“Diamond” Dallas Page recently spoke with Raj Giri of WrestlingINC.com about his time in the business, his start in the AWA and WCW, being there when WWE purchased WCW, his time with WWE, starting DDPYoga and much more.
Here is the final part of the interview. Click here for part one of the interview where DDP talks about his early WCW days, Rob Van Dam inspiring him, Eddie Guerrero, being fired By WCW, Hulk Hogan and more. Click here for part two, where Page talks becoming a main eventer, almost quitting WCW, feuding with Randy Savage, helping Chris Jericho and more.
Also, make sure to learn more about DDPYoga by clicking here.
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WrestlingINC.com: Okay, when we left off, we were talking about your run as champ in WCW and then towards the end in 2001, WCW was kind of going under. You main-evented their last PPV Greed against Scott Steiner. What was the mood like backstage?
Page: Yeah ? well you know, no one knew that Vince [McMahon] was actually going to take over WCW until that Monday night and I was gone from there at that time. Scotty [Steinter] had put me out as part of the angle, and I came back for that TV. Basically, I wanted to come to TV and say goodbye to the fans.
WrestlingINC.com: It’s crazy just how high the high was just a few years earlier and now the company was going under. What were your feelings on that?
Page: You know, it wasn’t going under, that’s the farthest from the truth. Our average rating back then was a 3.8-4.4. It’s not getting that today! You know?
WrestlingINC.com: Yeah, I meant just WCW as it was known then.
Page: It’s important because that’s what the fans think and that’s not what happened! What happened was Eric Bischoff was going to buy the company for $50 million and he didn’t want to put it on TV on TNT, he wanted Fox — that’s who he was negotiating with and to sign the deal, he had to agree to a ten year contract and then he could do whatever he wanted with it. So the new guy came in, Jamie Kellner, [who] called Brad Siegel’s office and said, “We’re not going to be the wrestling network anymore. Cancel them.” Not friggin’ tell Eric to go get another deal. That’s how they work in TV. “Cancel them!”
Bischoff was going to buy it for $50 million! And take over $30 million in contracts! If they turned to Warner Brothers or whatever the hell it was, $80 million. Do you know what Vince paid for WCW?
WrestlingINC.com: It was like $2 million right?
Page: 5 [million]! You tell me how much sense that makes. There was so many people that lost out. Now I wasn’t one of them and I knew that. I knew that I was going to end up in WWE and left a lot of money. If I had left later, it wouldn’t have been like that. But if I wasn’t 45, I wouldn’t have left a half a million dollars on the table. That’s why I went. I had to walk away from $487,000. How many people make that in their life? I left it on the f–king table while they were f–king us for our gimmicks and sh-t. The bottom line that we were never going under! Bischoff was going to f–king bring us up. We were going to frickin’ go head to head with Vince again. But it never got to happen because Jamie Kellner killed it!
WrestlingINC.com: It would have been crazy to see what would have happened if Kellner didn’t decide on having no wrestling on the network.
Page: I’ll tell you what. It wouldn’t be G-rated today [laughs].
WrestlingINC.com: When WWE bought WCW, there were a lot of mixed feelings, but there were also a lot of people that thought that they would be able to turn it into a second brand, which is kind of what they ended up doing with Smackdown and…
Page: That’s what I thought! I thought they were going to do that. You know, I was all psyched for it. I thought it would be awesome too. Because I saw the way Bischoff did it [with the nWo]. I was right there. If you can bring guys in — I mean, bring in Booker T and have him start dropping guys left and right. People would have been like, “Whoa.” And all those WCW fans, they would have came over. It never came, they [WCW fans] literally stopped watching television when it came to wrestling. There were millions of them.
WrestlingINC.com: Do you think you would have done it any different now? Do you think you would have sat out the rest of your contract?
Page: Me? [laughs] Dude, f–kin’ hell yeah. I never would have walked away. I would have waited ’till I saw those guys [nWo, Goldberg] went in. I would have still had two years [in the business] after that.
WrestlingINC.com: It didn’t really much make sense the way you were booked coming in to WWE.
Page: Well, it was what it was. You know, it was about brand. That’s what it’s about. It’s about brand. Now are you going to put over the guy that just got spiked over there [WCW] two years ago? No, you’re going to say that was bullsh-t. That was a mistake. It was what it was… there was a lot of animosity coming in there. I didn’t know that. I was thinking f–k, I didn’t know there was heat up there. I was thinking I can’t wait to go, I can’t wait to do my sh-t. And so it was what it was and I was just up there trying to be a team player, you know? When I was in WCW, dude, I fought every f–king day to get that spot, to hold that spot. I didn’t really like going up there, you know. It was rough. That’s what it was.
