A Star Shattered: Chapter Seven
Tammy was enjoying her time in Smoky Mountain Wrestling as herself and Chris Candido were able to work with some great talents. Ricky Morton, Robert Gibson, Tracy Smothers, the Armstrong Family and the Heavenly Bodies were all guys they were able to work with or next to. They also worked with legends like Kevin Sullivan and Sherri Martel. Plus, new talents such as the Gangstas, Chris Jericho, Lance Storm and Dr. Isaac Yankeem, who would go on to be known as Kane in the WWE.
Tammy recalls working with Sherri Martel in 1993 when Sherri would manage Tracy Smothers for a weekend of shows. The first time they worked together, Sherri wouldn’t even look at her. Tammy tried to introduce herself but Sherri wasn’t interested. Jim Cornette told them the plan for their match where Sherri would just grab Tammy by her hair until Brian Lee saved her.
Well, Sherri did pull Tammy by her hair… right onto the apron and hit her with four stiff forearms to the chest. After the match, Tammy sold the beating all the way backstage and told Cornette that she didn’t think Sherri liked her very much. Cornette didn’t know what Sherri was doing. When Sherri got backstage she made contact with Tammy and embraced her saying that she knew Tammy could handle it.
Sherri was testing Tammy’s heart and will for the business. Following the test, Tammy and Sherri became sisters within the wrestling business. Tammy earned Sherri’s respect and Sherri always had hers. Tammy notes Sheri’s death and will never forget her.
Tammy talks about how herself and Candido always had a good relationship with Chris Jericho since day one. They all liked KISS, though Tammy and Candido were Gene Simmons fans and Jericho idolized Paul Stanley.
After a show in Kentucky, Jericho asked if he could follow them on the next trip because he didn’t have a police scanner and couldn’t afford another ticket. Tammy and Chris agreed. They would turn on the interior lights to signal Jericho for any cops. She tells a story about how they were driving through the mountains and her detector wasn’t finding any cops around. However, when they came through a tunnel she noticed a cop, but it was too late. They both sped past the cop and Jericho got stuck with the ticket. Jericho still gives her grief about the incident.
Back to SMW, Cornette brought in Candido’s childhood friend John Rechner to be partners with Candido and to be Tammy’s newest protege. His name would be Boo Bradley and was portrayed as a borderline mentally retarded man. She would control him with a chain, which she didn’t mind as Boo didn’t like to bathe very often back then.
Boo’s act in SMW quickly caught on in SMW and he became a fan favorite. Tammy isn’t sure if it was because he got sympathy or because the fans felt like they could relate to him. They used Tammy’s cat named Buffy, though they changed the name to Boots, as a way for her to control and motivate Boo to win matches. If she threatened to harm the cat, Boo would quickly get control of the match he was competing in.
Cactus Jack would be brought in to work with Boo and get him to leave the evil Tammy. The fans loved it. The major point of the angle was going to be for Tammy and Chris to murder Boots, though Tammy makes sure to note they weren’t going to actually kill the cat.
At Christmas Chaos, Tammy threatened to toss the cat off a bridge and into the river. Boo chased her around the arena and Chris Candido was tossed the cat in the ring. Candido came off the top to deliver a leg drop and that was how they “killed” the cat.
What fans didn’t see was the bait and switch backstage with Cornette. Cornette gave them another canvas with a small pillow tucked inside and that was what Candido hit. The cat was perfectly fine. The incident pissed off fans and made Boo Bradley an even bigger babyface. Boo would later be known as Balls Mahoney in ECW.
Tammy notes that by this point in time their run in SMW as coming to a close and they were headed to the WWE. SMW couldn’t survive on its own anymore and their assets were later sold to the WWE.
Chapter Eight coming soon!