For the crossover of professional wrestling fans who are also podcast enthusiasts, Talk is Jericho is weekly required listening. Chris Jericho evolved himself from one of the best wrestlers in the world to one of the best interviewers. He’s able to get honest and truthful dialogues between him and some of the biggest names in sports entertainment.
This comes as no surprise as even to this day, Y2J is one of the greatest grapplers to ever hold a microphone. He’s been able to captivate audiences of tens of thousands at live shows and has been doing the same for millions of listeners since he started TIJ in December of 2013. He’s done hundreds of episodes with a ton of different guests and shows no signs of stopping.
Some interviewees have opened up about behind the scene workings of their matches, others told great stories of how their characters came to be. They’ve mused on heroes and friends they’ve lost, and on rivals they legitimately hated. No two interviews have been the same.
Here are 15 of the greatest secrets to ever be revealed on the hit podcast. Don’t be a Stupid Idiot, check out if your favorite Talk is Jericho moments MADE THE LIST!
15 The Best Vs. The Beast
While interviewing James Ellsworth after his release, Jericho and the Chinless Wonder began to talk about matches that could have been. Ellsworth brought up the notion that he was supposed to wrestle Heath Slater at 2016’s SummerSlam.
Y2J was able to easily one-up the master of the No Chin Music when he revealed that he was slated to wrestle Brock Lesnar at Payback 2017. According to Chris, he was told by Vince McMahon, “At WrestleMania, it’s you and Kevin Owens for the world title. You’re going to win the world title…and then you’ll lose it at the next pay-per-view to Brock.” Jericho obviously meant the Universal Championship, but that’s not a big deal. The match would have been huge for the Best in the World At What He Does. Sadly, it wasn’t as big as Goldberg’s epic return that took precedent over this dream match.
14 Kevin Owens And Sami Zayn Never Wanted To Be A Team
The pairing of Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn are a rare breed in that they not only make an incredible team, but they are also one of the best rivals the wrestling world has ever seen. The two met extremely early on in the careers while still in Canada and had their sights set on singles success. It wasn’t until they started wrestling in the states that they began wrestling in tag matches.
According to Sami, “You weren’t going to bring in just me. You weren’t just going to bring him. We’re driving anyways…our names just linked together very early on when we started punching our way out of Canada.” It was evident early on that the two had tremendous chemistry together.
13 Debuts Are Often Last Minute
You would think that if somebody was about to make their debut on the main roster they would have plenty of time to prepare. That couldn’t be farther from reality. For example, Baron Corbin had no clue that he was going to be wrestling in the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania, let alone winning it, until the day prior. At least Samoa Joe had a bit more of a warning. He had a full 48-hour notice.
At least these two were already in the system before they got their new marching orders AJ Styles had spent the majority of the past two years wrestling for Ring of Honor and New Japan. After signing his WWE contract, he was made aware that he would debut at the Royal Rumble only a few days before the event.
12 Austin Aries Purposely Botches Segments
One of the biggest questions Jericho had for Austin Aries pertained to the banana he was always holding. Aries told Jericho that he was simply eating the potassium-rich fruit when he was approached for an interview.
The production crew was perplexed and asked Aries to redo the segment without the banana. Knowing that his banana-full take would be cut to use the new one, Aries ended the interview in confusion fashion by saying, “excuse me, I have a bushel of bananas over there I’m going to eat.”
This wasn’t the only time Aries purposely tanked a segment to ensure he got what he wanted. While in TNA, Austin was shooting a backstage segment where he only wanted to be shot from the waist up, The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived revealed something below the belt that would never be allowed on TV. Needless to say, they kept the camera nice and tight on his torso and face.
11 Injury Returns Are Also Last Minute
One reason call-ups can be so last minute is the fact that storylines are always changing. Writers may have plans for wrestlers during one draft of the script, only for them to be completely absent from the next version. Ideas are also thrown into fluctuation when a superstar returns from injury.
One comeback in particular that made for last minute changes was Seth Rollins’. After going down with a torn ACL, MCL, and meniscus tear in his knee, the Kingslayer was forced to relinquish the WWE Championship. This injury also put his future with the company in jeopardy. Luckily, after six months of rehabilitation, Rollins was able to make his triumphant return at 2016’s Extreme Rules where he attacked Roman Reigns. For such a massive return, it’s crazy to think the Architect only had about a week’s notice.
10 Dusty Rhodes Influenced EVERYONE
It’s safe to say that Dusty Rhodes was one of the most impactful forces on all of NXT. The three-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion worked as the head writer and creative director for WWE’s developmental system during its infancy. He also famously taught promo classes for the up and coming talent. Seriously, who wouldn’t want the man behind “Hard Times” teaching them how to cut a promo?
Several wrestlers have been outspoken as to how important the American Dream was to their careers. Lana and Rusev have Dusty to thank for the two of them pairing up and eventually marrying. Bayley credits him for pushing talent further and further to reach the potentials. According to Sasha Banks, “He never gave up on me and he always believed in me… He was everybody’s grandpa.”
9 Eddie Guerrero Quit WCW On A Whim
While talking to Dean Malenko on an episode dedicated to the life of Eddie Guerrero, the Man of 1,000 Holds talked to Jericho about leaving WCW for WWE. Malenko was in the group the Revolution with Chris Benoit, Perry Saturn, and Shane Douglas and was getting ready to jump ship with Benoit and Saturn. They were sick and tired of not getting their fair shake in WCW and were looking for greener pastures. Eddie, who was friends with all three, hadn’t been approached with leaving.
According to Malenko, who was on his way to resign, “Eddie goes, ‘Where are you going?’ I go, ‘We’re quitting.’ And he goes, ‘I’ll come with you.’” This just proves that Guerrero had so much trust in his friends that he was willing to journey to the unknown with them. It proved to be the right call as Eddie would eventually win the WWE Championship.
