back to February, 2006 “Tennessee Cowboy” James Storm was on top of the world. He was in the middle of his seventh reign as NWA World Tag Team champion (sixth with “Wildcat”
Chris Harris). He was part of America’s Most Wanted; the most dominate tag team in the near five year existence of TNA Wrestling.
That all came crashing down thanks to a beer bottle shot from Storm on the December 14, 2006 episode of Impact which led to
Harris suffering serious damage to his eyes. Since that day Storm has been virtually silent about his reasoning for the attack.
Thanks to Jeff Jarrett, Steven Godfrey and Ross Forman, Alan J. Wojcik was able
to sit down for his third interview with Storm to get the truth on many rumors. Like previous interviews this was done with
the promise of a case of Storm’s favorite beer.
J. Wojcik: When we last talked it was weeks before TNA’s March 2006 debut house show in Detroit where you took on the Naturals
(Chase Stevens & Andy Douglas). What has the house show experience been like for you and do you see it becoming a full
time thing for TNA?
Storm: I sure hope so because house shows mean more people are watching us on TV and checking out the internet. It’s
a good thing for all of us working in front of fresh audiences and expanding the knowledge of the product.
J. Wojcik: At the 2006 Lockdown PPV you were part of Jeff Jarrett’s team (with Harris and Scott Steiner) where you took
on Sting’s Army (with AJ Styles, Ron Killings and Rhino). What was it like to be in the deadly Lethal Lockdown bout
with some pretty high profile names and what in the name of all things good were you thinking when you fought AJ Styles onto
the top of the cage?
Storm: It’s one of those matches that you are so happy to be in with those names you mentioned. You want to help put
on the best match but you also want to be remembered for something and that is what AJ and I accomplished. We said its either
going to be cool or Mankind like and we could have fallen back into the ring. But it worked and both of us will be remembered
for that cool spot. To be part of that match was great.
J. Wojcik: At Sacrifice and Slammiversary 2006 you and Harris defended against the X Division stars AJ Styles and Christopher
Daniels. (AMW lost the belts at Slammiversary) Did you and Harris have difficulties working with them considering their working
in the X Division, and I know the moniker “It’s not about weight limits, it’s about no limits.”
Storm: I think we liked to be known as the guys who can work with 300 pounders or the X Division guys. We had experience working
with Daniels when he was part of XXX (w/Low Ki/Senshi and “Prime Time” Elix Skipper) and we had two cage matches.
AJ took a while to get used to but when they landed after all the flips you just pop them in the mouth. Back when I was their
weight I used to work that style, now I drink some beers and wait for them to land, then WACK! With 4 guys together who know
how to have the match of the night every night it can only result in magic like those matches became.
J. Wojcik: In July 2006 AMW worked for Dory Funk Jr.s !BANG! promotion in Ocala. Talk about that experience and did you pick the brain
of the former NWA World Heavyweight champion?
Storm: I picked a little bit. It was cool to be in with a legend and taking those damn uppercuts. One time Dory and I got
into it here at TNA so it was fun. All I can say is it was a great experience.
J. Wojcik: On August 13th you were supposed to be part of Hard Justice but a fire in the ceiling cancelled your match (AMW
vs. Naturals vs. Bentley/Kazarian vs. James Gang). What was the atmosphere like backstage and were you surprised the PPV went
Storm: It was weird because I remember seeing Eric (Young) and Johnny (Devine) in the ring on the backstage TV’s and
hearing the roof is on fire. I thought someone was ribbing until we saw the fire extinguisher exhaust cloud out the arena.
I truly thought the PPV was over right then and there. TNA skipped over our match but sometimes things happen and they got
the show back on the road.
J. Wojcik: October 22nd took TNA back to Detroit for Bound for Glory where AMW lost a four way tag match (with Team 3D, the Naturals and James Gang).
What were your thoughts on the first PPV outside of Nashville or Orlando?
Storm: I thought it was great for TNA to escape out of Orlando. The fans might not like hearing that but I don’t care and sorry about your damn luck. They
have been babied here and have seen everything. We went to see a more appreciative crowd. In the opening matches someone did
a hiptoss and the crowd popped. During the AJ/Rhino match the other night (Elevation X at the Destination X PPV) here one
of them had to fall to get a cheer. Sure they pay our paychecks but they are sensitized.
J. Wojcik: When the Latin American Xchange (“Notorious 187” Homicide and Hotstuff Hernandez) took the belts off
Styles and Daniels at the PPV AMW became top contenders. But before an Impact taping things got violent when LAX attacked
you at an autograph session which saw you suffer what was reported as temporarily paralysis (Hernandez hit Storm with the
Border Toss to a wall). Are you a fan of doing those angles and did you suffer any long term damage that day?
