On a recent episode of The Wrestling Inc. Daily podcast, Wrestling Inc. Managing Editor Nick Hausman sat down with WWE Hall of Famers Butch and Luke, The Bushwackers. They have recently announced that they have reunited and will be returning for one last run. Hausman asked them to go back and talk about the origins of “The Bushwackers” name, before that they had been known as The Sheepherders.
“Vince gave us the name,” Luke said.
“We did ourselves,” Butch noted. “He gave us the name because he wanted to own The Bushwacker name, but he didn’t tell us how to go. He just said, ‘I want to have you as babyfaces,’ and I jumped up on his desk right there, first time ever met him.
“I’m on my hands and knees. I had my face a couple of inches from him. I said, ‘Mate, I don’t care if you make us babyfaces, if you put a dress on us, whatever, we just want to make some money.
“No, Butch, you said, ‘How can you make these faces babyfaces?,’ Luke added. “That’s what he said.”
“I said, ‘If you can make these faces into drawing money as babyfaces, you go right ahead,'” Butch recalled.
“He said to us, ‘Look at my top babyfaces. Look at the mugs on my top babyfaces, Hulk Hogan, Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Jake The Snake,'” Luke revealed. “He said, ‘They’re not pretty looking guys.'”
Hausman then asked how The Bushwackers licking people came about.
“Butch is from down under,” Luke pointed out. “He always enjoyed licking down under.”
“All my life, I always did things off the cuff, without even thinking really,” Butch admitted. “When we go ringside messing around, sometimes I would bend down, put my head back and people would be banging on the head. When you saw it on camera, it was a good reaction, but they were beating the s**t out of my head because they were getting carried away. That wasn’t too good for my head.
“So I thought there’s got to be an easier way. So I grabbed this guy one time as I was going around, and I thought, s**t, I’m going to try this. And I gave him a lick under the chin right over the forehead. Well, that got over like a million dollars. So from then on, that’s what we did, and of course, two septicemias later, and I nearly died in the waiting room on a hospital bed. I possibly wish I never did. Luke did it the right way.
“He would put his arm on the head over his hand, but you couldn’t really see him not licking him. I started to do that at the end as well. The licking now, well, obviously, we’ll have to stop now, but the beauty of this whole thing now is we could either be The Bushwackers or The Sheepherders. We can be anything we want. We’ll be able to show our talents off a lot better without being restricted to either being a Bushwacker or a Sheepherder.”
The Bushwackers have won countless championships across many different promotions, but they were never WWF Tag Team Champions. Luke said they had a chance in a program with The Brain Busters (Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard), and he explained why the title change never happened.
“Tully and Arn had the belts, and we were put with them,” Luke recalled. “We set it, and we did a bit of an angle. Those days, on television, we had jobbers. We’re doing the battering ram on enhancement talent, and the guy’s giving up on you on the other side of the ring.
“He puts me in a headlock, and he’s running me. My head’s supposed to hit the gentleman’s stomach. The guy freaked out and turns, and my head hit his hip. I cracked a vertebrae on my neck, hairline head fractures. I was out for 10 weeks, and Butch had to run with Tully for ten weeks till they (the titles) changed. I killed our chance for the belts there.
“Nearly every town that we went in, once we were over, he (McMahon) would put our match on last because you always wanted to send the people home happy,” Butch noted. “The main event would be on before us, or two before us. Then we would be saved for the very last match. We would go on there with the music, and the people would go home so happy. So we did that for many years for WWE. We didn’t need a belt for that.”
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The Bushwackers full interview aired as part of a recent episode of our podcast, The Wrestling Inc. Daily. Subscribe to get the latest episodes as soon as it’s released Monday – Friday afternoon by clicking here. You can find the full audio from today’s show, as well as the video from Nick’s interview with The Bushwackers, below.