Mick Foley's appearances on Wrestling Observer Radio are always highly newsworthy and topical (see this article about his previous show where he spoke frankly about the issue of concussions and his own neurological problems). He didn't disappoint last Wednesday either in a show people should go out of there way to listen to. The highlights included:
- Foley made it very clear even beating around the bush that he expects to return to WWE within the next several months, as has already been reported on Cageside Seats. Assuming he has another good match left in him, he says a WrestleMania match with The Undertaker "makes a lot of sense" and even joked that his eight year old son Hughie once asked him whether he was the man to break the streak. He also expressed interest in working with some of the newer WWE stars like The Miz and CM Punk.
- I think Dave Meltzer and Bryan Alvarez dropped the ball slightly by not politely probing him whether one more match, particularly on the grand stage of WrestleMania 28 where he would feel compelled to deliver a memorable, show stealing performance, was in his best interests, given his well documented history of head trauma leading to permanent neurological damage.
- Surprisingly, he said he hasn't ruled out doing announcing for the company, despite Vince McMahon's abrasive handling of his announcers by shouting orders down their ear pieces and dressing them down afterwards if they screwed up being the straw that broke the camel's back that led to him leaving WWE in September 2008. He looks back fondly on his short-lived Smackdown announcing run with Jim Ross and wonders what might have been if he hadn't took everything so personally.
- There was a fascinating discussion over the similarities between learning how to become an effective stand up comedian today with learning how to become a good professional wrestler in the dying territories of the late 1980s, because both involve working an audience.
- When asked how the CM Punk angle has panned out since Money In The Bank, Foley gave a very political answer: "Aww man, we have to see how it all plays out, I'm going to try to resist my urge to be critical of storylines for a company I'll likely be working for again."
- He mentioned that one of the creative sticking points with TNA was their handling of the Knockouts division where the women are regularly scripted to use demeaning language against each other, due his high profile work with the charity RAINN, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network. Management didn't take too kindly to Foley insisting they knock off the women-hating insults. There is some irony here, as Mick Foley was outspoken in his defence of TNA's hypocritical "Eliminate The Hate" anti-bullying campaign before being made the storyline Network Executive in charge of Impact's content.
- Foley discussed being involved with a benefit show for Shane Helms, who recently suffered catastrophic leg and facial injuries in a near fatal motorcycle accident. Helms has asked that the money raised will go to producing a public service announcement. Foley didn't come out and say exactly what that PSA would be for, but how he talked it definitely sounded like it would warn people of the dangers of driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs. Indeed, Helms was recently arrested for a DWI stemming from the crash. A nice gesture by Mick and I'm glad to hear that one wrestler has learnt his lesson about DUIs, hopefully Matt Hardy and Kurt Angle follow suit.
- Coming soon you can see the whole Foley family on Celebrity Wife Swap, where he claims he underwent a physical makeover and his wife got to stay with the best looking guy in the business, which should make for one of the most fun appearances by a wrestler on a mainstream show.
- In closing, he admitted regretting not doing a match with Vince McMahon at WrestleMania X-Seven over a stubborn insistence that he had retired, which caused him a lot of heat at the time. I'd say, given that would have been a relatively easy smoke and mirrors match, much easier than having a serious match with a top star eleven years on.