As previously noted, WWE Hall Of Famer Steve Austin recently spoke with pro wrestling veteran turned wilderness survivalist Bob 'Hardcore' Holly for a two-part interview on The Steve Austin Show. During the podcast, Holly talked about former WWE Superstar Steve Blackman being a legitimately "dangerous" fighter and what he is doing now. Also, Austin and Holly got in-depth with respect to WWE's maligned Brawl For All tournament.
According to Holly, Blackman is a real badass in the same class as the legendarily tough Haku, also known as Meng in WCW.
"Let me tell you something. That whole thing with that Brawl For All, [Blackman] was dead serious about hurting people. I mean, this guy, I kid you not, Steve, he isn't anybody to mess with. I pushed his buttons on purpose, but I knew my boundaries. I knew my limitations. I knew how far I could go with him because I knew Steve. I wasn't about to push him over that edge where I was going to come up missing because I'm serious - Steve is no joke. I'd put him in the same class as Meng, basically. Like, I put those two right there. Yeah, yeah. Steve's dangerous. He's dangerous. I talked to him actually probably about five [or] six weeks ago for the first time in years. Yeah, he's one of those kinds of guys where if you're messing with him, just joking around, he questions, 'okay, is this guy really messing with me or is he wanting to start something?' He's always that serious!" Holly noted, "[Blackman]'s a good dude, funny, one of the nicest people you'd ever meet, but he's just somebody that's dangerous. He's flat dangerous."
Holly mentioned that Blackman is currently running a bail bonds business as well as a martial arts school now. The six-time WWE Hardcore Champion indicated that 'The Lethal Weapon' has no interest in returning to pro wrestling.
"[Blackman] owns a bail bondsman business, so he's doing that." Holly continued, "he has a martial arts school, an MMA school. He runs that, but that's what he's doing now. Yeah, he sounds like he's happy. He doesn't really have any desire to put himself back out there as far as wrestling, or appearances, or things like that. He's content doing what he's doing. I know he's married. He has two kids now and he seems happy, so he seems perfectly content with what he's doing."
On the subject of Brawl For All, Austin professed that the shoot tournament was set up to make 'Dr. Death' Steve Williams a credible challenger to 'The Rattlesnake'.
"[Brawl For All] was set up for 'Dr. Death' Steve Williams. [WWE] assumed he was going to take this whole thing and I guess that was going to be after that he was going to be an opponent for me." Austin continued, "I was on the inside, but I was looking in from the outside, thinking, 'okay, well, maybe I'm going to fight 'Dr. Death'' or 'I'm going to work with 'Dr. Death' after this,' and then, boy, all-of-a-sudden, it didn't go as planned."
In Holly's opinion, Blackman probably would have won Brawl For All, but he got injured preparing for the tournament.
"[WWE] decided on this Brawl For All." Holly said, "I can't remember who came up with this crazy concept, but I wasn't even supposed to be in it. I wasn't even on their radar to be in it. Tiger Ali Singh backed out of it, he said he was going to beat everybody, but when it came down to it, he backed out of it and so [Bruce] Prichard called me and asked if I wanted to be in it. I was, so I got in it. When Steve Blackman heard about it, he wanted in, so they put Steve in it. And, actually, Blackman probably would've won the whole thing. He was taking this thing so seriously, and this is the mindset of Steve Blackman, he was taking it so seriously he was actually working out with guys, preparing for this Brawl For All, shooting in, taking guys down, like, obviously, boxing was included. He was practicing, doing that, and the guy that he was practicing, training with was a lot heavier than Steve and ended up rolling on his knee and it messed his knee up, so he had to back out if it."
'Bombastic' Bob claimed that his New Midnights teammate Bart Gunn ruined WWE's creative plans when 'The Bodacious One' knocked out 'Dr. Death' in the second round of the tournament.
"Obviously, Bart [Gunn] was in it. I was riding with Bart Gunn at the time and he had called Bruce Prichard and told Bruce that he was going to win the whole thing and Bruce was like, 'I have no doubt you will; good for you; I think you'll do well in it; blah, blah, blah.' And Bart was like, 'no, Bruce.' See, I actually think he thought Bruce was patronizing him and he's like, 'no, Bruce. I'm going to win this whole thing.' Long story short, Bart ended up winning it, but one the way there, when Bart did fight Steve Williams, he knocked Steve out." Holly recalled, "it actually screwed up their whole plan for Steve Williams to work with [Austin] because they had no idea that Bart was going to knock him out."
