Posts Tagged ‘NWA’

Tony Schivone spoke to CBS DC on WCW, returning to announcing, and Ric Flair’s promos. Here are some of the highlights:

Keeping his composure during Ric Flair’s over-the-top promos:

“Yeah, the one that I remember was one that we did on the set of World Championship Wrestling back in the 80s. He was doing the angle against Gorgeous Jimmy Garvin and Precious, and he was trying to woo Precious, and he brought out a mannequin. He kissed and made love to the mannequin, while I was holding the microphone. If you go back and watch it, I think you catch me laughing. He and I talk about that often, when I talk to him and I talk to him about how nutty he was. I say, ‘Yeah but, I was there when you kissed a mannequin.'”

Getting back to announcing with MLW after being away from it for years:

“Yeah. Court [Bauer] got in touch me, and we started in October, and he said, ‘Listen, I’d like for you to come down and call some action for us.’ He said, ‘I don’t have much money to give you, but I wondered if you’ll consider doing it.’ And he told me how much he would give me to do the first show. I said, ‘Well that’s kind of nostalgic because that’s what I got my first show back in 1982.’

I thought about Court and MLW and said, he and Conrad Thompson had done a lot for me by opening up the world of podcasts, and I might as well go down and try to do it. I was really apprehensive, because I didn’t think my voice could handle it based on what I used to do. It was really kind of an unknown world for me to go back and do it.”

Despite being unhappy working for WCW at the end of the company’s run, would he have stayed if WCW continued on:

“I would’ve continued on because the money back then and the benefits were just too good. There’s no question. It’s funny because when we finally did go down, everything was so bad, and it was like a weight lifted off my shoulders. I’ve often said, ‘You can’t put a price on happiness’ and I really wasn’t happy. It was just too much pressure and I remember Eric used to say, ‘I know things get nutty here and I know there’s a lot of pressure and we drive you pretty hard, but buddy that’s why you make the big money.’ I didn’t make the big money compared to the guys, but I made a very good living. But again, you can’t put a number on happiness.

The last show that we had when Vince took over we were down in Panama City, [Florida] and I got in my car and drove back to Atlanta that night and just felt great. I knew we were going down, and I knew eventually that WCW would go belly up. I didn’t know what would happen, but there was a lot of questions leading up to that moment through the months leading up to it. I had shed the tears about the business and what my life was gonna be moving forward before that moment. But when that moment came, I was really, really relaxed.”

Schivone also discussed more about MLW. You can check out the full interview by clicking here.


Ric Flair spoke with Fox 5 about his alcohol addiction, health scare, and feeling lucky to still be alive. Here are some of the highlights:

 Addiction to alcohol:

“I don’t carry a flask, I don’t drink at home, and I’m a social drinker. I mean my whole life, I never drank during the day. But at night, when I’m through working, yeah, I drank. I didn’t start ‘day drinking’ until probably right before my son [Reid Fliehr] died. And then, I really, after he passed away, it was 10 in the morning until 2 a.m. every day.”

The lead-up to his recent health scare last August:

“I knew that something was going on because it really hurt. So, she [Fiance’, Wendy Barlow] took me and, sure enough, my intestines had ruptured.”

Feeling lucky to still be alive:

“You have no idea. You want to know something? I am preoccupied with dying, does that make sense to you? I think about it every day.”

Ric Flair’s fiance’, Wendy Barlow, also discussed more about his health scare. You can read the full interview by clicking here.

Magnum TA was recently a guest on The Ross Report podcast and he spoke about his stepdaughter Tessa Blanchard. TA had a feud with her father and Four Horsemen member Tully Blanchard in the 1980’s when they wrestled in NWA and said the best quality Tessa shares with him is her positive attitude.

“Tully [Blanchard] and I can sit together in front of a crowd, doing a Q&A today and just be right back in synch to where we were 30 years ago. He is such a professional and we just had great chemistry all around,” TA said. “Tessa [Blanchard] inherited that quality, that intangible thing that you either have or don’t, and she also has a passion for this thing called wrestling that her Dad, Grandfather and I are in love with and she is destined for great things. She really tries to stay positive, focused and always tries to be the best that she can be and bring out the best in others. I am just really proud of her as well as her mother is too.”

Tessa Blanchard wrestled in the Mae Young Classic over the summer, losing to eventual winner Kairi Sane in the first round. TA said he was very proud of how well she performed in the tournament. He believes she will only continue to get better as she moves forward in her wrestling career.

