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VIP - MITCHELL FEATURE: Chris Jericho In The Smoky Mountains: Another View (#1003)

Dec 19, 2007 - 3:04:40 PM


By Bruce Mitchell, Torch columnist

BRUCE MITCHELL FEATURE
Original Headline: "Chris Jericho In The Smoky Mountains: Another View"
Original Publish Date: December 22, 2007
Pro Wrestling Torch Newsletter #1003


Note: I've known K.C. O'Connor for twenty years, since the days when he was a teenager and a part of the "Front Row, Section D" regulars who faithfully attended the monthly wrestling shows at the Greensboro Coliseum in the '80s until the early-'90s. K.C. fit right in with us and had a real ringside ability to get under the skin of wrestlers like the late Eddie Gilbert and Ron Simmons (Psycho Sid Eudy once hocked a loogie at him after K.C. accurately critiqued his wrestling ability). K C. was more than just another smart-ass, though. It turned out he was, and is, a real student of the sport.

Jim Cornette was so impressed after spending just a couple of hours watching a Clash of the Champions with him one night (the old TBS two hour WCW wrestling specials - kind of a quarterly predecessor to Monday Night Raw) that he hired K.C. to be one of his assistants in his fledgling Smoky Mountain Wrestling promotion. K.C. had never worked a day in the pro wrestling business before Cornette gave him the job.

He moved to Tennessee shortly after and spent a few years driving up and down the two-lane highways and dirt roads for Cornette, doing every behind the scenes dirt job there was to do for the promotion. I even spent a week traveling with him, attending the Smoky Mountain Wrestling "Bluegrass Brawl" in Pikeville, Kentucky - featuring the Final Conflict Loser Leave Town Cage Match between Jim Cornette's Heavenly Bodies and the Rock & Roll Express. It was one of the best, hottest shows I ever attended. K.C., the ringside attendant that night, even knocked Cornette down at the cage door at the climax of the match, saving the day for Ricky 'n' Robert, which was a little ironic seeing as Jimmy Del Ray of the Heavenly Bodies was one of his roommates.

Then one day he called to tell me that Cornette had just attacked his car with a baseball bat, something about a dispute over back pay and a video camera.

K.C. is now a successful real estate broker in Wyoming and recently emailed me asking for some book and DVD recommendations. I had just finished Jericho's memoir and told him he ought to get it first, since K.C's name was actually on the lease of the apartment in Morristown that Chris Jericho lived in while in SMW and described so vividly in the book.

A week and a half later, I received the following email:


I'm 270 pages into Jericho's book, up till his working in WAR.

If the chapters on his time in SMW are any indication, he's taken as many creative liberties in his memoirs as every other bullshit artist before him.

I couldn't care less that he says the house was Anthony's, (Anthony Michael, one of the original Dudleys in ECW) when Anthony moved in with me after Del Ray moved out. It's irrelevant that he thinks he was invited to stay in my house and Rex and Bruiser weren't. Corny was the one who asked me, not Brian Hildebrand. Brian had his own place and said, "no," when Corny asked him to put Jericho up.

***image1***It's flat out false that he almost came to blows with Bruiser and Bruiser liked him. He piped off one time in the car and Bruiser shut him up with one line, end of story. I mean, really, we're supposed to believe he was gonna challenge Bruiser f---ing Bedlam to a fight over dirty dishes? Please! Whenever Bruiser went back to Hamilton for a few days, he made it clear to me that I could use his Jeep, but Chris wasn't allowed to touch it.

Bruiser particularly thought Jericho was the one guy in the locker room that would be voted most likely to "Honk On Bobo." (I will give Y2J for reminding me of that K9 classic, as I'd forgotten that one...) Bruiser especially thought Jericho was a piece of shit when he wouldn't cover me one night at Subway, when Chris was pulling down $900 a week while I was driving him around without being reimbursed for gas, and I was making $150 a week.

He never drove Murdoch around. That was my responsibility, to chauffeur Capt. Redneck. Jimmy would never ask his hot young babyface to drive his guest lead heel around for the tour. Kayfabe, ya know? Jericho heard me and Del Ray telling the story at home of tossing the beer bottles out the window as we were the ones in the car with Murdoch every night.

