Recap Of Chris Jericho On TSN's Off The Record
Thanks to Adam Lebow who sent in the following interview recap:
TSN’s Off the Record for November 14th 2007
Hosted by Michael Landsberg
Up front segment with Chris Jericho.
Landsberg: How tough has it been to see your friends buried?
Jericho: Well its been really tough. A lot of people who you are really close friends with.
Landsberg: Why do you think so many people, ‘left the party early’?
Jericho: Well it was figuratively. I think wrestling is misunderstood in a lot of ways. Not just physically but mentally. Only a handful of people can do the job. It’s a very lonely, hard job with all the travelling you have to do.
Landsberg: You paid tribute to all the guys who died.
Jericho: Well there isn’t an off-season, it is uncertain until you crack the big leagues.
Landsberg: Benoit was your friend right?
Jericho: One of my best.
Landsberg: Do you think wrestling destroyed Chris?
Jericho: Do I think a part of it did? Ya, but I think there were some deep rooted issues that have to be examined
Landsberg: Okay, he died, we found that he has massive doses of testosterone and had brain damage. Was wrestling a factor to his demise?
Jericho: Well, it was a factor, but was it a big factor? Who knows. He had a lot of small concussions, but did that play a role, who knows? That could be me. I hope it’s the reason Chris did what he did, that he had the brain damage, it doesn’t excuse anything, but it gives us a reason for this destruction, for a guy who for 15 years was one of the best guys I lived in my life.
Landsberg: He was on the show numerous times, and I know you mean that. Now, tell me about the book, its more about a good news tale.
Jericho: Well it’s a follow your dreams backup. It is my story, my version of the dream I decided at 8 years old. I wanted to be a wrestler. My cousin wanted to me Indiana Jones at 8. I wanted to wrestle. So I got to get my dream to go to WWE.
Come back for the panel discussion, as we see clips of Marc Mero, Lex Luger and Benoit talking about drugs in wrestling from over the years.
On the panel. Peter Smith, who has a wrestling reality show on The Fight Network. Mauro Ranalleo, host of Fight Network Radio on Sirius Hardcore Sports – Channel 186, Dan Lovranski co-host of Live Audio Wrestling and Will Strickland president of Urban music association of Canada.
Landsberg opening question is, is wrestling to blame. We start with Smith, who says wrestling shouldn’t be blamed but he says there are no measures to make the situation better. But he says why don’t you also blame major league baseball or the Olympics. Mauro says look at your size, or look at Batista and Cena. If you take a body like mine, Vince won’t reward me. Smith says that you can’t go to the Olympics either. There is no question it is a problem to an extent, but you can’t blame wrestling for it. Lovranski says the issue is its there. You have extreme examples in every sport.
Landsberg asks if this is the norm in wrestling. Lovranski says the issues that come out of it, it depends on the issue. Peter is the example, who admits to using steroids and isn’t freaking out all over the police. Strickland says the reward system in wrestling is about what you are willing to do, take steroids and work 350 dates compared to 50 dates. You want the fame and fortune, but at what cost. While I wont necessarily blame wrestling, it has something to do with it. But let’s talk about Vince McMahon.
Smith says they can all agree that the Wellness program isn’t being taken steroids, but Smith says it isn’t steroids that leads to the deaths, but the painkillers. Landsberg says you never know how it’s weighted in the deaths. Landsberg wants Smith to talk about the clip they are showing of Smith doing steroids while working the Indy scene (as seen on his Fight Network TV show). Smith says he was on the road and he had to keep his body a specific way. In his opinion, he says it was worth the risk. Mauro asks why he has to use steroids to earn a living in pro wrestling, why is that look important as opposed to working the mic. Smith says he wasn’t born with genetics, he graduated high school at 195, now he is 295. Smith says steroids take him to a different level. Also, Smith has had a hard time training and it is something he has decided to do to get over the hump.
Lovranski says isn’t the real issue that it is there. He thinks that since the painkillers are there, and it’s so easily available, you need the Wellness policy.
Someone says he doesn’t think the fans care. He says it is an issue in the media, is it something the government has nothing better to do? Lovranski says nothing will occur unless the government does something, because they have had the drug program for years. Mauro says that everyone gets addicted to what they see. Smith says he agrees with that, and he would be happy if everyone didn’t do steroids. Smith says he has to go black-market to get the steroids, and he has to do it.
Landsberg asks Smith if when he watches Raw can he tell who is on the juice, and Smith says he can to an extent.
Landsberg plugs the really off the record segment that will be on the TSN site with Jericho
Landsberg says not so long ago, Vince said wrestling is fake, but not UFC is hurting wrestling. Mauro says it has, because it is the evolution of pro wrestling, with real fighters, but Mauro says wrestling has hurt itself because of the booking, and how bad it has got. Lovranski says its good competition for Vince, and Vince needs competition to raise his game, just like WCW in the late-’90s. Lovranski thinks MMA could be good for Vince. Strickland says he thinks its comparing apples and oranges. We know its scripted vs. something that’s real. The personalities of wrestling are way bigger than MMA. Smith says all sports are entertainment, and you don’t have to make choices. But Landsberg says that people who sit at home can’t watch wrestling because they watch UFC. Mauro says look at Tito Ortiz and Ken Shamrock. Shamrock is way over the hill, but the two drew a big TV number. Smith says he doesn’t see how that hurts wrestling. Lovranski says look at the PPV buys between the two. Landsberg says he agrees with Dan cause in UFC you have the drama and the intrigue, but it is happening for real, so it’s a hybrid of wrestling. Lovranski says this happened in Japan years ago, and it was the precursor for MMA. Mauro says wrestling will always be around. But Smith says all it has to do is with change that will bring the fans back. Smith says even if you go back to the cartoon characters, they can work. Landsberg says Steve Austin was one of the first to blur the lines. Mauro says when you over script, it hurts. When you have Austin, Rock they excelled because they got to be themselves, yet you have Ric Flair who reads off a script and its horrible.
Next question with Chris Jericho
We see clips of Lance Storm, Bret Hard, Lex Luger and Lanny Polfo doing the next question segment.
Q: Do you know Lanny Poffo
A: Never met him, but have heard stories
Q: Where did the name Jericho come from
A: Its German
Q: Favorite author
A: Steven King
Q: Favorite book?
A: (MISSED THE ANSWER)
Q: What percentage of wrestling fans can read?
Q: What percent of wrestlers can read?
A: 97% except for Jeff Hardy and Randy Orton
Q: Worse wrestling theme song
A: Planet Stasiask’s introduction.
Q: Who is an ass clown?
Q: Why did you get kicked off that Fox singing show?
A: I’m not so strong
Q: Next Fozzy album?
A: Next year.
Q: Would you put Eric Lindros in the hall of fame
A: He never had the heart
Q: Do you think you will be in the wrestling hall of fame one day?
A: I would vote for myself twice
Note: I missed two questions where he answered where the origins of babyface and jobber came from, but they were just jokes.
And with that, it was a rap, showing old clips of Jericho making fun of Landsberg over the years.
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