Apparently, Gunn told Holly that he would have put Williams over if he knew WWE's plan for the standout Sooner.
"Like Bart said, if they would have just told him what the deal was, he would've had no problem putting Steve [Williams] over basically." Holly remembered, "and so, Bart just went out there and did what Bart does. Bart knocked him out and ended up screwing up their whole thing and that's how Bart ended up moving on and obviously knocking out The Godfather, and knocking out Bradshaw, and making his way to the end."
Holly shared that the WWE talents were happy that Gunn knocked out Williams because they were tired of hearing WWE Hall Of Famer Jim Ross say that Williams was going to mow through the field. Holly suggested that Williams lost credibility when Gunn knocked him out. Moreover, Holly stated that Brawl For All was a bad idea from the start, as there were any number of ways to make 'Dr. Death' seem like a legitimate challenger to Austin without the shoot competition.
"It screwed up their whole storyline as far as Steve Williams working with [Austin] when Bart knocked Steve [Williams] out because their whole plan was for Steve Williams to win the whole thing and they thought he would. And, actually, the sad part about this whole thing is seeing somebody like Steve Williams get knocked out because of who he used to be, how big of a deal he was, and what a stud he was. And it was just really tough seeing it happen, but the boys all popped when it happened because [Jim Ross] was going around telling everybody how Steve Williams was just going to walk through everybody and people were tired of hearing it. The boys were tired of hearing that. And when Bart knocked him out, it just blew the roof off the back. The boys popped because everybody was sold out at the monitor watching the thing and when Bart knocked him out, the boys popped." Holly explained, "you cannot plan for something like that to work out in your favor because it's not. When you dangle $100,000 carrot in front of somebody, especially a bunch of hungry boys, it's not going to work out like you think it is and it didn't. And unfortunately it didn't. And when you really stop and think about it, because of who Steve [Williams] was, 1987 All American, he's a big deal in Japan, and then, all that gets wiped clean from getting knocked out. It's like, almost all of his credibility went out the window, in a sense. It didn't, but it did. Do you know what I'm saying? It's like, here is this guy who is supposed to be one of the baddest men on the planet and then Bart knocks him out? It almost wipes out his whole credibility even though anybody can get knocked out at any given second. And that's why you don't pit the boys against each other like that. It was a bad idea to start with. And it's like, if they wanted [Williams] to work with [Austin], there [are] a whole bunch of different ways to get him there instead of having him come in and try to do a shoot fight for $100,000. It's just not going to work out."
Holly admitted that he does not know how he was not knocked out by Gunn.
"I had no idea how bad [Gunn] was." Holly reflected "I knew he was a big freaking country boy. Obviously, there's a lot of toughness there, but I didn't realize to what extent until I started watching him drop everybody. I was like, 'holy hell!' I guess I survived that son of a b---h! I don't know how I did because I know he hit me… Steve, I was on one side of the ring, he hit me, and I was on the other side of the ring. I stood there and I was like, 'how in the f--k did I get over here?' I did! I was like, 'how in the hell, did I get over here?' And all I know is I got hit and then the next thing, I was on the other side of the ring standing there. I was like, 'how in the hell did I get over here?' But I know he hits like a mule. I do know that, but it did surprise me that he walked through everybody like he did. It shocked me."
Also during the show, Holly divulged that he and Gunn agreed to just stand up and fight each other in their first round matchup instead of shooting in on each other as the other fights were boring because of that.
"Me and Bart, we agreed not to shoot in on each other." Holly elaborated, "that's one thing because we watched the past fights, and, to me, they were kind of boring because guys [were] shooting in on each other and going down to the mat. And we wanted to fight and that's what we agreed to do, 'okay, you don't shoot in on me, and I won't shoot in on you, and we'll just stand there and fight.' And that's what we did. And, obviously, he ended up moving on, which I'm happy for him [about], but it would have been nice [to win the tournament]. I mean, I still got $5,000 for getting in the thing."
Put a little stank on it. If you use any of the quotes from this article, please credit The Steve Austin Show with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Source: The Steve Austin Show