Jay Lethal recently joined Interactive Wrestling Radio with host James Walsh. The former Black Machismo talked about his upcoming ROH Death Before Dishonor match with Silas Young and more. You can listen to the interview by clicking here, they sent us these highlights:
Throwing out the first pitch at the Tampa Bay Rays game:
"That was nerve racking. Before you do that, you hear horror stories about awful first pitches. Then, you go on YouTube and you watch people throw really bad first pitches. You don't want to be on that list. And, you don't want to be on ESPN and be on SportsCenter although they say most publicity is good publicity. I remember thinking, 'Wow, celebrities get to do this. I'm getting to do this? This is something celebrities do.' That was really cool. They gave me a jersey which my Dad has and refuses to let go. So, I guess, I don't have a jersey, my Dad does. (laughs) He's my biggest fan!"
"It has been announced that it will be myself against Silas Young in a 'Last Man Standing' match. This will be my first ever last man standing match! I'm a little excited, a little nervous. It is live on pay-per-view. Everybody always ups their game for pay-per-views. It is just kind of a wrestling tradition."
Silas Young being underrated:
"100 percent! That is an understatement. He is definitely better than he is given credit for. I hadn't met Silas until my second time back here (ROH). My second run, as they say, in Ring of Honor after I left Impact Wrestling and came back to Ring of Honor, there were faces that I had to learn. Silas Young was one of those guys. In the ring, I've got to tell you, he is one of the guys who represents Ring of Honor well. In the ring, he is literally one of the best wrestlers in the world. He plays the role, he plays it right. I just love everything about him... Even that look! He's got a unique look with that mustache. I love him. Sometimes I think he was born just a little too late. He'd be a millionaire if he was born just a few years earlier. But, I think he is amazing in the ring."
Speaking to Randy Savage about his "Black Machismo" Character:
"Unfortunately, I did not ask him too much about it because, and this is an interesting story here. I worked a few shows, I wrestled a few shows for a man named Ed Chuman. Ed Chuman would always tell me, 'You know, I'm friends with the Macho Man and his brother Lanny. He'd like you to call him. He saw a few clips on YouTube and he'd like you to call him.' I knew Ed Chuman but I guess I didn't really trust him. I figured, 'Sure, he's trying to get me on the phone with someone who does a good Randy Savage impression like myself so that I'd ask him a bunch of stupid questions.' So, I didn't believe him. Everytime I'd get to his show, he'd say, 'Hey, Randy Savage said that you didn't call him. He really wants to talk to you.'
"So, during the peak of my Black Machismo gimmick, I got booked on a show for Pro Wrestling Syndicate in a match with Lanny Poffo. At the end of the day, I remember he was talking to my parents, he gave them 2 of his books. I pulled him aside and I said, 'I've been working for this guy named Ed Chuman. He says he knows you and Macho Man. He says he wants me to call him. I don't believe him. Is this true?' He said, 'Oh yeah, we know Ed. But, I don't know if Randy told him to call. When I get home, I'll check.' When he said he knew Ed Chuman, I was kind of like, 'Oh no, this could be legit.' Literally, when I got home, the next day in my email was Lanny saying 'Yeah, that was Randy. He wants him to call him. Here's his number.'
"I call him... Right away, I'm a fan now. I'm a fan getting to call his idol. You could tell I was interrupting him. I'd always call at weird times. He'd always go, 'Is that right?' The conversations would only last two or three minutes and he'd say, 'Me and my girl are about to go eat.' Had I known or believed that Ed Chuman had been telling the truth, I'd have called him a long time ago. But Lanny did tell me, 'He is a big fan of your character. He doesn't watch on TV but somehow he did see some of it on YouTube and he is a big fan of it.' That is as far as it went. So, I never got to talk to him about his thoughts. But, Lanny told me that he actually enjoyed the character."
Working with Hulk Hogan in TNA:
"Oh man, it was amazing! He's got a great Macho Man impression! Almost better than mine! It was a surreal moment standing next to him for the first time, getting to meet him. I did a little thing in the center of the ring where he came out, I think he made the match with me and Ric Flair. All I could think of was, 'When this airs on TV. man, my brothers are going to be watching me interact with the same people we watched when we were growing up when my Dad would order those wrestling pay-per-views for us.' Sometimes I got lost in that thought rather than thinking, 'Wow, I'm getting to meet Hulk Hogan, I'm getting to meet Ric Flair!' I'm thinking about what happens when my brothers see this!"
Samoa Joe saying he wants Jay Lethal in WWE:
"Samoa Joe is a big bully and he just wants me on the same roster he is so I can carry his bags. (laughs) Joe is amazing! I've had very, very, very limited conversations with anyone from the WWE. Neither of whcih lead to anything major or with any kind of promise. Mostly because, I'm extremely happy with where I am right now. I think every wrestler has different goals as to what making it is in wrestling and that will make you persue options a little bit more. I'm extremely happy with everything that I have been able to do in wrestling which makes me extremely happy where I am right now which is in Ring of Honor."