the boys a 1 or 2 month "off season" after Wrestle Mania? I think this would be a good idea, because it would give WWE a chance to build toward something. Maybe during the off-season they could showcase stars from OVW or Deep South and have a rookie draft at the start of each new season, with a representative from RAW, Smackdown!, and ECW present. Thoughts?
A: There might be an up side to this but there is also some down, which is why this has never been done. The first fear is that by offering the down time there is the chance fans will get out of the habit of tuning in and get hooked on something else and they would lose fans over time. You also have to consider that if they shut down for 2 months that is 1/6th of the year which is a big percentage to give up once you are used to revenue 12 months a year. So while some fans may like the break I think in the long run it would likely cost the company money.
Q: What are your thoughts on The Undertaker? There are rumors that Taker is retiring after Wrestlemania. I know that it's not about the titles, but as a huge Undertaker fan I would like to see Undertaker experience another title run before his successful career ends.
A: The thing with a guy like Taker is that he doesnít need the tile. He is so over he can be a Main Event without a Title so if you put the Title on him you lose a Main Event. If you have the Title on someone else the Title can make them and Taker is still Taker and you have two headliners.
Q: The primary question I have is where should I go or who should I talk to if I want to get involved in the business from a writing/booking standpoint? I think I could contribute more in this area to the business of professional wrestling than being a performer in the ring.
A: I get asked this all the time. You actually have to have a degree and legit writing credits to get a Writers job. There is info on the WWE website if you go to the Corporate section.
Q: Have you ever been in a situation where a booker gives you a really bad excuse as to why you should job?
A: I generally just do what Iím told and never ask for a reason. I always figure the reason ďThey want the other guy overĒ should be enough. I was once offer the reason, ďWe need to get the other guy some lossesĒ as a reason I was being put over.
Q: What's the latest on Val Venis (Sean Morley) aka Chief Morley? For a while he was on WWE earlier this year, seemed to always lose his matches, then disappeared.
A: Val is in the position where WWE has labeled him as a ďGood HandĒ. They think he is a good worker and thus will always have a job, but they donít have enough creative power to come up with anything new for him so he will be used to carry others on the road and put people over on TV. Itís not a great spot for your ego, but itís good job security.
Q: I read your opinion of Eric Bischoff's book, and I was wondering what your opinion of William Regal's book is.
A: I really enjoyed Williamís book. It was as entertaining as I hoped it would be (He is an amazing story teller in person) but it was extremely interesting and honest. I thought it was a very worthwhile read.
Q: When wrestlers compete in a gimmick match (Hell in A Cell, TLC for example) are they paid more for that work? Or is the rate of pay pretty much the same.
A: There isnít a specific pay scale to gimmick matches but you generally make more money if you are in higher spot on the card, or in a major match. Gimmick matches tend to be more important and highly featured bouts so you tend to make more money.
Q: As an aspiring wrestler, is it possible to make any kind of living (not a bad one) wrestling the indies and working a regular job without a college degree?
A: You wonít make a great or even good living just working Indies, at least not for quite a while. There are a few guys who make a living on the Indy scene but most are just getting by while hoping for a bigger break.
Q: I was just wondering, what do you think of the tag-team, Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch?
A: I havenít seen enough of them to truly judge. They arenít on that often and itís usually short. I know Lance fairly well and think he has potential, but Murdoch Iíve never met.
Q: what is your view on TNA trying to start a war with WWE? TNA is stupid thinking they can take on an empire like WWE. Do you think TNA stands a chance against WWE?
A: You realize there isnít actually a WAR, right? TNA is just trying to make the fans believe there is a WAR in order to appear on the same plain as WWE. Regardless of what VKM is doing there is the same competition for fans regardless of any ďWARĒ there may or may not be.
Q: Your whole thing with TNA's "banning the lock up" I think is a little unfair. You even say that TNA matches donít get enough time to develop a proper story, or for the matches to mean anything worth remembering. Well, if they get that little time why should they lock up, and do a minute of chain wrestling only to finish the match up just a couple minutes later. By them jump starting the match it gives them more time to get some actual things in during the match. I also feel jump starting delivers more of the spike tv attitute, and what TNA promises well be on their show "Total Non Stop Action"
A: You are missing the big picture. You are solving one problem by creating another. Why do people jump-start normally? It is because the conflict has become so heated and it is away to illustrate to fans that these two people are so hot at each other they refuse to wait for the bell or follow the rules. When EVERY match jump-starts this is lost. Iíve seen Team 3D jump stat against job guys. WHY? When anything happens all the time it loses itís purpose and nothing stands out. I mentioned this once in my TV thoughts. There was an episode of Impact where every match up to the main event was a cold match (no angle) and every one of them had a jump-start. The Main Event had an angle, heat and featured LAX who had jumped 3 people in the back during the show. This match didnít jump stat but obeyed the rules and thus looks completely stupid. The only match on the card that obeyed the rules was the one where guys were actually mad at each other. You need to look at the big picture on why things are done not just look for an easy time fix.
