Jimmy Snuka Shares Memories of Bob Backlund, Working in Pacific Northwest
– Jimmy Snuka recently spoke with Wild Talk Radio about Bob Backlund, Roddy Piper and more. Check out the highlights (and you can listen to it in full here):
On his time wrestling in the Pacific Northwest: “When I came to the Pacific Northwest, it was a dream come true for me, you know? I wrestled there every Saturday and then, on the weekends, we drove all around Oregon. The weather was great and I loved it. My dreams were starting to fulfill and then getting to perform in from of people like that; I did so much and I learned so much from these old school guys, the old-timers. I was very lucky, to be there among them and learn what I have to do and what I’m not supposed to do. And I was very lucky because I got a lot of help from the old school guys, you know?”
On his relationship with his manager Captain Lou Albamo: “He did my bookings cause he and I were always together and the promoters would let us know where we were going and everything. You know, he was my leader; I’d listen and I don’t say nothing until he says, ‘Ok, you can talk now’. But he was such an awesome guy, to be with him and god bless him he’s in heaven now. The great thing about it was he taught me who was good and who was bad, and I took advice and kicked back and listened to everything, brudda.
On Bob Backlund: “He was great to wrestle against; I mean, he was coming out of college, he was in good shape and everything, he looked good. He looked like a champion. And it was such a great pleasure, for me, to have the opportunity to wrestle him; you know the education that me and him put together, we learned a lot from each other. At it was such a special night for me, because I wrestled him twice and the second time was the best, greatest psychology I ever had with him because we clicked. We took care of it, do it right, because when we go back to that locker room brudda, you want to feel good and make sure you continue feeling that way.”
On his famous cage leap at Madison Square Garden: “You know, brudda, nobody really expected me to do that dive off the top of the cage. And to have all these beautiful guys that came to the show all the young professional wrestlers coming up; I didn’t even know what they were there until after the match was all over and everything and maybe even a day or so and I hear about it, that they were there. And I was very impressed that I could give them that feeling.”
On the Piper’s Pit with coconut shot to the head: “The most important thing about this whole thing with the coconut is I had to think ‘what can I do to prepare for what is going to happen with this coconut’. How was it going to go and work out the way he’s going to have to communicate with me because if we do it right, it’s going to be done right. So, he hit me with the coconut, the pineapples, the bananas all right, so when it came time for that last coconut, I was just staring him down because I ain’t going to look away, you know, I’ve got to see everything happening, you know? When it happened, brudda, when it happened and he hit me over the head with that coconut; thank God I had my bandana on, you know? But still it cut me open and I got so dizzy. I just kept going one way and I remember going into a wall and went down. That whole thing, brudda, is where it started. We both knew, when it was all said and done, I told him ‘I think we got them’.”
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