Heyman doesn’t do a lot of media these days which is why this recent interview grabbed my attention. Heyman returned to Philadelphia this past week for Monday Night RAW. This allowed the media a unique opportunity to talk to the Evil Genius and reminisce about the days of ECW.
“The reason why the early days of ECW survived in Philadelphia and the reason why Philadelphia was the perfect city and remains the perfect city is because the Philly fans were two things: One, the most demanding fans in the country. If you lived up to their expectations, which were lofty to begin with, they were the most rewarding fans in the world,” Heyman said.
“If you pleased them, if you gave them what they were looking for, if you satiated their appetite for satisfaction in a product, the Philly fans would reward you by publicizing and singing your virtues to the masses because Philly accepted you as their home team and they wanted the bragging rights of saying ‘This happened here in Philadelphia.’ That could only happen in Philadelphia.”
It is nice to see Heyman acknowledge a fan base that still holds a deep place in their hearts for his brand of pro wrestling. The connection between Heyman and Philadelphia is a connection that is one of the strongest between a pro wrestling personality and a city, maybe only second to Jerry Lawler and Memphis. It says a lot about Heyman’s confidence in ECW when you think back on it. Most in pro wrestling will complain that the Philadelphia crowds are too hard or unfair. Heyman on the other hand used that shrewd crowd to his advantage.
Is it an exaggeration to say that ECW may or may not have been successful if it was housed anywhere but Philadelphia? Does an audience really make that big of a difference in the success or failure of a pro wrestling company? There are a lot of intangibles but I think that the crowd Heyman chose for his product made more of a difference, at least in the beginning than a lot of people realize.
Heyman also talks WrestleMania and his current role in the WWE in the interview. Needless to say Heyman is very excited about his part in the WWE picture and working with CM Punk and Brock Lesnar. It’s a great interview and a rare chance to hear from him outside of RAW or SmackDown.
Check out the entire interview over at Philly.com.
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