Tommy Dreamer On How Terry Funk Validated ECW When He Joined The Promotion

Throughout much of its existence, ECW was elevated by the presence of Terry Funk. The internationally famous wrestling legend was an announcer at the promotion's first TV taping, the one who put over Sabu and Shane Douglas to get them over as stars, the heart of the main event of the company's first pay-per-view, and more. On Friday, as part of a celebration of Funk's birthday, Tommy Dreamer, a Funk protege in ECW turned co-host of "Busted Open Radio," explained how "The Funker" contributed to the legacy of the little indie promotion that could.


"When he came to ECW, he gave ECW validity," Dreamer recounted. "Like Chris Jericho did for AEW when he stepped up to that podium [at AEW's first press conference], here's the face that every wrestling fan knows, and [saying] 'This is the company that I'm gonna attach my wagon to and help carry it along. All of his famous death matches that he did in Japan with Mick Foley, his famous retirement in All Japan, all the things he has done." Dreamer noted that Funk's popularity in All Japan was such that he even released an album of Jimmy Hart-penned songs in Japan. 

"I would tell him this all the time: I hated him as a kid," Dreamer added. "Hated him. Why? Because Dusty Rhodes was my hero. But I realized, when I got into the industry, just how good he was. So you don't realize it until you got 'smartened up.' Now, we're at least smartened up to his greatness. You get all these bits and pieces [of] stories about him, and you're just like 'Whoa.' All these little things. And his mind was just insane for wrestling, and I cannot say enough great things about an individual." 


If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Busted Open Radio" with an h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.