A pissed off Scott Steiner speaks out
TIM BAINES - Ottawa Sun
|Scott Steiner at the TNA Bound For Glory pay-per-view on October 18, 2009 in Irvine, California. Photo by R.P. Strickland, firstname.lastname@example.org
Scott Steiner may be gone from TNA.
But he's not forgotten. And he's got an axe or two to grind with the big boys.
Main-eventing on the indy scene, Steiner will tangle with Kevin Nash at a huge show in Thunder Bay, at the Fort William Gardens, on May 15.
And while he's got the normal bumps and bruises you could expect from a 47-year-old wrestler who's been at the top along the way, Big Poppa Pump says he's feeling OK.
While he's got a small construction company on the side and maintains homes in Michigan and Georgia, Steiner looks forward to appearing in Thunder Bay.
"My match preparation is the same, whether it's 70,000 people (the number of fans he says saw a show he did in North Korea) or 1,000," says Steiner. "Fans are paying money to see me, so it's up to me to perform."
While not too long ago, he had a deal with TNA, he's not exactly sure what went wrong. And he doesn't really want to talk about it.
What he doesn't like is the robotic mannerisms of many of wrestling's top performers.
"It pisses me off, the guys that they push to the forefront," he says. "They're basically puppets. It's an agent on a headset controlling everything."
While Steiner has enjoyed success as a singles competitor, it was as a tag team with brother Rick, that he really cemented his status. The team was innovative before its time. Feuds against teams like the Road Warriors and The Nasty Boys were ring classics.
Rick and Scott Steiner as WWF tag team champions.
"I was doing the Frankensteiner at 260 lbs., then," he says. "You see a bunch of lightweights doing it now, but it was innovative when I started doing it. We were doing a lot of moves off the top rope. Very different at the time.
"If there is a better tag team out there, I'd like to know who it was."
Steiner also bristles at suggestions that he was using steroids during his WWE heyday.
"I told (WWE) to have Triple H pick me up in a limo, then we could go test together," he says with a laugh. "They never asked again. I've never failed a drug test in my life.
"Their Wellness Policy is a political issue. A lot of people have addictions. And if they don't hve the willpower to control it, that's when it becomes a problem."
He looks back at his first time in WWE with some regrets.
"The timing was bad," he says. "Vince [McMahon] was going through a lawsuit and all his money was going to defend himself. I should have stayed in WCW. It was a huge mistake."
In 2007, Steiner was kicked in the throat by Apolo in Puerto Rico. The kick nearly ended his life.
"When I went to the hospital, they told me I had five hours to live," he says. "The doctors there don't make any money unless they perform surgery so I was skeptical. I looked in the mirror and said, 'I look OK.' I tried to leave the hospital.
"I found out from some doctors back home that I needed the operation. Yeah, they saved my life. It was a bad time for me. I had lost one of my my best friends a month earlier."
Looking back, he says the Big Poppa Pump creation was his own.
"I was a babyface for so long, it didn't make sense for me to look the same," he says. "So I changed my look and my interview style -- to be arrogant. People really got with it."
For more information on the Thunder Bay show, check out greatnorthwrestling.com. Nearly 1,000 tickets have already been sold. Other matches include: Hannibal vs. Vampiro in a hardcore match, with Terry Funk as guest referee; The Honky Tonk Man vs. Vinny Glyde; The Genius Lanny Poffo vs. Jeremy Prophet; and Candy Girl vs. Moonlight
April 20, 2006: Scott Steiner: On conquests and conquering
Tim Baines is the Sports Editor for the Ottawa Sun and can be emailed at Tim.email@example.com.