Ross on John Cena: “I was shocked to see John (at the Smackdown tapings on Tuesday), who had just had neck surgery earlier in the day, up and around much less dropping by the ancient Igloo to simply say hello to ‘the boys.’
“As I understand it, a disc in Cena’s neck herniated and a fragment stuck into his spinal cord causing obvious discomfort and numbness down his right arm and into his hand. Dr. Joseph Maroon, a renowned Neurosurgeon and Professor of Neurosurgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and the team neurosurgeon for the Pittsburgh Steelers expertly handled the Cena’s repair. This was a procedure that Dr. Maroon called an ’emergency surgery’…
“Cena’s surgery wasn’t as drastic or invasive as what some other WWE Superstar’s have endured and one thing that helped was the quick response time of Cena himself. If John had ignored the symptoms this matter would have ended up an entire different story without the quick and positive results of Tuesday.”
The following interview took place on Between The Ropes on August 26, 2008:
Between The Ropes with Chris Jericho
The interview started out with Chris being asked about his feud with Shawn Michaels. “I remember when I was a kid watching wrestling I think Jake the Snake and Rick Rude had an angle for a whole year, it literally lasted a year. Nowadays, if you can go two months with somebody it’s like ‘oh my gosh, we got a lot out of that one.’ This one has been six months and going with no signs of slowing down. It’s hotter now than it ever has beenâ<80>¦Definitely it’s one of the best, if not this best, angle I’ve ever been involved with in my entire career.” Chris also credited his reinvention of the Chris Jericho character as one of the reasons that the angle has yet to slow down.
On top of his work with WWE Chris discussed his projects outside the ring. Regarding his band Fozzy Chris said that he’s working on lyrics for his next album, though neither he nor the rest of the band have time to actually produce it right now. Chris explained that he sees this as a positive since it gives him time to figure out the most effective way to release the album given the ever changing music business.
Chris was then asked whether he finds the politics to be worse in music or wrestling. He said the politics in music were worse for him because he doesn’t always know who to talk to, whereas in wrestling he can just go straight to the boss and discuss his issues.
After some talk about the video game Guitar Hero the topic shifted back to his WWE work, specifically the recent evolution of his character. Chris said that he knew when he returned he wanted to do something different, but he wasn’t exactly sure what at first. He then talked about the fans taking a little while to get used to the new Jericho, who both looked and acted a bit differently, likening it to the reaction that Metallica got from its fans after cutting their hair for the album Load.
“It takes a while for people to get used to a new look, a new image, and a new mindset. When they were getting used to it I changed it up into something completely new and different and not playing the old Y2J character that was very sarcastic and over the top. I wanted to take it all the way down to where if I talk slow and whisper almost the fans are going to have to shut up and listen to what I have to say because I’m in control. I’m in control every night I go into that ring, every night I say something, do something, or wrestle. I’m the one that calls the shots not the fans.”
Jericho also specifically discussed one of the most obvious visual evolutions of his character, his wearing of short tights. “It’s the first time I’ve ever worn short tights in 18 years. It’s great, I love it because everyone is like ‘what are you doing? Why are you wearing short tights?” Chris said that the reason he always wore long tights was because two of his favorites, Shawn Michaels and Owen Hart, wore long tights, so he started doing it and never changed. Chris then recounted this backstage reaction to the new short tights “I think it was Bruce Pritchard, or it might have even been Vince (McMahon), asked me ‘why have you been covering those legs for so long?’ It’s a very homoerotic sport, two half no guys greased up and touching each other.”
Chris then explained how some of his acting studies have helped his character’s recent evolution. “I studied acting while I was gone and its come in so handy and made me so much more relevant now as a performer because I’m playing a character more than I ever have. I’m definitely an actor playing the part of Chris Jericho when I’m out there. It adds so much to the layering and the depth of the mindsets that I haveâ<80>¦I honestly feel that this is the best I’ve ever been on the mic and in the ring as well.”
The interview concluded with Jericho hyping his next book which he is currently working on and will come out next October. He said that the subject matter will revolve around what it was like achieving his dream, whether it was worth it, and how he fought to continue living it out.
To listen to the entire Chris Jericho interview, including Chris talking about his new reality show and what he considers his favorite storylines in his career, as well as the entire August 26 edition of Between The Ropes in streaming audio, visit the show online at http://www.BetweenTheRopes.com. In addition to listening to this week’s show you can become a site member and access hundreds of previous Between The Ropes shows and interviews. Join us for Between The Ropes for two hours every Tuesday night at 6:00pm ET on ESPN Florida AM 1080 and AM 1060 and worldwide on BetweenTheRopes.com.