Paul Heyman Talks His Early Days, Lesnar Ending Taker’s Streak, SummerSlam, More
The following are highlights of a new Busted Open Radio interview with Paul Heyman:
On his early days in the business hustling to get press passes: “I just didn’t want to be another face in the crowd. I was a huge fan of the product. On Sunday my parents would go to the lower east side of Manhattan because my Mother likes to shop there and my Father and I would bum around before we picked up my Mother. One of the things My Father liked to do was we would pick up these radical lower New York free news papers with their own social agenda because their writing was always very passionate. Whether we agreed with their politics or not doesn’t matter, you would find great emotions in the writing. In one of these papers was a sports column and it was more of a sports gossip column and the writer mentioned that after Madison Square Garden, Vincent J McMahon would take his inner circle to lunch at Ben Bensons Steak House in midtown Manhattan.
“Now I don’t know the readership of this article, so I don’t know if a lot of old WWWF fans got to see this, so I figured this was some inside information. I found out that the office was at the Cape Cod Coliseum which was owned by Vincent Kennedy McMahon, so I called and said ‘My name is Paul Heyman. I was told to call by Vince McMahon to get my press pass for Madison Square Garden’. I’m put through 3-4 assistants until I got patched through to Vince J McMahon. I said ‘This is Paul Heyman from the Wrestling Times’ because we have The New York Times. I said ‘I was talking to you at Ben Bensons and you said to call you about a press pass at Madison Square Garden.’ He said ‘I did?!’. I said ‘Yeah you did.’ Because who else would know he dines at Ben Bensons and who would tell him that he was in a radical news paper in the lower east side of New York with a readership of a couple hundred, so I must have been real.
“He said ‘Go to the Holland Hotel at 42nd street and 8th Ave and talk to Gorilla Monsoon and Arnold Skaaland and I look forward to seeing you at the Garden.’ I got a ride down to the Holland Hotel and I saw Monsoon and Skaaland playing pinnacle with a bottle of booze, I got my press pass, BS’d my way into Madison Square Garden with my press pass and got in Vince Sr’s good graces by snapping some photos with him and Andre The Giant and bringing him some 8X10 the next month. For the rest of the time he was in charge, I would bring pictures they could use in their programs or on posters and they would give me 50 bucks for my transportation and trouble. I’ve always found that honesty is dramatically overrated.”
On Brock Lesnar vs John Cena at SummerSlam: “Brock Lesnar is going to beat John Cena. That’s not a prediction, that’s a spoiler. Brock is going to win and it will bring more prestige and box office draw to the championship title than anybody in the past 25 years. Brock Lesnar is going to make that title mean more than it ever has before and people are going to understand that when the title is on the line it is special and it’s going to mean something.”
On the shock of Lesnar ending Undertaker’s Streak and why people didn’t believe him when he announced that Taker will lose to Lesnar: “You should have listened to me. I’m gonna tell you this again, Brock Lesnar is going to deliver an F-5 that will drive Cena with such force he will pin John Cena and win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. You can believe what I’m telling you and you won’t be surprised next time you interview me and you can say ‘every time Heyman says something it comes true. He’s not Nostradamus and he doesn’t have a crystal ball or any special voodoo powers’ Brock Lesnar is going to beat John Cena. Take it to the bank.”
On where the moment Brock pinned the Undertaker ranks in his career: “As an advocate and performer, it is the moment. Absolutely. Nothing else is even close. John Cena brought it up on Monday night. 40 men have held the WWE championship. Only one man can say ‘I beat the streak’. That’s a moment. The only equivalent I can give you is if someone was announced as the President of the United States and someone comes up and says ‘I’ve been elected God’. There have been a few men who ever had the title. Only one man beat the streak.”
On his relationship with Vince McMahon today: “Strictly platonic. I think Vince McMahon serves his company well as the chairman and recognizes the talents and exploiting the ability of Paul Heyman every Monday night on Raw.”
Check out the complete interview at BustedOpenNation.com.