Same for the roaches in Boo's (Balls Mahoney) bed. He must have heard that from Anthony after he left, because Boo came in after Jericho was gone. And it was Anthony and D-Lo (Brown) that found the roaches. I was gone by then, too, and I left six months after Chris.

He didn't tape Corny at the drive thru, either, although he was in the car that night. J.R. Benson and Ron Hed, the sickies from CA, taped it. The Strange Kentucky People tape is 100 percent true. Even down to R&R and Jesus pics in the living room. Scariest thing I've ever seen.

I'm glad he admitted he had a shit attitude and f---ed Jimmy by not working the gimmick tables. He took, mocked, and gave nothing back to the company. Lance at least stuck around and worked with Brian Lee for $150 a night that summer. And Morristown wasn't a dry county; he just wouldn't go out with us. Del Ray and I invited him several times to the club in Mo-town, where we both got drunk and laid often. Even the Macho Man hit the club with us, but not Chris.

Yes, their videos did nothing for them. They were abysmal in theory and in fact.

Yes, the penalty box matches were a stupid idea and poorly executed.

Yes, he did skip a show one-night claiming car troubles when he really went to Nashville for a KISS reunion concert.

Yes, he used steroids. I saw the needles in his room and heard him talking to Bruiser about getting more.

Yes, he did kick it with a vampire stripper at the Mouse's Ear. Anthony and I goaded him all night to approach her. It was the only girl we saw him talk to the whole time we were there. He did leave with her.

