On a recent edition of his “Monday Mailbag” podcast, former WWE referee Mike Chioda recalled having to paint the tribal markings on Umaga’s face on the fly.
John Laurinaitis had informed Umaga that he needed to wear his face paint at house shows to avoid heavy fines. Chioda made the save by helping the late wrestler with his paint.
You can check out some highlights from the podcast below:
On how Umaga was ordered to start wearing his face paint at house shows by John Laurinaitis: “I remember me, Johnny Stamboli, Rey Mysterio, and Ekie in the car and we’re driving down. Ekie’s got a — he’s started this Umaga thing with the paint and all that stuff. So he’d go to TVs and have one of the guys paint his face all the time. We’re in the car on the way to a live event, I remember Johnny [Ace] calling him. He says, ‘Ek, you didn’t wear your face paint last night at the live event.’ Ek’s like, ‘Yeah, Johnny, I put it on the TVs.’ ‘You gotta start putting it on now or else you’re gonna get fined.’ He was like, ‘What?’”
On having to rush to pain Umaga’s face in the car: “So we tried to stop at a couple places to get some markers real quick because we had about an hour before we get to the show, then we had to do this. So we got black markers and I had to f****** paint his face in the car. That s*** didn’t come off for like three days until he got to TV. He was so pissed at Johnny too because Johnny was serious he was gonna fine him. And every time Johnny wanted something done, ‘Vince wants the face paint on.’ Vince’s name comes out all the time.”