On a recent episode of The Taz Show, the former WWE/ECW superstar revealed that during his run as a SmackDown commentator and the nuclear rise of Brock Lesnar, Vince McMahon actually wanted him to come out of retirement for a match at Madison Square Garden against Lesnar. Taz stated (courts come courtesy from WrestleZone):
“Vince McMahon approached me about working with Brock at Madison Square Garden while I was a commentator there… I’m over there doing the commentary for the WWE at the SmackDown table several years ago. And Brock was just cooking up before, and basically, they were really building Brock up as this killing heel machine. This was before this whole suplex city thing they have going on. And I was, I don’t know what year this was, could have been 2006 or something like that. Somewhere in that world, 2007, something like that. Maybe 2005; I’m horrible with years.
“So, it was earlier in the day, it was probably around 3pm, and we’re at the arena. I’m sitting at the announce desk, and some guys are in the ring just working out, loosening up, stretching out, who’s doing this, who’s doing that. I’m doing some prep work, like I always do. Michael Cole is over there twiddling his thumbs, doing nothing. And I’m doing all the prep work (God, I wish he could hear this. He might listen to the show. I should text him, because he would flag on me, because everything I just said was a little bit of a lie [laughs]).
“So, I’m sitting there with Cole, and he’s writing stuff up, and Vince walks by, he’s just watching and checking on some of the people who are working out. He was talking to some of the agents, they were doing a rehearsal or something. So Vince slips over to my area, at the announce desk, and he’s like, ‘Hey, uh, can we talk for a minute?’ [And I thought I was going to be fired]. So I walk over there in the corner with Vince, and he goes, ‘Listen. This is big. You ready?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah. I’m ready. What’s up?’
“He goes, ‘You and Lesnar do something at the [Madison Square] Garden. It’d be great. You would come back, do a match at the Garden, we’ll plug it, push it.’ I go, ‘Vince. No thank you. I love Brock, I love you, and I love the company, but I can’t do it. I’m banged up, I got a lot of numbers to my body. I’m just, physically, I’d be too risky for me to do.’ He goes, ‘No, I know that. We’ll work around it, we’ll do business.’ [I told him], ‘Vince. I’m not what I was. I can’t go be what I was, and I don’t want to put myself at risk.’”
That would have been fun to see (especially considering it was during the days when Brock knew more than two moves) primarily because both wrestlers were known for devastating looking high-impact suplexes. However, what is interesting is that Vince wanted to do this despite never really doing much with Taz during his actual WWE wrestling run. Still, the crowd at Madison Square Garden would have understood, as would dedicated fans of the business that were also familiar with his ECW career full of achievements.
As for the years, it was probably around 2002 when Lesnar was on the rise. Lesnar wasn’t even in WWE from 2005 to 2007 like Taz mentioned, but he did admit he was bad with years!
Feel free to follow me on Twitter @writerobwrite19 for more wrestling coverage and film reviews.