Thunder – January 31, 2001

Thunder
Date: January 31, 2001
Location: Baltimore Arena, Baltimore, Maryland
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Tony Schiavone

I’m running out of things to say about these intros. We have less than two months to go in this company and it’s most likely a skippable B-show with a main event between two midcarders who don’t have an interesting feud. Or maybe a tag match with two members of a heel stable against a semi-regular tag team. I would offer a suggestion of a great cruiserweight match with two people being elevated to new heights but that’s not the WCW way. Let’s get to it.

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RF Video Shoot Interview with Glacier

This was filmed in 2008

The interview was conducted by Rob Feinstein

It runs at one hour and fifty-four minutes long


Glacier starts the interview by saying he was a fan of wrestling growing up and would watch matches at the arena in Jacksonville, FL with his father and brother. He said Dusty was his hero growing up.

He started to do martial arts when he was 12 or 13 years old when he asked his dad if he could learn them after watching Bruce Lee movies. He talks about some of the types that he learned for a few minutes. Glacier also said that Eric Bischoff at one point pushed him to do some of the K1 stuff.

On how he got into wrestling, Glacier said a few of his college football teammates would go to the local wrestling tapings and one of his teammates, R.D. Swain, was with him and they got interviewed together and jokingly said their goals were to become the World Tag Team Champions. Local wrestler Fred Avery (a local wrestler who did a few jobs for WCW in the early 90’s) asked them if they wanted to become wrestlers but they declined at first but eventually went to train in his backyard. Glacier said the ring Avery had was slanted and painted orange then they were hooked after that.

He talks about the training and said that Avery was insistent that they learn amateur-style wrestling and after about 5 months of training they got to have their first match. Glacier laughs about taking tehebumps saying he was youthful then and had so much adrenaline and excitement that he did not really think about taking them at the time.

When asked about his first match, Glacier said that he was basically trained as a tag team with his partner and they wrestled a tag team called “The Smurfs” who were both about 5’5.

Glacier wrestled for an Independent in Georgia called “Peach State Wrestling.” He talks about being mentored by Ted Oates and Mr. Wrestling II. Glacier said that MWII would be at the arena 4 hours before the show with his mask on and would always maintain kayfabe at all times, even using masks on in the shower after the show.

Tommy Rich took a liking to him and one day called him up and said that he should be called “Sugar” Ray Lloyd as he worked for Southern States Wrestling and even got a few matches in WCW.

When asked if any guys tried to test him out in the ring, Glacier said that a few of them did and recalls one guy Steve Lawler tried and Glacier said he gave it back to him. Ted Allen also tested him out. Glacier said that at the time he was out of college and was clean-cut, looking like a total babyface. He didnt mind guys testing him out.

His first match in WCW was in 1989 against Butch Reed. He said Reed took care of him in the ring and wanted to see him again and thank him as Reed could have taken advantage of him then but did not. The next night he wrestled against the Great Muta as he dealt with Gary Hart, who put the match together. Glacier said that when he wrestled in WCW in the 90’s he learned that Muta could actually speak English. He recalls being perplexed as to what Muta was doing before the match (making a concoction to use for his mist) then said that Hart gave a good word to the office about him.

He is asked about Eddie Gilbert as Glacier said he always gave him advice. Glacier then said that people were generally nice to him and always gave advice as Glacier then talks about how most guys gave him help and figures they did as he is easy to get along with.

Glacier goes back to talk about how he graduated with a Masters Degree in Education and taught and coached football for several years before getting his big break in WCW in the mid 1990’s. Glacier tells everyone to pursue their dreams but do so realistically as you should get an education first.

On UWFI, Glacier said that most of it was a shoot, especially when you were on your feet compared to on the mat. He was thankful for the experience then talks about how the training was tough at the dojo. He wished UWFI would have lasted longer as they opened it up to everyone from Judo guys and boxers.

He talks about how he got back into WCW. Glacier said he joined Sting & Luger’s gym and ended up meeting Diamond Dallas Page through Disco Inferno. He said that Disco came up with the idea for the Coach Buzz Stern character, something Glacier did a few times at various indy shows. He then said he was with DDP and wanted to add some martial arts stuff to the Stern character. DDP had no idea Glacier studied martial arts and when he found out, he suggested that he tell Bischoff about that as he was interested in that. Glacier met Bischoff, who wanted to make sure he knew what he was doing, and after a few hours he was offered a contract.

