Jericho welcomes James Ellsworth to the show.
Ellsworth points out that he didn’t expect to sign a WWE contract until the moment they offered him one. Ellsworth admits that he didn’t even have a contract while he was working the main event angle on Smackdown Live with A.J. Styles.
He was able to have a great 16-month run in WWE before being released, but he was very dissapointed with his release nonetheless. He points out that professional wrestlers always wants more, and he still thinks he had more to give.
Jericho points out that Ellsworth’s run was fantastic, because he was on television during his entire run in a high profile spot. Jericho adds that Ellsworth had more World Championship shots than he did during his 16-month run.
Ellsworth informs that it was Carmella’s idea for them to pair up. She went to Vince McMahon with the idea and he loved it. He pulled them both into his office shortly thereafter and that was a nerve-wracking experience. McMahon told them that he wanted this pairing to generate some heat for Carmella, and Ellsworth promised McMahon that he’d make that happen.
Speaking about his release, Ellsworth fears that he may have become too comfortable during his last couple months there, arguing creative ideas and thing of that nature. He informs that his last couple of days in the company seemed perfectly normal to him. There was nothing out of the ordinary backstage, and McMahon even praised him and Becky Lynch after their inter-gender match on Smackdown Live.
He went home for his days off and suddenly received a call out of the blue from Mark Carrano. Caranno told him the bad news, saying the company felt as if Ellsworth’s character had run it’s course. Ellsworth says he started spitting out creative ideas to Caranno, pointing out that there was still so much more to do with Carmella’s Money in the Bank briefcase. He also proposed a transition to 205 Live, but nothing worked.
Jericho doesn’t think Ellsworth should take his release personally. He thinks that Ellsworth did a great job and that’s what made his run last as long as it did. He doubts that Ellsworth did anything to make McMahon want to release him; sometimes McMahon just feels like he got what he needed out of certain characters and then he moves on.
Ellsworth points out that prior to receiving a contract with WWE, he was told that they had a creative idea for him at SummerSlam. The idea never happened, but Ellsworth informs that he was supposed to have a contract match against Heath Slater, where he’d pick up the victory and win a WWE contract. Slater started to receive babyface reactions on Smackdown during that time, so WWE had to change their plans.
Ellsworth says he never gets scared, but he was terrified the night he faced A.J. Styles on Smackdown Live. This fear almost cost him his life because he failed to take the Styles Clash correctly.He tucked his chin while taking the move and this was a huge mistake. Luckily, Styles realized what was happening and adjusted quickly to save Ellsworth.
Jericho informs that he was the one who got the Styles Clash unbanned when Styles debuted in WWE. He says the secret was to never call it the Styles Clash around McMahon, because that name was taboo. Jericho points out that the Styles Clash is such an easy bump to take if you do it correctly.
Ellsworth pinned Styles that night without a WWE contract, and then fought Styles for the WWE Title shortly thereafter, still without a WWE contract. Jericho says that has to be the only time that’s ever happened.
He informs that working with Dean Ambrose was most fun he’s ever had in the business. He adds that Styles is unbelievably nice – almost so nice that it’s hard to believe he’s been successful in the wrestling business. They were both so kind to him during that program.
Jericho informs that plans change in WWE all the time. He informs that he and Kevin Owens were actually supposed to wrestle in the main event of WrestleMania last year, where Jericho was booked to win the Universal Title. However, once Goldberg and Brock Lesnar’s feud heated up, McMahon had to make a business call and he went with the bigger box office draw which was Lesnar versus Goldberg.
Ellsworth informs that Carmella is a very sweet Woman. She called him upon his release and they talked for a long time. He’s still great friends with her and they text everyday. He admits that he cried when he got signed in WWE and he cried when he was let go, but Carmella helped him get through his release that day.
Ellsworth informs that he’s been in huge demand on the indie scene since his WWE release, and he’s forever grateful to WWE for giving him an opportunity. He’s determined to make the most of his situation, so that he can earn a living from professional wrestling for the rest of his life.
That sums up this week’s episode of Talk is Jericho. You can listen to the show yourself anytime here, and I’ll catch ya next week for another recap!