1 Episode results for "Mitch Cards"

WKPWP - Keller interviews Mick Karch & Kenny "Sodbuster" Jay: (4-30-15) Remembering Verne Gagne - the highs and lows of his career

The Wade Keller Pro Wrestling Podcast

2:13:47 hr | 7 months ago

WKPWP - Keller interviews Mick Karch & Kenny "Sodbuster" Jay: (4-30-15) Remembering Verne Gagne - the highs and lows of his career

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A New back issue from twenty years ago is posted so go. Vip and read fascinating authoritative well sourced behind the scenes details on professional wrestling in hard hitting editorials. On the controversies of the day. Go TO P. W TORCH DOT com slash Kgo V. I. P. that's w torch dot com slash Kgo. Vip and dive into our archives are over fifteen hundred back issues of the press and Torch Weekly newsletter with PDF's and all text versions so you want to read it on your phone. Your tablet your laptop. There's a format that works for you so that's POW torch dot com slash KGO VIP rate start as low as nine dollars and ninety nine cents for one month or eight dollars and change if you get a one year subscription now pw torture and spreaker bring you the Wade Keller. Pro Wrestling podcast. It's time for this week's interview. Classic where Wade Keller interviews one of pro wrestling's newsmakers one of the most successful and influential promoters of the one thousand nine hundred seventy s and early nineteen eighties. Vern Ganja the subject of today's interview Classic Longtime Awa Fan Awa Fan club president of Awa. Champion Nick Buckling Goal Awa announcer including on the ESPN tapings at the showboat in Las Vegas and also host of the SNL Saturday at wrestling. Block and longtime indy wrestling. Pay Play by play man. Karsh joins me. Who had up close interaction with fern? Ganja and watched his product from start to finish from the sixties to the very end. And we're joined by AWA jobber Kenny. Sod Buster Jay who was a favourite in the AWA territory in affable likable lovable. Loser on Awa. Tv for many many years who actually started off working for Ganja at his palatial home on Lake Minnetonka and then did did jobs on television so we share some stories about him to offer. Ganja died five years ago this week at age eighty nine. The discussion on Verne spent his years. As a top main inventor as AWA world champion to his rise and fall as a promoter behind the scenes his reaction to Vince McMahon's national expansion that decimated his roster and his profitability his role in the evolution of the Hulk Hogan baby face character. Don't let anyone tell you any different. Hulkamania was born in the Awa despite and then because of ver- Ganja and we'll get into that Hogan entered Awa territories a. He'll was cheered by the fans and burn said. Hey you guys like we're gonNA promote as a baby face and even though we didn't have that amateur background vern Ganja loved Hoke was a huge breakout star in Awa and formulated the entire Hulkamania routine and gimmick before. Vince McMahon hired Hogan for more money and they would go onto wrestlemainia fame. So a really fascinating discussion. If you're still interesting history are going to love this if you just want to hear some great stories about this crazy wrestling business including the one of the longest running most successful wrestling promoters from one of the big three brands. They weren't called brands then. They were called promotions during the the sixties seventies early eighties. There was the Awa the NWEA with all their territories and the WWF which prior to that was the W. W. W. F. You'RE GONNA learn a lot about about pursing history and learn fun story about someone who was not always well loved From the position of the boss the promoter so settle in. It's a really fun discussion. Mccarthy is one of my favorite guests over the years to have on And I've known make forever used actually right for progressing towards submission com. You can find it and some of our earliest back issues so Anyway with that introduction. Let's now get to it. This originally aired on April thirtieth two thousand fifteen welcome to the P W torch live cast. I am Wade Keller editor and publisher of the Pro Wrestling Torch weekly newsletter since one thousand nine hundred eighty seven and also P W torch dot com since nineteen ninety nine. Bw Torch APP available on iphone and Android and also host of this the POW torch live cast. We are here five days a week Monday through Friday and Sundays after Major. Wwe Pay per for the only weekly Monday through Friday talkshow covering professional wrestling exclusively for the past five plus years and we thank you for joining us again today yesterday. Pat McNeill Was joined by Chris. Crews FROM WC WW announcing fame and also friend of the torch. Who's been on the show multiple times in the past and on Tuesday? I was joined by Jason Powell of pro wrestling dot net. And he He and I discussed Monday night raw. And also what? We'll be talking about today on interview Thursday here on W. Towards life test the death of Verne Ganja at age eighty nine and we are I'm excited to be able to talk about what Verne Ganja meant to me. As a wrestling fan again as I did on Tuesday and what he meant to professional wrestling with two people who had a chance to follow his career closely in different roles and the first person could bring on is Mick car she worked for Verne. Ganja as part of the Awa in Las Vegas on the ESPN tapings. Mika former pro wrestling torch columnist a frequent guest here at torch live cast on Nick. Welcome back to the life cast. Thank you way too good to be here. I. It's great to have you on. Thank you for taking time to be on today's show. I'm really glad that we could put together. Show a talking about Vern Ganja and I know you have a lot to say about them. I want to introduce our second guest in. That is Sod Buster Kenny Jay. Who WORKED FOR GANJA FOR SO many years? Kenya's this you are you there. Yeah I'm Wayne Kenny. Thinks he's doing. I'm doing great. Thank you for taking time away from busting sod to join us here on the show to appreciate it absolutely. Well I talked about what Vernon to me on Tuesday so I'm not going to repeat it today. The first wrestling show I ever went to was Verne's retirement so I came in as a fan at the end of Verne. Ghana's reign as a full time wrestler. I watched them on. Tv for years. But the first show. I got Lau was may of Nineteen eighty-one retirement match seventy thousand plus sold out crowd against Nick Balk Winkle and of course you know he made a few coming out of retirement matches but Kenny you obviously knew vern as a wrestler as an employee and as a friend. I'd love for you I to talk a little bit about your background with Ganja and how you I met him and how. You ended up on television as a wrestler. Well you know I I used the wrestling Chicago Milwaukee then with the army and then they came out of the army and and as sixty two then came back down to Minneapolis. And then I got the duress. Lula Douala car promoter and then that's how you got started and then pretty soon verne was there. You know you know we're in a great Great Wrestler and he loved wrestling. And you know he was a great great promoter so I I can't take anything away from the guy and I I really really. I'm going to miss. When is the last time that you had a chance to talk to earn? Well we we did a deal here at the place here in the on Chicago Avenue. Forty six to the Beatles and when they redid the wrassling movie jazz and Warren was there. This is probably Five years ago or so you know what I was in real good shape and I got to talk to him. I other shake his hand and do more wonderful wonderful thing I ever did. And also you know I'll never forget that moment in my life audible is offering listeners of this podcast. A free edition of Jim. Ross is under the black hat or for that matter any book title of Your Choosing in their vast collection of thousands and thousands of books. If you go to audible dot com slash wade or text weighed five. Hundred Dash five hundred. That's right Jim Ryan under the black cat came out just a couple of weeks ago available to you right now for free. In his new book he goes into detail. I haven't heard before there's one point pretty early in the book where he says I'd call it the dam. Flavors steamboat trilogy. And now I was trying to get punch holes to line up in the stupid paper on my stupid desk. I wanted to be on the frontlines not behind a desk. Go check out the new Jim. Ross memoir of his time in. Wwe with some great stories from years and years and more recently. That's under the black cat at audible DOT COM SLASH. P W torch now. It's not just pro wrestling books and it's not just books. Audible is much more than audiobooks. They have podcast guided wellness programs theatrical performance alias. Comedy and exclusive audible originals. You won't find anywhere else. There are thousands of titles. In fact. If you listen to everything on audible you'd be listening for more than three centuries to catch up. Of course you could dial up your nearest speed and maybe cut down to a century and a half anyway. Audible helps people get more stories and information through the gift of found time. It allows people to listen while commuting cooking exercising gardening relaxing at home a recent. Pew Study Found that twenty seven percent of adults say. They haven't read a single book in the past year. Up from nineteen percent in two thousand eleven lack of time being the main reason. So why not listen to your books and then you can you tell your friends. How many books you read this year. One of the wrestling titles. I'm listening to right now as catch and kill by Ronan Farrow about Harvey Weinstein situation and It it's a fascinating look behind the scenes at Power and corruption and denial Within a news organization of the frustration that he had within NBC News. Trying to get this story out. It's a well told story it's fascinating and kind of chilling also listening to an Alfred Hitchcock. Biography I've been watching some old Alfred Hitchcock movies in recent weeks. I've had more time at home in less time away from home and I wanted to learn more about him and the movies he made. Whatever interests you this month Audible Scott a book that will let you deep dive into it or just be entertained in escape so again go to audible dot com slash wade or text weighed two five hundred dash five hundred every month members. Get One credit to pick any title plus to audible originals from a monthly selection and Access Daily News digests from the New York Times Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post as well as guided meditation programs. And that's important for a lot of people right now. We're living in a time right now where there's a lot of unknowns and a lot of routines that have been broken and it can shake us up a little bit. Some guided. Meditation. Might help. This might be the time to check that out in audible his way to do that. So go to audible dot com slash wade or text. Way To five hundred dash five hundred Kenny. We had a great Ganja on this show on that day and I actually think it was a little over three years ago maybe three and a half years ago because I had to ask my mom. My mom went to it and Mic. I really yes she went to it and I want to bring into the conversation on this because I don't know how many people in I don't know how many public appearances make for an made after that date if any I. I don't think he necessarily made any. And my mom had bought a picture of earn an autograph. She thought you know do. And my mom may have the honour mic and J of being the last woman that Verne Ganja hit on at a at a celebrity appearance. He's pretty and his handling of rushed her so earlier today about that and it was a fond memory here. Mitt Karsh You you grew up watching and by the way Mick and Kenny. Feel free to make this a conversation not an interview. Feel free to interrupt me or you know we'll just kind of make this free flooring see where it takes us by the way. Do Invite callers to call if you want to share some Burn Ghani Memories or question. Our phone number is six four six seven two one nine to wait that six four six seven two one nine eight two eight mic. I want to set the stage a little bit. Also with you starting off as a fan of the AWA in watching for Ganja I of said but it's only secondhand because I wasn't born when Verne became a headliner in a crossover a mainstream star here in the upper midwest sort of sleet mixed talk about exactly what Verne meant to this community in based in Minneapolis. Saint Paul and broaden. It also talk about how he compares to wrestler since then in terms of that mainstream appeal and how he was appreciated by the community or seen by the community. You know it's really interesting way to if you don't know the background burn. Ganja and know him just as a wrestler you have no idea the impact that this guy had because remember. We didn't have major league sports in the twin cities till nineteen sixty one. The twins and the Vikings and because of that professional wrestling you know once twice a week was really the big deal around here. Besides remain a minor league baseball teams and Ganja was the guy a You know even I would say up up through the late sixties early seventies burns not only a television personality but he really transcended that especially in the state of Minnesota. I mean this guy. Hobnobbed with governors and senators vice presidents and he was as big a celebrity. I think as anybody and then you know when you Add to that his community involvement and his charitable work at Golf Functions Tennis Celebrity events and so on and so forth and of course his dedication to the University of Minnesota I. It's a shame that the modern day wrestling fan probably just doesn't have a clue how big vern was in the state and especially in the twin cities just phenomenal. I mean his celebrity just transcended everything ten. Same well-spoken There Kenny. Talk about that too What was it like when you were around? Vern Ganja it from a- from a standpoint of charisma that he had and the kind of country club atmosphere that he was was recognized I mean. He was among the elite celebrities in this community. He played football with bud. Grant he Governor Bosch wits attended Awa shows in the front row. Go on and on Kenny. Talk about that talk about what fern the five vern gave off when he was in the public. Well I'll tell you one thing. He was a great guy he was and he loved wrestling and he lives for wrestling because he did after he got out of college and Winter Olympics. And everything he did. He did everything and and He created his verve wrestlers. Well you know when he got into the promoting and you treated and released so well I'll never forget it. You know he he got me into six man tag team with them and crusher and me against Larry inning and hardy raising the monarch off. You know you got me in Japan and he got me with Mohammed Ali. You know I could never. I'll never forget the guy you know. Because he he really helped me you know as he was a great guy and I'll I'll never forget him. And and and Kenny talk about the dynamic between vern and his business partner in promoting partner. Wally Carbo those two from everything that I've read and and just being around them a little bit in my years relative to you and the stories I've heard the dynamic between them. There has to be some fun stories there. Well they got along real good. You know I mean where do when they both show I guess they they do. Did it together and then you know I mean it. It took a lot of courage does a lot of charisma. You know to make your match. You know I mean it's just like Football you know you can just put a couple teams together. You gotta you gotTa have in the sequence. You know it's it's It's all sports is all the same you know you gotta you gotTa work together and you gotta you gotta sit up demand you know and then you gotta sit up football teams so I did a great job and yeah and you could tell back in the sixty seventies eighties. The road you know that. What was the last thing you said? Kenny our phone connection went out just for two seconds. Need an extra dose of positivity in your wrestling. Podcasts will come join me out for L. Over in the progress Paradise Aquino Torch. Vip as we look on the bright side of wrestling and focus on some of the great matches and shows from around the world be the US Japan Europe or Mexico. There's always a place of restaurants passed in the Paradise to and we've done fun. Historical shows such as the we love ligers series celebrating glorious career of Thunder. Like on our. I was there when shows where guests will join me to talk about. A classic bent that they were in attendance for we love variety and you can expect lots of at the. Press Paradise detailed. Pw TORCH VIP subscription information on a list of all the VIP benefits is available at Pierre Torture Vip Info Dot Com and yes all VIP Alcazar compatible with popular podcast APPs on iphone and android devices. Or you can stream them directly from our AD free. Vip Mobile Site C in the paradise. Okay let let let me let me go in and shift to make to make from your watching on television and also experiencing what what he meant and how he came across in the community are there other. Wha How does that compare to the rock? Coal Cogan Steve Austin Heck Bruno Sammartino. Like talk about the difference at wrestling's perceiving because Mick you are so you are so valuable to a show like this because we obviously cover current day wrestling week in week out and have for years and decades but make you followed wrestling so long that you're able to provide that. Forgive me for you know how long you've been a fan. But you have been urged you if you have seen as a fan and as a participant as an observer so many heirs of wrestling into so many changes your so valuable in that way is vern different in terms of how he's perceived compared to other top wrestlers since hit his. You don't really interesting because you remember you know again going back to the fifties and the sixties and you're going back to the cave savior and everything else so has changed. I mean the way wrestlers are looked at and promoters are looked at back in the day when you have the Mystique I mean I mean Verne Verne was the real deal and and the he was Like Mark Rosen on. Wctc here locally. Called him the Saturday night superman so the perception of Verne here in the state of Minnesota I mean he was he was a god. I mean he really was. He's right up there with Fran Tarkenton and Harmon killebrew and all these guys and and it kind of evolved a little bit you know. Needless to say as wrestling changed in the eighties all of a sudden the perception of a wrestling promoter and and and The Vince McMahon's of the world. And the dusty Rhodes. Everybody is talking about the behind seen stuff. And I don't know that you know it may be the luster wore off a little bit You know and as more and more stories kind of came to light about your Verne's business dealings with the guys and so on and so forth. It changed a little bit The perception of Verne Ganja as kind of a hard ass in and he was he was he was a perfectionist. And he did it his way. So you know in terms of how he was perceived Yeah that changed a little bit but again I keep going back to the same thing you really had to experience. You had to live through it to know back in the day. This guy was like Sir Lancelot around here. I mean he was he could walk on water. And that's the real deal so I think the perception in the state of Minnesota was probably different than it was on a national scale way Because on the National Level. I think people you know looked at vern again as Vince McMahon. The Bob Daigle the the Jim Crockett. Whatever you know whatever the case may be here in the state of Minnesota at least early Rom didn't perceive them that way so I think. The era of eras in professional wrestling changed the perception of Verne. Ganja Kenny you for thirty years and and like you said I mean he gave so many. You were very loyal to him. He was very loyal to you the over the years. How did he did for and Change? As he gained more power gained more riches he did. He was very wealthy. Did very well for himself as a promotor. How did you say teach? His key changed and also as he became older than a lot of talent working for him. Although there's a few jokes in there about Awa at the end you know everyone kind of stuck together till the end but as as he aged and younger wrestlers started coming up. I in fact as an aside. I mean my my experiences with fern just in the late eighties. Being around him were talking about the rockers. Shawn Michaels Mardi Janetti. All those punk kids they don't they don't appreciate the opportunity that kind of thing to T- Kitty. Talk to me about the how you sovereign change as he as. He moved from his twenties thirties to his forty fifth. I don't think he he has really changed. Because you the great wrestler all the time. I wrestle many times and we had a great time TV wrestling matches. I mean but I'm talking. You know you're talking about the New York Buddy Rogers and they're all great professional wrestler ice and it all all goes down to from Verne to all the way to New York. You know and You know Buddy Rogers and then there was a Bogor's eleven I mean dis guy and Paddler God lieutenant that they were all great professional wrestlers and as all do the same thing it was wrestling and was professional wrestling and and it was the same. You know until eviscerate man to go over. You know what it was. I just sixty seven days. I'll never never forget them and we're in gone. It was there all the time and I'll never forget them every Sunday night catch wrestling night in America on PW Torch Daily Dot Com hosted by me PW torch columnist. Greg Parks each week. I'LL WELCOME A CO host. The torch family to discuss the big shows and pro wrestling taking your calls and emails. You can listen. Live most weeks beginning at eight. Pm Eastern on Sunday nights with the WWE or impacts pay per view. Go on the air at the conclusion of that pay per view you can listen. Live but of course. The full show is available for download on demand anytime shortly after it airs visit. Pw Torch Daily Task Dot Com and click the livestream linked to find the next scheduled live. Show Lincoln Search. Pw Torch an apple podcasts or your podcast APP to subscribe wrestling night in America every Sunday. Twa Torch Daily Dot Com can bike mic absolutely. Yeah I was just going to jump in here and and for my weight and and what's really interesting about this all the and you and I have talked about this before the perception that you know make arches former your work for the Awa will really my TV experience for the Awa was about six months. That was it in the end. The same thing you know and I've been on a fan of it for you know fifty plus years and I did publicity for Vernon Wally and so on and so forth. I think what you're asking is. Maybe I don't know from an emotional standpoint. Maybe from a business standpoint how to burn change As time was going on and as things were changing. If if that's you know that's the perception that I'm getting the way that I saw it and this is probably from. Oh man maybe the early seventies on Things really started to change even back. Then because in the early seventies Wtc MTV Of course hosted the Awa all star wrestling network the syndicated TV they were owned by Chris. Craft and in the early Seventies. I WANNA say seventy three maybe seventy four. The station was changed. Changed ownership in Metromedia TV. Bought them out and they weren't really big. Fans of professional wrestling was kind of a necessary evil to them and when they I made that change. I don't know if they didn't like Vernon if they were butting heads or what the situation may have been but because of that they kind of move the AWA television show all over the board at least in the Minneapolis market. I've talking in terms of when it aired. So bad pissed vernal off a little bit at the same time. He released the original movie. The wrestler which had an initial rate response and then totally petered out. So there was some stress there You know again going back to the early seventies and at the same time they have stressed started to trickle down to wally carvel. So then Vernon Wally. Kinda have this adversarial relationship a little bit and and burn became you know on. Television is the charisma. You can't argue with it. I mean he was just a phenomenal guy. And if you call vernon good mood nobody better. I mean he was just a gem of a guy but the stress was starting to get through them and I think what happened from the seventies right on through the end systematically things started to Kinda chip away at burns arm rule little bit and I don't know of hostile is the right word but he. He became more protective. I think he became more defensive of his product and I think he came Just a well. He was always a fast master like I said he was always a perfectionist with the boys but I think he just started to have a little bit of an edge to them and sometimes you could feel it. You didn't see it on television but if you were in the background you saw your felted. The boys talked about it and You know I it was I guess. Kind of a slow erosion of the empire if that makes any sense. I'm fascinated by five earned because I got to see the tail end of vern as a public Washington tail end. It was a long stretch of time but relative to what you experienced mic and Kenny. As long as you knew him I. The Post retirement years mostly as an adult. I was just a kid when he was a wrestler and the public figure when he do the W radio appearances just an institution. Am station still around. He was he was amazing. I mean I still to this day. I'm not sure that there's more charismatic sports figure more UNASSUMING DISARMING CHARISMATIC. Nice Guy Public figure Denver. Ganja but boy did I see the other side of it. I mean I. I mean not a lot but enough that I heard stories of it and I guess my question I you make and I'm kind of curious with Kenny too. But do you make. Do you think that Vernon was phony? When he was being nice in public or was it more complicated than that and he's he deserves a more a nuanced explanation. Which is he enjoyed being a public figure in a celebrity but behind the scenes. He just we all have our moves. We all have our sides to our to our personalities when the when the cameras were off he kind of let loose Eric. Bischoff one time told me you know. Terry Taylor was his whipping boy because he had so much stress and he knew he could get away with it and he knew Terry could take it and so during the nitro years. W W Eric would just take it out on on Terry Taylor but publicly air couldn't do that in front of everybody or in public is much better public perception than Eric did. But long question short mic. Do you think he was phony? When he's being nice or did he just have a range of of moods and personalities during that from say the early seventies through the early nineties when he kind of faded from the limelight. I don't think he was only when he was being nice. Wait I think at and You know people have talked about this in the business. If you've got away from the stress of the wrestling business. He was phenomenal. And you know you talk about the you know. Probably the most charismatic guy ever. I couldn't agree more. He had that Verne gone. You smile and I mean this guy could disarm anybody and he walked into a room and the way. He carried himself again. Just a genuinely nice guy and I think I don't think this is really strange in in the business world wait. I think there's a lot of people like that especially high level executives. You know they get on public. You get them out of the ivory tower and they're great when you get them back you know in that In that realm where they've got the You know the dollars and cents and the calculators and everything else and in front of them it becomes a different story and again you ha- you add to the stress of what was going on around vern out the time He had never experienced anything like he did one that WWF started to you know infiltrate. I mean this is this was his turf the Awa was Yep. That's all he knew. That's all we knew and all of a sudden you know it's it's starting to dismantle so you had all this stress and it's what do I do now and