Here are some highlights from the interview -
A return at the Royal Rumble -
“I can post a picture of me and the Pope on Instagram or Twitter and the first three thousand comments will be: ‘When are you coming back to the WWE?’
“People are so obsessed with that. My response is that I don’t know. I talked about this the last time I was on the show in New York for Fozzy. I don’t have any plans.
“Not to say that I won’t but as you can see there are a lot of really cool projects that are going on under the Chris Jericho brand umbrella and I think that just adds to me being an asset to the WWE and spreading my wings as much as I can and gaining the biggest fan base I can.
“I’m not retired from wrestling, I never said that. The time has to be right and soon eventually it will be right.
“I came back to the Royal Rumble last year and to come back at the Royal Rumble this year, it would be like: ‘We’ve been there and done that’. I have to see what’s going on and figure out another cool way to make it work when the time is right.”
The next guy in WWE –
“I think anybody can be the face of the company, if the fans dictate it.
“I think sometimes the powers-that-be may have different opinions but the thing about Daniel Bryan is that his rise is very organic. It happened basically in spite of the way he was getting pushed.
“I think if I had to pin point a moment that it happened, it was during that eighteen second loss at WrestleMania last year where people were legitimately angry that the company could treat him that way and started to really get behind him as a character. I think when everybody is chanting his name and the guy goes out there as possibly the best wrestler in the world and a great character and a great performer, why not?
“You need something different to replace the one that’s on top as we saw when they were trying to replace Hulk Hogan for so many years until Bret Hart stepped up. I think he can be the face of the company if they so desired.”
The rise and the falls being a test from within -
“If you are a conspiracy theorist, you would think that.
“All I know is from my experiences and if you look how I came into the WWE in 1999, it was the biggest thing in a long, long time. You look at the timeline of that, two or three weeks later, I was losing to Stevie Richards on Sunday Night Heat.
“There is always a growing process and if you remember the famous title match I had with Triple H where I beat him for the title back in 2000 and then was forced to give it up a few minutes later and what people forget about that is at the end of the show, I got pinned by Hunter in a six man tag team match, clean, 1-2-3.
“You always wonder that sometimes they do the opposite of what you would expect to happen as far as the way you would book things.
“I think that there is kind of a test, can this guy get over? Can he sink or swim? What’s going to happen if we pull a swerve on him? Will he have a bad attitude? Will he stop working hard? You never know.
“My response to that is all you can do is the best you can do with whatever situation you are given. If you get too far with it, you got to make a stand and say something.
“Before I won the title that time at State College, Pennsylvania against Triple H, I was on my way to Vince’s (McMahon) office; it was like the movie Slap Shot: ‘Who owns the Chiefs? Pay me or I will leave’ sort of thing. I’m done!
“I lost to Viscera, I lost to the Godfather and this was a waste of my time. I’m done. The writer at that time was Tommy Blacha at the time and he said: ‘Listen, before you go to Vince, I have to say something.’
“I said: ‘There is nothing you can say that’s going to change my mind.’
“He said: ‘You’re going to win the World Title tonight.’
“And that changed my mind.
“You just got to hold on and Eddie Guererro’s told me that his dad used to say: ‘The cream will always rise to the top. If you can wrestle, you will always have a job and you will get to the top.’ I still believe that.
“Whatever kind of politics or dipsy-doodles may happen, all you got to do is keep performing to the best of your ability and sooner or later you are going to get that shot.”
Thoughts on Shawn Michaels getting back in the ring -
“Honestly knowing Shawn (Michaels), I don’t think so. That’s my opinion. He could but you look at the way he went out, in one of the greatest matches of all time at WrestleMania in the main event with this huge reception.
“The performer of Shawn Michaels caliber and his ego, and I say that in a good way because we all have egos, he is not going to come back for anything for less than that. I don’t think you are going to get anything bigger than that.
“Undertaker versus Shawn Michaels, in my opinion, were the two greatest matches ever. What can compare to that? My gut feeling says no, of course I don’t know but if you ask me, I’d say no.
“The reason why Taker and Shawn worked is that you have two guys that are on the same exact level, iconic performers that no one can really touch. Maybe Shawn versus Triple H is something that maybe they would do but I don’t think that’s even big enough.
“I think that door is closed for Shawn and I think he is happy doing what he is doing and I think that’s the same for Steve Austin. I think he very satisfied with his career, I don’t think he feels the need to comeback.
“Sometimes it happens. As much as the wrestling fans demand it, sometimes if you feel that you did everything that you wanted to do and you’re happy, then why mess with it.”
Thoughts on the Big Show being the most exciting that he has been -
“I only know from what I read in the reports. I haven’t had the chance to watch a lot of the shows because I have been busy on the road.
“The Big Show has been around for so long and has performed at the highest level in some many different angles, in so many different personas.
“I think he is one of the most taken for granted performers in the history of the WWE. He can do anything, he can have a great match every single night but when he is motivated, he goes to a totally different level.
“I think all you have to say to Show is that: ‘You are going to be involved in the main event storyline (Randy) Orton and Hunter and I think that’s all that Show needs to turn it up some more.
“I think that Show at eighty percent is better than eighty percent of the roster.
“But when he is motivated, there are not a lot of performers that can touch him. I think he is very underrated. I think he is taken for granted by the fans and by the company.
“If I was going to start my own wrestling company, Big Show would be in the top 5 easily, easily, and easily.”