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Billy Jack Haynes Talks WWE Wrestlers as Independent Contractors, A Possible Union & More

Posted By: WrestlingNewsSource.com on Apr 02, 2019

Billy Jack Haynes Talks WWE Wrestlers as Independent Contractors, A Possible Union & More

The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling podcast recently interviewed former WWE Superstar Billy Jack Haynes. Billy Jack Haynes and discussed in depth about WWE Superstars being “independent contractors” and the possibily of a union in wrestling. Below are some highlights and audio clips from the podcast, courtesy of TTMPTOW.

Haynes on wrestlers as independent contractors:

“I’m in an individual case against Vince (McMahon) right now that still hasn’t been settled and there is sixty one wrestlers and wrestlers keep dying left and right (you guys). So, the whole idea is the fact that this independent contractor gimmick is so full of you know what. How are we independent if Vince buys all of our tickets? Which it is thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars of airfare a week and he books us in the towns, he gives the finishes of the matches, he controls this the entire way but to say we buy our own hotel room that makes us independent? Are we supposed to sleep in the middle of the street when he books us in these towns? L.A. to New York or whatever. That is what he is going on that we are independent because of the hotel room and if you can honestly believe it that is what he’s doing.”

Haynes on Jesse Ventura attempting to create a wrestler union in 1987: 

“Jesse Ventura came up with one after WrestleMania 3 in 1987. He wanted to form a union and most of the guys like I said before it was like “Yankee Doodle Dandy”, everybody was hurt and let’s say 90% or 95% (not everybody) had torn ACL’s, broken ribs, broken backs. Dynamite Kid had a broken back and was forced to wrestle in WrestleMania 3 or he was not going to get paid. He had lost forty-five pounds and he has just passed away, was my mentor and he actually helped train me in Calgary, Alberta.”

Haynes on the John Oliver piece and the timing before WrestleMania: 

“Once again, this is a great forum that you guys have going on here with me today because of the King Kong Bundy death that I was going to allude to. (Bundy) had a table next to me a month ago and if you want to talk about it, I had to break away because I just talked to (Chris Pallies was his name) Bundy, I had got him on this lawsuit and we had just talked.”

“I broke down crying so bad because it hurt so bad because his table was next to me and it was so emotional for me to see his pictures there that were signed and him not being there. It hurt bad. You see all of these guys that have died and honestly if you do not perform back in our era they would fire you. Someone would come and replace you. So you are making $10,000 a week but you have no job security. So the fans need to realize that not only the camaraderie that you mentioned earlier, we loved each other no matter what. We had each other’s back. This forum (HBO) is helping bring it out. I am one step away from another nervous breakdown but I am not looking for no pitty, never have and never will I just love my brothers and sisters in this business and to see them die left and right from the years of abuse that Vince McMahon put on us.”


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