everything became really really difficult. So you know to your original point. Was He for me when he was smiling and shaking hands and public absolutely. I think that was the real version. Ganja I just feel like you know when when the the wheels started to fall off it. Got To be an awful lot and You know he reacted that way. And you may have a point. You know what I mean and again. I don't think this is anything strange. I think you know if if you're a business owner there's always one or two people in the office the grunts or whoever it is however you perceive them. They're going to take the heat for the things that are going on around you and and what An interesting point you know. I've talked about the incident between Vernon I in Las Vegas. You don't WanNa screamed and yelled at me over. Something that you know was really minimal. And when I talked to Nick Balk Winco body and nick was on his way to New York so he really didn't care when I asked him about it. He said you know you gotta understand. Bird's not yelling at you. You know he said Jack Lanson. I are probably the only two guys burn as in yelled ad in the last ten years. It's because of everything that was going on around him. So I think on the overall was vern Ganja Nice guy absolutely I think he was a great guy I think his public persona and his charity work and everything else was the real version. Ganja behind the scenes the scripts would get. That's that's my perception of it from a distance again. I only work with them. You know hand in hand for a short time. Some of pro wrestling's best. Podcasts are V. I. P. Exclusive and you can go. Vip and find out why we have been supported by paid subscribers for over thirty years with our exclusive top-shelf content including pro wrestling torch senior columnist. Bruce Mitchell with the Bruce Mitchell audio show. I usually host that program though he has a variety of guest hosts with different themes and unmatched historical insight but primarily providing insight and hard hitting analysis and opinion on what today's news means. Also the fix with Todd Martin every mid week todd and I sit for two and a half three and a half hours with analysis of the latest TV shows and major events from wwe w new Japan and many others plus. We'll keep you up to date on what just happened in the world of anime. Usc Latorre and more and what's coming up the following weekend plus book reviews reviews of documentaries and so much more comprehensive coverage of the worldwide pro wrestling scene and the unmatched mailbag segment. This is one of the highlights of the week and the pro wrestling podcast world. I know I sound like I'm exaggerating. But this up with the fixed listeners. Provide fantastic questions and todd delivers. Every week you will learn you will think and you will appreciate professional wrestling on another level when you go. 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Join THE RANKS. So the most well informed and most entertained pro wrestling fans with the best podcast lineup anywhere. Go VIP and get these shows with the removed. Also a huge bonus. Pw TORCH VIP INFO DOT COM. Kenny again to you. A burn start in the wrestler movie Some point to that as a timeframe around which he went from being more like two more scrutinized by wrestlers and his colleagues fellow promoters even and by the eighties. I mean I heard really negative things about fern within the industry. You sounds like you got to see more More disarming version of somebody who when he was around you was relaxed and and just kind of appreciated what you were able to do for him in the ring. One of the things you were known for and I know Harley race complimented for this Kenny. Is You made your opponents. Look like a million bucks in that ring and it sounds like just always appreciated that about you. Well Yeah and You know like I said. I wrestled over and many times that we had a great measures. You know I mean he. Greg my ribs once but it was Having resigned but You know but I really You know I still are three. Shared the guy and the like you see. He was a promoter and He's GonNa book you know and If he's if you don't like you he's not GonNa kill you know so it's it's it's just a scratch. My bagger got your back or something but I I love the guy you know. I'll never you know his leg. I liked the crusher bag doll. You know I- I wrestle Amal and I I loved it while you know I mean. I don't care they they'd be home in my bed neighbor day. So and Mitch Cards helped me so you know I just I just appreciate all guys. That helped me absolutely Kenny. I didn't have a chance to talk to you before the show. But if you have to go you let me know if not would be happy to have you stick around to for more show. But I don't have time okay. Great excellent very good again. If you're just joining US sod buster Kenny Jay for three decades fixture of AWA television joining us today on the people you torch life cast. You can find this show. At P W torch live cast dot com or on five days a week. Tomorrow Torch Senior columnist Bruce Mitchell and the east coast cast dotcoms Travis. Bryant will be hosting at starting at seven eastern. That's a new Friday timeslot and the new Friday duo who host this show one. Quick Personal Note Business sort of if you didn't yet you can hear me on the Steve Austin show this week spending nearly two hours with Steve. Talking about Sunday's. Wwe extreme rules pay per view. If you want incentive to listen to it go onto my twitter. Feed the feedback has been tremendous as it usually is. I've been doing the Post pay per view shows Steve Austin every month for a while now and you can check that out on my twitter feed reviews of that at the Wade. Keller that is at the way Keller But yeah about an hour. Fifty minutes it Went live on Tuesday on itunes and over at podcast one. That is a Steve Austin. Show unleashed not the explicit version but the PG family friendly version almost two hours reviewing that show Mccarthy also joining me the former president of the Nick Bach Winkle Fan club and former AWA announcer longtime independent. Wrestling announcers. Still active today. I'm make I want to give you a chance here to talk about What you've got coming up where people can hear you announcing and some I know you're huge huge supporter of the indy wrestling. Cnn I like TV chance to plug. That I appreciate that. Yeah I mean that's Since the demise of the Awa the the independent wrestling scene in the state of Minnesota way do you know that I mean so many different promotions? The one that I'm involved with right now Very proud of it of course steel domain wrestling and promoter. Ed hellier going on about sixteen seventeen years now very very proud of the fact that you know some of the alumni Adam Pearce see Punk Colt Cabana. Eysenck deal. I mean it's just Austin Aries. Yeah I mean it's it's a great alumni. I mean Sean delivery. It's really really proud of it. And we're running shows about every five six weeks richfield American Legion Just outside of Minneapolis and then once a year we do a big show at the Hopkins Pavilion. And that'll be coming up in July so very very proud of what we're doing there so that That keeps me busy and You know I'm on. I'm on facebook. Twenty four seven. You know I might sleep for ten minutes but then I'm back on there and of course they've got a I got a wrestling fan page. typically old school wrestling. It's it's kind of the emphasis called slick mix wrestling fan page of all things and old time wrestling so you get a chance to check out and yeah. I'm I'm still keeping my name out there. I'm not waiting for that. Call from Vince anymore. I ever feeling that probably isn't going to happen So I think that by the telephone but You know wait. I'd rather talk to you. You know what I'm saying. Well thank you very searching for more great pro wrestling. Talk Join Me. Jason Powell hosted the three weekly pro whistling boom podcast. Each week. You'll hear the latest news and analysis for me and my team at pro wrestling dot net along with other pro wrestling media members plus the pro wrestling boom podcast speeches long-form interviews with notable names in the wrestling industry subscribing to stitcher downcast and all your favorite secondary apps or visit us directly at pw boom dot com once again that's pw boom dot com our phone over here. If you WANNA give us a call six four six seven two one nine eight two eight. That's six four six seven to one ninety eight twenty eight. We're taking your phone calls. If you WANNA talk about Vern Ganja. Let's go to our first caller the day Eric. Six five zero six five zero. Thank you for calling and holding. Please state your name and the city. You're calling from noon. This is Dante. I'm out in the San Francisco Bay area and I thank you for taking my call. Great thanks I wanted to Offer again my condolences on the passing of burn gone. Yeah quite a legend. I I grew up out here in the bay area in the bay area and I grew up as far back as the very late sixties and seventies with Ray Stevens Pat Patterson and the great restaurants out here. I wanted offer some Quick Air Bay. Area perspectives on. Burn Ganja and how much we appreciate it him First of all if you go back to the first Roy Shire Card in March nineteen sixty one referring to actually wrestled on that card cell. He was involved in the Bay Area Card with Roy. Shire just before Roy really exploded with Ray Stevens Pepper Storm viewed Moving up to nineteen eighty one. We were losing shires territory. He was spilling out wrestling to Kansas City. And then Florida and the cards worse dissipating and he was laying out and suddenly. Awa appeared on our on our local television station so We started getting cards in January of nineteen eighty one and basically. We weren't going to have live wrestling here. I was going to be the odd show was going to be difficult to find and thanks to burn bringing wrestling out here. You know that gave us two or three years before the national started coming in. Wwe and then ended up so I really appreciated that. He did that. I never our thing. I'd want to ask you guys for your For your comments on. Wouldn't you make the arguments? That burnt geographically was kind of the most national promotion at the time. Say Nice by Nineteen eighty-one. You can attest that and we can talk to Kenny after that about all the cities he wrestled in just when you look at a map make of the territories and even Google this wrestling wrestling territories nineteen seventies. Just Google that look at the images. I know they're up there. I've seen it before. The Awa just covers the largest swath of land from Chicago to Denver. And then a leap to San San the San Francisco Bay area mic. Talk talk about that aspect of it. You know. That's really interesting too because I think the perception and maybe it's because of the wrestling magazines was always of the big three. The Awa was number three and that was never never right. I mean they did have that much territory they did. Cover that much ground. You know. All the way from the bay area You know of course in San Francisco and Denver and Omaha Milwaukee Chicago Green Bay Winnipeg. I mean yeah they were. They were all over the place and and for some reason you know it was like Bach. Winkle was always perceived number three behind. Maybe you're back Leonard or your whole gun or your ric flair or or whoever? That absolutely is not is not correct. I mean that's that's a wrong perception and you know the caller alluded to you know Verne going into the bay area. There and of course he was working with his old tag team partner and friend the late. Leona Malini Bringing some shows out to Oakland and in that area we always helping to promote shows. So yeah I mean there's no question about it the Awa the scope of what they had Was just incredible and being an Awa guy is I am. I never could understand why the perception was as it was that you get you. Wwf and you got NWEA. Oh and by the way you got Awa because that is just ask backwards to me all energetic to your right mic that that was how I saw the national wrestling magazines. Also we're kind of used to it here. In Minnesota you know in a lot of ways in terms of the perception of that being here in the Midwest but the WWF W. WWF at the time was had New York. It was in the east coast a large part of the east coast so the national wrestling magazines. Based largely out of these coast would favor them New York Madison Square Garden. That's a big deal and the NWEA got an advantage over the Awa in the sense that the Awa was a territory a large one but the NWEA was dozens of territories. Or you know more than a dozen make territories and so just from pure how many shows on a given weekend is the NBA running. Well if you count all the NWEA territories a lot more than the AWA but as far as if you split off the NWEA territories and treat them as individual territories. The Awa was in many ways many times by many metrics the largest and I know wrestlers made great money working for the Awa Kenny talk about your travels. And the SCULPT AWA end its growth during during those peak years. Well you know I I. I wasn't like Full-time or or as a big star like Bach winkle run gone. Yeah Billy Robinson but I did it all right. Judo I I got to wrestle. Denver I gotTA Reser Chicago. I got wrestled. Green Bay Milwaukee and even Thunder Bay. You know I got around a lot you know but I had my business go on. I was landscaping. You know so I wasn't in full time but I'll tell you one thing In these times they needed me someplace. I was capable. Kitty Jay and I would be their Yup. We're about to go to another commercial break. Why are you listening to commercial breaks? Why deal with these interruptions when you can become a VIP member support the weight? Keller pro wrestling podcast. Wait Tiller progressing. Poll shows the Peterlee Torch daily casts and the entire team and everything that we do. And get a ton of return for your membership by becoming. Vip member go to POW TORCH VIP INFO DOT COM for full details. Thirty plus years of archives of podcast Retro Radio Shows Over Sixteen hundred back issues of the pro wrestling torch weekly newsletter fascinating march through our coverage of wrestling history