Today The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling welcomes a former NWA World Champion and the man with “hands of stone” as “Rugged” Ronnie Garvin comes aboard for episode #262. Detailing a timeless career that spanned decades and covered all the major territories of the golden era of professional wrestling, Garvin reflects on a lifetime of memories and some of his greatest moments from his wrestling career.
Being booked to become NWA World Heavyweight Champion:
“It was a nice big paycheck. That was my bottom line. Everything else did not excite me and I tell that being honest and yes I did accomplish something and I can’t say I didn’t do it but my main goal was to get to the top. The whole thing and the object was money. How much money do I make a year, how much money do I put towards my retirement and I was planning everything out in my life and a lot of people didn’t do that. I didn’t go to the bars drinking and I wasn’t a partier and I didn’t have all the women in the world like Ric Flair, I didn’t ride in the limos and I told people if you see me in a limo that I am driving it. I’ll be up in the front with the guy in the little hat driving the limo. Both of my feet are on the ground and I never dreamed it and the only dreams I had were to be successful. I am a regular guy and I put my pants on one leg at a time. I always thank the fans because without them we wouldn’t have anything.”
Being the complete opposite of Ric Flair and did they get along:
“I have never seen him since 1987. I don’t like being in that kind of world. It is bullsh*t. But to each his own. It is his life and you live it the way you want to. But I don’t respect it because to me you are a goof. When you blow your money away and you wind up down the road broke and if you look in sports and entertainment you see folks that had everything and the last part of their life is just misery.”
“Why go through that at the end of your life and go through that financially. I’ve heard all kinds of stories that I don’t know are true or not but I wish him the best and he’s never done anything to me but I respect people that are down to earth, people that are accomplishing things without having to brag about all of their feats in the world, how many women they slept with, how many drinks I can have in one night and driving the Mercedes and taking limos. I got in the ring with him, I never sat a table and had a meal with him or met him in a bar or had a long conversation or even travel with him. I never did that.”
Did he feel any different becoming World Champion:
“Once I had it I really didn’t care. To be the World’s Champion was no life for a guy. If you look at a guy like Jack Brisco for example I think he quit and just plain didn’t want it. I remember him telling me that he was gone and never was home and was in Japan one day and in California the next but I guess Flair loved that life..I would imagine. He’s been the champion many many times and I’d think a lot of guys probably didn’t want it and that is why he had it so much.”
The difference in his experience working for the WWF:
“I had never wrestled for WWE (WWF at the time). I had almost went one time when Vince Sr. was the promoter but for some reason I never went. It was something at the end there that the way I got there it was Pat Patterson called me after I was out of the NWA and I had come back from Puerto Rico and it was because I was in the states that I got to go there but I wasn’t too thrilled about it because I knew I didn’t fit there. The Macho Man fit there with all his robes and the fancy stuff and I had a different style of wrestling because being on the mic was not the best thing for me because I was brought up on when the bell rings that is the action. All the entrances and the flashy stuff it didn’t matter because if the people want to see a fight than they’ll see a fight. If you want to see me dance than you are in the wrong place because I don’t do that (laughing). I went there and tried it out and I had my own airplane at the time and that helped. I used to fly myself everywhere and that extended my career for another four or five years.”
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