Danny Davis: “I don’t want to wait until I’m gone to be put in the Hall of Fame”
Dangerous Danny Davis joined Ken Resnick and Bruce Wirt on this week’s Wrestling with History radio program. Danny talked about his start in the business, his new book, his thoughts on the WWE Hall of Fame, and more. Here are some highlights:
On his start in the business: “I went to a wrestling event…my sister brought me there and I watched King Curtis, Jay Strongbow, and Baron Scicluna just to name a few, and I was hooked; I knew in my heart that someday I would be involved in that business. I followed through and I (worked) in every aspect of the business from putting up chairs, to putting up the ring, refereeing, selling tickets, collecting tickets, selling concessions, driving the ring truck, whatever it took…”
On being trained by Chief Jay Strongbow: “He was excellent. Very few words. Rick McGraw first got me into training; he got me into the gym and showed me how to work out. He would also teach me to wrestle; we would do independent shows on our days off and work with each other (I was Mr X). He passed away unfortunately, but I just continued (to work) as Mr X. I would show up at TVs and no one knew who I was; even Vince McMahon didn’t know who I was. When they found out (it was me) Jay Strongbow took a liking to me. He would get there early for me and he would talk to me (privately). One night in New York, we had a bad ice storm and most of the (talent) didn’t make it. He came into the dressing room and told me to get dressed and that I was going to work (with him). He said I want you to do two things, ‘listen to what I tell you, and above all don’t touch me!’ We had a 15 minute match and I never touched him. He put the sleeper on me and that was it.”
On whether fans made the connection that Danny Davis the referee was also Mr. X: “I don’t think anybody realized what was going on. I wore a long sleeve shirt as a referee because I had distinctive tattoos. I would go into the arena in the afternoon and set the ring up, then I would set chairs up. I would then go to the concessions and line up the pictures and the programs. Then when the show started I would go out and referee; before intermission they’d put me on as Mr. X (as a jobber), then I’d go back and get dressed as a referee and I would referee. At the end of the night, I’d take it all down, go to the next down and do the same thing.”
On who came up with the corrupt referee angle: “Nobody ever approached me (ahead of time) about doing that (angle). One night they did that thing with me in Florida with the Bulldogs, and the next thing I knew I was Dangerous Danny Davis. I don’t know who or how it happened, but that’s how they decided they were going to change the belts…It was such a natural thing and it got over so big; I don’t think they thought the reaction would be that big.”
On how much of what was done was rehearsed: “All of our interviews were off the cuff…you just did them off the top of your head. It was different than it is now. Back then, everybody got a break. They would put you in a position to do well, and Vince and the agents would be back watching. They would give them an opportunity, and if it got over then they went with it. If it didn’t, they would kill it. You didn’t go into an arena and practice your match…it was all off the cuff and you (had to) know how to work.”
On walking out to work Wrestlemania 3 in front of 90,000 people: “I had a dream to become a professional wrestler. I would have been satisfied to become Dangerous Danny Davis and do jobs. When you stepped through that curtain and got on that cart…there is no words to tell anybody how it feels unless they had a dream and that dream came true.”
On working with Jimmy Hart: “To this day I always get to places early; he burned it into me. Jimmy Hart is the consummate professional, bar none. He taught me so much of the wrestling business. Him and I still stay in contact with each other, we’re very close friends.”
On his book, Mr X – The Life Story of Dangerous Danny Davis: “I went to the wrestling Hall of Fame when it was in New York and I met Kenny Cassanova and he approached me about writing a book. It took him a long time to convince me to write a book and the only way I would do it is if it was different than any other wrestling book. There’s things about wrestling in it, but it’s a book about living your dreams. It shows how anybody can achieve a dream even if you have a bad start in life. I haven’t met anyone yet who has had a negative thing to say about the book. No matter what you have to face in life, there is always a possibility that you can live your dreams.”
On not being in the WWE Hall of Fame: “They wait until you’re deceased so they don’t have to pay for your flight, hotel, and things like that. They do it posthumously, and that’s more and more the trend. There’s a lot of guys that should be in there that aren’t. I don’t want to wait until I’m gone to be put in the Hall of Fame; I’d like to enjoy it while I’m still here on the planet.”
Wrestling with History featuring Ken Resnick and VOC Nation founder Bruce Wirt airs live on VOC Nation every Wednesday night at 9:30PM ET with legendary guests and listener calls.
The VOC Nation Radio Network was born out of AM Radio in Philadelphia, and has grown into one of the most successful independent Internet radio networks in the world. Aside from Ken Resnick, current VOC Nation podcast hosts include former WCW star The Maestro, former TNA star Wes Brisco, and Pro Wrestling Illustrated’s Brady Hicks.
Featuring guests from wrestling personalities such as Hulk Hogan, Eric Bischoff, Joey Styles, Matt Hardy, and Mick Foley, to entertainers like Lou Ferrigno, The Insane Clown Posse, Roberta Flack, and Kristy Swanson, VOC Nation has given listeners insightful programming for nearly 10 years.
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Link to the interview here: https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/vocnation/episodes/2019-10-24T13_41_54-07_00
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