I recently spoke with former WWE star Matt Striker. In the second and final part of the interview below, Striker discussed commentating, if Vince would yell at him on commentary, being replaced by Booker T, Vince as a boss, “Macho Man” Randy Savage not being in the WWE Hall of Fame, his WWE departure, TNA and much more.
You can check out the first part of the interview here, where Striker discussed being a wrestling fan growing up, wrestling while teaching and getting outed, signing with WWE, how he became a commentator, competing at Wrestlemania 23, ECW and much more.
Also, you can check out Striker in action this weekend as he faces WWE Hall of Famer Jerry “The King” Lawler at this Saturday’s Wrestling Under the Stars II at Dutchess Stadium in Fishkill, NY.
Wrestling INC: After the ECW brand folded and you were on SmackDown, you were getting more and more commentary gigs and your roles were increasing. Were you getting much feedback backstage about how things were going?
Striker: The feedback is when your name is on the sheet the next week, you know you did a good job. I’m not one of those guys, and I’ve watched a lot of guys, you’d be surprised, a lot of guys that you see on TV now that walk around confident, like top, top talent.
They’ll come back through the curtain, and they’ll just be looking with puppy dog eyes for Vince to give them a thumbs up. I always found that so sad. You got to know how good you are. You know if it was good or not out there, because if you don’t then you’re not a pro.
So I would know when my broadcasts were good and it would inspire me to try to be better, and I’d know when they were bad. I didn’t need to go and get a lot of feedback. When they want you to know something, they’ll come get you and say, hey listen, this is how it’s going to be now. Okay.
Wrestling INC: I know a lot of talent have talked about how difficult it can be having Vince McMahon yelling through the headset while they’re on commentary.
Striker: I think that is a myth that the internet has helped perpetuate, and I’m sure guys like Mick and Taz have different relationships with Vince.
Everyone likes to think that they know what goes on in those headsets. I will say to you right now, Vince never screamed in my ear. Ever. He gave me passionate instruction, but that man never shouted at me, talked down to me, treated me poorly.
So, I just feel a responsibility that people should know that the Vince that they read about in a lot of the interviews, that’s not the Vince I experienced.
Maybe because I wasn’t close enough with him as Mick or Taz were, but I never had Vince screaming at me. I don’t know what it was. Maybe he felt bad for me or maybe he was afraid of me because he knows I’d come and punch him in his face [joke]. But I doubt that.
Wrestling INC: So how was Vince as a boss?
Striker: He’s the most benevolent, generous man I’ve ever met in my entire life and he has enough money to do whatever he wants, but all he cares about is the product.
He’s more like you and I and the fans than people give him credit for. He’s a fan! Think about it. He has to be the ultimate fan if he puts all of his money into this product, to making these movies, to making these video games, these action figures. He’s the biggest fan of them all. He’s a great boss to work for.