Long before Shane McMahon became an on-screen character for WWE, he was busy doing grunt work including setting up the ring before shows. He was also a referee billed as "Shane Stevens," but Shane always had an interest in being a performer as well.
In the late 80s/early 90s, Shane took his interest in wrestling one step further by asking Bruce Prichard if one of the boys could help train him in the ring. Prichard obliged and enlisted the help of a certain WWE Hall of Famer to show Shane the ropes.
"From the first day I met him because he was always a performer," Prichard said on his podcast as to when he knew Shane wanted to perform. "He was a performer when he was graduating high school and hanging around his buddies at the house. He just was one of those kids that was going to steal whatever environment he was in at the time; all eyes were going to be on him. That is who Shane McMahon is.
"Plus, I remember when he was on the road with us on the ring crew and as a referee. We were given strict instructions about not giving Shane any bumps and to take care of him and all this other crap, but he would get to the towns early and set up the ring and would ask me and Randy Savage whether Randy minded him showing Shane some stuff."
Savage was known to be a stiff worker from time-to-time but this was the boss' son he was in the ring with. Thus, Savage took it easy on Shane while Prichard was the one who had to suffer as the guinea pig during training.
"So, Randy and I would go to the buildings early in the afternoon after the ring was set up and work with him. I was the first one that had to take some of those stiff a** crazy tackles from that crazy son of a b***h, and I remember the first time he locked up with Randy and Randy telling him to loosen up. It's a dance, not a fight, so loosen up. We would go in the ring and every day we were on the road we would get in the ring with him during the day and work out in the ring a little bit, then go to the gym and work out. That was early on when he was on the ring crew."
It would be about 10 years before Shane would have his first official match. At a 1998 episode of Monday Night Raw, Shane lost to Mankind via disqualification after a run-in from The Rock.
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Something to Wrestle with Bruce Prichard with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.