Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Honky Tonk Man Interview

Honky Tonk Man recently did an interview with Wrestling Inc. They discussed how his career started 14 years before he joined the WWF and how he created his character and name, and how he was supposed to be a huge star in WCW. They also discussed his Intercontinental Championship reign and how it all came about...

Wrestling Inc: When I think of wrestling in the late '80's, I think of Hulk Hogan, Macho Man (Randy Savage), Andre The Giant and yourself. You became one of their top guys. When you won the Intercontinental title, Vince McMahon was supposed to be putting the title on Butch Reed but couldn't find him at the show. Then, Hulk Hogan suggested that you get the title. Was that how you remember it?

Honky Tonk Man: Yeah. I just happened to walk by while they were standing in the hallway and Hogan looked and said, 'What about him?' That's how it happened because Butch was going AWOL or M.I.A. -- which happens some times. Of course, it was like Jake (Roberts). Jake was missing in action about half the time he was there.

I just happened to walk by and they said, 'What about him,' and I said, 'OK.' Vince pulled me aside and told me what he wanted to do. (Ricky) Steamboat was leaving and, you know -- after all these years, Steamboat gets a job as an agent, making all this money. I'm sitting home doing nothing and he was the one that got the belt from Savage and up and quit the company. Saying, 'I want to go home and spend time with my wife and children.'
Of course, if you have a championship belt, you don't go home and spend time with your wife and children. You have to be on the road and [Vince] said, 'This guy wants to go and do this and I got to have the belt in a town.' I said, 'Listen, if you give me that belt, I don't want a day off.' And I ran with that belt for 64 weeks.

So that explains how he was given the belt and how it was all just dumb luck that he walked by right when they needed someone to hold the belt. I always heard it was supposed to be Jake The Snake Roberts that took the belt off of him, that Honky Tonk Man was just supposed to take the belt off Steamboat and then drop it to Jake. But then in their feud Honky hit Jake with his guitar only he used his real guitar instead of the prop guitar (either on purpose or by accident) and as a result Jake suffered a neck injury that ruined his career. With Jake injured they decided to just leave the belt on Honky until they found another champion. 

Side-note: because of that neck injury, Jake became addicted to painkillers and that is what ruined his career and personal life. Everyone is familiar with the tragic life of Jake The Snake Roberts, so while he had a horrible life before he got into wrestling, it was this injury that ruined his wrestling career. 

Anyways, the story Honky tells in the interview, which I had never heard before, is that the original plan once he got the belt was for him to just pass it back to Macho Man Randy Savage who was the previous champion who dropped the belt to Steamboat at Wrestlemania 3. So I guess the plan was to just go back to Randy who had been the Intercontinental Champion for years, (at Wrestlemania 2 and 3 he was the Champion). However, this is where the story got interesting, Honky apparently refused to drop the title back to Savage! From the sounds of it he even threatened to walk out and go to WCW. He claims he had a great offer to go to WCW so Vince wanted Macho Man to destroy him on TV on Saturday Nights Main Event and take back the title. This was common, Vince always destroyed talent that was on the way out. Except, similar to when Bret Hart left, Honky refused to do business. Instead they agreed to leave the title on him and he agreed to stay with the WWF.

Honky Tonk Man: So, when they mentioned the destruction of the Honky Tonk Man on television and going with 'Macho Man' -- you know, in reality, if 'Macho Man' was still around today and with us at a roundtable. It did his career better than mine because he became world champion as opposed to being the Intercontinental champion again. For that reason, Ted DiBiase -- who still has a little animosity towards me though not a lot -- Ted never got to be world champion because Ted was going to be world champion.

So apparently Honky takes credit for Randy becoming WWF Champion at Wrestlemania 4. According to Honky, the plan was for Randy to get back the Intercontinental Championship, and for The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase to become WWF Champion at Wrestlemania 4. So by refusing to drop the title to Randy, he thinks Vince decided instead to give Randy the WWF title and screw Ted. But the way he says they would back him up if they were all there to talk about it, and how Ted still blames him makes it sound believable. So by Honky being a jerk and refusing to do business, he screwed Randy out of the title, but then caused him to move up to the main event. However, that screwed over Ted all together. 

The next story I always heard was that the original plan was not to have Honky finally drop the title to the Ultimate Warrior, but rather Brutus The Barber Beefcake. Brutus was Hulk Hogan's best friend and since Hogan was the main event top guy and WWF Champion, it would make sense that he would want Vince to put the second Championship on his best friend who he was putting in the main events with him. The same way Hulk brought Randy in to form the Mega Powers, you need to remember, when Macho turned Heel, Brutus became Hogan's new partner. They faced Macho and Zeus at Summer Slam. Meanwhile, Vince was still looking for anyone to take the title off of Honky. 

Since Honky was the Heel, it was a perfect set up for the next top baby-face to get a major push by finally ending his reign and taking away the title. So it seemed that spot was being saved for Brutus. However, again, injury struck and Honky was left holding the title. Seems like the curse of the Honky Tonk Man if you ask me lol. Everything someone was supposed to take the belt away from him (which he was never supposed to have in the first place) something bad would happen.

Well the story I have always heard was that Brutus was scheduled to take the title from Honky at Summer Slam and that was the match that was being built. But then at the last second Brutus was injured and it looked as though the match would be scrapped and Honky would once again be left holding onto his precious title. But at the last second, maybe Vince finally snapped and said enough is enough, and they send Honky out tot he ring for a random match against a mystery opponent, an open challenge that Honky would regret for the rest of his career.

But when Honky tells the story in the interview, he claims that this match with the Ultimate Warrior was planned for 6 months. And he made no mention of Brutus. I find that odd. Regardless, the Ultimate Warrior came out to answer Honky's open challenge and Summer Slam and in less than a minute we had a new Champion!

It seemed like after a 2 year run, Honky could have put over the Ultimate Warrior or who ever with a decent match and not just a quick pin. But then again, from what I've heard of the Ultimate Warrior, that was probably all he had in him lol. Either way the reign was over. 

Honky said the next move was for him to team up with Greg The Hammer Valentine to form Rythem and Blues who were supposed to defeat the Hart Foundation to become the next Tag-Team Champions. But before that could happen Vince signed the Road Warriors aka Legion Of Doom, and they took over the Tag-Team division. Apparently Valentine hated the whole gimmick anyways and was not cooperative.

So Honky finally left for WCW but hated Eric Bischoff, refused to put of Marc Mero, told off Hulk Hogan backstage and quit the company after only a few weeks. 

He made a point of taking a couple shots at the WWE today and stated that Steamboat quit the company when he was Champion to go be with his family, and after that they took him back years later and gave him a high paying office job. Meanwhile Honky is still working independent shows on his own. When he was asked about being asked to induct Koko B Ware into the Hall Of Fame, he said it was nice, but he thinks he should have been inducted first. Although he said the next year they tried to induct him but he was busy. I think he just said he was busy because he was pissed off about the year before.

Well in my opinion, as much as I never liked him and wished anyone would have taken the title from him, he was the longest  reigning Intercontinental Champion in history and should be in the Hall Of Fame. If he wants an office job give him one. But he kinda sounds like a jerk, he wouldn't put over Macho Man, he screwed Ted DiBiase, he injured Jake The Snake, possibly Brutus Beefcake, he quit the WWF and WCW. And yet he wants them to hand him a job and put him in the Hall Of Fame? 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Popular Posts