“The match I saw her do at the Mae Young Classic was the best piece of work that I had seen her do to date. I know the person she was in the ring with was a seasoned pro, but I know Tessa was assertive, believable and charismatic that I always want to see come together for her,” TA said. “She comes from the right sheet of cloth and I think that she has her days when it is hard with her patience because she looks around and is hungry, but she just continues to fine tune this machine. She also knows that she can get much better than she is today. She knows that she will only improve with time, she is just anxious for it.”

Blanchard is currently dating widely-popular indie wrestler Ricochet. TA said the use of social media is one of the biggest differences between wrestling today and wrestling in the 1980’s. Ricochet has successfully used social media to grow his popularity among wrestling fans to allow him to make a good living while working the independent circuit.

“Ricochet is doing well, I can tell you, he is doing really well. He is probably on top of the indie scene on the pay scale of what he is able to yield,” TA said. “Tessa, for the length of time she has been in the industry, makes a living, and she doesn’t have to go out seven days a week like we were having to do back in the day, but it’s such a different era with social media and social networking and being able to market yourself and using these tools that they have available to them is genius, and if you don’t believe it’s mainstream, that is one of the reasons why The Rock is one of the most popular actors in the industry because of his ongoing push of the projects he is involved in, he is networking it all around the world because of his social media and everything that he works on is the golden touch before the studio advertises it.”

Magnum TA was a popular wrestler in NWA in the 1980’s, winning the United States Championship and engaging in high-profile feuds with the Four Horsemen and others. TA recently joined The Ross Report and discussed the use of performance-enhancing drugs in wrestling during his era.

“There was two schools of thoughts on the performance enhancing deal. There was guys, and this was the category that I was in, that I would use something twice a year, say for six weeks, twice a year, to keep from completely tearing my body up into nothing, because I was working seven days a week year round, and found a happy medium with a physique and a body that I can maintain throughout that off period year round,” TA said. “If you saw me wrestling anytime twelve months out of the year, it wasn’t like you saw me as a 280-pound monster and then the next time I was 240 and lost 40 pounds of muscle. I was heading down that path when I was in San Antonio, TX when Ray ‘Hercules’ Hernandez was there; he was a young and up and coming guy, and had a bag of performance enhancing drugs that were very accessible, and when he came in he was 218 pounds, and Ray became around 280 pounds, and I was 270 pounds, and we were in our minds thinking about being 300 pounds and being like the Road Warriors.”

TA said it was advice from a veteran wrestler who made him reconsider his habits. He decided he was going to learn how to use other means to maintain his weight year-round.

“I can never forget when we went to Corpus Christie and walking into the dressing room, there is Bruiser Brody with his boots on, and he said to me, ‘Kid, you are looking great. I want to tell you a little secret though; if you ever become a star based solely what you look like and you have to do this to maintain your look, then you are ruining your own epitaph,’ and the light switch went off my head right that minute, and I decided that I was going to perfect my craft and find my happy medium that I can support year round,” TA said. “And that I wasn’t going to be Tony Atlas, or Ivan Putski, but to be the best that I can be. I found that place and can maintain that 240 pounds weight class and the thing was I trained real heavy with weights. I wasn’t a bodybuilder or anything, but I was always lifting heavy weights so my body and joints can be accustomed to handle that, which made me durable, and that is why I can go into the ring with Doc (Doctor Death Steve Williams) when he was 320 pounds, and even though he was clumsy and smashing around, he didn’t break me up because I was pretty sturdy.”

TA also discussed why he never made it to the WWE. His lone appearance with the company came in 2007 when he was in the audience for the Vengeance pay-per-view. TA said he never had plans of joining the WWE. He said Andre the Giant was planning on putting in a good word for him with the company, but he was eventually signed by an NWA territory.

“No, that conversation never took place. I never met Vince McMahon in person until I worked that pay per view show for him like 10 years ago or so (WWE Vengeance 2007) and we spoke for a few minutes, and he made me feel really good,” TA said. “He did say to me that we could have made a lot of money together. The ironic part about it is that that is where Andre [the Giant] wanted me to go. When Andre named me ‘Magnum TA,’ and before he would get in with Vince McMahon Sr, he was still living and getting the plate for me to go there, Ernie [Ladd] swept me up and pulled me into Mid-South Wrestling.”

Source: The Ringer

Paul Heyman spoke with The Ringer on his career in pro wrestling. Here are some of the highlights:

Staying relevant in pro wrestling:

“Tell me somebody who was in the NWA who was relevant then and relevant now. Sting’s not. Lex Luger’s not. It’s Ric Flair and Paul Heyman. Tell me someone from that entire era who is relevant today. Vince McMahon. Jerry Lawler. And of all those people that I’ve named, how many of them are in a prominent position on television today? The only one is me. So, how? The manner in which you were treated behind the scenes did not promote longevity. You were going to be used up and spit out. And here I am as the advocate of the number-one attraction, the highest-paid commodity, the top champion on the flagship show in the company that owns 99 percent of the market share. Obviously whatever I was doing back then, that people perceived as career suicide, gave me the ability to survive long enough to have a longevity that no one else enjoys.”