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WWE NETWORK: Day 300 - Saturday, December 20 Schedule
EXCLUSIVE: Jim Ross details working agreement with Global Force Wrestling, how the deal with Jarrett was arranged, gameplan calling Tokyo Dome Show, what does he think of Striker as co-announcer?, what Tanahashi vs. Okada reminds him of, more
TNA RESULT: Robbie E. & Brooke on the Amazing Race finale
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WWE NEWS: WWE launching "12 Days of Attitude" on Network; latest attempt to retain subscribers on monthly system
NEWSWIRE: Rock'n Christmas Eve, El Patron to P.R., would Rousey play heel or face?, Bully & Velvet booking, Steele talks biz
WWE NEWS: Super Smackdown TV ratings are in - live special flops on USA Network
FRIDAY TV: Super Smackdown on Syfy, Rock starring in two TNT shows, TNA duo on season finale of "Amazing Race"
WWE NEWS: Hulk Hogan reveals one key reason why he wants to wrestle again in WWE
WWE NEWS: WWE's return tour of Japan announced
PUNK NEWS: C.M. Punk tense interview with OTR's Landsberg - how does he feel about A.J. Lee still working for WWE?, will he eventually return like Bret Hart?, mocked with UFC video, more
WEEKEND EVENTS: Styles vs. Ricochet tonight, Hardy in Vegas, Storm, big PWS iPPV, Sky headlines NEW, Cabana vs. Pearce
PPV REPORTS
CALDWELL'S WWE TLC PPV REPORT 12/14: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of Cena vs. Rollins, Roman Reigns involved, Ambrose vs. Wyatt, set-up for the Royal Rumble, more
CALDWELL'S WWE TLC PPV REPORT 12/14 (Pre-Show): Royal Rumble main event announced, New Day vs. Rhodes Bros., more
MCNEILL'S PPV BLOG 12/14: Live Blog for WWE TLC(&S) - ongoing thoughts & observations
RADICAN'S ROH "Final Battle 2014" PPV REPORT - ACH & Young Bucks vs. Addiction & Alexander, Briscoe-Cole blow off
CALDWELL'S ROH FINAL BATTLE 2014 PPV RESULTS 12/7: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of live PPV from New York City
MCNEILL'S PPV BLOG 11/23: Live Blog for Survivor Series - ongoing thoughts & observations
CALDWELL'S WWE S. SERIES PPV RESULTS 11/23: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of Team Cena vs. Team Authority, more
CALDWELL'S WWE S. SERIES PPV RESULTS 11/23 (Pre-Show): Heyman, Bad News, Fandango's in-ring return, more
RADICAN'S NJPW Power Struggle Report 11/8 - "Wrestle Kingdom" lineup takes shape, ReDragon-Time Splitters, Ishii-Goto MOTYC
KYGHT'S PPV EVALUATION - WWE Hell in a Cell: Best/Worst Match, Best Move/Finish, more!; Updates 2014 PPV Ranks
HIAC PPV VOTING: Poll Results for Overall Rating, Best Match, was the Bray Wyatt ending too screwy?
MCNEILL'S PPV BLOG 10/26: Live Blog for Hell in a Cell - ongoing thoughts & observations
TV REPORTS
PARKS'S WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT 12/16: Complete coverage of Super Smackdown, including Rollins vs. Ziggler main event
JAMES'S WWE SUPERSTARS RESULTS 12/18: Kidd & Cesaro face Los Matadores, Summer vs. Emma
JAMES'S WWE NXT REPORT 12/18 - WEEK 131: Takeover fall-out, including Neville vs. Owens, Zayn's tiitle win, more; Overall Reax
DEHNEL'S LUCHA UNDERGROUND REPORT 12/17: Battle Royal & 10-way match set up main event (w/Analysis of Booking 101)
CALDWELL'S WWE TRIBUTE TO THE TROOPS REPORT 12/17: Wyatt vs. Ambrose Boot Camp TLC re-match, Team Cena vs. Team Authority, Hulk Hogan, D-Bryan, celeb videos, more
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PARKS'S WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT 12/12: Complete coverage of Friday night show, including Erick Rowan & Dolph Ziggler & Ryback vs. Luke Harper & Kane & The Big Show
NXT TAKEOVER ROUNDTABLE REVIEWS 12/11: Caldwell, Parks, Radican, James, Chiverton, "Instant Reaction" Ben Tucker rate and review WWE Network special
JAMES'S WWE NXT TAKEOVER "R-EVOLUTION" REPORT 12/11: Zayn completes two-year quest, Owens debuts, more; Overall Reax
CALDWELL'S WWE NXT TAKEOVER RESULTS 12/11: Complete virtual-time coverage of Neville vs. Zayn for the NXT Title, Itami & Balor, Charlotte, Kevin Steen/Owens's debut, Corey Graves retires
OPINION & ANALYSIS
ASK THE SPECIALISTS ROUNDTABLE: What One Rule Should be Brought Back/Fixed on WWE TV?
PARKS'S TAKE: Why is WWE loading up the pre-Royal Rumble episode of Raw?, plus Thoughts on New Japan U.S. announce team, Del Rio's first ROH matches, TNA re-branding, more!
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RAW POLLS 12/15: Vote on Monday's Raw & Lesnar-Cena hype
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HITS & MISSES - 12/16 WWE Super Smackdown: Reigns's return, Ryback / Rusev / Rollins / Ziggler, Uso Drama, Ziggler vs. Rollins
HITS & MISSES - 12/15 WWE Raw: Jericho, Lesnar's Return, The New Day, Roman Reigns, TLC fall-out, more
