On a recent edition of his “Everybody’s Got A Pod” podcast, Ted DiBiase Sr. discussed leaving Bill Watts’ Mid-South Wrestling promotion for Georgia Championship Wrestling, how he was written off, and more.
You can check out some highlights from the podcast below:
On returning to Georgia after Mid-South Wrestling run: “Well, I think one of the reasons that may have played into this, too, is, of course, Melanie and Melanie and I get married and in Georgia, I was home every night. I mean, we would go and wrestle and come back home. So I came back and slept in my own bed every night. Now, this wasn’t the case in Mid-South. I think some of my reason for going back was to take Melanie back to a place where she was comfortable. She knew her way around. She had friends. And that was I’m sure that was one of my major reasons for going back. By this time, I think I had gotten the deal in Japan. I didn’t mind making less money in Georgia because going to Japan made up for it. And so I was making like, what, 2 or 3, sometimes four trips a year? To Japan. And so when we went back to Atlanta, by this time, Melanie’s dad had retired, and they went back to Mississippi, where her mother was raised. You know, her mother was raised in Crystal Springs, Mississippi, which is about 40 miles south of Jackson. We went back and instead of getting an apartment, we lived in the home Melanie basically grew up in. And her father was an executive with Sears. And he went all over the country building Sears buildings. He was like the guy in charge of all this stuff. But anyway, that’s why we went back to Atlanta. But me going to Japan and then coming back and having more time that way, that helped a lot.”
On whether he negotiated with Jim Barnett: “No, I don’t think I ever had more than two conversations with Jim Barnett, I mean, basically, he was told or Jim Barnett told whoever the booker was and the booker at first was Ollie. But then, when Ollie left and Robert Fuller came in, Jim Barnett told Robert Fuller, Get Ted DiBiase over. There’s a chance he could be the next NWA world champion. So Robert Fuller and getting me over got himself over because he made us a tag team. I like Robert personally, but he was horrible.”
On being kept off Mid-South Wrestling TV right before his departure: “Well well, yeah. I mean, if Bill knows, obviously if Bill knows I’m leaving, then why invest anything more in you if you’re leaving? In my estimation, Bill Watts is one of the brightest bookers and somebody who understands the psychology of what we do better than just about anybody. I know. I mean, Bill, Bill’s a brilliant guy. You don’t have to speak with him very long to tell just how she’s really he’s got it.”
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Ted DiBiase Sr., a former professional wrestler, recently discussed his departure from Bill Watts’ Mid-South Wrestling promotion and his move to Georgia Championship Wrestling on his podcast, “Everybody’s Got A Pod.” DiBiase shared insights into why he made the switch, how he was written off, and other interesting details about his career.
One of the reasons DiBiase mentioned for leaving Mid-South Wrestling and returning to Georgia was his marriage to Melanie. He explained that being in Georgia allowed him to be home every night with his wife, which wasn’t possible when he was wrestling in Mid-South. DiBiase wanted to provide a comfortable environment for Melanie, where she had friends and was familiar with the surroundings. Additionally, DiBiase mentioned that during this time, he had secured a deal to wrestle in Japan, which compensated for the lower income he received in Georgia.
When asked about negotiating with Jim Barnett, the owner of Georgia Championship Wrestling, DiBiase revealed that he had only had a couple of conversations with him. Instead, Barnett instructed the booker, initially Ollie and later Robert Fuller, to get DiBiase over because there was a possibility of him becoming the next NWA world champion. DiBiase expressed his personal fondness for Robert Fuller but criticized his wrestling abilities.
Before leaving Mid-South Wrestling, DiBiase was kept off television. He explained that if Bill Watts, the promoter, knew about his departure, there was no reason for him to invest more in DiBiase’s character. DiBiase praised Watts as one of the brightest bookers in the industry who understood the psychology of wrestling better than most.
In conclusion, Ted DiBiase Sr. shared interesting insights into his decision to leave Mid-South Wrestling for Georgia Championship Wrestling. His desire to provide a comfortable environment for his wife and the opportunity to wrestle in Japan were major factors in his decision. Despite not having direct negotiations with Jim Barnett, DiBiase’s talent and potential as the next NWA world champion were recognized by the bookers. DiBiase also acknowledged Bill Watts’ brilliance as a wrestling promoter and his decision to keep him off television once he knew about his departure.
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