BAM BAM BIGELOW: I started with Paul E. I got Paul E his first job.
BAM BAM: In Memphis, uh, you know, back in ’86, and Paul E got me my first gig at Studio 54.
INTERVIEWER: Right, they were doing it for Ric Flair, right?
BAM BAM: Ric Flair, Dusty Rhodes, you know, and I wrestled in Studio 54 with Otis Day and the Knights.
INTERVIEWER: You were the big attraction…
BAM BAM: That’s right.
INTERVIEWER: The debut of Bam Bam Bigelow.
BAM BAM: Yeah.
BAM BAM: (referencing Otis Day) Otis, my man.
***INTERVIEWER and BAM BAM SHARE A COMFORTABLE LAUGH***
BAM BAM: You know, but Paul E, um, Paul E create- Paul E’s one of the boys, and, and sometimes he has to draw the line to be the boss, which is a business, business decision. And business has to come first, otherwise we’ll all be out of a job. But he creates an atmosphere where when you go to work, you’re happy.
NOTE: I made the decision to eliminate the period in Paul E. for Bam Bam’s quote. It doesn’t look right without the last name Dangerously after it. It’s especially jarring in the middle of a sentence.
Click HERE for source
INTERVIEWER: What do you think of Paul Heyman?
SABU: Think of who?
INTERVIEWER: Paul Heyman.
***INTERVIEWER and SABU SHARE AN AWKWARD LAUGH***
SABU: Uh, I don’t think that much of him. Uh, I had my bad blood with him for years, but now we’re okay. But I still don’t trust him, and I still don’t like him that much. You know, he was, uh, he was a bastard.
***INTERVIEWER and SABU SHARE ANOTHER AWKWARD LAUGH***
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VADER: I don’t know Paul that well, I really don’t.
INTERVIEWER: Was he well-liked, uh, with his tenure in WCW by the guys?
VADER: I know, the only thing I could say about Paul was that, uh, when I, uh, left the WCW, um, he was on the phone, and he had big plans for Vader coming to ECW and I was intrigued. I mean, I was intrigued. He is a good salesman, and he had me sold on the monster he could’ve created, and what he could’ve done. And obviously, very talented individual. I don’t know if you like him, or if you dislike him, but the bottom line is: I think he was good for professional wrestling, and was very talented at what he did.
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Paul E. Dangerously
Paul Heyman was born in Westchester County, New York on September 11th, 1965. His parents were Richard S. Heyman, a prominent personal injury attorney who passed away on June 25, 2013, and Sulamita Heyman, a Holocaust survivor who passed away on February 27, 2009. By age eleven, Paul was running a mail order business from his home that sold memorabilia.
A few years later, the young Mr. Heyman managed to fast-talk his way backstage for a WWWF show at Madison Square Garden. He tells the story in his WWE produced documentary, “Ladies and Gentleman, My Name is Paul Heyman.” It was a stroke of genius.
There was a paper that used to publish a gossip column about sports. One of them was about Vincent J. McMahon, and how before every show the WWWF ran out of MSG, he would get a haircut from the same barber. Then afterwards, he would go to a steakhouse.
So, Paul Heyman called up the parent company of WWWF, and pretended that he had run into Vince at the steakhouse. By the time he was done, they invited him to come to The Garden, and cover the show. They even bought several photos from him.
This was all he needed. From the moment he saw Vincent K. McMahon interviewing “Superstar” Billy Graham, Paul Heyman wanted to get into the wrestling business. Now he had his in. Keep in mind, he was only 14 years of age at this point. He ended up graduating from Edgemont High School, and went on to SUNY Purchase and Westchester Community College.
In 1985, Paul was hired as a photographer for Studio 54. That same year, he was bumped up to producer and promoter. That led to him making his first big splash in the wrestling world: he hosted Wrestle Party 85. Thanks to a phone call with Jim Crockett, that event boasted Bam Bam Bigelow’s debut (referenced by The Beast From The East himself in this article’s opening words), as well as the presence of Dusty Rhodes, Magnum TA, and Ric Flair, who was due to receive an award.
Thanks to Bam Bam Bigelow, Paul Heyman made his managerial debut on January 2nd, 1987. He worked the northeast independent circuit, at first, and then moved on to a more high profile gig in February with Kevin Sullivan and Championship Wrestling from Florida. That’s when he first took on the moniker of Paul E. Dangerously. All of this is chronicled in his WWE documentary in a way that I cannot possibly match: from the mouth of the man himself.
