A little less (Jack) Swagger?
TIM BAINES - Ottawa Sun
|World champion Jack Swagger at the Fatal 4-Way pay-per-view on June 20, 2010 in Long Island, NY, at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Photo by Mike Mastrandrea
Maybe Jake Hager is losing some of that swagger that turns into pure electricity each time he steps into the ring as Jack Swagger.
Losing a world championship belt can do that to you (Rey Mysterio won the title at Sunday’s Fatal 4-Way pay-per-view, pinning Swagger after a 619).
But even as an ex-champ, you can still count on Swagger to deliver the goods. And that means ripping on the fans night after night.
“I don’t want to go out there and tell them they’re a bunch of redneck hillbillies,” says Swagger. “You’ve got to be more creative. Audiences are so much more sophisticated. If I come out and they’re cheering me, I have to do everything I can to turn that around. I was in Buffalo and I talked about Terrell Owens. I really enjoy it. There’s something about having the whole place boo you.”
Swagger certainly has a right to be proud of his accomplishments. He was a two-sport star at the University of Oklahoma (football and wrestling) — a natural athlete.
So how far removed from his real-life persona is the Swagger character?
“I feel pretty natural out there,” he says. “I’m more laid-back in real life. But once the lights come on and I walk through the curtain, the audience really fuels me, makes me even more obnoxious.”
That doesn’t mean Swagger will never be a “face,” a good guy.
“Swagger is such a great name. You never know, it could turn into a good-guy thing,” he says.
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Jack Swagger bio and story archive
Tim Baines is the Sports Editor for the Ottawa Sun and can be emailed at Tim.firstname.lastname@example.org.