RF Video Shoot Interview with Lance Storm, Volume 1

This was filmed in July 1999

The interview was conducted by Rob Feinstein

It runs for one hour and fifty-nine minutes long

 

Storm said he got started in wrestling after being unhappy in college, where he was playing volleyball so he thought about giving wrestling a try. He talks about his dad not letting him watch wrestling as a kid because it was “fake shit” so he got into it later on as a kid.

 

He was trained by the Hart Family and said Keith Hart was the member of the family most involved with the school. His debut match was against Chris Jericho, who got Storm work in Calgary and got about $50 per week.

 

He got a connection for FMW through a guy named Fritz Young, who Storm hates as he got screwed out of pay. He did not want to go back as he wanted to be a singles wrestler and thought it would be for the best.

 

Storm wound up in Smoky Mountain Wresting with Jericho after Storm left his barber a tape to give to Tokyo Joe, who called Otto Wanz and got a job in Europe. He also sent a tape to Jim Cornette, who saw it several months later and called up PJ Walker (Justin Credible) and asked for Storm’s number. Storm got the message in Germany and flew to the U.S. and had a date set to come down but tore part of his quad and was out of action for ten weeks. Cornette also saw a tape of Jericho and wanted to know if they could tag with each other. Jericho agreed as long as Storm was okay with it as Storm thought they would be set with Cornette as a team and feud with the Heavenly Bodies.

 

 

He loved dealing with Cornette and liked working with him but Cornette was upset that Jericho was still working in Mexico and Japan, using that style in SMW with guys who were not able to keep up with that style.

 

On Jericho hurting himself, Storm said he landed on his head trying a shooting star press a few nights prior but was somehow not injured. He was going to try the move again the next night but at the show the ring truck broke down and the show was cancelled. At the “Night of Legends” show, Jericho asked Cornette if it was okay to try out some moves in the ring as Cornette said it was fine as long as he did not get hurt. Jericho tried the shooting star press again and landed on his back as he did not make the full rotation. Jericho then rolled out and went outside where Storm followed and saw that his arm was messed up. Storm had his fiance take him to the hospital where he was diagnosed with a broken arm. Jericho asked Storm’s fiance to tell Cornette he was going to be there and would still work but the hospital would not let him leave as he was scheduled for surgery the next morning. Jericho finally left and took a cab to the arena then wanted to do a double tope to the floor spot but Storm talked him out of that. Storm puts over Jericho for doing work in that match. He talks about Jericho being covered in blood and that Cornette was pissed as he wanted to do a post-match interview as Jericho’s hair was soaked in blood. Storm thinks he bled that much due to the fact he had aspirin at the hospital and not the fact he bladed with his left hand, something Dave Meltzer suggested in the “Wrestling Observer Newsletter.”

 

Storm said the Heavenly Bodies were great workers but thought they did not get along well as Jimmy Del Ray was much more wild and outgoing.

 

Jericho left SMW after getting hurt as he missed a few weeks of TV tapings and was going to go back to Mexico and Japan as Cornette had money problems due to the fact Rick Rubin pulled out financially because he could no longer use it as a tax write off. Storm said that Cornette owed him about $2,500 and knew he could not afford that and they worked out a sum as Storm notes Cornette will do anything he can to pay someone he owes.

 

He started to work back in the Canadian Independent scene and would go over to Europe. Jericho got him into Japan for the WAR Promotion where he met the Ultimo Dragon, who loved working with him because everyone else on the tour worked stiff and he did not.

 

Storm talks up Tenryu as a boss and said he is a great guy. He adds that Tenryu has been the foreigner before in wrestling and knows what its like to be treated like shit so he looked out for him.

 

They go back to Smoky Mountain as Storm said he later found out from Tracy Smothers that the Rock n’ Roll Express tried to hold them down. Storm said Cornette wanted them to use their double dropkick from the top rope finish as Storm was even weary of that at the time as the RnR had been using a double dropkick for years and they would feel threatened by a younger team doing a flashier version of that move. Storm said they were in the opening match throughout their run.

 

When asked about the difference between Cornette and Paul Heyman, Storm laughs and says they hate each other but have the same personalities. He then adds Cornette is much more likely to return your calls.

 

He talks about winning at the New Japan Pro Wrestling Skydiving J show teaming with Yuji Yasuraoka against Norio Honaga & El Samurai. He thinks Honaga was upset about losing and thought he would not catch him on his dive so he did not try the move. His favorite worked there at that time was Shinjiro Otani. Storm liked working in Japan and said if you let them beat you they will but if you hold your ground they are cool.

 

At one point he was going to work in Mexico but the economy tanked and they could not afford to bring in more people.

 

Storm mentions that Ultimo Dragon’s arm got screwed up after surgery by the WCW doctor, who Jericho told him had screwed up a few other guys with surgery.

 

On getting into ECW, Storm said he was going to ask Jericho to put in a word but Jericho told him to call Heyman himself as Heyman knows his work. Storm said he called and six months later, Gabe Sapolsky called him at 11pm and said Heyman wanted to use him. He called back and asked if he could come in tomorrow as Storm told him originally he was leaving for Japan and if he did not come in now it would be another month. Heyman called him at 2am to say he was on a 6am flight and worked the show in a match against Balls Mahoney at the ECW Arena.

