On the latest episode of Pro Wrestling 4 Life, two-time WWE Hall of Famer Sean “X-Pac” Waltman caught up with fellow WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley. Foley appearance on the podcast came just a few hours after releasing his “WWE: We Have A Problem” video that went viral. Waltman’s co-host, and Wrestling Inc. managing editor Nick Hausman, asked the hardcore icon to explain why he felt the need to release it.
“The only deal I have with WWE is a Legends deal,” Foley noted. “They do pay people to be consultants, and if I was being paid to be a consultant, I would say, ‘WWE, we’ve got a problem’. I’m just putting myself in the place of a top-tier Superstar who has a decision to make, and I would look at how AEW has treated their recent acquisitions and I would compare it to how WWE has treated a few of their recent, as in development, talents brought up to the main roster.
“And I would say, ‘I don’t know if I want to gamble to such an extent that I’m willing to have everything I’ve done watered down or made a joke of.’ If somebody is a more intriguing character in NXT than they are in WWE, and it seems almost by design, I think that’s a big, big problem.”
Foley was a top trend on social media with many fans arguing over whether Foley was correct in his critiques. Waltman commented to Foley about the video, and Foley explained why he felt it was more effective to release his thoughts publicly instead of in private to Vince McMahon.
“I’m a WWE guy. I love WWE,” Waltman stated. “I thought that it was done with love. I really do.”
“It was. I love the company,” Foley responded. “I really do, and I think they need to hear that. If I texted Vince and said that, that’s one thing, and that might be effective, but I think it needs to get out there. And if it embarrasses them, I think that’s okay.
“I look at Keith Lee and look at how dynamic he was. I know Keith’s had some health problems, but the guy comes out and, you don’t know that he’s got that look? You haven’t done enough research to know that he is a big dude, and now you want to cover him up? That’s part of his appeal that he’s loud and proud and had incredible entrance music.”
Foley later continued his critiques of WWE, pointing out the booking of Karrion Kross on WWE RAW.
“In the case of Karrion Kross, it’s what I said, don’t reinvent the wheel,” Foley pointed out. “If the guy’s got the best entrance, one of the four or five best entrances in the business, and then you send him out there as a generic guy and he loses in two minutes, there was one big fan saying, ‘This doesn’t hurt him. This doesn’t affect him. It wasn’t an NXT loss,’ and I’m thinking, dude, you only get one chance to make a first impression. Can you dig that guy out of the hole? Yeah, you can, but he shouldn’t be in a hole.”
Waltman agreed, “Why should you have to?”
“I think that AEW’s pressure is the best thing that can happen to WWE because… you remember being in WWE when we were in the war,” Foley said to Waltman. “When you guys came up, it was a major major acquisition. I remember that first night vividly. ’98, day after WrestleMania, DX, you guys came in, left me and Terry Funk laying, and that worked for my heel turn.
“That’s the way you premiere somebody, and that’s a memorable thing, but in that day, we didn’t play ‘haha’, that’s a tribute to Pat Patterson. We didn’t play ‘haha’ with people’s characters just for the sake of dragging them down. If you had a hand to play and you could play it, they allowed you to showcase your best stuff. The idea of going out on the big stage being less than you can be — the point I was gonna make also is that in WWE, you get in that ring, it’s two feet bigger, but it might as well be a mile longer.
“I’ve seen people who seem to shrink because they kind of lose their confidence and their mojo, and once you’ve lost your confidence in our business, it can be really really difficult. It doesn’t matter how many people pat you on the back, talk to you, tell you you got it. You have to believe you’ve got it, and if you don’t believe you’ve got it and it comes in part because people are messing with your character, that’s a problem.”
A new episode of Sean Waltman’s Pro Wrestling 4 Life drops every Wednesday morning on all major podcast platforms. It is also released in video form on FITE and YouTube.com/XPac Thursdays at 3 pm EST!