Pro Wrestling Talk Radio recently conducted an interview with 3-time WCW World Champion Diamond Dallas Page which can be heard in full at this link.
The following are some interview excerpts:
How his wrestling career almost ended before it started:
“I had three matches in 1978, but it just didn’t work out for me. My knee was hurt and I got my opportunity to run a rock-and-roll bar. It was so much fun to focus in on the booze, the broads and the party… and before I knew it years had passed by and the 80’s wrestling blew up and I didn’t pay my dues to be around there and it pissed me off so much that I dropped the ball and lost sight of the big goal. I completely stopped watching wrestling.”
DDP praises Daniel Bryan:
“People could relate to the ‘hardest working guy in professional wrestling’. They didn’t see me show up like Goldberg did, beating everyone in his path; they saw me get my ass whooped. Then I got a little bit of shine, and got my ass whooped (again).
You can look at every single star that the WWE has… they may not have kicked ass the whole time, but when they started they started out with a win, with a push, with ‘Let’s see if we can get the machine behind this person’. That’s not how it was for me. Nobody believed in me.
It was a lot like Daniel Bryan. There’s a guy who has risen to the heights that I never even got to. Everything has worked out for him perfectly, even when it looked like everybody was going to f*ck him, it worked out really well. He’s one of the real nicest guys on the planet, never mind the business.
If it comes easy to you, you appreciate nothing…Looking back to a guy like Daniel Bryan, I was there in Miami when the Great White (Sheamus) ate him alive with that Brogue Kick and took the world title from him in (18 seconds)… and it got him more over that night than if he would’ve beat him. It made a monster impact.
There’s ‘better than’, there’s ‘less than’, and there’s ‘different than’; Daniel Bryan is absolutely ‘different than’, and so is Diamond Dallas Page.”
How Vince McMahon created backstage tension during the Invasion by conditioning the WWF roster to believe WCW wrestlers were the enemy:
“'They (WCW wrestlers) want to prevent you from providing for your family. Eric Bischoff wants to shut your job down and take your dinner off your table…' that’s how Vince got his troops to rally around him. There was a point in time where it really looked like we were going to shut them down. There was a time when Vince was kicking the water coolers out. It was not a good time… It was a time when you walked (in the locker room) and you could feel the heat…I didn’t feel it until a couple of weeks after I was there, then I realized (the WWF roster still looked at us at the enemy).
DDP comments on the Invasion angle:
“It was pretty obvious that (the Invasion angle) was just to prove a point, because you don’t do an invasion angle without the top guys… you do it like Eric Bischoff did it when we had two guys show up and they killed everyone. That’s how you make an impact, and that’s obviously not what happened.”
Differences between the Monday Night War era and today:
“What’s different about back then and today is today they’re scripted; my generation made up our own sh*t. We stayed within what we were told is the outline, and that’s way easier to do than to have someone give you the words and you have to live them… I’ve got a lot of respect for some of these young kids who can go out there and cut some of these promos that are long as sh*t. (The creative team) may have changed the dialogue 10 minutes before they went out there… they’re pretty talented.”
Comments on The Rock:
“The reason why John Cena’s been ‘THE man’ all this time: that guy can talk! And he can go with the best of them. There was a point where he was facing Rock, and Rock was writing stuff down on his arms. He’s famous for that, and John exposed him.
The Rock is, without question, one of the greatest talkers ever in our business. But… The Rock took everything from everybody, from ‘The People’s Champ’, to ‘The Great One’, to ‘Bring It’”.
DDP also gives his thought on losing the WCW World Championship to David Arquette, how the “Diamond Dallas Page” gimmick was created while drinking in a bar, Jake “The Snake” Roberts influencing his career, the lessons he learned from being “screwed” by his run in WWE, DDP Yoga, and more.