Veteran referee Mike Chioda has recounted the time a rib from Vince McMahon went to far, and a cameraman ended up with a concussion.
With a 31 year tenure as a WWE referee, Mike Chioda knows all too well the hectic schedule of being on the road to make it between towns in time for the next show, and the lack of sleep this can cause for everyone involved.
Speaking on his Monday Mailbag podcast (available via AdFreeShows), Chioda has discussed how this didn’t seem to affect WWE Chairman Vince McMahon, who although he would jet between towns would then be in the gym at crazy times.
When Vince used to get in, he’d get on his charter, get into the next town, everybody would drive four hours, he would get in 30 minutes, and he would get in one or two in the morning and go to the gym. His trainers would be sitting there waiting for him at the hotel waiting to go at three or four in the morning. He doesn’t give up, man.
The fact that McMahon seemingly didn’t need as much sleep as most people led to him being a little less sympathetic to those who did. On one occasions, the Chairman got Mike Chioda to rib a fellow employee, but the consequences left the official feeling rather guilty.
Vince used to hate to see people sleep. This one camera guy, I love him, he was a great guy and I remember he said, ‘hey, cut him down.’ I remember I climbed all the way up this thing cause he had his hammock on something, and I cut it by his head and he went straight down into the steel. He had a concussion.
I felt so bad, it backfired on me so much. We stopped in Ramstine Germany because we always did, and I remember, he had to go to the hospital there and he went back home. I remember apologizing and calling him and everything. I couldn’t say ‘Vince and them made me do it.’ I didn’t want to say that, I had to do it. I shouldn’t have listened to [Vince] but it was Vince and them guys, but the f***ing rib backfired.
Mike Chioda also recently recounted how he was told in the ring during a WrestleMania entrance that the match which was about to happen needed to finish in one minute.
With thanks to Wrestling Inc for the transcription.