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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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NEWS REPORTS
WWE NEWS: Updated line-up for MSG Network special - Dudleys added, four matches advertised, more details
WWE WEEKEND TOUR: Cena & Rollins headline Night 1 in Florida, plus NXT champions in action, more details (Reports Wanted)
PWG NEWS: Battle of Los Angeles tournament begins tonight - Sydal, Baretta, more in First Round matches, plus full weekend schedule
GFW EVENTS: Kevin Nash headlines this weekend's Global Force tour - two ballpark shows, Bullet Club scratch, full line-ups, more
WHAT'S ON - Friday: New Japan on AXS TV preview - Shinsuke Nakamura challenges for IWGP IC Title, plus Tag Title match
WWE NETWORK: Friday, August 28 Schedule - Superstars, Punk, more
SHOW RESULTS - 8/27 WWE NXT in Tampa, Fla.: New NXT Women's & Tag Champs in action, Finn Balor, Samoa Joe, Apollo Crews, more
WWE NEWS: Battleground buys - preliminary total up from past three PPVs
TV RATINGS: Viewership for TNA Impact & ROH TV - Week 13 on Dest. America - Impact falls back, ROH up slightly, demo break down
WRESTLING PODCAST LOG: Ric Flair talks to Steve Austin, Austin w/Kelly Kelly and Chael Sonnen, Jericho & Booker talk to Tough Enough'ers, Ross, Cabana, Taz, more
WWE NEWS: Dolph Ziggler talks decision to re-sign with WWE, current program with Lana, who from NXT does he want to face?
WWE NEWS: WWE announces live NXT special from the U.K.
PPV REPORTS
MCNEILL'S Late Night Blog - WWE Summerslam 2015: No shave 'til Brooklyn, lots of blood, Cesaro's warm-up match for Z.Z., more!
McNEILL’s Late Night Blog - "NXT Takeover: Brooklyn" - a/k/a Don't Tell McMahon about this show until after Summerslam
CALDWELL'S SUMMERSLAM REPORT 8/23: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of Lesnar vs. Taker, Title vs. Title, more matches
CALDWELL'S WWE SUMMERSLAM REPORT 8/23 (Pre-Show): Complete "virtual-time" coverage of hype interviews, no match
JAMES'S WWE "NXT TAKEOVER: BROOKLYN" REPORT 8/22: Balor vs. Owens ladder match for NXT Title, epic Women's match, Tag Titles, Samoa Joe, Liger, dignitaries in the crowd; Overall Reax
RADICAN'S NJPW "G1 Climax Finals" PPV Report 8/16: ReDRagon-Young Bucks, KUSHIDA-Ricochet, Tanahashi-Nakamura match for the ages in final
SHOW RESULTS - EVOLVE 48 iPPV in Deer Park, N.Y.: Thatcher vs. Busick final battle, Chris Hero vs. Zack Sabre, Jr., Gargano vs. Swann grudge match, more
CALDWELL'S NEW JAPAN G1 CLIMAX FINALS REPORT 8/16: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of Tanahashi-Nakamura G1 Finals, plus IWGP Jr. Hvt. & Tag Title matches
SHOW RESULTS - EVOLVE 47 iPPV in Queens, N.Y.: Thatcher vs. Zack Sabre, Jr. for EVOLVE Title, big turn, more
RADICAN'S "NJPW G1 Climax Night 18" PPV Blog 8/15: Elgin-Ishii war, B Block finalist determined, G1 match analysis & ratings
NJPW G1 CLIMAX NIGHT 18 RESULTS 8/15: Okada vs. Nakamura to determine B Block Winner, plus Elgin vs. Ishii, more from B Block
RADICAN'S "G1 Climax Night 17" Blog 8/14 - Tanahashi-Styles put on classic match to determine A Block winner, results & analysis of A Block action
TV REPORTS
PARKS'S WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT 8/27: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of Thursday show, including the Dudley Boyz return to action, Dean Ambrose vs. Sheamus
MCMAHON'S TNA IMPACT REPORT 8/26: Three title matches, set-up for next week's TNA Title match, Dixie-Jarrett Summit, more; Overall Reax