and so much more including ad free versions of the way. Keller podcast wake up both shows. Npr Torch daily cast and several exclusive VIP podcast just about every day dozens of VIP exclusive podcasts. At you're not hearing because you're not a VIP member so go VIP POW TORCH VIP INFO dot com subscribe to our podcast feed and listen in a streamlined way with no interruptions to all of our podcasts. Again that's torch. Vip INFO DOT COM off. All right I want to go back to the follow up for discussion here with McCarthy and Kennedy J remembering Foreign Ganja and the Awa Dante anything else before we let you go really quickly. Wait I I came into the show late so I did not realize that kennesaw buster. Jay was in the house so I wanNA give a shout out Kenny. You're a great one. As far as I'm thankful I'm really sorry I had I come into the show late All this week I really really wanted to make it a priority to get these shows because I think this is the best show and Wade and all your guests you have are always going to offer the best perspective on the great career referring gone. Yeah I'M GONNA throw in one more quick comment. I wonder if you guys hear me out and see what you thought of this In Nineteen eighty-one Ray Stevens and PAT. Patterson were on the villain side of the dressing room in the AWA. However Bay area there was no way that burn could book them as villains or as heels. They were just weren't gonNA get booed so I appreciated his aforethought in kind of going against the system and he books Ray and pat as complete baby faces out here manually. I yeah even in those March nineteen. You were offended against style Jerry Blackwell for the first time I leave there with a mask where Ray Stevens in. The crusher teamed up against the Donaldson Torah which wo usual out here so I applaud fern for having the business sense at the end of the day you had to have the business sense and Yeah the K. Part was a little different stuff. They're all three of you. I appreciate very much appreciate that Dante before you go. What years were you most immersed in following awa? You've mentioned what's what's the range of years that you watch. I'm growing up. I always had read the magazines. Do I was aware of all the Federations but they first came to our. Uhf STATION NUMBER. Twenty in. Nineteen eighty or nineteen eighty. Let's say they nineteen eighty and it was just grow for us because Shire Federation was burning out. They were looking out or they were having good cards but they just weren't having enough of them and their fan base The first card in Awa was January of nineteen eighty one. It was a battle royal and it was a big sell out. Mr Non Malini. I used to see him wearing his blackened strikes. I we went up and he would always be in the arena The next two cars were both Bernie defenses against Jerry Blackwell and so I just felt I was honored to have gotten a C. Burn wrestle You Know Jerry. Blackwell of course wouldn't have been my first phone and I would have preferred to see a boxing match. But you know just being able to get perceiver and come into the ring and put the best up with a towel around his neck. You know just really great We followed them and went to the card consistently from B. One Two bay for a I mean all the way through ray basically but the cards were consistently about six weeks from eighty one to eighty four eighty five easily then it spread out a little bit more. They moved from Oakland to San Francisco as well. The SOD buster had to come out to one occasion for four more. Not right who who in the eighties? I Yeah I say yeah from. My biggest greer was sixty and sixty seventies and late early eighties. You know. That's when I got hit hard with arteritis you know so I had. I had the canceled a lot of matches but then after that I made a big comeback. I mean as far as the health goals but I I I Russell odd after you know even Vern Awa was gone then the little shows and I I did a lot of wrestling. You know but the Dow I am done. I took my copy of the wrestler Just two nights ago and I watched it once or twice over really enjoyed. Now is a great movie. It will always be in my collection and I think I'm GONNA have to go find my old. Vhs VHS tapes and fanatic. Actually I dr vern. We would the war here Rob Dinners Gobi. Very really gotten bad. And he's getting. How come you weren't on the movie raspberries and I know that you should have been on there? Well Kinda laid but thanks a lot guys. Wait I was also at Awa Super Class three where Mr Hennig won his awa title all vertical really. Yeah so I basically I've grown up with wrestling and I basically been to every event air in the San Francisco Bay area over probably forty or so years. I'm dating myself bed. But thank you for what you do. I appreciate the time and being able to expound. Thanks Dante that's great. Glad you called. Have you subscribed to the POW torch daily cast yet? It's a free daily podcast with shows throughout the week dedicated to ring of honor all elite wrestling impact wrestling major league wrestling an xt. And Emma may talk for pro wrestling fans. That's Monday through Friday and on Saturdays. Checkout the deep dive with Rich Fan where he examines a single topic in depth and then Sunday nights. It's wrestling night in America with Greg Parks. You can listen. Live or download the show later at W. Torch daily cash dot com. Just click on the live stream. Link you take your calls talking about wrestling's biggest events either ones that just took place or previewing shows that are right around the corner and on Sundays when. Wwe runs pay per views. He's live right after the pay per view at Twu Torch daily cast dot com reviewing the show. And taking your calls that's the POW torch daily cast light up just search. Pw Torch in Apple podcasts. Or wherever you listen to your wrestling podcasts. Or visit our homepage to download or stream. The shows or find out more information. Pw TORCH DAILY CASTS DOT COM mic. I knew win. Dwa watching here in. Minneapolis Saint Paul We talked about going to San Francisco like as a fan that made me think. Wow the AWA is big time. It's not just the Minneapolis. Champion of Saint Paul Is. It really gave the impression that the AWA was was big time. What did what. How did the perception of the AWA change for you over the years as you learned more about the larger wrestling see nationally and internationally and burnt? Ghana's place in it and what is kind of stepping back from it? It also the big picture legacy of Verne Ganja. I always say it's kind of a shame that the Monday night war Roberson Nitro Ted Turner. Buying out. Nwea the top promoter. Jim Crockett junior at the time. Changing the name w w the lineage of the NWEA because of WCW and WWF. Buying them out. And of course W. F. as the winners on the last man standing so to speak. They W GETS SHORT. Short changed in terms of historical recognition. But it is as significant as any territory during the sixties and seventies so kind of. Where's Vern Ganja placement? As as a major star having headlined in so many different cities and for so long with such success the reality is weighed. I think it depends on who you talk to and sad to say. A lot of people. Don't remember their perception of Verne. Gonyea is from the nineteen eighties on you know. I mean it's hard to you know. We're talking thirty five years ago so it really is generation but the people who even watch some of the Verne Guy and Youtube and and I know Donte was talking about nick. Bach Winkelmann burn even. Then you Verne's fifty years old plus and when Verne lost the title debacle in one thousand nine hundred eighty one In one thousand nine hundred ninety five Verona's already forty nine years old so his place in wrestling. I think it depends on who you talk to somebody like me. Somebody like George Shire. I know that Verne Ganja is absolutely one of the one of the real honest to God legends in wrestling and he should be noted as such a long before they were at the Saint. Paul Civic Center. Yeah you're fifty sixty seventies. Whatever anybody we've talked about this before anybody who was anybody came through the wwl territory especially from nineteen sixty odd and you think of all the guys that burn trained and they went on to become great great stars so in the scheme of things of burnt out on. You was the pioneer You know on the Dumont in Chicago. He was one of the first nationally known wrestling stars. In the nineteen sixties the AWA came into prominence in the seventies. She Got Bockel Stevens You know the cluster met slot area. Everybody is on top. I mean this is one hell of a territory and even until I'm GonNa say maybe wrestle rock. Some people will say that. That was kind of the You know the first indicator after wrestling wrestle rock that things were going downhill In the scheme of things in Ganja was a big time player will understand the impact that he had not only as a professional wrestling celebrity but as a wrestler and that the difference because You know and I saw the wwe. And God bless them. They put up a TRIVIA VIDEO VERN. Ganja the other a and and. I'm sure they're sincere condolences but they refer to burn is a sports entertainer and believe me. That would be the last thing to burn would wanna be called this sports entertainer because he was a wrestler he was a bonafide tough guy and he gave professional wrestling. I think this goes to to your point about what did he mean to the old school fan. He gave wrestling credibility. He gave wrestlers credibility These are the kind of guys that he would wanna put on top in the AWA. The Bach wingels even mad dog had the amateur wrestling background. And Burn. And Billy Robinson and Wilbur Snyder and guys like this if you if you were top in the Awa you were on top with a wrestling company. So in that sense to me. The Awa was probably and burned. Ganja was probably the last vestige of old school suspend the disbelief. These guys are great wrestlers an amateur wrestling background. They no no. They're holes. This is the real deal It may have been the last of it with the AWA. So in terms of legacy That's the imprint. That's the impact and vern. Ganja was recognized by sports illustrated in the year. Two thousand as one of the fifty greatest sports figures from each state and Verne was in his prime years and if so credible because of what he accomplished as an amateur wrestler and that was vern really looked to that. I mean even Scott Norton and the ad when I interviewed her in Ganja. The first torch talk I ever did and I wrote about this in this week's pro wrestling torch newsletter. And I put excerpts of of this remarkable interview that kind of opened my eyes to what interview could be like when somebody opened up and talked openly about the inner workings of the business. It's very ironic. Verne was the person who started that the torch tongue series of insider interviews but he talked about his frustrations within McMahon stealing all his talent. Now already at work to get there and build it up comedy. Had and of course the sad infamous comet about bruiser brody getting what he asked for in reference to probably getting what he asked for in reference to getting murdered in the locker room at Puerto Rico wrestling show he was. He opened up in a way that he probably never had been before because he had been probably interviewed and by mainstream media in a more fluffy way. And I asked him questions he wanted to answer and I even at that point still the teenager very early in the torch ears. I was able to ask him some probing questions that got him to open up and and he talked about the value of of skin. That injury Scott Norton being an arm wrestling champion. Like he looked for anything. That was a legit sports background as the foundation. Give credibility to his talent or his wrestlers. That he that he featured and vern came from that he was hugely successful. Ncw Wrestler at the University of Minnesota with multiple big ten titles and NCWA championships and also a real standout a good football player. And I believe he played or tried out for Green Bay packers. Maybe but yeah I mean. Just that legit sports background was really important to him and he always looked for that and that was something that gave pro wrestling which wasn't on the up and up and people were always skeptical of it but it wasn't as well known or spoken about Obviously it was. People didn't speak openly about how pro wrestling operated. If much if at all in the fifties sixties and seventies it Vern really hung onto that to the end. In fact when he talked to me about Hogan Hulk Hogan every taught him everything he didn't know anything and I taught him but make one of her big legacies. Kind of trying to lead here in. This is Hogan Vern Ganja doesn't get in most circles in some circles he does but in most circles doesn't get the credit he deserves for creating Hulkamania for directing Hulk Hogan and how to be a top. Ab Face. I mean I think would be valuable for Roman reigns right now to tie it into today's wrestling scene. Vern about that with me and that torch talk and Hogan gave shout out to him after he died this week. Talk about Verne's instinct for being a baby face and what he did to help Hulk Hogan become this huge star that Vincent Man Basically recruited and signed away from well. I'm going to take a step back first and then I'll you know know you brought up a great point about burn wanting to legitimize wrestling in any way he could. I mean first and foremost it was the amateur wrestling background. If you had that if you were the Brad rings or you know or Larry. Hanoch or anybody like that and bird could say look at this guy's amateur wrestling background. He was the real deal. you know. That was first and foremost with him. But you know you brought up a great point. Scott Norton had the arm wrestling championship. Background can participate a world class weightlifter. So as long as vern could mention guys it he was bringing into the business that had legitimate legitimate amateur. Sports background it legitimized professional wrestling. And you know it was and again I get to the point about Hulk Hogan and a second. You know the point that you brought up about interviewing vern and him being used to fluff