Q: Why do you think they would announce the Ladder Match for the PPV during the actual PPV? Honestly, one of the matches this whole year I've wanted to see was a Ladder match involving the Hardy Boys, MNM, and London & Kendrick. I would have ordered the PPV had I known this beforehand, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.
A: There are likely 2 reasons behind something like this. They may have been so disorganized that they hadnít made the decision to book the match in time to properly promote it. They also may have wanted to give a bonus to fans that ordered the PPV. With so many bad PPVs so close together lately (THE ECW one specifically) they may have decided to give fans more than they expected to make the show exceed expectations. Also when you deliver something like this unexpected it gives the PPV a must see feel. Anyone who didnít buy the show and regretted it because they missed the ladder match may be more apt to purchase in future even if the advertised line up isnít that strong.
Q: I know that this will destroy any kayfabe that's left if there's any if you answer yes, but I was told that WWE tv matches are so scripted that wrestlers are told when to look at the camera and when to do poses. Is that true?
A: NO, matches are not scripted. The wrestlers do pre-plan somewhat but they are not given a script that says what to do when to do it and certainly not when to pose and look at the camera.
Q: Well I read that Bischoff did'nt like what you said about his book and kinda talked a little trash, and was wondering what you thought of Eric as a booker/talent??
A: I canít comment too much on him as a booker because I donítí know what creative ideas were his or not. As a talent (not worker but on camera performer) I think he is quite good. He always manages to create heat and comes off natural.
Q: Recently I read in a article that Kurt Angle was going to have a "shoot" fight on a TNA ppv. Now say this happens and he faces...lets say Tito Ortiz, do you think that if Kurt looses that it could ruin TNA's chances of pushing Angle as such a threat? And do you think that it would / could ruin Angle's run in TNA also? I should just note that I personally hope Kurt gets his ass beat.
A: I seriously doubt they would actually do a ďshootĒ fight in a TNA PPV. They may promote it as such and make it look like one. A loss by Angle would be devastating and when itís real that is ALWAYS a possibility.
Q: What is your fondest memory of working in the WWE? A match, an event, anything.
A: I had a bunch of them. All the trips to the Maritimes were great. I was always SUPER over on those shows which was a blast.
Q: I read that you still keep in touch with Benoit and i was hoping if you could answer me if there is any truth to the rumour that he is unhappy in WWE? As i have read on some sites that some upper tier guys in the WWE are now seeing TNA as a more appropriate working environment
A: That would be a question he would have to answer himself. It is not my place to comment about how he is feeling.
Q: Do you feel that finishers are being undermined with kickout after kickout these days? To me, as a viewer, it feels as though no finisher is believably powerful enough anymore, because it's always kicked out of by two. I don't mean they should necessarily return to squashes, but at least have some more clear-cut situations where the finisher really DOES finish off an opponent straight away, with one single use instead of multiple times. Or is that simply not viable today?
A: I donít think most finishers are kicked out of, at least not often. When was the last time you saw someone kick out of a Super Kick, or a Pedigree, or an RKO? If itís a huge match and only done once in a while it can build drama.
Q: Just Wondering who were your favorite wrestlers before u became a wrestler, and who are ur favorite wrestlers now?
A: I was a big fan of: The Dynamite Kid, Bret Hart, The Midnight Express, Brian Pillman, among others. Some of my favorites to watch now are, Gregory Helms, Regal, Benoit, Finlay, Christopher Daniels, Christian, Edge.
Q: I have read that Rob Van Dam refused to go to Iraq again this year and has received major heat for it. I have also read that Triple H did not want to make the trip because he wanted to be home with his wife and new daughter. Obviously, I understand what is going on here (provided it is true), but what are your thoughts? Do you think it is hippocritical or different situations?
A: I think the thing you are over looking is that RVD hasnít gone yet and has always refused to go, where I think HHH has gone before.
Q: Did everyday in the wrestling business feel like you were "living your dream". Or did there come a stage where it feel just like an everyday kind of job.
A: I am fairly unique in the business in this respect, because this was never a dream of mine. I love what I do but it was never a dream. It was just a fun job I was good at.
Q: Never heard the term schmazz? What is that?
A: Itís just a term for melee or out of control brawl. If a show or match ends with a lot of bodies hitting the ring for a big brawl, that would be a Schmazz.
Q: If TNA was running shows in Calgary instead of Orlando, would you be wrestling for them (until the throat and knee injuries at least)?
A: A strong likely hood I would have went there when I first left WWE, in that situation. Getting off the road was my main goal so it they were in Calgary I would have been very interested.