METZGER'S ROH TV REPORT 8/23 & 8/26: The Addiction defends the ROH Tag Titles vs. Future Shock, Roderick Strong in singles action, more; Reax to ROH TV similar to NXT
JAMES'S WWE NXT REPORT 8/26 - Week 177: Matches from "Takeover" in Brooklyn, including four-way women's main event, plus post-Takeover interviews, more; Reax
CALDWELL'S TOUGH ENOUGH REPORT 8/25 - Week 10: The Season Finale of WWE's competition show, plus Triple H appears for final voting
CALDWELL'S WWE RAW RESULTS 8/24: Complete "virtual-time" coverage of live Raw - SSlam fall-out, big returns, more
JAMES'S WWE "NXT TAKEOVER: BROOKLYN" REPORT 8/22: Balor vs. Owens ladder match for NXT Title, epic Women's match, Tag Titles, Samoa Joe, Liger, dignitaries in the crowd; Overall Reax
PARKS'S WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT 8/20: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of Thursday show, including big eight-man tag main event
MCMAHON'S TNA IMPACT REPORT 8/19: ECIII vs. P.J. Black for the TNA Hvt. Title, Gail Kim steel cage match, Drew Galloway, Open Mic Challenge, more; Overall Reax
METZGER'S ROH TV REPORT 8/16 & 8/19: Young Bucks vs. RPG Vice tag main event, big show-ending developments, more
JAMES'S WWE NXT REPORT 8/19 - Week 176: Balor-Owens final hype for Takeover, Women's Title contract signing, Samoa Joe, Tyler Breeze, more; Overall Reax
CALDWELL'S TOUGH ENOUGH REPORT 8/18 - Week 9: The Final Five becomes the Final Four, plus contestants pick a finisher
OPINION & ANALYSIS
RADICAN'S "The Pull List" (Vol.3): Live Smackdown in Providence, Top Ten MOTYCs, advance review of "Mad Max: Fury Road" combo pack, Rory McIlroy "PGA Tour '15" review
LIVECAST POLL: Which of these upcoming matches are you most looking forward to?
RAW POLLS 8/24: Vote on Monday's show 0-10 & select Best Match
MCNEILL'S Late Night Blog - WWE Summerslam 2015: No shave 'til Brooklyn, lots of blood, Cesaro's warm-up match for Z.Z., more!
McNEILL’s Late Night Blog - "NXT Takeover: Brooklyn" - a/k/a Don't Tell McMahon about this show until after Summerslam
WWE PPV REAX #1: "I wanted the biggest event of the summer to end with an exclamation point; it ended with a semicolon and a question"
WWE PPV POLLS: Vote on Summerslam 0-10 & select Best Match
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MCNEILL LIVECAST POLL: Which Brooklyn event are you most looking forward to?
RAW POLLS 8/17: Vote on Monday's Raw 0-10 & select Best Match
RADICAN'S NJPW "G1 Climax Finals" PPV Report 8/16: ReDRagon-Young Bucks, KUSHIDA-Ricochet, Tanahashi-Nakamura match for the ages in final
RADICAN'S "NJPW G1 Climax Night 18" PPV Blog 8/15: Elgin-Ishii war, B Block finalist determined, G1 match analysis & ratings
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8/24 WWE Raw Hits & Misses: Opening Segment, New Day, Dudleys return, Stewart, Sting
COLLECTIBLES COLUMN: Evaluating Top 10 WWE Stars's Trading Cards
TUCKER'S LIVE INSTANT REACTION - NXT: Takeover vs. Summerslam highlights the glaring difference between two products
COLLECTIBLES COLUMN: The History & Popularity of Mattel’s WWE Toy Belts (with Historical Title Change Graphic)
HITS & MISSES - 8/10 WWE Raw: Owens vs. Orton vs. Cesaro #1 contender match, Miz TV, Stephen Amell, Orton vs. Rollins
COLLECTIBLES COLUMN: Roddy Piper - Big Increase in Sales of Piper’s Trading Cards, plus Flashback Column on Piper Figures
8/3 WWE Raw Hits & Misses: Piper Tribute, Rollins-Neville, Divas Revolution, Heyman
TUCKER'S LIVE INSTANT REACTION - Raw 8/3: The Road to Summerslam continues to get more interesting, but why?
