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Freddie Prinze Jr. Details Pitching Smaller Talents To WWE's Vince McMahon

Bigger > smaller for Vince

Vince McMahon has had a penchant for pushing tall, muscular men throughout his time as WWE Chairman, with the likes of Andre The Giant, Hulk Hogan, The Undertaker, Big Show, Diesel, Brock Lesnar and Bobby Lashley all having runs at the top of the card in the company.

Smaller talents have been able to achieve success in WWE but McMahon has often needed to be convinced of their qualities by others, something former writer Freddie Prinze Jr. experienced during his time in the organisation. 

Prinze Jr. noted on Wrestling With Freddie that he initially struggled to get his pitches approved for smaller talents but a conversation with guest Chris Jericho ultimately paid dividends, particularly for Jeff Hardy. 

"You and I had a conversation. Again, I don't know if you'll remember this. But I was having a hard time pitching some of the smaller guys, and you just kind of smiled and looked away. Like you were remembering something way back when, and I didn't know what it was, but I'm like, staring at [Jericho]. Like, 'What's he gonna say? What's he gonna say?' Whatever you were gonna say you change to Freddie,' you said. 'Father, Son.' I went, 'What do you mean?' I grew up without a dad. So it didn't click with me, and you said, 'His dad loved the big guys and he's his father's son. So he's always gonna see the big guy able to beat up the small guy, no matter how much evidence you show him because his father told him it was that way,'" Prinze Jr. began. 

"I remember getting on the plane with Vince, and kind of looking at him and I just changed. It changed my whole philosophy on how I pitch things, especially how I pitched the smaller guys and the first one I tried it with was Kofi. I literally just pitched it like, like a Spider-Man comic where all the bad guys beat up Spider-Man the whole time. But it's his goodness that's gonna sort of bring it out and not hulk out," he continued.

"But, we always pitched it where, 'Of course, he wouldn't win the title, but we'll just get him into that match.' We'd always be like, 'We'll cross that title bridge when we get there. So, it really changed the way I pitch and I started having a lot of success with it, and after Kofi came the Jeff Hardy storyline, which brought him to the championship, and I literally started just looking for different angles. I started seeing that he was selling more merch than even Hunter was selling, and so that's what I went into the pitch with. It was like, No, the creative was the creative, but I was like, 'Hey, man. This dude's selling more merch than anyone in the company right now.' Even the people who are against the idea, [I was] like 'He's selling more merch than you, bro."

Jeff Hardy would capture the WWE Title at Armageddon 2008 and he would enjoy further world title reigns before he departed the company after SummerSlam 2009. The Charismatic Enigma wouldn't return until 2017.

H/T to Fightful

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Aidan Gibbons

Written by Aidan Gibbons

Journalist/Editor-in-Chief of Cultaholic.com Twitter: @theaidangibbons