questions and not being used to who you know getting asked the hard hitting questions. I can only imagine what that was like for earned guide. Yeah I mean it'd be because you don't vern and Nick Bach Winkle and guys like this that held onto the very absolute end in defending the business and the the realism end legitimacy of it that had to be totally abhorrent to Verne to get questions like that and you know I knew him I and I know he didn't when he trained guys he didn't smarter them up until it was time to the ring. I mean starting slaughter and Rick Flair guys like that. They'll talk about that. They went through the training camp and Verney was absolutely a hundred percent legitimate on the level. You know until it was time for you to be told otherwise so You know that was again. You know just just kind of to your point about vern you know reaching out to the to the other amateur sports as far as what he did with. Hulk Hogan absolutely you know there's another one you and burn does have a right or did have a right to be upset because he did mold Hulk Hogan you know all along with Gregg and the other guys were in the Awa at the time Nick and Ray Stevens and whoever else they directed the sky they taught him how to cut a promo they you know. Hogan was was pretty stiff. You know when he first came in and he was doing his promos you know especially as he'll promos. Audi st always had somebody talking for them you know Fred Blassie or whoever it was and vern really did direct him and I can understand his consternation and being aggravated because everybody all whole cogan burst onto the scene and you know nobody gives fern credit or there was no hulk Hogan career before Nineteen eighty-four in the eyes of some people. There was no whole Holden's and his t-shirts mic that are out now say Hulkamania established in one thousand nine hundred four or nineteen eighty-three. Yeah it's just it's and that's disgusting because you're you got a guy for a couple of years that he was here in the aws. I mean those thousand nineteen thousand Sell out to the St Paul Civic Center and you know they were doing that all over the horn no matter where HOGAN WITH CHICAGO MILWAUKEE DENVER. It was sell out crowds and basically to you know to crap on that and say you know there was no whole Cogan. There was no Hulkamania until he'd beat the Iron Sheik is absolutely bs and yet I completely understand why vern was upset by that. I will say in my interview with with fern. I don't think I the questions I asked. Were not in any way like confronting him or or challenging him to speak about how matches were a work because it just wasn't done but just asking him about Vince McMahon and the expansion into German territory the signing away of talent his thoughts on I knew when I asked about one carbo or or bruiser brody different people that he had up down relationships with. I figured I'd probably get some sort of you know I was trying to. I didn't ask about Kenny. Jake's figured he'd say Nice Guy. I wanted to get more provocative answers but was when I asked about a Hulk Hogan he says I think he came along at a very opportune time and that line really jumps out because I wrote in the cover story in this torture newsletter about how Ho came around an opportune time in the sense. That Verne retires in May of eighty-one Hogan is headlining a couple months. Later a few months later as the lead baby face a completely different type wrestler than fern was used to burn is much is he gets. He's given a hard time for staying with the times and being behind the Times he had. Maybe reluctantly maybe gritting his teeth. But he didn't he did not refuse to push hulk. Hogan on top visit doesn't think didn't think Daniel Bryan was worthy of being on top and it took only complete rejection of Batista and injuries and all kinds of other things for him to get a short run and we'll never know how would have gone with him because of all the health problems and injuries afterwards but I actually went with Hogan keep promoted him. On top and hope was hugely successful than it really was a transitionary time that preceded wrestlemainia that preceded the rock and wrestling connection vern being willing to give a headline spot and and directing Hogan in a way that maximized what can had an and. I want to go to Kenny Hogan Second Foot. Make your thoughts on that and that Verne. Maybe gets a bad rap for not you know yes. He didn't keep going around and they had business disputes. But Hogan was when it gets everything for an stood for and yet he still of course the money was everything pushed him to the top. I think you hit it right on the head. Their money was everything and as much as vern wanted to maintain that old school mentality. You know all of a sudden my God the cash registers are overflowing everywhere with Hulk Hogan so I mean he basically had no choice. I mean this guy's there. Hey let's let's ride tidier and you know. Certainly money talks to But not including putting Hogan over is the champion and that I think is is really came here to Wayne was kind of damned if you do damned if you don't because you know here. This guy is on top. And he's feuding with everybody from David Schultz. Jesse Ventura Mr Saito. You know right on down the line right. Yeah but Bach. We go again Joe. It came time. Switch the strap and that wasn't going to happen You Know Verne still went with the old guard. He still went with the wrestler And I mean that from a from a technical standpoint. He went was a wrestler as opposed to the big muscular blond guy from Venice Beach But again it goes back to you know again what you said a little bit earlier on you know the burn you know. Maybe he got a bad rap because he didn't hang on to hold onto long. Maybe got a bad rap because he He didn't the strap on them. Maybe in retrospect he should have done that but in terms of what he created with whole Cogan. Absolutely it's documented. That's another part of Oregon legacy that people should absolutely recognize and You know again boy. The Times were changing back. Then I think the whole thing was so rule wind for Verne back in the day and again when he retired and he came back in. Nineteen eighty-six for wrestle rock. You know how old was he was sixty some years old when he came back or sixty sixty when he came back restaurants and you know the whole wrestling world is just like flying away from him and he did everything he could. You know you mentioned earlier. The part about you know. Burn keep up with the times and he should have done this and that you know what you know. Since he really tried given the the parameters of what trying was to burn Ganja he left the old studio the small studio format he went out to Atlantic city. He went out to the showboat in Las Vegas. He tried different things. Yeah he went with the midnight rockers. You know and he I mean he really tried as best as he could while he was gritting his teeth. You know to to kind of go with the flow. But you know it just wasn't to be people who say you know did burn hang onto long? Was He with old school mentality. You know who didn't Vince outlast? In the scheme of things and everybody everybody's gone I mean some people it took longer than others but he outlasted everybody. Nobody kept up with them. And I wil as far as giving Hogan the belt VIN vern liked. He worked with people in the especially in the seventies but even the sixties who were friends of his or the crusher. You know a love hate relationship with businesswise over the years but you know he. Nick Bach Winkle were there was a trust there. And there wasn't with Stan. Hansen Stan. Hansen came in after Hulk. Hogan was part of kind of parallel. The Road Warrior era the Post Hogan Road Warrior and Stan Hansen and Rick. Martel Awa kind of before the last chapter of Bisco in the rockers and buddy rose and Doug somers and Hanson walked out and didn't come in and they had to just hand at boxing title different title belt than the one Hanson left with no showed and maybe vern looked at that and said you know what had I given Hogan Belt. That probably would happen earlier with Hulk. Now you could say that's Burns fault for the weekend business with talent but vern may have looked at the Hansen incident as as kind of a validation of his unwillingness to go all the way with Hogan before he felt more comfortable on a business relationship and friendship with them because hope was of a different generation in vern was used to working with his generation Bach winkle crusher Stevens Patterson Robinson and Macau did that play into it that was just a different generation. Verne was having a hand over the keys to the shift to somebody that he just didn't know where trust besides the fact that hope wasn't that amateur stand out. That was a great point weight. And if you think about it and you mentioned Stan Hansen. That's a perfect example. And then bruiser brody bringing in bruiser brody. I mean there's guys came in that were totally hundred and eighty different than what Verne was used to and guys would never in a million years think I would bring in the road. Warriors perfect example. You know you go back to to Jesse Ventura one thousand nine hundred eighty four. You Know Jesse. All of a sudden he's gone. You know one day you know verbs portion of the next day he's gone Brody is walking out in the middle of matches. Dan Hansen runs over a title belt. I is this is. This is the generation that burn was dealing with and and so clearly you can understand why he turns to the Bach wiggles he turns to the Baron von Raschke sadly to the detriment of the AWA. Because you know the guys were you know into their fifties at the time. Although you know an argument could be said that Nicholas still phenomenal. Even you know in one thousand nine hundred eighty six when he wrestled. Kurt Nicholas Fifty two years old or whatever. It was When they went to a one hour Broadway but but again I mean just Yeah totally Generational Mick Nichols Auditorium. I want to jump in and say this to wrestling fake wrestling fans love undertaker at age fifty wrestling. Wrestlemainia fans have been clamoring for five years for sting who finally at age fifty five the same year as verts retirement match the same age showed up at Wrestlemainia for the first time in wrestled triple h triple H in his mid forties still put himself on TV. All the time more than Virginia did. Probably I duNno. Ratio-wise maybe similar. It happens in every generation and and so many different territories and different settings the legendary wrestlers when they left wrong power end up. Still THE FANS. Don't pay to see him and obviously when somebody whether it's it's undertaker and staying don't have a stake in the company or somebody like AAA who does. There's a temptation to either take the payday. Or keep your grip on that power that comes from being the star of the show because nobody can take that away from you vern. Ganja though was criticised late sixties through the say mid seventies because he had so much talent to work with the WHO were big stars but he held on as champion and I guess one question I want I want to give to you. Make did did vern deserve criticism. During that time. For hanging on too long because billy superstar Billy Graham Nick Bog winkle Ray Stevens crusher billy Robinson you can list big names should vern have given a turn to them on top especially when crusher was by a lot of metrics bigger draw vernon certain markets Yes I I think he probably should have given them a turn here. Here's the thing I mean you go back a little bit. A little bit farther than that. Like to the sixties he would give crusher attorney and he would have mad. Dog was on top for a couple of years. So you know as it got into the late sixties into the early seventies then vern started to cling to the biltmore and put himself on top more and for longer periods of time. And and that kind of thing and you know that was not a good thing And and part of the problem to wade is back then and again. You're talking one thousand. Nine hundred seventy two. I think is a perfect example. Seventy two seventy three. When he had all that talent that you're talking about vern defended the AWA title. I believe and this is not just in the twin cities. This is like all over the horn a dozen times or fifteen times the entire year and I think that added to the perception of wait a minute now. You know you're getting on in years burn. You don't look so good when you're in the rain you know and you know you you get ring rust. I mean let's face it. You know you wrestle. You know that infrequently and you're on top so bad added to the perception that maybe he should have passed the title around because he did have tremendous talent back. Then so yeah. Is there in all different? Hang onto long. Yeah but as you said he certainly not alone every every major promotion Especially when the guy owns the company. They've done the same thing everywhere and I think with burn sad to say the last ten years of his career because he rustled so infrequently. It was more glaring that he wasn't passing the title around. Yeah Yeah now is not the time to for razors at the drug store. Harry's no sometimes it's better to stay inside and that's why they shipped directly to you so you can experience the quality of Harry Shave in just a few days from the convenience of your own home. Here's razors because of the fit and finish of the razor blade for me. I don't like putting a cheap plastic blade or a heavy blade. That's off balance up against my face when I'm shaving. 