COLLECTIBLES COLUMN: Hogan Featured In New Cards from Topps & Leaf
VALLEY: The Top Ten Moments of Roddy Piper's career from Dog Colors to Coconuts to MTV to WCW Nitro
COLLECTIBLES COLUMN: Hulk Hogan Fall-Out - Major Retailers Pull Merchandise, UPDATE - Mattel halting production
7/23 WWE Smackdown Hits & Misses: Ambrose vs. Sheamus, Sasha Banks Video, Owens' Promo, Rollins vs. Cesaro
PWTORCH EXCLUSIVES
FLASHBACK: Vince McMahon AOL Chat 20 yrs. ago - McMahon talks WWF vs. WCW right before start of Monday Night Wars, plus McMahon jokes about turning 50
SUMMERSLAM ON THE 5's: SSlam takes place on this day in 1990, 1995, and 2000 - Warrior vs. Rude, Diesel vs. Mabel, Rock-Angle-Hunter
RAW RETRO - Taker vs. Hunter 13 yrs. ago today, set-up for Triple H awarded the Big Gold Belt, more from post-Summerslam Raw
SUMMERSLAM FLASHBACK: Brock beats Rock for WWE Title 13 yrs. ago in New York, plus HBK vs. Triple H Street Fight, more
SUMMERSLAM FLASHBACK - 12 yrs. ago today: Triple H wins the second-ever Elimination Chamber match, Lesnar vs. Angle, more
SUMMERSLAM FLASHBACK - 6 yrs. ago today: Punk vs. Hardy main event over Cena vs. Orton, plus DX, JeriShow, Rey, more
SUMMERSLAM FLASHBACK - 9 yrs. ago: Edge vs. Cena for WWE Title, HBK & Hunter vs. Vince & Shane, Flair-Foley, Hogan, more
SUMMERSLAM FLASHBACK - 3 yrs. ago: Lesnar vs. Hunter at Staples Center, Cena-Punk-Big Show for WWE Title, more
SUMMERSLAM FLASHBACK - 19 yrs. ago: HBK vs. Vader for WWF Title, Taker-Mankind Boiler Room Brawl, Lawler-Jake Roberts, more
SUMMERSLAM FLASHBACK - 7 yrs. ago: Taker vs. Edge HIAC, plus big HBK-Jericho angle, Cena vs. Batista, more
SUMMERSLAM FLASHBACK: Randy Orton wins first World Title 11 yrs. ago today, plus the start of Bizzaro World
ECW FLASHBACK: Mick Foley (Cactus Jack), Terry Funk, Public Enemy, and lots of chairs at the ECW Arena 21 yrs. ago today
REFERENCE
TV RATINGS: Viewership for TNA Impact & ROH TV - Week 13 on Dest. America - Impact falls back, ROH up slightly, demo break down
WWE NEWS: Tough Enough TV Ratings - Season Finale ties for lowest rating of the season; final numbers on 10-Week Season
WWE NEWS: Total Divas TV Viewership - Week 8 falls to season-low
WWE NEWS: Raw TV ratings are in - Raw remains flat despite night-after-Summerslam
TITLES & CHAMPS: Ongoing list of 2015 Titleholders
WWE NEWS: Smackdown TV ratings are in - Thursday's show recovers from last week's year-low performance
TV RATINGS: Viewership for ROH & TNA Impact Week 12 on Dest. America - Impact shows improvement Wednesday night
WWE NEWS: Tough Enough TV Ratings - Week 9 falls to season-low, males checking out before the season finale
WWE NEWS: Total Divas TV Viewership - Week 7, plus overall season
WWE NEWS: Raw TV ratings are in - Raw unchanged despite returns of Lesnar & Taker
TV WRESTLING VIEWERSHIP - Week of Aug. 10: Full Break Down of last week's Wrestling TV Shows, including DVR numbers
TV WRESTLING VIEWERSHIP - Week of Aug. 3: Full Break Down of Raw, SD, Tough Enough, Impact & ROH, including DVR numbers
PWTorch Free Podcast
LIVECAST AUDIO: JIM ROSS talks live w/Wade Keller on the Thursday Livecast (8/27) - now available on-demand