His friend who worked in special effects met with Bischoff and after that they came up with the Glacier gimmick. At first, there were going to be four characters: Mortis, Wrath, and then something for Ernest Miller. Glacier said Bischoff would call these secret meetings that took place at Glacier’s friend’s studio. Bischoff wanted them to be video game characters that came to life and wanted heavyweight guys to wrestle like cruiserweights. Glacier said he would go to arcades with Kanyon and pick up on what games the kids were playing and how they would speak so they could use that for their characters.

Originally, Bischoff wanted the Glacier character to be called “Cryonic” but Glacier did not want that and they settled on having that as the name of his finisher. Glacier also said that “Stone Cold” was one of the ten names listed that they had thought of and laughs about that.

Glacier had no idea what to expect about the character but knew Bischoff wanted it to be a huge deal. He would work out the character and entrance at the Power Plant and said that for some reason it was not clicking but credits DDP for telling him to create the history of the character. He also said the plan was for his finisher was a big spinning hook kick but no one wanted to take the move.

He talks about the vignettes and how they had someone else to the voiceover as his own voice was really “Southern” at the time.

When asked why his debut was delayed, Glacier said that Bischoff did not like the vignettes but did not find out why, which Glacier said was in typical WCW fashion. He then talked about how Bischoff called him in his office as Midway, the video game company that created Mortal Kombat, was suing over the character. Glacier suggested they change the costume as Bischoff did not want that as it was expensive so Glacier said they switch his tights to differ from the Sub Zero character and got rid of the helmet, which he hated.

Glacier talks about having heat in the locker room as he was perceived as being Bischoff’s golden boy and learned that others in power hated the gimmick. Glacier said he never wanted any of that and just wanted to wrestle so he just kept quiet and stayed humble.

On his debut, he worked with Ray Traylor, who Glacier really respected. They worked on their match at the Power Plant before hand and thanks Traylor for making him look good and how he did him a favor. Glacier said he was scared to death out there as that character and talks about how he had then what was known as the Goldberg push. He also became friends with the referee, Brian Hillebrand, after that and thanks him a lot too.

When asked about how much his entrance cost, Glacier heard estimates ranging from $100,000-$500,000 from all sorts of guys and that Bischoff told him they had to fly three guys in each time he did the entrance. Glacier then talks about how you could not follow the entrance because it was so elaborate.

Originally, he was supposed to wrestle Mortis at Bash at the Beach in 1996 but was told at the last minute to not come down. He talks about how the nWo was the best and at the end the worst times in wrestling.

Glacier wishes that he was a heel at the beginning because the character was shoved down everyone’s throat and the kneejerk reaction is to reject that.

On wrestling Mortis, Glacier said that they always clicked in the ring. He then talks about how he got pissed at Meltzer for giving their match at Uncensored *** but how he said it should have been good as they had five months to put the match together but after watching the match later on, he does agree with the rating.

Glacier calls James Vandenberg (James Mitchell) one of the most talented guys in wrestling and how he never stumbled over a promo. Glacier says he was known as “Vandy” then.

He recalls a match he had against Wrath in which Terry Taylor told them not to do a superplex but Wrath told Glacier to suplex him and how he would take the heat. Well, they did the move and backstage Taylor berated them but Wrath never came forward and when Glacier realized that he came forward and got yelled at by Taylor.

When asked if Wrath and Mortis having martial arts training would have helped things out, Glacier said that they could have done some different things but doenst necessarily think it would have done better.

About Ernest Miller coming into WCW, he was disliked at first because he was so cocky and arrogant but after that they warmed up to him. He then talks about meeting Ernest initially at an underground first club in Atlanta that he was brought to by Bischoff that cost $100 to get in and had coolers of beer everywhere.

Glacier talks about losing to Buff Bagwell and how at the time everyone was losing to the nWo and didnt mind returning a favor and putting over someone. He didnt care for Bagwell not selling his kicks but didn’t see the writing on the wall at that point. Later on when he was not doing anything with the gimmick he saw the writing on the wall as when you are not relating to the fans you become stale.

On when he trashed the gimmick, Glacier said he was told to do so and promised they had better plans for him. He then said he couldnt believe he was naive enough to think that would happen.

