WWE Hall Of Famer Steve Austin recently welcomed pro wrestling veteran Tom Prichard to The Steve Austin Show for a two-part interview. Among many other things, Prichard talked about training WWE Chairman Vince McMahon for his cage match against Austin at WWE In Your House: St. Valentine's Day Massacre (1999). Austin noted that McMahon worked a little stiff in the bout.
During the podcast, Prichard told a story about training McMahon for his cage match with Austin in 1999. According to 'Dr. Tom', he even measured out the memorable table bump that McMahon took during the match.
"I'm the guy [who was training McMahon], man. That's right." Prichard recalled, "we'd go to the studio, and again, I had just moved to Stamford too, not that long, maybe a year or two, I guess, whenever [Austin] worked with [McMahon] for the first time. I don't remember the year, but we would come to the studio where that ring was. And they hated us there because of all the bumps. But sometimes he would want to train at 11 o'clock at night because he had been working all day, so I was on Titan time back then and I worked with the boss. And, in fact, we even, for the cage match were he took the bump on the table, we measured that out at the studio and he got up on the cage, and we had the cage on the ring and everything, and we measured it, and we put the bump pads down and everything else. He took the bump and I think he took it like three times and he said, 'I've got it, I've got it.' And sure enough, during the match, be bounced off the table and it didn't break."
Apparently, Prichard made a blade for McMahon, so 'The Genetic Jackhammer' could get color in the match; however, McMahon never had to use the blade because Austin hard wayed McMahon with a chair.
"We used to train. He wanted to train some nights at 11 o'clock at night just for this match with [Austin]. And he was going to get juice. I don't know if it was the first match or the second match, but I had to make his blade that night. So I'm making Vince McMahon's first blade and he [has] never done it before in his life, okay? And he's working with the hottest superstar in the business [of pro wrestling] at that time. So he gets juiced during the match and he comes back. And I would never go into Vince's office, never, unless I really needed to go there, but I was so happy for him that he used the blade that night. And I went back there and I said, 'what a job! That was great.' He goes, 'I never had to use it.' I said, 'what do you mean?' He goes, 'no, he cracked me hard way. Look here.' And at the top of his head, he got hit with a chair and it split him wide open." Prichard continued, "but that was the kind of guy he was. He was ready for the blade, but once [Austin] hard wayed him, he didn't need it, I guess."
To Prichard, the experience of training McMahon was "great", though McMahon is not a "natural athlete". The former 'Zip' of The Bodydonnas remembered working on Stunners with McMahon, as 'The Boss' was interested in delivering Austin's finish to 'The Rattlesnake'.
"It was great, but [Austin] [is] right - [McMahon] is not a natural athlete. But you know how Vince can be very empathetic and understand you and be on your level. You know how he's talking to you like he that cool Vince. Then you've got the boss Vince. Well, during the studio [time] he was cool Vince, but then he could be boss Vince when he wants to be too, obviously. But working with him, all we really did was lock up and we took some headlocks over. And he's grabbing my arm and wanting to throw punches and man-oh-man, I'm covering up, but he's knocking the living s--t out of me, which was alright. That's what I was there for.
"I remember he even gave me a couple of Stunners. I don't know if he ever gave [Austin] a Stunner on the match or not, but he wanted to try a couple of Stunners too. I do remember that very well. I went over that with him. But it was a very cool thing, man, because the people who haven't had the opportunity to meet with Vince and be one-on-one with him, and trust me, I haven't had that many - I've had maybe four or five, maybe five real one-on-ones where it's personal talk, which he does with anybody who has the time to sit with him and get to know him; I think he'll take that time with pretty much anybody - basically, he would show up, he would start stretching out and stretching the ropes, then I would start circling and then he would start circling. He's say, 'alright, come on, pal! Let's do it!' And I'd lock up with him and he's not the easiest guy to maneuver. No, and he doesn't realize that, but he has that performer's ego. He has that performer's heart and that's really where he wants to be." Prichard said, "I respect the hell out of him too for doing it."
On the subject of St. Valentine's Day Massacre, Austin recalled that McMahon's adrenaline was so high during their match that McMahon was a bit stiff.
"The adrenaline was in Vince so much where he basically rag dolled me." Austin added, "and it's kind of like, 'goddamn, dude, let me take my own bump!' But he would throw me so hard I couldn't take a proper bump for him!"
Listen to the show 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