Being the number one believer in ECW:

“I never looked at ECW as wrestling. I always considered it more of a theology. I don’t know whether I had or didn’t have a messianic complex during that time. But I bought into the movement as much as, if not more than, anybody else. If I sold anyone on the religion of extreme, I was its number-one customer.”

Working with others in WWE aside from Brock Lesnar:

“As long as Brock is in WWE. I don’t think it makes sense to work with someone else.”

Managing The Undertaker (before he was The Deadman) in 1990:

“[He was] shockingly mature for someone so new to the industry.”

You can read the full article by clicking here.

Source: Dinner With The King

Excitement continues to build as we get closer to the return of Starrcade and War Games. Jim Cornette was a guest on Jerry “The King” Lawler’s podcast, Dinner With The King, this week and gave his thoughts on the WWE bringing back WCW gimmick matches.

The WWE will be bringing back War Games in the main event of NXT Takeover: Houton on Nov. 18th, featuring NXT Tag Team Champions SAnitY (Eric Young, Killian Dain, Alexander Wolfe) vs. Roderick Strong & The Authors of Pain (Akam, Rezar) vs. The Undisputed Era (Adam Cole, Kyle O’Reilly, Bobby Fish). Starrcade will return for the first time in 30 years on Nov. 25 with a SmackDown Live card, headlined by a WWE Championship steel cage match between Jinder Mahal and Shinsuke Nakamura. Cornette said he believes the WWE should’ve been utilizing these innovations from the moment they acquired WCW.

“I thought they should have done War Games from the very first,” he said. “That’s one of the greatest gimmick matches that consistently worked where nothing else was working, that worked.”

But Cornette said from his understanding, WWE officials were always hesitant about War Games in particular because it didn’t fit aesthetically with their presentation. Still, he stands by his belief that they should give those matches a try.

“They have never done multi-ring matches, because they think it won’t translate well to television. That’s what I always heard,” Cornette said. “Yes, they should try those concepts.”

Cornette also threw out an interesting idea in which the special events can also serve as a way to pay homage to WCW’s history.

“Why not do a Starrcade-themed PPV mixing live matches with the history of Flair to Race for the NWA Title to The Skywalkers to the WCW era,” he said. “It sells their product.”

Source: NBC Sports Radio

As previously noted, WWE Hall Of Famer Ric Flair was recently interviewed by NBC Sports Radio. Among many other things, Flair discussed the art of cutting promos, influencing many pro wrestlers, and how the legendary Four Horsemen faction came about.

On the subject of cutting promos, Flair professed that it came from his life and passion for the pro wrestling business. Moreover, Flair credited the likes of the late great Dusty Rhodes for creating competition.

“That all came off the top of my head. We’d be out in Atlanta [Georgia] all night long, back at the hotel around 5 a.m., change clothes, and go to the studio and start taping at 9 o’clock. That’s just a lot of coffee and a lot of liking what I was doing for a living, being surrounded by guys like Dusty and Arn [Anderson] and guys that had so much influence on me. And we went out there and we competed with each other. Does that make sense? If Dusty was out there first, I knew I had to follow that. If I was on first and Dusty had to follow me. It was very competitive.”

When asked how much of the persona of The Rock was derived from Flair, ‘Naitch’ suggested that Dwayne Johnson himself would admit that he borrowed a lot from the 16-time champ. Flair went on to say that he has influenced a lot of pro wrestlers.

“I think he’ll admit that a lot of me was him,” Flair said. “I don’t know how many Rolex watches I’ve sold for Rolex from guys buying their first Rolex. I can remember Randy Orton got his first big check with Evolution. The first thing he bought was a new tricked out diamond encrusted Rolex, so I know that I’ve done some damage. I think a lot of guys have become more wardrobe-conscious. Does that make sense? Looking the part all of the time as opposed to when you’re in the gym. Every time you walk into a door, you want everybody in the joint to look at you. That’s just what it is.”

According to Flair, Arn Anderson deserves all of the credit for the Horsemen idea.

“Actually, the idea for The Four Horsemen came from Arn, just something he said one day about The Four Horsemen. I can’t remember the terminology, but he put up [the] four [hand gesture] and Arn did it and we started doing it each week and within a month it caught on and it was bigger than ever. It was huge, so I give all that to Arn. He took the ball and he ran with it.”

Click here to check out the interview.