Stone Cold Steve Austin welcomed Paul Heyman to the Stone Cold podcast last night on the WWE Network during a live show from San Antonio, Texas, backstage at Monday Night Raw. Heyman said he was humbled and feels it should be the other way round, him interviewing Austin and not this.
Austin covered the history between two and how Heyman put him in the Dangerous Alliance and later got him in ECW. Heyman recounts how they originally met, mentions Austin’s ex-wife (which Austin said he didn’t have to do that!) and five weeks after meeting the two were working together.
Heyman said the Dangerous Alliance was something to fight off the 4 Horsemen and the idea was to build the faction around Rick Rude. Heyman told Rhodes that something was missing and that something was Steve Austin.
Austin asked when is Brock Lesnar coming back and Heyman said it’s public knowledge now that he’s coming back soon. He said that Lesnar has been on the farm, as he’s a farmer and a hunter and most of the money he made from WWE before, the UFC, and what he’s making now he goes and buys more farm land because deep down Brock Lesnar is a farmer. He said no matter how much UFC wins he has, how much WrestleManias he gets to main event, he goes back home to his farm and that’s what he likes.
Austin told Heyman to fix a meeting with Lesnar so the two can go hunt together and if they want the WWE Network crew can tag along to film it. Heyman said he’s Jewish and hunting is not his thing.
The Rattlesnake asked how close Lesnar was to going to UFC earlier this year and Heyman said in January Lesnar held a mini training camp and if no WWE deal was coming he was ready to go in a full training camp and go to the UFC. He didn’t care who his opponent would be as he would have been ready.
Heyman said Brock was torn about the decision as he enjoyed his WWE run, ending the streak, the SummerSlam match with Cena, and basically everything in between. But at the end of the day he’s an athlete, hunter, predator, and if he managed to do all the things he did in the UFC with diverticulitis, imagine now what he can accomplish having a clean bill of health. Heyman said the two are having a blast now and Lesnar is enjoying his time in WWE for the first time in a very long time.
Austin says that many people think Lesnar doesn’t enjoy wrestling considering he doesn’t do many dates. Heyman said Lesnar loves the business but loves his children more and those kids need their father more than WWE needs Lesnar. He said anytime Lesnar appears it’s special and you can’t miss a Lesnar match. He compares a Lesnar match to Christmas Eve, saying it loses the meaning if they do it every week.
Austin says people want more of Heyman and asks if he’s ready to take on more clients. He said he and Lesnar has an interesting dynamic as they are true friends outside the business so it translates perfectly on television. When you put him with another man, fans will still see him as Brock’s advocate so the idea doesn’t work well.
Heyman said the other person he’s friends with is CM Punk and that’s why that worked as well on television although he played a different role with Punk than he does with Lesnar. He said Punk did all the work and all he did was stand in the background and clap. Austin asked if he still talks to Punk and Heyman said they do everyday.
He said they text more than they talk but it’s a great friendship outside the business. He said Punk sees UFC as a challenge and doesn’t care about money. He probably regrets not getting there earlier, but it was time to pull the trigger. Heyman said Punk believes he will either shock everyone in the Octagon or get knocked out/tapped out and he accepts both possibilities.
Austin brings up the art of selling and mentions how everyone now kicks out of the DDT for example and other finishing moves. Heyman said that if they take Mark Henry or someone his size and make his finishing move the headlock and he taps people out in a few seconds, the move will get over as long as the wrestlers put it over, as long as the announcers put it over, and as long as everyone protect the move.
The discussion turns into cutting promos and Austin said there’s something missing in the big picture. Heyman talked about closing the final show before his first Starrcade and Dusty gave him the opportunity to go ahead and knock it out of the park. He talked for 4 minutes putting everyone over and ended with a stupid punchline. He went backstage and Dusty said it was entertaining but he forgot he had to sell the event.
Austin asks if he gives advice to others and Heyman said that whoever comes and ask for advice he will help but he doesn’t impose on others. He said that there seems to be a disconnect on how wrestlers take a mic and start talking about the events of last week before they do three simple things – introduce themselves, what they do, and what they will be selling. He feels like they are not engaging with the audience but rather preaching.