Storm: It was one of those things that wasn’t supposed to happen. Hernandez didn’t mean for it to happen but it
made him look good and I am all for that. Helping him get over got us over. Before it went down I figured I would lay there
and thought I would sell it but when I came down I smacked my head on the concrete. I kept telling them to get me a beer and
I would be fine but they called paramedics and it got serious. I ripped the neck brace off and got my beer to numb the pain.
J. Wojcik: The Genesis and Turning Point PPV saw AMW and LAX do battle where the roles were reversed as the fans turned AMW
face after LAX threatened to burn an American flag. How did you feel about the change and did it change the way you and LAX
approached the match?
Storm: I don’t know what management thought but I always like to go out there and feel the crowd before going full tilt.
The fans were hot on LAX after they tried to burn the flag so it turned us and we went with it. We had been faces before so
we went with it for a while.
J. Wojcik: You have destroyed people with the beer bottle shot to the head but during the Flag Match when you blasted Homicide,
the shards went into Harris’ eyes taking him out of the match. You called him out publicly after that match but the
Impact that Thursday you blasted him in the face with the bottle in a match due to the pre-match stipulation caused the contractual
end of AMW. I guess the obvious question is WHY??
Storm: I get asked that all the time and why did you do that to Chris. Well Chris Harris is nothing, forget him! I was the
man of the team. Sure I got an ego because I care about no one but my little girl at home who I have to provide for. Chris
wants to be a superstar fine but he wont get buy me and I will blind his other eye so he can get a Seeing Eye dog.
J. Wojcik: After Harris was put out of commission by you; you also ended business dealings with Gail Kim. Why dissolve that
relationship and how did “The Pride of Tennessee” Jacqueline Moore come to be your advisor?
Storm: Gail needs to get back to work in her uncle’s restaurant seating people. She cannot manage a guy like the “Tennessee
Cowboy”. Now you take a gorgeous woman like Ms. Moore who is one mean you know what. She is from Texas and a redneck like me. She called
me up and said you need a tough woman like me. So there you have it, she took out Gail and we are on the way to superstar
J. Wojcik: This will probably get me in more hot water then I currently stand in. Looking back over the last four and a half
years do you regret ever allowing TNA to create AMW? What I mean is do you think you would have gone further in the promotion
as a singles worker since you were signed that way?
Storm: I don’t regret it at all. That is how we made our name. Sure you can look back and think I should have begun
as a single but Chris or I could have gotten lost in the shuffle. We did out tag team run and were part of the greatest matches
in TNA. I am sure either of us is itching to get in there and beat the hell out of some people.
J. Wojcik: It has been almost three years since you wrestled for a singles title (Storm unfortunately lost to then NWA World
Heavyweight champion Jeff Jarrett in Nashville, buy the Best OF AMW DVD to check it out.) Had you been itching to get back
to singles work and what do you hope happens to your career now that AMW has been killed?
Storm: Chris Harris is like my beer bottle, its there as a prop. Being the “Tennessee Cowboy” isn’t a gimmick
it’s my lifestyle. I am all about drinking, fighting, fast cars and beautiful women. If they want to put me in the singles
picture fine. I think it’s going to be fun for everyone.
J. Wojcik: Your former partner made a surprising return at the Against All Odds PPV. Were you shocked by his return?
Storm: At first I was shocked. The match was over and someone yelled Chris Harris is here. Chris has to make a living like
everyone else. I am sure he got tired of sitting at home seeing me in all the glory and praise. I am sure I would do the same
thing if I was in his shoes. He came back and I am going to beat him back down.
J. Wojcik: Rumors were going around Slammiversary 2007 will take TNA back to Nashville for the first time since September 8th 2004
(TNA’s website confirmed it recently). Do you think the Nashville fans will come out to welcome the promotion back?
Storm: I think without them we wouldn’t be here in Orlando or other cities putting on shows. They came out each week to the Asylum and helped spread the TNA
name around the world. I think the people who came out each week will be the first in line to buy tickets in Nashville. Look at the ECW regulars who
came out when Vince bought ECW and Shane ran his show (Shane Douglas’ Hardcore Homecoming event in 2005) they came out
to support and I think Nashville fans will be the same.
J. Wojcik: In closing do you have anything you wish to say to the fans that have seen your new attitude on life and might
Storm: Kiss my ass. I would tell you to suck on my beer bottle but I want to drink that. Sorry about your damn luck! I am
out of here and give me that case of beer you promised.
to James Storm for his time and I hoped he enjoyed the case of beer promised. Log onto www.tnawrestling.com for all things TNA. James Storm has a website, www.thecowboyjamesstorm.com which is run by the very lovely Miss Kendi.