8 Vince McMahon Wrote Jinder Mahal’s Promos
Have you ever wondered why Jinder Mahal’s promos as World Heavyweight Champion seemed extremely stilted and felt like generic 1980s anti-American spiel? That’s because they were written by Vince McMahon. Yes, the perpetually out of touch chairman of the WWE personally wrote each and every word coming out of Mahal’s mouth.
After scrapping a script that involved Mahal boasting that he was able to trounce five of the best superstars SmackDown had to offer, Vince felt that it needed some old-fashioned racial tension. Upon seeing the updated promo Modern Day Maharaja was none too pleased, believing his character should stay away from the archaic angry foreigner. Mahal quickly changed his tune when he heard the chorus of boos he received from the audience. Sadly, his character never grew beyond this and quickly became stale.
7 Bo Dallas: Conspiracy Theorist
Most people on this list opened up about the behind the scenes workings of the wrestling business, not Bo Dallas. The former NXT Champion opened up about the behind the scenes workings of the real world, or at least how he perceives them. On the July 28, 2017, episode of Talk is Jericho, Bo and Chris talked nonstop about Dallas’ honest to goodness conspiracy theory beliefs.
From wacky musings on the earth actually being hallow and run by a race of lizard people to some more dangerous statements about Sandy Hook and 9-11 both being government plots, Dallas even gets Jericho to admit that he believes the moon landing was staged.
False flags, decoys, government cover-ups, shadow organizations, these are all things in which The Miztourage member Bo-Lieves.
6 Shawn Michaels Got Blood Banned
Have you ever wondered where all of the blood in WWE has gone? Well, apparently you can blame Shawn Michaels and Chris Jericho for its absence. During what is one of the best runs in both of their careers, the two were in the middle of a heated rivalry and might have taken things a little too far.
During their epic two-part interview, Shawn explained that they wanted to take their feud to the next level. Michaels asked head honcho, Vince McMahon, if he could deliberately bleed. Vince eventually gave the go-ahead as long as the blood was minimal. Unfortunately, by the end of the match, HBK was bleeding like a stuck pig. This lead WWE to outright banning “blade jobs” and fining anyone who dares cut themselves open on purpose.
5 Kevin Owens Liked How He Won The Universal Championship
Wrestling fans the world over cried foul when Triple H pedigreed Seth Rollins on the August 29, 2016, episode of Raw, allowing Kevin Owens to pin CrossFit Jesus and pick up the WWE Universal Championship. Even hardcore fans of KO thought that the way he won the belt cheapened his victory and made him look weak. It was WWE once again trying to prove that Triple H is the strongest and baddest man on the planet.
Owens kind of agrees. Believing that was the point of his entire victory. While talking to his “former best friend,” Kevin talked about how it was the perfect way for a heel to win the championship. Underhanded and dirty. It also meant so much to him that Triple H, the man who brought him into the WWE, personally handed him the strap.
4 Cody Has A Bullet Club Suit Waiting For Dustin
Since Cody decided to bet on himself and walk away from a lucrative WWE contract, he has been on a roll. He won the ROH World Champion in Ring of Honor and has carved out a great career for himself wrestling for New Japan Pro Wrestling. The bulk of his success can be chalked up to him hitching his wagon to Bullet Club.
The American Nightmare’s run on the independents has been such a hit that he’s been in touch with his brother about joining him. He even revealed to Y2J that he commissioned a version of Dustin’s Goldust suit to be made in Bullet Club’s trademark black and white.
We can only imagine it looks a lot like Goldie’s awful Black Reign gimmick from TNA, hopefully with less tribal.
3 Bayley Was Asked If She Could Be A Heel
Before becoming one of the most mismanaged characters on the main roster, Bayley was a sensation down in NXT. Not only was she consistently putting on the best matches against opponents like Sasha Banks (seriously, their match at NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn brought a tear to my eye), but she was the best pure babyface the company had. Her enthusiasm for the sport and ability to connect with the crowd was astounding.
When hearing Bayley describes her super fan gimmick, Jericho posits that it sounds like it was meant to work as a villain. There appears to be some truth to this, as when the Hugger was ready to debut on TV, she was asked if she could work heel. Had this happened, it may have thrown the whole Women’s Revolution out of whack, as Bayley was the only Horsewoman to remain a fan favorite throughout their NXT run.
2 Squeaky Clean AJ Styles
One of the funniest things in all of Talk is Jericho is whenever Chris gets to do his impression of AJ Styles. He’s been able to bust this gem out a few times, mainly while talking to Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson, and once again with James Ellsworth.
The impressions are particularly hysterical because as the Good Brothers and Y2J revealed, Styles doesn’t curse. Opting to self-censor himself, the Phenomenal One opts to use works like “freakin’” in lieu of the actual swears. Ellsworth describes AJ as being, “Almost too nice to be in the wrestling business and be successful.” Styles even has a particular way of describing how a match is going to go down with an opponent. According to Jericho, when talking about grappling, AJ constantly uses the phrase, “Come here you!” It’s a must listen and hilarious impression.
1 Alpha Vs. Omega Wasn’t Supposed To Be No DQ
It’s safe to say that when Chris Jericho wrestled Kenny Omega that Wrestle Kingdom 12, it tore the house down. A lot of folks didn’t think Jericho still had what it took to go move for move with one of the greatest wrestler’s today. They were all proven wrong by the time the nearly 35-minute bout came to an end.
This was definitely helped by the fact Kenny and Chris were able to make it a No Disqualification match. The two already planned on going hard and pushing the limits of the rules of the squared circle and opted for the stipulation so the referee didn’t look incompetent. It gave them the reason to attack each other with tables and chairs right in front of the referee with no repercussions.