LIVECAST AUDIO: Joel Gertner talks live w/Pat McNeill on the Wednesday PWTorch Livecast (8/26) - now available on-demand
LIVECAST AUDIO: Wade Keller & Jason Powell of Prowrestling.net on the Tuesday PWTorch Livecast (8/25) - now available on-demand
LIVECAST AUDIO: Raw Post-Game show w/James Caldwell & live calls on the Monday PWTorch Livecast (8/24) - now available on-demand
LIVECAST AUDIO: Special Edition Summerslam PPV post-game show w/Caldwell & Parks
LIVECAST AUDIO: Jonny Fairplay and Bruce Mitchell on the Friday PWTorch Livecast (8/21) available on-demand
LIVECAST AUDIO: Diamond Dallas Page live interview w/Wade Keller on Thursday's PWTorch Livecast (8/20) available on-demand
LIVECAST AUDIO: Wednesday PWTorch Livecast (8/19) available on-demand - Pat McNeill's ROH Extravaganza w/live calls & emails
LIVECAST AUDIO: Tuesday PWTorch Livecast (8/18) available on-demand - Wade Keller & Jason Powell of Prowrestling.net
LIVECAST AUDIO: Monday PWTorch Livecast (8/17) available on-demand - Raw post-game show w/James Caldwell & Pat McNeill and live calls
LIVECAST AUDIO: Friday PWTorch Livecast (8/14) available on-demand - Jim Valley hosts w/live calls on this week's hot topics in wrestling
LIVECAST AUDIO: Thursday PWTorch Livecast (8/13) available on-demand - Mick Foley Live Interview w/Wade Keller
VIP Exclusive Features
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VIP - PWTorch Newsletter #1419 (PDF & TEXT): SummerSlam coverage including Keller’s Report and Staff Roundtable, Keller’s Raw Report, Mitchell on Lesnar-Brock, Parks on Tough Enough (12 pages)
VIP - 08/27 Audio Flashback - Real Deal w/Pat McNeill (08-27-2005): Hot Five Stories of the Week, Jericho’s tease of a jump to TNA, Dragon Gate invading ROH, Vince McMahon’s big birthday, Indy Line_up of Week, Listener Mail (34 min.)
VIP - 08/26 - Wade Keller Hotline - Ask the Editor: What has Sting done to deserve a title shot? Did Bret agree to return to WWE to save his family from being buried? Could Marvel take issue with Roman’s Superman punch? More (21 min.)
VIP - 08/26 East Coast Cast (ep. #256): Travis returns to discuss Summerslam Weekend, Raw ratings, Jon Stewart, Divas "Revolution," more! (148 min.)
VIP - 08/26 The Fix with Todd Martin & Wade Keller (pt. 2 of 2): Return of the Dudleys, Divas presentation on Raw, wrestlers touting match quality, NJPW on AXS, Kenny Bolin book, Rousey’s next foe, Justin Wren book (51 min.)
VIP - 08/26 The Fix with Todd Martin & Wade Keller (pt. 1 of 2): In-depth analysis of Tough Enough finale and the top talking points coming out of the post-Summerslam edition of Raw including Sting, Lesnar (50 min.)
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VIP - 08/26 Audio Flashback - Bruce Mitchell Audio Show, pt. 2 of 2 (8-26-2005): Reaction to HBK’s controversial promo on Raw day after Summerslam, comparing careers of HBK and Macho Man, Joe-Kenta, Mid-Atlantic Fanfest (65 min.)
VIP - 08/26 Audio Flashback - Bruce Mitchell Audio Show, pt. 1 of 2 (8-26-2005): Could Jericho end up in TNA? Are there other WWE wrestlers who could make a bigger impact in TNA? Plus Smackdown’s Friday shift (40 min.)