About the Coach Buzz Stern character, he said he took from various coaches he had in his life. He wished he had a chance to run with the character a bit. He then said that he got released and got a meeting with Bischoff after that to show him some of the clips he shot with Luther Biggs in his coach character and gor rehired after that for a few hundred bucks less a week. Glacier tells young guys to not sit around and wait for the office to come up with something for you and be proactive.

He is asked about some of the major players in WCW. Glacier liked Hulk Hogan, saying he was nice to him. He always respected Bret Hart for hanging out with the boys in the locker room instead of using private rooms like Kevin Nash and Scott Hall. He does say that he got to know Kevin since leaving WCW and likes him a lot. He also likes Hall too.

Glacier got hurt wrestling Goldberg and had to get helped to the back then got operated on a few days later. He said in wrestling you are going to get hurt and that it was not Goldberg’s fault that it happened.

After leaving WCW, he worked for Dusty Rhodes in Turnbuckle Championship Wrestling. He was the champion and wrestled against Barry Windham, who was sick and wanted Glacier to call the match in the ring. He loved how he got to wrestle guys like Larry Zbyzsko and Dave Taylor.

He went back to WCW after asking Terry Taylor what he had to do in order to get a spot on the roster again. Taylor asked him if he could be comedic with the Glacier character and actually think he was a superhero. Glacier said he paid for his own costume and went to the booking room before the show and hid in the closet, per the advice of Taylor. About ten minutes into the meeting, Taylor played a cassette of Glacier’s music and then Glacier busted out of the door and cut a promo in character about how he was a superhero. He said that Ed Ferrara laughed so hard that he fell out of his chair and then when he promo was finished he left the room and went home. He was rehired shortly after that. Glacier then talks about how he also had a gimmick of being Lance Storm’s older brother, as they look alike, but Vince Russo did not like the idea.

Glacier talks about the WWF showing interest and at the advice of Taylor, cut a promo as Buzz Stern introducing Glacier. Kevin Kelly called him up and asked who introduced him and found out it was him. Vince McMahon got wind that his dad was a state trooper and had an idea for him to be that as a character but Glacier said the money wasnt that great as they were the only game in town and he wanted a normal life at the time so he passed.

After wrestling he went back to teaching and helped Dusty run the wrestling school at Turnbuckle Wrestling.

He became an agent in TNA when Dusty was the head booker. At the time, Glacier was in Florida working on the Indiana Jones stunt show at Universal but got hurt. He liked the experience there.

On working as a stuntman, he talks about his first role was on “No Holds Barred” and recently got a role on “Burn Notice.” He hopes to break into acting soon.

When asked about Chris Benoit, Glacier said he was close to him as was all the midcard WCW guys were at the time. He said its sad that all people will remember him for is the murder/suicide because he gave so much back to the wrestling business. He does believe that head trauma was a major factor in the tragedy and talks about how wrestlers can get into the mindset that they are indestructible athletes and if they are hurt they have to get better before the next match and believes that Benoit was one of those guys.

He tells a road story about when he was in WCW. He says that they finished World War 3 and it was snowing like crazy. He was with Kidman, Chris Jericho, Kanyon, and Sick Boy. James Vandenberg was with them but went to bed early. Jericho came up with an idea to scare Vanderberg, who was passed out drunk. They came into the room with huge snowballs and planned on Kanyon turning on the light so he knew who was doing it but the light never worked and they hit him so Vandenberg took the beer bottles and started throwing them. Glacier said that Vanderberg took everything in stride and never let things bother him. Vandenberg then brushed the snow off of the bed and went back to sleep.

Final Thoughts: I really liked this interview. The recap might not read like the most interesting thing in the world but Glacier came off as a great guy with a good head on his shoulders. He never had a bad word to say about anyone. He came across as a guy who loved everything he did and tries to make the best out of every situation.

He did express some frustration with how WCW was run at the time but was always proactive regarding his career, which is something I respect. He also had some good insight into the business as well.

I thought it was a fine interview but unless you are a fan of Glacier or interested in all things mid-90’s WCW (well, this is the place for that) then you would enjoy this a lot. You do learn a lot about how the character was created here, which was cool.

Next week I will be reviewing the Matt Morgan shoot interview as he talks about being on “Tough Enough” to his times in the WWE and TNA and about his drug addiction as well.

You can purchase the DVD of this shoot for $20 by clicking on the link below

http://www.rfvideo.com/shootwithglacier.aspx