Austin brings up Vince Sr and a photo flashes on TV which Heyman says he took. He said he made the first $50 from Vince Sr and that was a pic of Vince and Andre at MSG. He recounted how he hustled his way to a press pass, got on the phone with Vince Sr, and the next month he gave the Andre photo to Vince in the hallway of MSG. Vince Sr then sent The Fink to give him the $50 and told him to keep giving them photos. He said he got a lot of $50 notes but never straight from Vince Sr.
Austin asked what’s the difference between Vince Sr and Jr. He said Vince Sr was in a different TV industry era, the era of syndication and territories, and when Vince Jr bought it, cable was already out there. He talked how Lou Albano was the guy who got fired the most in the history of WWWF/WWF/WWE for being drunk every show hating on Vince Jr and then brought back every time and apologizes.
When asked how is the relationship now with McMahon, Heyman said it’s probably better than before because they don’t have to interact every day. When he came in 2001 he was tasked to give contrary opinion and that was a big challenge. He said he changed the way he deals with Vince McMahon now and that fatherhood has chilled him out.
When he came in as Smackdown head writer his plan was to surpass Raw and they did. Austin asked about the infamous 2006 private jet ride he shared with McMahon and Heyman said Vince never talked about it publicly so he doesn’t think he has the right to break that confidentiality. But in a nutshell, what happened was that it was his time to go as he lost his passion, mainly thanks to how they dealt with the ECW revival and Vince told him they can’t co-exist together and one of them has to go. He said there was a really, really, really, really bad show and it got heated afterward with Heyman telling Vince what did you do to my brand (ECW) and McMahon telling Heyman what you did to my investment!
The two go over some funny road trips from the WCW days. Heyman recounts a story where he was riding with Austin and Rude and Austin loved to use the words “God damn” with every letter. Rude got annoyed and stopped the car and asked Austin to stop using the “Fu****g Lord’s name in vain.” Austin apologized and said he would not say it again and when Rude said thank you, Austin replied with a “You’re God damn welcome.”
Another road trip story featured Sting, the Steiners, and the Samoan Swat Team. Sting used to drive with the Steiners and when they used to see a car full of wrestlers, Sting would drive close to the other car, Rick Steiner would get out of the window with Scott holding his legs and they would open the other car’s door. There was something wrong with the car locks, so they ended up calling locksmith in OKC to fix it.
One time Heyman was riding with the Samoans and they see Sting and Steiners fast approaching behind them. Knowing what’s coming, they locked the doors and when Steiner couldn’t open the door, he went back in and they all started throwing food at Heyman’s car. Pissed off, the Samoans told Heyman to stop at a convenience store, bought up tons of food and proceeded to have a road war, throwing food, bottles, baseballs, and everything else. When they arrived at the Charlotte airport, the car was totaled and to this day, Paul reveals he’s still banned – 26 years later – from renting a car in Charlotte.
Heyman and Austin reverse roles and Paul start to ask Austin some questions of his own. He asks Austin what he thinks of Cena using the Springboard Stunner, and Austin said that now a bunch of them kicked out of it so it’s not very effective. He said it doesn’t bother him and he’s a Cena fan but he thinks it’s a high risk move due to slippery ropes.
Then the question everyone was waiting for came. “Would you like to fight Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 32?”
Austin said he’d kick Brock Lesnar’s ass and Heyman once again asked if he’s ready for The Rattlesnake vs The Beast in Texas. Austin said it’s a great place to settle the score, but he doesn’t want to take the momentum out of Lesnar and Heyman because if they roll in the AT&T Stadium with 100,000 fans, Lesnar is going to get his ass smoked.
Heyman turned his cell phone on to call Lesnar and a bunch of text messages were coming in, one of which was “fire all writers” which funny enough was sent by a current WWE creative writer.
Austin then cut a promo on Lesnar and Heyman and said he would open a can of whoop ass on Lesnar. “Can we make it happen? We can discuss it,” Austin said, and Heyman suggested they go talk to Vince McMahon now.
The WWE Hall of Famer said that if it does go down he has three words for him: Texas Death Match.
The interview ended with Austin and Heyman going against each other as a riled up Austin thanked Heyman for coming to the show.