February 25, 2011
Jericho wrestling's renaissance man
By TIM BAINES - Ottawa Sun
Chris Jericho laughs as he is asked whether he'll be appearing on Dancing with the Stars.
"Yeah, at the same time I heard that, they said I was going to be the new singer of Velvet Revolver. Maybe I could do Dancing with the Stars to Velvet Revolver music," he says. "I'm still waiting for those calls."
Jericho is on another leave from the wrestling ring, a little R and R -- Rock and Roll. He's back to fronting his metal band Fozzy, with big plans for the summer. He's also out on the road, plugging his hugely successful second book -- Undisputed: How to Become the World Champion in 1,372 Easy Steps.
The book is getting rave reviews, it's No. 13 on The New York Times bestseller list and No. 4 in the UK.
Jericho dishes on others, and isn't afraid to poke fun at himself.
"I write very honestly," he says. "People can relate to what I say about myself. I like to use myself as a foil. I know I'm not going to sue myself."
Some of the inner mechanisms of the "real" WWE are highlights of the book, particularly insight into owner Vince McMahon.
"It's a character study of both of us," says Jericho. "The bottom line is Vince saw something in me that I wasn't giving him. It's not like he's a son of a bitch or asshole.
"In the end, my character became one of the best WWE has had."
It is a character that has morphed, adapting with the times.
"I didn't want to be the Hulk Hogan or Ricky Steamboat of wrestling," he says. "I wanted to be the Paul Stanley or David Lee Roth -- the showman. Being a frontman of a big party was how I wanted to do it."
Jericho says it's obvious Triple H is becoming the WWE kingpin.
"He's going to take over the company," says Jericho. "This isn't the year 2000 anymore where he was trying to bury me. Nobody wants to be Bruce Hart, where he takes over Stampede Wrestling and goes out of business two years later after his father had it for 40 years."
"We stole the show," says Jericho. "Putting on a match like that goes far and above winning a title. The office decides who wins a title. But we put the whole thing together."
Jericho says there's no set time when he will return to wrestling.
"It could be two days down the road," he says. "I'm still a huge fan of the business. When it's time to go back, I'll go back."
As for WWE's PG-13 product, Jericho says it doesn't really affect what he does.
"I think I did better in the PG-13 environment," he says. "It's easier to get pops when you say, 'ass.' they're going 'tee-hee-hee, he said a swear word.'
"I wasn't really doing any swearing. I just go with the flow. If I have to do an X-rated environment, I'll do that. And if it's PG, I'll do that."
Author ... musician ... wrestler ... as an entertainer, Jericho has made a difference. And he doesn't need a championship belt to validate that, either.
Tim Baines is the Sports Editor for the Ottawa Sun and can be emailed at Tim.email@example.com.