Four generations of McMahons have been involved with WWE going back to Vince McMahon's grandfather, Jess. However, not every member of the family is involved in the business as Vince's older brother, Rod, has no ties to wrestling outside of familial ties.
Even with that, Rod happens to be Ryback's only connection to the McMahons and WWE ever since he left the company three years ago. Wrestling Inc's Raj Giri joined Ryback's podcast where the latter talked about meeting Rod and his relationship to him.
"I have had no communication with [WWE]. I want to think of the last conversation that I had with [Senior Director of Talent Relations] Mark Carrano, I had some communication with him. That was over some ankle stuff too," said Ryback. "The only communication that I have had is with Vince McMahon's brother, Rod McMahon, who uses Feed Me More Nutrition [Ryback's supplement company]; we go back and forth in emails.
"He lives in Houston, which is where I met him at Gold's Gym many years ago. I told Vince McMahon that I met his brother and told him that I could see the resemblance, they look very similar and Vince got red in the face and got extremely angry with me and then he locked me in a room with his mother to meet his mom in Houston. Well, he didn't lock me but he brought me in to meet his mom and she looked great, she was 90 something at the time, and she said that my son is going to live to be very old, which was odd that it was the first thing that she told me, but then other people came in, and Rod is in the steel manufacturing business."
Ryback wasn't aware of how close the relationship was between the brothers and Ryback was worried that the fact that he brought up meeting Rod could have got him into Vince's doghouse.
"I didn't know that Vince had a brother and they are around the same age. I think Rod is a little bit older, but as I was looking closely at his face I could clearly see how the nose is identical and under the eyes," stated Ryback. "Rod may be a little thinner but is around the same height and realized he wasn't BSing me, and Vince said that he did have a brother and I could see the resemblance. But then [Vince's] face got really red and got mad at me, and this was during the Rybaxel period so I was like, 'F**k! How did this backfire? Just by talking to him?'"
Ryback says Rod seems like a genuinely good guy and he didn't want to talk about his own issues with WWE with Vince's brother. That's a conversation that Ryback would rather have with Vince himself.
"I know what [the issues] are, and I believe that it needs to be taken care of by having a conversation with Vince McMahon if I ever have one, but I can separate things. I met Rod at the gym, he's a good guy and we stayed in touch. To me he comes across as a normal guy. I don't know how similar or different they are, because I don't know Vince McMahon that well outside of business and gym talk, but he clearly loves the gym. He is 75 and is still working out and likes Feed Me More Nutrition so he is okay in my book," said Ryback.
You can listen to Ryback discussing Rod McMahon in the video above. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Conversation with The Big Guy Ryback with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.