Earlier this month, WWE debuted RAW Underground where Shane McMahon hosts MMA-style fights in a warehouse with many wrestlers coming in to compete for pride and glory. On an episode of the ARN podcast, Arn Anderson was asked by a fan for his thoughts on RAW Underground.
“I saw about a minute of it to figure out what it was and immediately cut the channel off. Not a fan,” Anderson expressed. “I just think it’s grass being thrown at straws. We are a wrestling product. Anytime we vary from being a wrestling product, it is always less than, and to have guys just falling out there and having would be knockouts or would be choke outs in a minute or whatever it may be and just move to the next one, it just feels like throwing stuff up against the wall to see if it’ll stick. And it’s not what we do and anytime you try to get a wave and go another direction, I think you’re making a mistake.”
Anderson later talked about a storyline that went too far for him. Anderson pointed at the McMahons vs Shawn Michaels and “God” feud at Backlash 2006. In the storyline, Vince McMahon claimed that his match against Michaels at WrestleMania 22 was a handicap match. He claimed it was himself vs. Michaels and God which is why he lost the match.
Vince recruited his son Shane for a tag team match against Michaels and God where Vince would convert Michaels, a born-again Christian, to “McMahonism”. On ARN, Anderson, a devout Christian man himself, explained why that storyline went too far.
“Wow, some things, even though that it’s wrestling and you just go, ‘it’s just wrestling’, sometimes, you go too far and for what you think is going to be entertaining, just comes across as just going too far, and that was one of those deals that didn’t really make me feel good about the business,” Anderson admitted. “It just felt like a really, really low road and when you pick and choose when you do the low road stuff, and when it’s at the top and it’s their idea, it’s just entertainment.
“The mood wasn’t right, boy, you would have really got crucified over it and I’m not being facetious or no pun intended, it was all those things that just went a little too far.”
Anderson was also asked about his reaction to seeing Mick Foley’s fall of the Hell in the Cell cage. He admits that, like everyone else, he was shocked and amazed at the moment.
“I probably took a gulp and a gasp like everybody else on Earth,” Anderson stated. “Never thought I would see something like that and the margin of error is so small. God was watching over Mick that day. That’s all I can tell you because afoot, either way, that could’ve gone way worse.
“I’m sure it was bad enough if you’re living in Mick’s body, but man, it set a new bar and pretty much hit the ceiling as far as you could go and man, that’s something if you saw it, you’ll never forget it.”
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit ARN with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Mehdy Labriny contributed to this article.