EY talks about his beginnings in wrestling and the brotherhood taking care of him, and him paying it back; you can read a few excerpts below:
Going forward from there, I was growing my brand and my name independently. I was wrestling all over North America, and had started sending tapes and DVDs and such to the WWE, and started to get tryouts. One of my very first times, I can remember being backstage and having Edge and Christian and Chris Jericho going out of their way to check on me throughout the day. I think that went beyond the brotherhood of wrestling, and probably had a lot to do with them all being Canadians.
They’re all parts of this big operation, flying all over the world doing house shows, and being on “Raw,” and they’ve got their matches for that night to worry about. Meanwhile, I’m there, and just being backstage at a WWE event for the first time is a big deal to me. I’m nervous, and I want to make the right impression. It’s this mixed-up thing where I was trying to be out of the way of all this crazy stuff going on, but in the way and noticed by the right people at the same time. So it’s this weird, mixed-emotions thing, and they were able to help guide me through it because to them, it’s just another day in a long line of crazy days.
I can remember one of my first ones, and it was in Chicago. I think I had been to a couple of shows, but hadn’t worked yet. I think this was one of the first times I worked on “Sunday Night Heat,” I think, but I can’t remember exactly. I ended up doing 20 or 30 “Sunday Night Heat” and “Velocity” shows. But I remember Edge and Christian, Lance Storm and Jericho going out of their way to make sure that everything was cool, that I was OK and knew where to be.
Part of it was, I think, beyond all those guys having a reputation of being good guys, was that they knew that I was from Canada and how much harder it was to get a spot because of that. Because in order for you to work regularly for WWE, the company had to sponsor you a visa, so you had to go above and beyond what the Americans getting tryouts were doing. Those guys knew my struggles, probably because they went through similar moments of their own, and when they passed that respect and concern along to me, it was another huge moment in my career where the brotherhood really took care of me.
WWE posted the following clip in advance of tonight’s #1 Contender’s battle royal on Smackdown Live. The clip features Eddie Guerrero’s historic win in the first-ever Smackdown Rumble back in 2004; Eddie would go on to win the WWE Championship at No Way Out the following month: