PWTorch editor Wade Keller presents a special Thursday Flagship edition of the Wade Keller Pro Wrestling Podcast featuring a WrestleMania 36 Preview with ex-WWE Creative Team member and professional stand-up comedian Matt McCarthy.
(Search “wade keller” to subscribe in podcast app or CLICK HERE to subscribe in Apple Podcasts.)
Brock Lesnar and Chris Jericho had a backstage altercation following the Summerslam main event. According to multiple accounts, it was based on a misunderstanding about how the match between Lesnar and Randy Orton ended, Jericho’s perceived role as a locker room leader, and tensions running high in the locker room for multiple reasons.
The timeline of events includes:
– In the Summerslam main event, Brock Lesnar “TKO’ed” Randy Orton with elbows to the head that cut open Orton, drawing significant blood. After Lesnar finished the match angle by giving Shane McMahon and F5, Lesnar made his way to the backstage area.
While the angle was still unfolding, Jericho approached the Gorilla position wanting to know about the finish. Was it a “shoot” where Brock went into business for himself knocking out Orton, and the locker room needed to deal with Lesnar? Or, was it part of the worked ending to get over Lesnar as a vicious fighter?
Jericho did not get an answer he was looking for, prompting him to lash out about feeling like he was being kept in the dark. Jericho called his treatment b.s. just as Lesnar walked back through the curtain.
– Lesnar confronted Jericho at the Gorilla position, believing the b.s. line was directed at him. They had a verbal exchange that included Lesnar taunting Jericho and they had to be separated.
– Vince McMahon got involved, telling Jericho to be a professional and understand that it was a work.
The broader context is the locker room has been on edge, especially as it relates to UFC fighter Conor McGregor. McGregor had his UFC return fight on Saturday night, and Jericho was one of the more vocal WWE stars on Twitter saying he doesn’t give a s— about UFC.
Jericho, who carries himself as a locker room leader, felt like he should have been in the loop about the Lesnar-Orton finish. The tension about UFC mixed with the MMA-style outcome of Lesnar “TKO’ing” Orton, which cast doubt on work vs. shoot in the moment, heated up the room.
Plus, the WWE crew had been at the Barclays Center for a full day, WWE was wrapping up a four-hour PPV and six-hour total event that made for a long night, and Jericho had wrestled more than three hours earlier in the opening match of the PPV. So, Jericho was still at the building long after he finished up, creating a situation where Jericho wanted to feel included after sticking around to watch the PPV main event.
There is also a sense of Lesnar being an outsider, especially with WWE saying that Brock is not subject to Wellness Policy testing because he is a part-timer. Jericho seemed to feel the need to assert himself as a locker room representative if Lesnar took liberties with Orton, which turned out to not be the case.
Overall, it made for an interesting conclusion to the night and captures the rising tension of the locker room, especially at the end of a long night and long week in New York.
[ Details reported by the Wrestling Observer and Pro Wrestling Sheet ]