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TUCKER'S LIVE INSTANT REACTION: TLC was the product of WWE de-sensitizing their audience, requiring more dangerous bumps, plus what kind of TV did the McMahons buy for Christmas?
COLLECTIBLES COLUMN: Brock Lesnar vs. C.M. Punk - In-Depth Review of Their Values Heading in Opposite Direction
CHIVERTON'S NXT SCOUTING REPORT: Final Rankings before "Takeover," full preview of Neville vs. Zayn masterpiece
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TUCKER'S INSTANT REACTION - Slammys Raw: "If you want something bland yet reliable, today's WWE is for you"
COLLECTIBLES COLUMN: Topps Takeover - Inside The Top Wrestling Trading Cards of 2014
VALLEY'S TAKE: My Public Apology to C.M. Punk, plus Random Thoughts on Batista's "Bond," Del Rio, more
CHIVERTON'S NXT SCOUTING REPORT: Latest Network Era Rankings, plus evaluation of the build to "NXT Takeover"
PWTORCH EXCLUSIVES
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WCW STARRCADE FLASHBACK - 15 yrs. ago today: Goldberg vs. Hart at Starrcade '99, plus Sting vs. Luger
SMACKDOWN FLASHBACK: Report from previous USA Network special 2 yrs. ago - Punk & Heyman promo, A.J. & Ziggler feuding with Cena, Big E. debut, D-Bryan teaming with Kane
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SMACKDOWN RETRO - 15 yrs. ago: McMahon-Helmsley Era begins, Edge vs. Christian, Hardy vs. Hardy, Rock Main Event, more
NXT FLASHBACK - 1 Year Ago today: Sami Zayn vs. Adam Rose main event, Rusev writes off Hero, more
WWE RAW RETRO - 5 Years Ago: Mark Cuban goes through a table, Jericho vs. DX, Cena-Sheamus feud, more
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REFERENCE
WWE NEWS: Super Smackdown TV ratings are in - live special flops on USA Network
WWE NEWS: Raw TV ratings are in - post-TLC episode flops, viewership hits year-low levels
TV NEWS: Smackdown TV ratings are in for Friday's show, plus viewership for Rock's new TNT show
TITLES & CHAMPS: Ongoing list of 2014 Titleholders
WWE NEWS: Raw TV ratings are in - Slammys flops, Raw down 13 percent since Survivor Series
WWE NEWS: Smackdown TV ratings are in - Friday's show down 17 percent from previous two episodes
WWE NEWS: Raw TV ratings are in - Monday's show tumbles, falls back to pre-Survivor Series levels
WWE NEWS: Smackdown TV ratings are in - Friday's show draws another big audience despite holiday weekend
WWE NEWS: Raw TV ratings are in - did Survivor Series buzz translate to a 3.0 rating?
WWE NEWS: Smackdown TV ratings are in - Friday's show pops big TV rating leading into Survivor Series
TNA NEWS: Impact TV ratings are in for Wednesday's show
WWE NEWS: Raw TV ratings are in - how did the final show before Survivor Series fare?
PWTorch Free Podcast
LIVECAST AUDIO: Jim Ross talks live w/Wade Keller on Friday's PWTorch Livecast (now available on-demand)
LIVECAST AUDIO: Thursday PWTorch Livecast (12/18) now available - James Caldwell & Greg Parks
LIVECAST AUDIO: Wednesday PWTorch Livecast (12/17) now available - Pat McNeill w/Bill Behrens
LIVECAST AUDIO: Tuesday PWTorch Livecast (12/16) now available - Wade Keller & Jason Powell of Prowrestling.net
LIVECAST AUDIO: Monday PWTorch Livecast (12/15) now available - Bruce Mitchell & Travis Bryant
LIVECAST AUDIO: Special PWTorch Livecast (12/14) following TLC now available - James Caldwell & Greg Parks
LIVECAST AUDIO: Friday PWTorch Livecast (12/12) now available - Wade Keller w/Piermarini & MMATorch's Penick
LIVECAST AUDIO: Thursday PWTorch Livecast (12/11) now available - James Caldwell & Greg Parks
LIVECAST AUDIO: Wednesday PWTorch Livecast (12/10) now available - Pat McNeill & Jim Valley live w/Kevin Gill
LIVECAST AUDIO: Tuesday PWTorch Livecast (12/9) now available - Wade Keller & Jason Powell of Prowrestling.net
LIVECAST AUDIO: Monday PWTorch Livecast (12/8) now available - Bruce Mitchell & Travis Bryant
LIVECAST AUDIO: Friday PWTorch Livecast (12/5) now available - Keller interviews Justin Credible
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VIP - 12/18 Audio Flashback - Wade Keller Hotline (11-23-2004): Tons of insider news on Holly’s attack on Rene Dupree at house show including locker room reaction, plus backstage news on Dusty’s first night as TNA booker, more (22 min.)
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VIP - 12/17 Wade Keller Hotline - Ask the Editor: What can fans do to help wrestlers stay healthier? Why is Sting called Vigilante? Does New Day have a chance? Should WWE reference the NFL? Does NXT reflect Triple H’s vision? (34 min.)
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VIP - 12/17 PWTorch Livecast: Pat McNeill talks live w/wrestling agent & promoter Bill Behrens, plus VIP Aftershow w/Caldwell on News & Events (96 min.)