Last week’s WWE RAW guest host Jesse Ventura appeared on ESPN2’s “First Take” show this morning to promote his new conspiracy theory show on truTV. There was a brief mention of Ventura being a “pretty good” pro wrestler, but no mention of him guest-hosting RAW last week. The interview mainly focused on Ventura being a modern-day version of the fictional Forrest Gump character due to Ventura’s involvement in numerous endeavors – military service, mayor and governor, pro wrestler, sports commentator, sky-diver, etc.
Ventura quipped during the interview that he gets bored easily, which is why he entered politics “because you’re only elected to a four-year shot.” Ventura also talked Minnesota sports, including Brett Favre’s NFL MVP campaign, and sold his new reality show debuting on Wednesday with a brief story that he was able to go deep into the U.S. government’s 9/11 report to uncover new information. In a typically innocuous ESPN interview with celebrities, Ventura said he was “frightened” by some of the information he learned and the interviewer, Jay Crawford, casually laughed off the sales pitch for the TV show and moved along to the next segment.
On ESPN Radio, Ventura said that pro wrestling, specifically WWE, is “a joke” and “still in the stone age” due to pro wrestlers not having any form of organized union protection. Ventura specifically focused on WWE classifying their wrestlers as independent contractors during an interview on Colin Cowherd’s ESPN Radio show today promoting his new conspiracy theory show on truTV. “How can you be an independent contractor when you’re told when to wrestle, who to wrestle, and you can’t wrestle for another promotion?” Ventura said. He added that he believes WWE CEO Vince McMahon classifies wrestlers this way to avoid paying social security.
Ventura briefly acknowledged guest-hosting RAW last week and self-deprecatingly criticized himself for calling out WWE less than a week later. “You see what a jerk I am, I just did his show and here I am causing him problems,” he said. Ventura also briefly talked about suing Vince McMahon for royalty payments when his voice or likeness is used on WWE home videos. Ventura said “the business would be different today” if other wrestlers would have joined him during the lawsuit in the early 1990s that allowed him to earn royalty payments from WWE.