RECAP AND REVIEW: Killing the Town with Abyss on working in Puerto Rico, his current role in Impact, what Dutch Mantell taught him, a major mistake that TNA made in the past

Killing the Town

Release Date: July 17, 2018

Recap by: Dust


Finally a proper long KTT episode after a long period of half hour shots, once Lance left.

350 Days film discussion and a nice interview with Abyss.

Cyrus and Lazenby start with a discussion about  the 350 Days premiere at the LA Chinese Theatre, an interview and archival photo documentary film about the 350 days that pro wrestlers used to spend on the road (with legends including Bret Hart, Billy Graham, Abdullah the Butcher, Luger, Greg Valentine, Orndorff and Diabase).

Then some t-shirt promos for Roots of the Fight.  

Cyrus moves to the start of the G1, he was there for the first two days. Plugs Omega vs Naito in the first round, Kenny won, looking great. Suzuki looked like he was coming to intervene and frightened Cyrus.

Lazenby wants Suzuki to get his hands on Cyrus. Cyrus plans to outrun Kevin Kelly and run for the airport if needs to.

Lazenby calls Disco Inferno an uninventive online hater who blurts things out thinking he’s cool. They discuss shock comedians like Richard Pryor and Sasha Baron Cohen, comparing them to Cyrus. Dino Velvet (Cyrus’ alter ego?) is unfortunately on hiatus.

They move on to Slammiversary.

Eli Drake and Tessa Blanchard are officially signed to Impact. Lazenby complains about Sami Callihan being booked for the Jericho cruise.

Konnan uses the name Paul “Security to the Stars” Lazenby. Konnan is instigating. Lazenby discusses the heat with Disco Inferno. They want Jim Ross in speedos and cowboy boots on the cruise.

Random talk including meeting Jarod Joseph (?) at the airport (?).

Lazenby plugs Gears of War 5, Roots of Fight shirts and When We Were Bouncers.

Cyrus also does his plugs.

They joke about Lance being dead and a boring ghost.

25:30:- Interview with Abyss, longest remaining tenured wrestler on the Impact roster.

Cyrus was Abyss’ first manager in TNA, and says that Abyss was the best wrestler he managed in TNA.

Abyss is mostly working creative but has limited his appearances before camera, like Brock. Abyss has known most of the team for more than a decade.

Cyrus wants to talk Puerto Rico.

Abyss was from June 2002 to June 2003 in Puerto Rico and loved it. C towns on Thursday, B towns on Friday, A town on Saturday and a C or D town on Sunday.

Puerto Rico was dangerous.

Abyss was a household name and getting thrown at with fruit walking home from the grocery store, let alone getting slashed with sticks on the way to the ring. Luckily he didn’t have to ever fight a fan – avoided getting stabbed or shanked because there was a lot security.

Abyss was with IWA, running opposition to the WWC (former CSP, NWA member, Carlos Colon).

Abyss suddenly was walking out to 14,000 people, coming from the tiny indies starting in 1995. His first gimmick was a 350 lb Jerry Lawler. Dutch Mantell saw him and told him he needed to change his gimmick to one of a monster – gave him the name Abyss. The name change and adding a mask (initially face paint) transformed his career.

Cyrus interrupts, talking about his experience with Puerto Rico. Colon offered him a year contract and a belt. Cyrus wanted to take a look first and every veteran was telling him, DON’T GO (same with the advice giving to Abyss). Colon was famous for keeping money back to stop wrestlers for leaving. Cyrus negotiated a six week trip. Cyrus was hassled at customs for bringing his wrestling boots. Landing in San Juan, nobody met him at the airport. Bad News Allen told him via phone to lay down the law to Carlos but Cyrus was wary of making enemies. Cyrus finally got picked up and he was taken to a fourth world apartment with roaches everywhere. Even though he wasn’t picky at the time, after Canadian death tours, he decided to go back home.

Abyss also had issues in Puerto Rico but he bonded with Dutch Mantell and a few other brothers.

Despite any problems, Abyss was making good money, hitting the beach every day, having fun with his friends at the gym and bars, he basically loved his time in Puerto Rico.

Abyss came back and immediately hooked up with Jeff Jarrett at TNA thanks to Dutch. He appeared on the first TNA PPV, June 19th 2002 (AJ Styles was also there…)

Cyrus mentions that Dutch wanted him to smoke a pipe and wear a bow-tie in TNA, Cyrus thought Dutch was ribbing him. Nowadays, Cyrus wants to learn from Dutch’s learning tree because the stuff that drives the business hasn’t changed over the decades. Dutch didn’t use to board shows and plan them out, he focused on the main show and the one big angle. Dutch taught Abyss to focus on the ‘money’.

Cyrus says that booking a territory where they don’t know it’s a work is so much easier, i.e. wrestling in the ’90s in South Africa.

They talk about episodic tv being difficult to book.

Abyss loves Puerto Rico for people ‘believing’ it.

They put over classic wrestling.

Cyrus is a Kerry Von Erich mark, the ‘best body’ in the business while being athletic and a god.

Cyrus says that Cody Rhodes is on the few true heels in the business and tells him to be too amusing – keep his heat. Heels need to be chicken s**t, retreat, don’t do the Phoenix Splash and stutter – not be too cool.

Abyss says that nowadays people, especially heels, work for the pop and chants. Abyss puts Sami Callihan over as being a good heel. Cyrus likes Sami having a fifth gear.

Cyrus says he still believes in babyfaces and heels – that’s the fundamental of the business and he agrees with Jim Cornette on that. He told a wrestler at catering who said faces and heels don’t exist any more that the wrestler should believe in them because the office believes. Abyss says the major ingredient of wrestling is good vs. bad, a massive mistake was TNA moving away from that in the past. They compare wrestling to movies – Jack Reacher and Die Hard had a heel and a face, every good action film has the good vs evil dynamic. Tracy Smothers told Abyss in 1997, you got to have those dragons to slay or you got nothing.

Abyss enjoys being his character nowadays with longevity and playing the babyface.

One last Puerto Rico story – Abyss was in the locker room where Bruiser Brody was murdered, with Scott Hall and Rick Steiner, they got the tour where everything happened.

Cyrus says that Brody was fine with people who he liked and would have had a great career with WWE.

Cyrus wants Abyss back on the podcast.

About Dust

Not an Attitude Era fan, watches old wrestling but likes Nakamura/Styles/Kevin Owens, listens to too many podcasts. @twitdust

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