WrestlingINC.com: Would you say the politics in WWE during that time were worse than WCW or was it just different?
Page: Naw, it was just completely– you weren’t part of that family coming in there. The other thing that was true too is that THEY [WWE] were almost closed down [in the mid 90’s]. Okay, they were almost closed down big time. Until the Austin – McMahon thing caught fire like a mother f–ker — so the bottom line is it was good for the company. Who knows, you know? Again, I’ll say this again… everybody on the internet thinks that DDP [said I dropped the ball in terms of signing with WWE] — I never said I dropped the ball. What I said was I dropped the ball when it came to me making a decision whether to come in or not. And I said, “Ah, I think I’m going in.” I have no animosity toward anybody. I mean, how many wrestlers have you heard about that are just so bitter? How many? A sh-tload!
WrestlingINC.com: Almost everyone.
Page: I mean, I’m never going to be that guy and that’s why I say I take responsibility for fricking saying I’d do the [stalker] angle. I should have went, “You know what? I’m sure that’s a great angle but it’s not really for me. If you want to get people for your World champion, give me a call back.” I would have made it to the airport, you know?
So it was what it was and — I tell you what, I would never have the deal I have today with Warner Brothers for getting my DDPYoga, and that to me dwarfed what I did in wrestling for the next 20 years. It dwarfed. And that’s the f–king gold standard. When you got the guys that are like Mick Foley who’s coming to my house fricking on Wednesday to come and work out with me.
I mean, I’m going to get there eventually [with DDPYoga] because I got the thing that is holding up, that gives you the benefits and it helps heal your body and nobody’s beat up their bodies like we [wrestlers] have. Kane’s doing it [DDPYoga] right now and Jericho … It’s so funny, one of these wrestling websites said DDP is using Jericho to push his DDP yoga. But you know, Chris is the one who said he’d put it out like a son of a b—h. I didn’t say that it changed his life. Chris said that, not me! I’m honored, I’m f–king honored that it’s helped him, you know? It feels great.
WrestlingINC.com: It seems like with WWE, that you guys have a good relationship now having just recently done the Best of Nitro DVD. Could we look forward to seeing you doing more with them?
Page: I just signed a legends deal. [laughs] I always loved the WWE. I don’t care. My career didn’t really end the way that I wanted it to but I had the greatest career ever. I had the career that no one is supposed to have. You know, so there is no animosity or. I want to do things with the WWE like their new channel. That’s exciting for me.
WrestlingINC.com: Is doing something like their Legends House TV show, is that something you’d be willing to do?
Page: Everyone’s been asking me about that, you know! I’ll do it — it depends what — I don’t know what they’re going to do with that. I don’t know what the mode is going to be. I’m not going to work with the [Iron] Sheik on TV to try to get him to do DDPYoga. [laughs] These people would look at me like I’m f–king crazy.
When they can see the sh-t that I can do, it will freak them out. Because none of them, not even the young guys, can do it. You know, so what does that tell you? So if there’s a positive role model for me to come in on, absolutely. Am I going to make it kooky or dilute my brand in anyway? Never. I worked for ten years on this. If we can make it awesome and there’s a spot there, absolutely, you know? Am I going to be the smarmy guy? It’s like, no. I’m going to be f–king DDP, you know?
WrestlingINC.com: Thanks for taking the time to do this interview. What else can you tell us about DDP Yoga?
Page: I say in my opening video on ddpyoga.com that this can be for everybody. This workout is for young kids, which we do this really fun video workout with kids. Probably in about six or eight months I’m going to push my infomercial and all that sh-t. We’re going to come up with a kids version… I’ll make it fun for them but it’s for kids, it’s for adults, it’s for people who are beat up, it’s for people who want to have that edge, it’s for that athlete that wants to be better than everyone else because their endurance is suitable, their flexibility is insane, and when you’re flexibility is insane along with your core strength like Rob Van Dam, you’re hurt once in 20 years, you know? To me, it’s just like this workout is the fountain of youth and I’m passionate about it because I’ve watched it help so many people and I love it.
Click here for part one of the interview where DDP talks about his early WCW days, Rob Van Dam inspiring him, Eddie Guerrero, being fired By WCW, Hulk Hogan and more. Click here for part two, where Page talks becoming a main eventer, almost quitting WCW, feuding with Randy Savage, helping Chris Jericho and more.
Also, make sure to learn more about DDPYoga by clicking here. A lot of wrestlers are now using it including Chris Jericho, Mick Foley, Shane Helms and scores of others. You can check out more about it below: