On the last SMW TV show before their big Super Bowl card, Buddy Landel gave the interview of his career in the build-up for his main event match with Shawn Michaels. Shawn Michaels gave an interview before this talking about how 10 years ago Buddy Landel was a somebody and a young Shawn Michaels was a nobody, but now 10 years later Shawn Michaels, then WWF I-C champ, is a somebody and SMW's Buddy Landel is a nobody.
Interview done by Chip Kessler with Landel and Jim Cornette joined in progress. . . .
JC: I won't interfere in that match! Absolutely not! (smirking)
BL: That's right, Jimmy, you're not gonna
JC: I'm not?! (surprised)
BL: I'll tell you why. I'm very glad to hear Shawn Michaels' comments regarding the career of Buddy Landel. But let me give you a brief little autobiography of Buddy Landel. You see, I spent my whole career saying I was from here and there, but the truth is I was born and raised in Knoxville, Tennessee. I grew up on Ron Wright. I've been a wrestling fan all my life, at the tender age of 17 I quit high school football my junior year to wrestle. It took me 5 or 6 years to get to the top. When I was 23 years old, I was wrestling Ric Flair for the NWA World Heavyweight Title. Everyone said I was to be the next world heavyweight champion. But the problem was this: in that time I'd been introduced to drugs and alcohol and the truth of the matter is this. I was an alcoholic and drug addict in denial. Drugs and alcohol cost me my career. By 1985 I was fired from that position as National heavyweight champion, #1 contender to the world title. I spent the last 10 years wandering around professional wrestling like the magazines say like a vagabond or gypsy. Being hired and fired, being in denial, up til about a year ago. I became my own worst enemy. I had to look at my wife, my children, my family and drive up and down the road while everyone else was in jets and limousines. I was drifting with nobodies. Drugs and alcohol had taken my life. I'd even thought about suicide. But I came to a point to where I needed help and I got down on my knees and I asked for God to help me and help me He did. You see, I was looking at myself in the mirror and asking, "Would I ever measure up to what I used to be?". And a year ago, I came back into pro wrestling weighing 260 pounds. I defeated my own worst enemy a year ago and that was Buddy Landel. Now, this last year in pro wrestling, I've lost all that weight and I'm back on top. I've beat everybody in Smoky Mountain Wrestling. And I'm proud to be in SMW and SMW is affiliated with the WWF. The SMW Heavyweight Title is so prestigious the holder gets a chance at the WWF Intercontinental Title. Shawn Michaels, I'm gonna tell you something. I've been up and down since I turned 17. I've been on top. I've seen my wildest dreams. I've got it back and I'm feeling better everyday. And I tell all them pencil pushers to stay out of my way. You know Chip, a lot of people. . . this is the big deal about Buddy Landel, I've got dozens of friends just as long as I'm buying. When the money runs out, that's when the people left me. Everybody wanted to be on the Buddy Landel bandwagon until the money ran out. God forgave me, my family forgave me. Everybody in Knoxville, TN knows Buddy Landel is a hometown boy. I love the city and I'm proud of it. But on Friday night, August 4th, Shawn Michaels, I'm in the best shape of my career. I'm 33 and I've held more titles than you've had years in the sport. I'm not taking anything away from you. You're voted the sexiest man in wrestling, that's great! Friday night, Aug. 4th, brother, at the Super Bowl of Champions, I'm coming in a tip-top shape because it's my hometown where it all began. I'm gonna become the next WWF Intercontinental Heavyweight Champion. Bank on it.
This was a fantastic interview. As a heel doing a face interview he broke character and did a shoot interview in a serious tone while still pushing the show.
Note: in case you're wondering, Landel lost the match that night and ended his association with Jim Cornette.
*Special thanks to Edward M. Branscomb for posting this on the internet.
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