Chris Jericho has followed his good buddy Stone Cold Steve Austin into the podcast game. Two episodes of Talk is Jericho are now available on PodcastOne - and both feature Y2J shooting the breeze with the man who influenced him to start his own internet talker.
Their wide-ranging conversation is loaded with great stuff from both men - Jericho talks about working with Ricky Steamboat, they break down their views on tag team wrestling, one more match for Austin (it doesn't sound likely, sports fans) - but there were a couple of really juicy tidbits from Stone Cold that I wanted to highlight.
On the birth of his iconic, game-changing catch phrase. (what?) I said, he talked creating his catch phrase. (what?) Not that one, the other one. (what?) He explained where Austin 3:16 came from!
We were in Madison Square Garden, and Scott Hall and Kevin Nash were fixin' to go down South to WCW. That's when the infamous Curtain Call happened, when all those guys from the Kliq went down there and hugged. Shawn Michaels and Triple H had been a part of that hug. In MSG that's hallowed ground; you don't break kayfabe back in the day in Madison Square Garden. Shawn Michaels was very temperamental back in the day. You could rub Shawn the wrong way and he'd have a real bad attitude. Vince couldn't put the screws to him, because he was his #1 guy and world champion. Triple H was going to win the King of the Ring in 1996, but because of that 'curtain call', Vince had to put the heels on somebody, and he put it on Triple H.' ... I was Plan B. So we go to Milwaukee, and my first match is with Marc Mero, and he does a little movement and kicks me in the mouth. They take me to the hospital during the middle of the show, I get 14 stitches and come back ... Before that [Jake Roberts] match happened, I come rolling back in the ambulance. If Michael Hayes hadn't come up to me and told me, 'hey man, while you were gone Jake Roberts cut a religious promo on ya.' Back in the day, any time somebody kicked a field goal or extra point, there would always be a John 3:16 sign in the football stadium. So I said, 'that's it. Austin 3:16.'
Pretty amazing how circumstances created that moment, and how little allegedly went into the speech that saved a company. Could that happen in today's scripted WWE?
Jericho also gets him to talk about "taking his ball and going home" when he was asked to lose to Brock Lesnar:
I handled the situation like a total ass. Jim Ross calls me while I'm laying in a hotel, and he told me creative wanted Brock [Lesnar] to beat me. I'm drawing stupid money right now. WWF has spent a lot of money getting me in this position. I've busted my ass getting me in this position. Guys that draw stupid money don't just happen overnight. So all the sudden you want me to do a job? I love Brock Lesnar; he's a monster. As soon as he walked through the door, we all saw massive potential in the guy. But for me to do a job for him, without any kind of build up - it's a pay-per-view match with two or three weeks of people talking about it. And I said, if that's going to be the case, I won't be there ... I was drinking a lot of whiskey and beer. We were running hard back then, and I just said 'piss on these guys' and I got on a plane and headed back to San Antonio. I should have showed up like a man, come up with a different solution; just show up, talk to Vince face-to-face, solve the problem in some way, and get through it like a grown man. I took my ball and went home. I handled it about as badly as I could, and that's my biggest regret in my career as a pro wrestler.
Nice bit of owning up to a situation where, from a booking perspective, he wasn't really wrong. It's also the first time I've heard him allude to his drinking playing a factor in the incident.
Both shows are worth a listen, with the second episode being where a lot of the meat is. But Y2J is an entertaining summabitch, and it should be worth a click to see where he takes his latest multimedia venture.
Any Cagesider Jericholics given the podcast a whirl yet? Whether you have or not, what do you make of Stone Cold's version of history?