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Lathering Shave Gel with aloe keep your skin hydrated and a travel blade cover to keep your razor dry and easy to grab on the go so go to harrys dot com slash daily cast to start shaving better today. That's harrys dot com slash daily cast to get a free Harry's trial set and I love the packaging. It comes in to talk a lot about Kobe. Kenny Jay multi decade up wrestler. For the AWA. What do you were you around Hogan much when Hulk took off after retirement? Well I was there when the Hulk Hogan was in Wrestling here and me and him. We got along real great and I mean I never run guy but he was a lot younger than me but I I knew him real well but I guess Vents had him tied up. So you had to leave for New York and Yes yes but you know now I mean hulk was like seventeen. I think. Seventeen years older or younger than you. You know that. That's a generation or two. Did you look at Hogan when he was around as wild? This is the future of wrestling. This guy look at the way the crowds reacting to him. Or did you look at them? Somewhat skeptically going. This might be a fad. Because he doesn't look like the main event wrestlers who who. I've been in the ring with that. I've watched rob a crowd. So what was your perception? At that time I really look at him as a great adly great wrestler. He had a great physique. He had potential. You know he had everything going for him you know. And he was young and he had everything going for them and I would have to give anything in my My soul to be like him you know but I. There's no way I could because I wasn't in that great shape but he did have everything going for him and I got you all the credit for what did and all you know. He did And He made. He made him saw something themselves. I gotTa give him credit for that. Would you say that at that time you were in favor of of him? Being the new lead baby face the lead hero of the AWA. Did you look at this and go? Yeah this is the next big star well not a bad time because he just came into the territory and you know there was a great guy. You know walkway over and gone belly. Roberson you know he had to go to Grace Sable there to get to get on top you know but So he he had a lot to go yet. A lot of ways older yet on top but Like I said he had everything. Go on Vermeer's young. He had the physique he had to Allen he was. He was a great great wrestler. Kenny who was vern Ganja friends with among wrestlers. And who did he simply have a business relationship with among the top names? We've talked about or some of the other wrestlers that That were around. Burn a lot in other words. Who were his friends who he would call his friend. They would call him there in. Who looked at vern as a boss and colleague but really not a friend. He had wrestlers on the side. You know like the crusher. You know he was. He was a great guy. You know and And like I said when the when I was interviewed when he died. I said there will never be another crush air. You know and now verizon and they'll never be another verd- you know I mean. They all had their own ways and their own style. You don't like mad dog you know he's gone and he was a great friend of mine even though he kicked the crap out of me many times you don't but He did a lot of help for my benefit. You know and I appreciate what these guys and you know. It's hard to it's a you know. So Dale worrying there. They did their thing. They're all the rating. WanNa do great in the so I over and has the he has some good talent. You know so what he did. Good I I gotta say that where for Virgin was a great promoter. A great wrestler degrading family. Mem- when you were around the matches did vern carry himself as one of the boys or as the boss who separated himself out of necessity from mingling. Like you might have with other wrestlers did did I kind of have to put himself in a separate area or did he. Just if you didn't know he was the boss. Would you observe backstage? No he was funny would say that because I know one time he came in the TV station. He said I'm here. You're you guys are working for me you know and I couldn't believe that but You know it wasn't directly to me. But you know they they use for TV. They usually get guys in from Chicago and Canada. You know and And and some guys would reese Adams or looking you know but he he was a businessman. It was not a promoter. He was a businessman and he did. It does a great because you can look back on on his Ferrario and he did. He made money you know. So he was a great businessman Great Wrestler and he did everything right to t- so you know Vernon said he'll me got me Mohammed Ali. He got me in Japan. He got me. Put me in the six man tag. You know he didn't have to but Maybe world is the SOD buster. He's got potential. I don't know what it was but I really appreciate it to this day and I'll never forget it. Thank you for listening to the weight. Keller pro wrestling podcast. Be Sure to subscribe. Also if you haven't yet subscribed to the weight. Keller pro wrestling. Po shows this show. The podcast have our blue logo. The Weight Tiller progressing post shows have a red logo just search Wade. Keller an apple podcasts. Or wherever you listen to progressing podcasts. And Click subscribe to the red logo and you can download our raw smackdown. Eighty W and sometimes annex t PO SHOWS. I'm joined by CO host to add a different perspective to the analysis for the show where we talked to live callers onsite correspondent in the building who tell us what did not air TV and we also answer Male Bay questions. Those shows are available for download within a few hours after. The show's end on Monday Wednesday and Friday nights. So there's a fast turnaround to get your fix so check it out. That's the Wade. Keller pro wrestling post show just search. Wade. Keller you can also stream the show live at Wade Keller polls show dot com about five minutes after. The show's end on Monday Wednesday and Friday night. Kenny I can I. I'm sorry. Go ahead we let let me ask what I remember. Your thought sure did burn. Ever let his guard down and and relax as especially well at any time that you were around him or did he had different jobs. Kenny and you know the boss can only be so friendly with people who is writing paychecks out to right did never really let his guard down at the bar afterwards. Or when you're hanging out waiting around for this that or the other thing or travelling or did fern Kinda always have to have his guard up. Treat himself like Hey. You guys worked for me on the bus. No he the guy down sometime. I know we went to a fishing trip where he's He's placed in In Minnesota here and we you know he d- He D- He had parties for the guy sometimes. Now and then you know and we had would while they boy don't went out fish on and then we brought fish. I mean they made. That was once every five years or so. You know but he. He wasn't always a stern You know do this do that but He was a great guy and say once in a while he wouldn't let his hair down sorta speaking of but And and be a family man and a great great. You Know Promoter Mick. Yeah go ahead what I was going to say. Wait I. That's that's a good point and again I I you know. Talk not from first-hand experience because I was on the peripheral edges there and only would see certain things or hear certain things from the boys to your point about whether or not he had friends. I think he did. But it really depended on who you were And I don't know if it was necessarily the pecking order But and some of the younger guys that I would talk to who may have been disgruntled over the years working for her and of course you know these same guys made money you know they you know for all the the pissing and moaning that they do or did they certainly made money back in the day and and They didn't complain about that but I I don't know that had a wide social circle among the wrestlers I think Verne social circle was the rest of society. If that makes sense it does And maybe a handful of guys. I know that you know he and nick were were close. from a business standpoint again going back to the to the early sixties Wilbur. Snyder I think he and mad dog Rashad had a real good relationship with each other so I think it depends on who you were. Maybe not so much the undercard guys maybe their perception was you know. The burn is the boss. And I'm over here I think what I saw as time went on. And certainly my tenure in the Awa back in eighty seven. Eighty Eight I there really was a separation and maybe that was because of the tension. They add that the business had changed and things were changing a little bit. You know for burn so there really was that line drawn in the sand and you have the boys over here for the most part burn was over here and it's interesting. I mean even guys like Barron Raskin and Larry Hannigan Stan Kowalski Guys. Who you know made a lot of money and worked for burn for years and years and war on top. I don't necessarily think they would say the Verne was their best friend. But from a business standpoint. He took care of him. And you know what you don't have to be friends necessarily you know if if this is a business and we're making money And burn being the perfectionist in the in the professional that he was You know that that's just the way it was and You know I so school of Friends. Yeah the whole community was his school of France. I don't necessarily know about the boys per se but he didn't look down at the rest of like well they work for me. I'm friends with the governor. And with God's Oh Yeah. Yeah no no absolutely not. I think that you know again to your point earlier. was ruining genuine guy. Absolutely he was and and I think when it came to business business business and you know whether he was the taskmaster at the TV studios you know cutting promos for fifteen hours and banging his forehead when you know when the Promo go correctly or whatever it was you know that was the one side of burn gone yet it. It was business. We got a product here that we want to be believable. We want it to be you know top notch we want. No you know. We want to cross all the t's and dot the I's and make sure that this is the real deal. You CAN'T BLAME THEM FOR THAT. In the end that he rubs some people the wrong way because of that and because he became more hard nosed over the years probably absolutely he did but You know bottom line is dollars and sense and you can't argue with a promotion that lasted for fifty years and made a ton of money. Absolutely if you're a wrestling fan you're a fan of good story and if you're looking for a good story look no further than stories of your and yours. I'm Sean. Ns and on every episode of stories of your and yours. I narrate a classic or listener submitted. Short story adding music and sound effects to bring the story new flavor. I featured authors such as Edgar Allan Poe Kurt Vonnegut Ray Bradbury Mark Twain and many more. So don't wait any longer. Download stories of your. That'S WHY O. R. E. AND YOURS THAT'S Y. O. U. R. S. Today and if you WanNa hear clips and get more information you can find the show on facebook twitter and Instagram at S. Y. Y podcast that stories of your and yours available. Wherever you get your podcasts. I do want to say to you know. His final years suffering from Alzheimer's. He was mostly out of the public guy. He made that appearance three years ago. A little over three years ago at a A showing of the nineteen eighty four movie. The wrestler Gregogna was there. Greg Ghani was live on this show during that showing in the lead up to or because they they did. Multiple airings day in Gregogna was on the show that day and I encourage people listening to this. Vip member you can go right to the torch. Live cast interviews section. Just do a search on your browser for Greg on your Ganja and it'll take you to that page and if your life cast listener you might be able to dig through and find it but that I think it was. I think it was in January of twenty twelve. When when that when that was ratio and vern he had the incident at at a nursing home. gone a scuffle with a fellow. Last time he got a lot of publicity in this market was when he got into some sort of a scuffle with a fellow resident at the Care Center and that resident fell broke his hip and eventually died and then Vernon ended up being taken care of at home. And I've heard that his family cared for specially Donna. Ganja and I mean we haven't you know it's kind of it's not just cliche. I think it's genuine people. Say condolences to the family. But I do want to before we end the show. Make note of the fact that his family stuck by Kathy. And Greg Donna and Donna and others were there to to the absolute very end and I don't have a lot of details on his final days or anything like that but and I haven't seen the family talk about it other than they were by his side to the end and Donna had especially taken on a real intensive role in taking care of her dad during that time. Make you want to talk to Kenny? Because he's mentioned what a good family man from was mic talk about the dynamic with Verne and his kids his daughters and a son and working in the office. Greg working as a wrestler. In what you've heard in recent years about that dynamic if anything well in recent years you talked about the Alzheimer's taking You know taking the toll on Vernon and that is such an insidious insidious disease wait. I mean you know and there's more and more public awareness about it and sad to say a lot of the guys from Bruins era you know are are having difficulty with that and I know you know I. I've heard through the grapevine from some pretty reliable sources over the past few years There were times when it was a living hell You know going through that. Not just with vern. I mean he's the example we're talking about but Again it's insidious and and what the family has to be aware when they're caretaking is just incredible No his kids were incredibly devoted to him. they always were and the always stood up for. They were always they were. Pr For earned. Ganja I mean I remember I had done on on Saturday night ringside and I had Kathy on Saturday. Night a ringside. You know. He had a couple of times. And they were always the spokesman. There were always defending them. They were always defending the Awa so the loyalty was always there. And and of course Greg and it's really interesting. Greg occasionally now will refer to burn as my day Ab but a Lotta Times. He always call him vern over the years and I thought that was really really interesting. But but certainly the respect that he had for his father. justifiably. I think they were very very tight. Knit family and that goes to the extended family two year about the the cousins and brothers and relatives and everybody else You know who just rallied around bird all those years and especially in in the past few years so The family dynamic I think