Recently on Talk Is Jericho, the nine-time WWE Intercontinental Champion sat down with JTG to talk about his book, "DAMN! Why Did I Write This Book?". Among other things, JTG explained the origins of his ring name. JTG revealed what Cryme Tyme was supposed to be called. Also, he discussed his experiences working with John Cena as part of CTC.
In OVW, JTG was given the name, The Neighborhoodie, by Paul Heyman.
"I was known as Neighborhoodie. Paul Heyman gave me that name. And then when I heard it, he was like, 'we're going to call you Neighborhoodie' and I was like, 'okay, I love it'. Paul Heyman, if you're listening to [this], I didn't like it, but at the time, I didn't want heat."
JTG would give himself the JTG moniker as he claimed to be at the top of his class in OVW and "just too good". When JTG arrived at WWE, he told people JTG meant 'just too gangster' because he did not want heat.
"I'm still JTG. I own the rights to JTG. I don't know how I pulled that off," JTG said. "When I was in OVW, I was at the top of my class. And when we'd cut promos, I'd call myself 'Just Too Good'. Just Too Good. At the end of every promo, it would be, 'because I'm Just Too Good'. And then when I got to WWE, I had to humble myself. A lot of people would ask me, 'so what does JTG stand for?', and I started stuttering, I said, 'uh, Just Too Gangster' because I didn't want to say Just Too Good because I didn't want heat."
Just when JTG thought he escaped the hoodie gimmick, Cryme Tyme was originally supposed to be called Hoodie Nation, but that name was already trademarked.
"We heard about Cryme Tyme, I think it was our second or third time up on the road. We were just sitting in an office coming up with names, and you wouldn't believe some of the names they had. I'll give you an idea of [just how terrible the suggested names were]. I forget what the writer's name was, but he said, 'we're going to call you Hoodie Nation and here's what we got. You're going to come out with your own flag and we're going to sell flags and everybody in the audience is going to have the Hoodie Nation flag and you guys are going to be so over.' And we're like, 'oh, gosh, no.' And then they checked to see if the name was available because you have to go through trademark and this whole process and somebody already had it. I'm like, 'yes! Thank you!'. And then Cryme Tyme came up and we just spelled it different and it worked."
JTG said he had a lot of fun doing CTC and he learned a lot from Cena.
"One day, I just found out that we would be partnering up with Cena and I'm like, 'hell yeah! That's like the perfect fit." JTG continued, "[CTC] was a good learning experience. A lot of the things I was doing that I had no idea was wrong, John Cena pulled me to the side [and said], 'don't do that no more. We're taking it to another level.' For example, before every match, I'd like to get the crowd warmed up. I'd say, 'are you ready to get it popping?'. I'd look at the crowd [and] he's like, 'don't do that. You don't need their approval. Just start the match.' He was like, 'you don't do that anymore.'"
JTG described the July 7, 2008 episode of WWE Monday Night RAW as unforgettable. Not only did he meet his wife that day, JTG described CTC destroying JBL's limousine as "one of the best and funnest" TV segments of his professional wrestling career.
"I'll never forget that day. That was the day I met my wife, so I'll never forget that day. John Cena came out. He was having a [feud] with JBL, and, if I can remember it right, he had some violations and he needed some help." JTG continued, "and then when I invited my soon-to-be wife to the show, I was like, 'that would be perfect. She sees her future husband being a bad ass. Oh, he's with John Cena and beating up limos?'"
In addition to these topics, JTG discussed his first release from WWE, being discouraged when Zack Ryder's Z! True Long Island Story did not get him pushed, and more. Click here to listen to the podcast. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Talk Is Jericho with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Source: Talk Is Jericho