Ax of Demolition claims Vince McMahon “started panicking” regarding his own personal health during Demolition’s final WWE run.
Demolition went from a two-man team to a three-man team in the twilight of their WWE – then-WWF – run, with ‘Crush’ joining Ax and Smash.
While speaking with Bill Pritchard of WrestleZone, Ax revealed why Vince McMahon made the decision in the first place – as he had an anaphylactic reaction to shellfish and almost died.
“The whole situation developed—I don’t know if the fans are aware—but I had been going back and forth to Japan as The Masked Superstar. I probably made 40 trips anywhere from two to four weeks [long], up to eight weeks over there. I consumed a lot of shellfish and sushi, and I developed an anaphylactic reaction shellfish, iodine. Just before one of the WrestleManias, my wife and I went out and we had dinner and I had shrimp for dinner, and I had an allergic reaction and I almost died. I think Vince and the office—fortunately, we were popular—I think they didn’t know what to do and they started panicking. What they should have done was given me and Barry a month or two off, and by that time. I think it was six weeks that I had been cleared by the doctor here in Emery, to resume activities. They pushed the panic button and contacted Crush and brought in a ‘substitute’ Demolition.”
The three-time WWE Tag Team Champion continues, saying he believes Vince “jumped the gun” and that the duo needed some time off from the ring, as opposed to a third member. The trio would win their third Tag Team Championships with Crush as part of Demolition, but Ax believes – titles or no titles – they should have remained as heels.
“I think that they just jumped the gun. I think that it would have settled down if—and Barry was not as affected—but a month or two off because they were running us ragged. By that time, everything would have been OK and we could have continued the run, but once everything got into swing we couldn’t keep up with it and I don’t know if we would have had another [title] run or not but I think that we could’ve continued. They heard the fans cheering for us when we were heels and they thought, ‘Well, these guys are getting cheered, we’ve got to make them babyfaces!’ No, you don’t, control the fans and control the crowd. We could’ve been coming out of the heel locker room for another year and a half but there, again, they jumped the gun. They do that quite often, not only in WWE, but a lot of promoters and bookers do that. They listen to the fans and instead of guiding the fans, they think that the fans are pushing them, so that’s my take on that.”
Ax also went on to reveal the problem with WWE’s tag team division just now, and what made Demolition so successful. The three-time Tag Team Champion notes selflessness and sacrifice as the success of Demolition – something Arn Anderson detailed when discussing The Four Horsemen with Inside The Ropes recently.
“I don’t think they have teams as much as they have two individuals [working together] that are waiting for a spot and so they don’t put them on the shelf. They just put them together and lump them together and neither one of those guys really want to be in a team, they want to be an individual. For a team to be successful, you can’t be selfish and you can’t be looking out for yourself. You have to be willing to sacrifice a little bit for the team. Nowadays you get some teams that could possibly work, but for one reason or another, they break them up. Or they push this one team and break them up, push another combination, and I don’t think they have an emphasis or a desire to have a tag team division.”
You can check out WrestleZone’s full interview with Ax of Demolition here.