was beyond reproach in When you say condolences to the guy new family I mean condolences. I mean doesn't even begin to scratch service and I actually heard Greg on a podcast yesterday. another podcast and he was talking about the outpouring From the public has just been unbelievable beyond his wildest imagination the outpouring of love and affection for Verne. Ganja so Certainly a tight knit family. I just want to say one thing before we go about Working for ruined Guy And again I did it for a short time and I. I've told you before all those years that I worked for the Awa doing publicity and everything else which was from nineteen seventy-three on I have not talked to earn Ganja until Nineteen eighty-four begin. Imagine that I mean so. I'm doing all this publicity for the newspapers and everything else but wally carbon was my goal. Between so I real association with burn was from Nineteen eighty-four on and then of course in eighty seven when I started working out The showboat A lot of you know there are a lot of people. Say a lot of things about over the years and you know whether it's a former employee or whatever I mean ruined had his quirks you know as as the business was Changing and everything else but I gotta say I mean and you know I'm I'm getting up there too. I'm in Gregory Gym Brazil. You Know Age area and for me a kid of nine years old back in nineteen sixty getting on the ring apron getting burned down his autograph and then having the opportunity to work for him twenty seven years later. I mean vern gotten was my hero. I mean Virginia and Harmon killebrew were made to sports heroes. And whatever you say about Burn Ganja and you know I saw the temporary so the good side I saw the bad side. I was blessed. I was absolutely blessed and honored and it was a privilege to at one time. Be An employee of Verne. Ganja and you know I would just say to any of the young guys who want to study the history of pro wrestling and find out. What a real legend is. Look up run Ganja and I will be eternally grateful to him and Greg For putting me on the payroll and just working alongside burn down you was. It was a gift and I. I'm just I'm blessed. I'm rich band host of the deep dive with Richmond. A weekly part of the Pierre Torch Fairly cast lineup of shirts. Search torch an apple podcasts. Or your podcast. Subscribe every Saturday at six. Pm Eastern. I dive in with guests for an hour and anything in the world of wrestling or wrestling related. WanNa hear about the influence of historical figures. Like big can lead. We got you WanNa hear about how crazy marine movies got we are no topic is too big or too small so if you want to dive in with this call in live or listen on demand and see the entire. Pw Torch daily cast schedule at POW TOWARDS DAILY CASPER DOT COM. Let's let's bring Kenyan final words in that regard to Kenny. Talk about vern as you say as a family man and what what you observed whether it was at one of his party's or at a show when his his family might have been around and maybe even talk about the dynamic with Vernon Greg in the loyalty? That was there. Well I guess they Verne was does He. He loved wrestling he lived for wrestling. You know he did it all his life. Almost you know once he started going to Libya's nine forty eight I'll he He held me so much. You know I mean I was a nobody you know I was just getting injured. Assad buzzer came I'm from Holy Board farmer and and when I came out of the Army I came here to work for Wally Carville and then vern gone. They got in there you know and they helped me so much you know like I say they got to go to Japan for a month. Here and And then the I got the Mohammed Ali and they got three on the six man. You know I it's Nobody I never was a never did amateur thing because my school didn't have it in holy Lord but I I loved wrestling once they got going into into it. And Milwaukee you know and then when I finally got out of the army and come here and then he really helped me. I mean wally. Kara helped me build Jewish. I mean bill He told me you know. Yeah time I wanted to go to walkers year dairy and also you know I am not going to stick in my mind for the rest of my life you know and I got Wall Carpool and Burn Gandhi. And all you know all these guys do do thank you. Thank me so I gotTa thank him. All you know and And thanks a lot. You know Wayne for having me on absolutely Kenny at a and I'm just so pleased or able to join us you or around Verne for so many years and it's great to get a wrestler's perspective somebody who knew him as well as you did and as his grateful towards what he did for you as you are. So thank you for your name and and sticking with us here today okay absolutely a lot. Yes absolutely fight. The Greg Greg Guinier dynamic a little bit how just talk a little bit about that and take it where you want because Greg Vern top top star in Awa? Big Draw Greg Ganja ended up having a good solid career and I still. I talked to Steve Austin on his podcast and multiple times when when he spent on my shore. I've been on his. We talked about how Greg Gone is the prototypical guy in terms of a baby. Fae showing fire and just getting the crowd riled up like I mean there's a lot of Greg that Ernest baby-faced Promo is something. That's I won't say entirely missing from the business today. I think Sammy's and actually tap into it a little bit. But there's a lot that great did well but greg lived in the shadow of Verne and Verne. Took some heat for Promoting Greg. But he did stop short at promoted to the top. You know it's interesting it and I've always said great really. Got A bum rap. I mean he's he does to This Day. You know talking about you. Know the nepotism and everything else in the end. Greg wouldn't have been a star another promotional. I guess there's some truth to the fact that maybe he wouldn't have been on top heavy gone to another territory but to denigrate Greg's ability in the ring I think is really unfair First of all you got the size issue. It was always odds. There's no credibility there's no believability here. When you know Greg I'm tossing Bobby Duncombe Maurice Tossing around Jerry Blackwell or whatever. Well that's interesting because you got your Jeff Jarrett's and you got your kindle Wyndhams and you know you got guys like that You know the nobody really made an issue out of it As far as the size David and Goliath situation but Greg was one hell of a worker and you know you talk about the earnest baby face and that is absolutely a lost art. I agree with you I mean everything is so scripted anyway You know nobody really knows how to cut a serious baby face. I'M GONNA get my revenge kind of promo anymore. They they just don't So I think Greg really got a bomb rap. He sold his ass off for everybody. And you said foreign didn't push him right to the top you know he. He came a little bit short of that he gave him the taking titles with you know with. Brazil and of course he gave him the that international TV titled Towards the end of the AWA. Run there but ruin was smart enough not to put Greg right at the top because I think you know the wrestling fans especially as the business was changing. Would've just eaten them a life Which is too bad because Greg you look at some of the match Greg Bach Winkle You know or even Black Weller Brody or anybody like that and and Austin said well the baby fish on fire. I mean boy. I you talk about somebody believable Greg was yet so I I think in a and Greg took it seriously. I I gotTa tell you I worked. You know the time that I was there I saw Greg in the locker room. And boy I tell you what if you were in enhancement guy or somebody else that were taking it seriously. He was all over you and you know he defended the business. He defended his dad. I think he was a great worker and give her a credit for the fact that he didn't Porch Greg to the moon. I think he game just enough. Greg got tremendous fan response. People you know in this area. Don't you know around? The country might not realize just how over guidance Brunell were. And you know it's interesting you know Greg and Jim are going to be getting the you know the tag team award next year at Cauliflower Alley I think that speaks volumes for the recognition that Greg is is finally getting Towards the end there you know from the Awa. The wheel started to come off a little bit You know in Greg was kind of the face of the promotion there towards the end again. I think the bad rap started to follow him a little bit but I got nothing but respect for the guy and I think Verne handle him very very well and I think. Greg carried himself well considering all the criticism. He was getting my final topic for you. And you're certainly welcome. Bring up anything that you any topic that cross your mind that we didn't get to where I didn't get to but Verne's most successful opponents. Knickebocker comes to mind instantly. Billy Robinson did tell list kind of in order Who you think were the top five or expand that list if you want to. Who were that? Who was that top tier of opponents whose careers were defined by wrestling vern? And they helped define Verne's career. Wow that's really an interesting question I I think. Nick certainly is right. Up there I think mad dog was Sean Mad. Dog had a reputation But but certainly when he won the strap burn in nineteen sixty four method was kind of Journeyman as far as the AWA was concerned. Then all of a sudden you know he gets the title and the rest of history so I think he clearly benefited by you. Know getting the rubbed Robertson Billy again you know had a worldwide reputation but again getting in the ring and it was always burn. When you're going to defend the title against Billy Robinson and you know. This was in an era when Verne would get himself disqualified. You would go into. The ring is kind of the subtle. He'll a little bit against guys. Like Billy Robinson Bill Watts and Eduardo Carpaccio. And guys like that So I think Robinson definitely benefited from I think some of the other guys were probably established already. But you know the bill watts I think is another one that comes to mind. Crusher was already established. But you know I think you know just getting into the ring with a guy like vern You know certainly put your over his top five opponents per se Feuds over the years absolutely boxing Richon probably crusher for a time when crusher was a he`ll. Dick Beyer Dr Acts Very very worthy opponent. You know and tremendous feuds and then you go back to the nineteen fifties and Vernon Liu says at a series of matches all over the Horn so He was the real deal and What else can you say? I know on a personal level as this news broke. I followed you on facebook and this hit you hard. I mean it was. It's not I wouldn't say it was unexpected in the sense that he's eighty nine years. Old suffering from Alzheimer's doesn't make a lot of public appearances. And did I say he's eighty nine years old? I mean just statistically speaking. It's not the same thing as of as of thirty four year old getting hit by a bus that said it's the absolute period at the end of such a huge public figure in your life as a fan as you ease your way into the businesses or in a different role in the businesses the Knick fan club president and putting out the the excellent buckle brigade newsletter and then working for Vernon Awa. I mean just on a personal level. Not that hasn't come through but there is something about the news that he is gone. That clearly hit you hard. It did and What's really interesting and I and I mentioned this to somebody the other day to wait. You know in in life we've got there's constance that we hang onto you know especially as you get older and you know even if you don't see that constant or feel it every day it's still out there and for me you know from the time. I'm nine years old as a wrestling fan. And then getting involved in the business. The one constant has been burned gone. Yep Turns always been there whether it's you know talking about my. Espn days or joking. With the guys abroad burn Ganja and all of a sudden what it is. It's it's the old mortality thing. It's the finality of it and for me. You know I mean I look at you know. Over the past few years Billy Robinson mad dog Rashaan the crusher. I mean these guys that were mainstays in the Awa Red Bastien Ray Stevens. They're gone race. Even they're they're gone and from that era. And you know you go to Cauliflower Alley Club and you see the boxer and goes in the Harley racist of the world you know. They're they're struggling physically and mentally. And it's so it's the end of an era and for me personally. You said that it hit me hard. And it really wasn't unexpected. Because I would always talk to house vern doing well. You know he's mentally. He's not doing very well but physically. He could go another ten years. I mean that was always the you know what people were saying that there were there were close to him So when I got the news it wasn't totally unexpected. But what's happening with me? Is that every day. It's getting harder and harder and you know the reality is really setting in and you know it's it's a part of that childhood being plucked away from you know it it's that There's another piece stornoway and another guy has gone. He belongs to the ages now. So yeah it. It's hitting me a lot harder than I thought it would. And not because so much that I work with earn Ganja but because Verne Ganja was he was ninety ninety percent of my life as been somehow or another version. Guy has been involved so yeah you know whether there's a fan or is it. An employee is his or whatever it's It's a tough one because it's a very tough one when he become a VIP member one of the perks. We don't talk a lot about the back issues every week. We drop another twenty years ago back issue on our website. You can read it in. Pdf and all text format in early two thousand. It was a fascinating time. That's when the radicals jumped from w w to the WWF. You can read all the behind the scenes details as that story developed week after week. Also the launch of the xfl. What was my take on that story and the debut of the new league plus some analysis of the early ratings. Also my exclusive feature-length one on one