"People say that wrestling is phony! It's billed
as exhibition in California and New York, and it's staged and promoted by
professionals, but it comes down to this.... It is, first and last,
entertainment for the people.
" Al Jolson was the greatest wrestling fan of all.
When I was wrestling in Los Angeles, Will Rogers sat in the corner for 10
"Wrestling is a great art, a great sport. To be a
good wrestler, you must have ability and personal pride to be better and you
must have color.
"I was changed overnight. One night in Memphis in
1930, I threatened to quit. 'Look at my eyes, they're all cut,' I said to an
old promoter, 'nobody wrestles by the rules.'
" 'Hit them first!' this old promoter told me. So
I became a villain and saw to it there were always fireworks when I
"I always wanted to be champion. I never was, but
I wrestled Jim Londos two hours to a draw, once, in Cleveland in 1935, and they
called me Champ for a while."