May 31, 2005
The Big Show revels in ring success
By SCOTT ZERR - Edmonton Sun
He's the only guy around who needs to be scrunched into a stretch limousine with a shoehorn.
The Big Show, all seven feet and 470 pounds of him, is hardly normal, even in the realm of World Wrestling Entertainment, where everything, including the talented performers, is larger than life.
Show (real name Paul Wight) will be among the horde of WWE stars on hand when the Smackdown! cameras roll at Rexall Place tonight in Edmonton. Chatting yesterday on a drive around the city, it's nearly impossible to imagine this giant mass of humanity strolling into a store, grabbing a pair of pants and sportscoat and trying them on for size.
"My shoes are from Big Ed's Shoes in Las Vegas. They're 18EEEEEE -- basically my feet look like Fred Flintstone's," said Show. "Pant size, I'm a 50x36. I get my dress clothes from Mohan's in New York on 5th Avenue and I get my jeans from a place in Cleveland called Big Fellas. Jacket size -- I think I'm about a 70 and a 44 sleeve."
So now that the Show is looking sharp, it's time to head out on the wrestling road.
Uh, not so fast.
"I hate limos. I'm never comfortable in limos. And small commuter planes that we have to take sometimes. I've had three commuter flights this weekend and I'm sore because I basically chew on my knees the whole flight.
"There's nothing like checking into your hotel after a hard trip at two in the morning, dragging your bags to the end of the hall because they think you want more privacy when you'd really like to be close to the elevator, and walking into the room and there's two double beds. That's always the best."
Cramped planes and little-man showers have forced Show to lease, and soon buy, his own tour bus -- a snazzy, rock-star ride which began rolling down the highway from Grande Prairie into Edmonton at 4 a.m. with eight of his sidekicks onboard.
Next, it's time to fuel up -- the stomachs, that is.
"I eat a little bit all day long. I don't really have a sense of diet. Food for me is an emotional crutch -- when I'm tired I eat certain foods. One of my friends who shall remain nameless (Kurt Angle) is on my ass pretty hard about dieting and working out again. I messed my shoulder up in November but it's doing better now so I'm going to start getting back in the gym. He's got a whole regimen planned to help me drop some weight. If I get down to 420, 430, I'll be happy."
At 33, Show has plans on being in the ring for at least six or seven more years followed by a good long run behind the scenes for the WWE. Currently involved in a storyline feud with Matt Morgan and Carlito, the future could hold at least another shot at the WWE championship, which Show claimed previously along with the tag-team, hardcore and U.S. title belts.
"It's a great thing to be champion. It's respect from the fans, the office, your peers. Who doesn't want to be champion? Let's face it, we're in this business because we're all egomaniacs anyway. We love the attention, we love the crowds and everyone wants to be recognized, whether it's through a championship or something else, that you're the best of the best."
But there's more to wrestling these days than just pummelling an opponent. It's about entertainment and branching out just as Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin and John Cena have all done on the big screen. Big Show strutted his comedic stuff as Rock's wingman on Saturday Night Live and stole the show with a crisp, sarcastic wit. More of that could be in the works.
"Right now, we're looking for a comedy for myself and the other guy who shall remain nameless (Angle). Hopefully if that comes up we can score another gig on Saturday Night Live. It's really easy to be funny around the funniest people.
"Kurt's hysterical. He'd be the straight guy and I'd be the loose guy. I can do dry, I can do borderline Chris Farley crazy. I can do whatever. The main thing is Vince (WWE kingpin Vince McMahon) thinks I'm funny and that's good. Hopefully the rest of the world thinks I'm funny, too."