interview with the Rock Dwayne Johnson the longest insider interview he has ever done with journalist checked out with VIP membership also my roster evaluations with depth charts for www e and e c w as the year two thousand kicked off. Plus the latest controversies behind the scenes. And W W including a cover story on how Hogan was damaging morale fascinating behind the scenes details on what was going on again contemporaneous well sourced detailed reporting on so many behind the scenes happenings in w. w. and the WWF at that time so go VIP and check out those stories right now. Pw TORCH DOT COM SLASH KGO VIP. That's PW TORCH. Dot Com slash Gobi Ip. A new back issue from the year two thousand drops on its twentieth anniversary every weekend. Have you heard over the last? Say Twenty five years since the AWA went under? Was there a stretch of time in the nineties. Where vern enjoyed a quality of life where he got to reap the rewards of the decades of hard work. I know there were financial problems despite living the high life for decades. But did you hear anything about what he did during his healthier years mentally and physically after the Awa went under you know I really didn't hear a lot and and what I did hear wasn't necessarily great. I mean only you know you mentioned the financial problems I know there was a bankruptcy situation and You know so. He kind of went under there and then as early as you know maybe ten twelve years ago he was already starting to show early signs of dementia. So I'm not so sure that you know. The verdict ever really got to enjoy the fruits of his labors. All those years i. I'm sure there was a time but I you know over the past twenty twenty five years. I don't know you know again I wasn't there. You hear the negative stuff you know so I obviously I don't know on a personal note how things were going with this family et Cetera. You hear the bad stuff year the bankruptcies you hear the you know the dementia setting in you hear about all those kinds of things. So from an outsider's perspective. I I don't know I don't ever he I don't know that he got what he let's put it this way. I don't think he he got what he learned. I think he run was entitled to a better better last couple of decades. I I will say if there's a lesson in there for for the waiver and lived as took. The summers off played tennis He he could have worked harder in earned more and he didn't and it part of that comes from being the boss and having that luxury but I will say at least. We don't look back at vern going. He worked every single day of his life. Tirelessly never did anything. Because he was thinking in my sixties that's or my seventy sixty seventies golden years and that's when I'll really the pay off mic. I think it's fair to save. Vern lived a really good life even with the stress and the disappointment of the turn that the business took in the eighties. He enjoyed life in the fifties sixties and seventies to a great degree to the point where some people like were critical of either. How infrequently was choosing to wrestle or the time he took off in the summers one of the reasons. Nick Bachman goes stuck around even though he could earn more money in the NWEA was a quality of life issue. Working for the AWA. I think Verne Kinda was onto something with that and instead of being critical of that I kind of think so people should think. Maybe he's got the right idea. A lot of people in different parts of the world certainly take more leisure time out and burn did and I think that's something that's a solid for people who feel bad that he didn't things took a turn for the worse in the sixty seventies and eighties. He he sure seemed to make sure. He got the most out of life in his twenties thirties. Forties and fifties. Oh he absolutely did and that. That's a great point. And you know you had mentioned the you know the last twenty twenty five years again. That's that's Kinda what things going to tailspin a little bit but my God back in the day. Yeah and again. I think a lot of that has to do with the celebrity and burn enjoyed every minute of air. I mean you know on on on a social circle. I mean this guy is everything I mean. He was as big. We've about this earlier as any athlete. You know in the state of Minnesota history probably and it's not hyperbole to say he was hobnobbing with the politicians and the you know the the high rollers and whoever it is so yeah burn had a hell of a Rut. He had a great life You know certainly. He lived the life of luxury He lived the life of a very very very successful Businessman and entrepreneur for a good portion of his life. And you know so. Yeah certainly I mean the early part of his retirement or his is waning years. I guess We're far better than the and and yeah I mean he was a lucky guy and you know it. It's just sad the way it turned out to your point. Oh yeah he he had some fun no doubt about it make. I say it every time it's such a pleasure having you on. I figure we could go six hours and not run out of things to talk about. You are tremendous in this format and I really appreciate you giving us more than ninety minutes of your time here and helping facilitate J. being part of the show one of ferns true contemporaries who is still around and added a dimension to the show. So thank you for all of that. I really appreciated weight and again You know thanks for having me on the end Kenny. Jay can't say enough. Good things about Kenny. My God you know. He's he's almost eighty years old and can't J. Always GonNa be Kenny. Jay and One more Go ahead I said yes. I was just nodding and an an and also again condolences to To Greg in in the guy and your daughters and everybody else and Burns GonNa be missed and Thanks for the Opportunity Idiots. Nice to be able to talk about them. Excellent thanks to our listeners for joining US certainly a little bit off the beaten path a little bit from our usual format. But we've certainly gone to Awa history and wrestling history at times with various various guests with Jerry Jarrett on talking about Memphis wrestling promoting wars in the eighties and and Randy Hales from Memphis and bill. Dundee one of our guests. When we went to the interview Friday format I enjoyed talking wrestling history. It is I feel like I know so. Little compared to just percentage wise of what there is to know about this business and being part of it in the way that I happen for so long as always fascinating to to connect some extra dots at an extra anecdote and learn a little something. Extra I do from you mic. I did from Kenny Jay. And it is yeah. It's amazing how much how much better I think I understand today than ten and twenty years ago and how much of that just came in the last few days too so anyway. I appreciate the opportunity. Yes very thank you make things to our listeners. I will sign off on that note. I did mention if somebody wants. Vip and dig into our twenty seven years of archives including previous round table. Discussions including McCarthy's appearances on the program focused radio show in the early nineteen nineties. Those were some really special shows. Make if you're still there remember that while the Carbo tribute show that we did I would point people to that wall Iverson's business partner. What a character. He was People want to this era of wrestling fascinates people in the more you learn more. You want to know the Wally Carbo tribute show on pressing. Focus is part of the people that you torch. Vip Website Archives. Just go down to the Retro Radio Shows Option on the right side bar on our members homepage and scroll down to that. We had Roger Kent Elder Russia. Jim Brown Zell George Shire and of course biggest name of all. Nick Balk Winkle as part of that discussion. It was just really fun stories and just various times that nick was in studio. I think a couple times and on the show others it was always Real Special Bach winkle on the pricing focus show too and anytime you and George and the gang got together to talk old Awa. The PHONE LINES LIT UP. So that stuff is out there and we had. Ken resnick on the show. Just a few months back earlier this year. Talking about his. Stay IN THE AWA. And he can fill in some of the some stories about that era that he was part of with the road warriors. Post Hogan Post Vern Gone. Yeah as a headline wrestler but still working for the AWA during that time. So there's a lot of resources out there. And then Bruce Mitchell and I did a real time commentary on the wrestler movie from Nineteen Seventy Four. That is in the Bruce Audio archives. We have a best Bruce Mitchell audio show option that you can choose on the menu for that different audio shows on our main page scroll down and stream or download that show we literally sat down sync up our TV's and watched the movie and just commented on things you might not notice what the the success of the movie. The acting. The different roles billy Robinson's history earns. History it's a really fun show so again for people who made it as far in this discussion about that's just a sampling of things that you can pull out an audio format to add to it. This Person Torch newsletter has a cover story that just touches a surface what Verne men but hits a lot of the high points and also my Endo territorial with excerpts that first torch talk where vern opened my eyes to how news making interview format could be and I pulled out some quotes from that in end notes this week regarding Hogan and Bruiser Brody and Vincent Man that are pretty interesting in poignant so anyway the place go for VIP S. P. W. Torch Dot com slash Kgo. Vip THAT'S P W dot com slash KGO VIP when you sign up. It's ten bucks a month. Twenty seven fifty for three months for ninety nine dollars for a year in it unlocks the deepest richest library of insider wrestling coverage in real time format. We covered it as it happened. And you can get twenty seven years of archives over well over thousand issues with I torch newsletter hundreds and hundreds of hours of audio contemporary and retro. It is an amazing sight to explore. I'm very proud of what we built. And if you've enjoyed this discussion you will find. I think endless fascination in going VIP and digging into those archives again thanks to McCarthy. Thanks to Kenny. Jay thanks to the listeners and also as I said in this torture newsletter thanks to earn Ganja the Awa his Lee his title reign in retirement. Madge drew me to the building. I was already in love with wrestling. But that just accelerated it being in that facility and getting a chance to get a taste of that era at the tail end before the transition to rockin wrestling Hulk Hogan Wrestlemainia the nationalization of wrestling to be able to get a glimpse and a taste very immersive and memorable and special taste of that era reflective of the sixties and seventies was was a really neat opportunity for me and heck thanks for Verne for. Maybe he was duped into notice. Get into but for doing that interview with me. He didn't have to do that in that first. Torch talk with me and that helped put pro wrestling torch in the torch. Talk Format on the map and yeah. I've had a whole range of memories with Verne and it was. It was just amazing this week kind of going through my mind all the different stages of how I perceive Vernon and how I experienced burn as a fan as a journalist and now looking back at his his life in his career so quite the week and quite the show and again big thanks to make Karsh and also of course sod buster any J. for their help in making this show come together until next time we'd Keller Signing Aloha Torch faithful this is Kelly wells host. Pwg talks xt every Thursday. You can hear me and My Gang Idiots Tom Style. Who share thoughts from the live tapings and torch recap limbered as well as a rotating cast of guests cover the matches and events in Inex- t live on USA network? Search torching and Apple podcasts. Or Your podcast. App to subscribe or listen on demand and see the entire. Pw Torch daily cast schedule at POW torch. Daily past dot. Com Cheers Harley. Remember the days. When women's wrestling matches were relegated to the mid card dumping ground and treated like glorified intermission. You mean the era when it was only men in the top spots in the Fed's get in the biggest matches. Yeah vaguely seriously. While we might have a long way to go we really have come a long way baby. And that's why we started grit and glitter cast covering the best in the world of women's wrestling from the Horse Women of WWe to the goddesses of startup and everyone in between each Tuesday. Emily myself and our team of guest. Correspondence talk the best matches and the biggest news in women's wrestling plus interviews deep ties in discussions about everything for media representation to gear to women behind the scenes roles. Just search P W torch in the PODCAST APP of your choice to subscribe or listen on demand and see the entire. Pw Torch Daycare schedule at POW. Torched cast dot com audible is offering listeners of this podcast. A free edition of Jim. Ross is under the black hat or for that matter any book title of Your Choosing in their vast collection of thousands and thousands of books. If you go to audible dot com slash wade or text weighed two five hundred dash five hundred. That's right Jim Ryan is under. The black cat. Came out just a couple of weeks ago available to you right now for free. In his new book he goes into detail that I haven't heard before there's one point pretty early in the book where he says I'd call it the dam. Flavors steamboat trilogy. And now I was trying to get punch holes to line up in the stupid paper on my stupid desk. I wanted to be on the frontlines not behind a desk. Go check out the new Jim. Ross memoir of his time in. Wwe with some great stories from years and years ago and more recently. That's under the black hat at audible DOT COM SLASH. P W torch now. It's not just pro wrestling books and it's not just books. Audible is much more than audiobooks. 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Awa wrestling Verne Ganja Verne Verne Wayne Kenny vern Ganja WWF Wade Keller VIP Minnesota Vince McMahon Minneapolis Buster Jay Steve Austin Vernon Wally Awa Chris Vanua Las Vegas Nick Balk Winkle