As previously noted, pro wrestling greats Edge and Christian recently caught up with self-professed 'Global Icon and National Treasure' Steve Austin. Among other things, Edge and Christian discussed the TLC match from WWE WrestleMania 17. Also, E&C talked about the first storyline idea they pitched to WWE officials and rumors of splitting up the former Brood members at WWE No Mercy (1999).
According to Christian, the first storyline idea they pitched evolved into what became the Terri Invitational Tournament or TIT.
"It was actually our pitch and this was the first thing that we had ever pitched storylinewise. And it was strictly a thing to get noticed. We were floating between RAW and Heat, or whatever the secondary shows were. Sometimes we'd be on Heat, RAW, or we were just trying to get our footing." Christian explained, "we were all talking and we were on all the live events and we were just spitballing like, 'how can we take this to another level? How can we really stand out here?' It wasn't going to happen any other way because the card was stacked! I mean, you had [Austin] in [his] prime, The Rock in his prime, Taker, Triple H, Mick Foley, like, all these huge stars at once. We knew we weren't getting anywhere near the top of the card as single's guys, so how do you stand out? How do you get a spot every week on the shows that's a highlighted spot on a good position? How do you get on every pay-per-view and how do you become an important cog in the wheel that needs to be there or else it doesn't run as smoothly?
"So we were just kind of throwing different things around and kind of said, 'what if we had a best of seven [series of matches] and every match is a new stipulation and it ends with the first-ever tag team ladder match?' And when we pitched it, we said, obviously, 'something needs to be hung above the ring.' And we don't want to get too far ahead of ourselves because neither of our teams had been tag champs or close to it at that point, but we said, 'maybe there needs to be a title, but something there needs to be visually hanging for us to grab to win' and that's when they came up with the Terri Invitational Tournament where the winner got $100,000 in cash and Terri Runnels' managerial services, so it was kind of like this tournament thing that she put on, this best of seven, and that's kind of how this came about."
Also on the subject of No Mercy (1999), Christian recalled that there was talk of him turning on Edge during the ladder match with The Hardy Boyz.
"With the first ladder match we did against the Hardys, we were told three finishes: one was us winning; one was them winning; and one was me kind of turning on Edge and costing us the match." Christian remembered, "the Hardys won and there were some rumblings at that early on of us splitting up and maybe doing something, which made me kind of nervous because I was still trying to find my footing and find out what I was characterwise. I didn't really have a character."
In Edge's view, WrestleMania 17, the event that hosted the second TLC match, was the best pro wrestling pay-per-view event of all time.
"I think WrestleMania 17, everything's subjective, but if it's me, that's the best card and the best pay-per-view ever and just because of the totality of it." Edge said, "from opening match to last match, everything delivered."
During the podcast, Edge professed that his injury issues probably started with the TLC matches. Moreover, 'The R-Rated Superstar' admitted that he is amazed no one died in their TLC bouts.
"I mean, at the time I thought I did [come away from the TLC matches unscathed], but if I really trace it back, I think that has to be where it started." Edge said, "whether it was the way I bumped, I bumped a little bit higher up, so now you're bumping a little bit higher up and doing it off ladders. I don't know. It's tough to fully pinpoint because, at the time, your hands would be bruised, your elbows would be bruised, your joints would be sore just from taking the chairs and the ladders and the tables, but it was just stuff like that and I watch them back and I think, 'how did one of us not die with some of the stunts we were able to pull off?' Man, the margin for error on those was hair-thin and the fact that we all came out of it without something happening that night during a spot is still incomprehensible to me."
In TLC 1, Christian inadvertently took a nasty flatback bump from the top of the ladder in the ring to the floor. Apparently, Kane did not take kindly to that dangerous bump, as he threatened 'Captain Charisma' about worrying him.
"Instead of going feet first, my feet swung up and I actually went over the ropes kind of back first. And I remember looking at the ceiling going, 'oh my God, this is not going to be good.' And I basically flatback bumped to the floor from off the ladder in the middle of the ring. And I don't know how I didn't land on a piece of debris on the ladder on something that would have done some serious damage." Christian continued, "I came to the back and Kane is walking passed me and he stops and he goes, 'are you okay?' And I was like, 'yeah, from what?' He was like, 'that bump. Are you okay?' And I said, 'yeah, I'm fine.' He grabs me by the shoulders, spins me, and pins me to the wall, and he goes, 'you scared the s--t out of me! Don't do that again.' And then he walked away! I got hurt more from Kane than that bump!"
Apparently, the performers in TLC 1 could not tell whether the capacity crowd was into the match from the venue's acoustics.
"It was a weird one, actually, because of the way the Astrodome was," Edge admitted. "Sometimes there's a delay. There's not that instantaneous kind of gratification where you know, 'okay, that worked' because the sound has to go up, hit the roof, and bounce back to you, so while we were out there, we talked about it afterwards, we were like, 'man, the crowd didn't sound like they were really there like we thought they were going to be.'"
Check out the podcast here. If you use any of the quotes from this article, please credit The Steve Austin Show with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Source: The Steve Austin Show