So, to keep this from becoming a novel, we’re going to skip to Paul Heyman’s first entry into the world of the WWE, which was known then as the World Wrestling Federation. I’ll regret not covering ECW the most, but again, a WWE documentary tells that story better than I’ll ever be able to.
It’s called “The Rise and Fall of ECW,” and it is very easily found online.
Anyway, with ECW fallen, Paul Heyman went to the WWF. He became a commentator opposite Jim Ross, who he worked with in the same capacity back in WCW. They ended up calling WrestleMania X-Seven together, featuring one of the greatest main events in the history of the Showcase of the Immortals: The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin II.
Not long after that, Heyman left the commentary table and took part in the disappointing ECW/WCW invasion storyline. That ended in November of 2001 at Survivor Series. By March of 2002, he was at Brock’s side as his agent. Obviously, at some point before then, the two men met for the first time.
I’ll let The Advocate take it from here (the following is from an article written by him):
It was a moment that changed my entire professional career. Tazz ran up to me and said: “You need to get involved in this.”
I was talking with Chris Benoit at the time.
Vince McMahon’s plan for post-WrestleMania 18 in 2002 was for Benoit to turn heel, and for me to go back in front of the cameras as his on-air agent.
Vince was frustrated because he felt Chris possessed all the tools, but was missing that one last connection with the audience.
Tazz led me to the ring, where WWE Developmental Program Ohio Valley Wrestling’s most promising prospect was in the ring.
Where this ends, the quote up at the top of part one begins. Or, does it not count as a quote, because it was written? Either way, we’ve come full circle, and we’re ready to move on to the third entry in this series.
Before we do, here’s the rest of Mr. Heyman’s account, so you don’t have to click back to “A Beast is Born”:
There he was. Brock Lesnar.
Jeeeesh, he was just so big, so massive, so huge. And he moved like a cat. There’s no way a man that size should be able to move so quickly and with such agility.
The man who would one day become the first individual to win both the WWE and UFC world heavyweight championships was working out his non-televised match with Funaki.
He was also getting some really bad advice from veterans who were obviously threatened by what Lesnar could potentially bring to the table.
“Nikita Koloff got over just being big,” one old school NWA vet told Lesnar. “Be more like Goldberg,” another person suggested. “Someone your size shouldn’t move too much. Look at tapes of Sid when he first started,” advised a third.
Some of the bad advice was clearly intentional. Some of it was based on the fact a lot of people have a hard time accepting change.
Tazz pulled Lesnar aside and advised him to talk with me. Lesnar listened intently, thanked me profusely, and said: “You know, I’m very coachable.
Truer words were never spoken.
The Next Big Thing
As I wrote in part one, my original intention was to release this all at once, but there’s simply too much. Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar are accomplished men, to say the very least. Part three, focusing on Brock’s quick rise to the top of the WWE, will be published tomorrow at 2PM EST.
Hope you enjoy.
For Part One, “A Beast in Born,” Click HERE
For Part Three, “The Next Big Thing,” Click HERE
For Part Four, “A Monster in the Octagon,” Click HERE
For Part Five, “The Beast Returns,” Click HERE
THIS ARTICLE WAS BROUGHT TO YOU IN PART BY MARK OUT ENTERTAINMENT
We here at Nerdopotamus are thrilled to have joined forces with Mark Out, and its owner Anthony Iovino.
Our goal is to present you all with more quality wrestling-based content. That’s why our first venture together will be the Nerd/Out Top 100 Wrestlers of the Year. We have formed a committee. The selection process has begun. The qualifying period is from WrestleMania 31 to WrestleMania 32.
That doesn’t mean it will be limited to WWE, to be clear. The performer’s promotion matters as much as their gender, which is not all. The only thing that matters is their ability as a professional wrestler.
Numbers 100-91 will be published on April 4th, 2016. From that point on, we’ll drop another ten numbers every day, until we are finished on the 13th.
We hope you all join us!
Click HERE for numbers 100-91
Click HERE for numbers 90-81
Click HERE for numbers 80-71
Click HERE for numbers 70-61
Click HERE for numbers 60-51
Click HERE for numbers 50-41
Click HERE for numbers 40-31
Click HERE for numbers 30-21
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FEATURED IMAGE CREDIT: Courtesy of WWE.com.