 

He talks about the Barely Legal PPV in 1997 and how he was jet-lagged from Japan and it took about 19 hours to get to the hotel due to the airlines messing up and wrestled against Rob Van Dam instead of Chris Candido, who hurt his shoulder. Storm thinks RVD was pissed off at the company at the time and gave a half-assed effort as a result then adds how he was exhausted himself and it made for a bad match. Storm said he flew from Calgary to Philadelphia and how its not that bad as the long flight means you can sleep on the plane.

 

Storm talks about riding with Jerry Lynn and Al Snow as they all got up early and went to the gym. He said that Lynn is easy to work with.

 

He says the WWF has not contacted him yet and prefers to stay in ECW at the moment because he can get the opportunity to show what he can do here instead of going into WCW and have his ceiling be a “midcarder.” He talks about going to Heyman with ideas for other people too then said he suggested he feud with Taz, who also liked the idea but Heyman said it was too soon to happen. Storm said he came up with the Simon Diamond, Chris Chetti, and DeVito stuff was his idea as he thought a partner to play “Simon Says” with Diamond would really get over.

 

Storm thinks Shane Douglas left due to being owed money and heard he was difficult to deal with too but denies first-hand knowledge of this. Storm also thinks Shane thought with the ECW Title, he had the leverage when it came to money but once he lost that he became worried and more difficult to deal with. Storm personally had positive dealings with Douglas himself.

 

He said that ever since Tammy Sytch came to ECW it was the downfall of Chris Candido. Storm said she rode him hard and he went from a hard worker and showing up on time to someone who was always late and had excuses for everything. Storm hopes he gets his act together and comes back because he is a great talent.

 

Storm said he has never taken steroids even though no one believes him. He talks about never smoking and only got drunk twice, one time it was in Europe when guys were upset he did not go out so when he did they fed him shots, wine, and beers. He said that Dave Taylor got the most drunk and was carried to the van by Fit Finlay and himself. The second time he drank was at a WAR show and Jericho was completely hammered and was singing karaoke.

 

He is asked about the letter he wrote to the “Wrestling Observer Newsletter” about drugs and steroids. Storm also talks about guys pressuring him to cheat on his wife while on the road as he recalls Dave Taylor telling him that his wife was probably cheating on him while he was gone to justify why he should. He then talks about guys on somas and how they were the “in” drug of choice in the WWF. Storm also says you do not have to use drugs and abuse painkillers and you can work smarter, such as not taking powerbombs off of the top rope if you have back pain. He talks about guys hopped up on pills wrestling and not feeling the pain so they take all sorts of crazy moves then the pills wear off and they are in a lot more pain than before.

 

Storm talks about not wanting to work with guys who are stiff then mentions fans cheering for only blood and violence despite the fact some of those guys have no clue how to wrestle a match. He talks about wrestling Jerry Lynn recently and the fans chanted “we want blood” as Storm jokes the fans should “gig” themselves if they want to see blood that badly as he is not going to cut himself.

 

He goes into how the young boys in Japan are probably better workers than some of the top guys in ECW due to how hard they train and talks about Onita ushering in the blood and violence in wrestling because his knees were shot and knew with his charisma he can bleed buckets and sell to get over but then it gets to a certain point where you are unable to top yourself.

 

On pairing him up with Dawn Marie, Storm thinks he was originally going to be paired with Marlena for one night to try and put Tammy over but it fell through. She likes her as a person and says she helped her out with his personality and wanted to keep her around.

 

Storm talks about how ECW needs some strong heels at the moment and a babyface tag team. He wants to bring in Johnny Smith as a heel.

 

He now talks about Heyman and others misinterpreting his heel character as they think he is anti-American how Bret Hart was in 1997 WWF but that he never badmouths the USA during his promos, just talks up how Calgary is great.

 

Storm credits Jerry Morrell and Fit Finlay for helping him out the most. He then talks about how he would give up his job today if he could get on with “the pencil” as he loves the idea of getting over the future.

 

On the business, Storm said its all about advertising now as that is where the money comes from and heard they might only do one house show per week as they have TV on Monday, Thursday, and Sunday and its tougher to get people to go to house shows.

 

Storm talks about guys without any experience walking off the streets getting six-figure contracts and tying up guys by signing up everyone like WCW is killing the business. He said Jericho told him Goldberg was a great guy but that WCW would ruin him by giving him everything so quickly, causing him to get a massive ego, and that WCW would sign guys and waste at home, letting their contracts run out so they would have no leverage when it ended.

 

Final Thoughts: Overall, a really good interview. The last 45 minutes or so were excellent. Storm was really candid here as he talked about the company he worked for and did not pull any punches when it came to his feelings on drugs, violence, and anything else.

Its interesting to hear his journey to how he got to ECW and that Jericho really helped him out a ton during his career. He started out just after the Territory system went away and that period of time was interesting for those starting out with limited places to work in America.

Storm did a follow up shoot several years later but I would still recommend this to others. He gives a lot of insight here and it an easy listen.

 

You can purchase the DVD, currently on sale at RFVideo for $10.50 or get a digital download for $7.99

 

Here is my schedule for the next several days:

Friday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 10/21/89

Sunday: Mid-South Wrestling 8/5/82

Sunday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 10/22/89

Monday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 10/28/89

Tuesday: WWF Madison Square Garden 10/28/89

Wednesday: wXw 2017 16 Carat Gold, Night Three

Thursday: Shoot Interview TBD