Q: Considering your recent injury the question about healthcare in pro wrestling came to mind, is the onus solely on the individual wrestler to sort out their healthcare, even in the largest promotions? And if so how does the profession limit the type of cover you can get? I would imagine putting pro wrestler on your application would have lead to a few questions and an inflated premium at the very least.
A: WWE has an insurance plan for talent but anywhere else you are on your own. Being Canadian it wasnít a big issue for me as we have health care coverage here.
Q: At TV shows, did you pay special attention to the side of the ring that faced the main camera? How much would that effect the way you, or others, performed in those matches?
A: It didnít affect me but I was conscious of where the hard camera was. You always try to play to the largest portion of your audience you can, so paying more attention to the side with the camera just makes sense.
Q: I was just curious how you felt towards Mick Foley's books, and whether they too have been tweaked to fit the criteria WWE have set for all their athletes (as in, making the book a work rather than a shoot).
A: I only read Foleyís first book, ďHave a Nice DayĒ and thought it was real good. Mick is a great writer so it was entertaining as well as interesting. It seemed pretty honest from what I could tell.
Q: You mentioned a scary Middle East trip, what was the deal with that trip?
A: I did a 2-week tour of Lebanon in 1992. War was breaking out at one point while we were there. We were confined to our hotels by armed guards at one point, and a guy was shot at one show not 50 feet from where I was standing.
Q: Not looking for you to burry him (unless you would like to), but what was the problem with Onita?
A: I just felt we were treated poorly. We were paid less than promised, and when we spoke to him he really seemed to talk down to us. Tenryu on the other hand, when I worked for him, treated me extremely well and was both friendly and easy to talk to.
Q: Was there a certain agent in WWE or WCW that you enjoyed working with more than the others?
A: I enjoyed working with Johnny Ace, and Fit Finlay a lot as agents.
Q: From a company standpoint, do you think it is a good or bad move in general to put 3 titles on one guy like WCW did with yourself?
A: Anything can be good or bad depending on how it is done. It certainly put me on the map and had they done more with me afterwards it would have been a successful way to make me a legit Main Eventer.
Q: Are there a lot of workers who are marks for holding a title?
Q: I know, kind of a hard one to answer, but why do you loving wrestling? Is it the performing, the money, fame etc?
A: I enjoy the match process a lot. I can live without the fame, the money just makes it worthwhile at the end of the day, it does not make you love something.
Q: How often did or do you get noticed in public when you were at the height of your various pushes?
A: It varied and depended on where I was. I got recognized the most the week after I worked The Rock. Seriously the time I defeated The Rock to get my WWE job back I got recognized all the time and everyone made comments that I wrestled Rock.
Q: Do you find it annoying to get noticed/approached in public or does it just depend on the situation?
A: It all depends on who the person handles things. If they are polite and considerate itís cool, if they are hysterical fans itís annoying.
Q: You say you will only take booking now that interest you, who would interest you to have a match with on the Indy circuit.
A: Itís more than just who, itís where, when, and what company also.
Q: In the shoot interviews you have done, is there a set of questions prior to that are off limits or can they ask what ever they want?
A: They usually ask if anything is off limits but Iíve always said ask what ever you want.
Q: Will you ever come back to mainstream wrestling like either WWE or TNA?
A: Never say never, but I seriously doubt it.
Q: What do you think about Rey Mysterio's ring work?
A: Rey is amazing and a truly unique joy to work with. He is one in a million.
Q: There was a rumor in 2000, that the night after you dropped the US title to Bill Demott (Halloween Havoc), the applause that all the superstars gave him on Nitro, he had no idea it was going to happen until it actually did. Is any of that true?
A: Yes it was planned as a surprise. Bill was a very popular guy and I think Konnan might have been the one to organize the applause for him.
Q: What did your kids ask for, for Christmas this year? Was Lance Storm in search of a Wii???
A: Thankfully my kids are young and not into game systems yet. They wanted the Barbie RV, which they each got.
Q: Ever been asked by a fan, for a autograph in a bathroom?
A: Probably but I donít recall specifically.
Q: Have you gained or lost any weight since you retired?
A: Iím about the same weight (with in a pound) Iím likely have a pound or two less muscle and a pound or two more fat, but I havenít changed much.
Q: You've said you enjoy Eminem, whats a couple of your favorite songs of his? I like "Loose Yourself" the best.
A: I like almost all of his stuff, including the stuff that wasnít released as singles.
Q: Which of these 2007 movie releases are you MOST likely to see in the theater. Gotta pick one. The Bourne Ultimatum, Spider-Man 3, Live Free or Die Hard (Die Hard 4) or
Pirates of the Caribbean 3
A: I will definitely see Pirates and Spider-Man. The other 2 will likely be rentals.
Q: How bad was airport security when you went on vacation with your wife? and did you enjoy Hawaii?
A: Security was easy and Hawaii was AMAZING. We stayed right on Waikiki Beach and everything went perfectly. Not a single aspect of the trip could have been better.
Keep the questions coming,