At 47, former WWE Champion Chris Jericho continues to reinvent himself in the pro wrestling business. Understanding that there are so many names who are hot commodities in the business, Jericho spends his time conspiring ideas that will make him stand out, despite being in the business for nearly 30 years. Purposely, Jericho has left WWE and returned, in order to not have the appearance of proverbially overstaying his welcome.
The WWE Universe has seen a Jericho who promised to “Save Us,” an apocalyptic Jericho that returned after vignettes of the end of the world being near, a Jericho who surprised Dolph Ziggler at the 2013 Royal Rumble, and a Jericho who became an honorary member of the Shield.
Recently, Jericho’s WWE return led to some high-quality matches, as usual. In addition to this, it also put Jericho back as a top name due to the character he was portraying. In fact, his character ended up being one of the most compelling parts of WWE, and his “list” was one of the most popular moments of every event he was a part of. However, this was not the original plan that Jericho had for his character to go in 2016, as he revealed who he would originally want to work with.
In a recent interview with Inside the Ropes, Jericho explained how his initial plan was to feud with Shinsuke Nakamura. Jericho even told Vince McMahon in 2016 that Nakamura should come up from NXT to feud with him, and he was even willing to stay until WrestleMania 33 to culminate the feud. However, these plans changed when he started to work with Kevin Owens.
Jericho added that after a tag team match they had where Owens jumped on him and stated, “you’re the G.O.A.T., I’m the donkey” when the match ended, this made him change his mind about feuding with Nakamura and redirected his ideas to have a program with Owens.
As the WWE Universe witnessed, the two had quite an interesting angle, that started as “best friends” but ended with Owens brutally attacking Jericho during the “Festival of Friendship,” which led to a match at WrestleMania 33 in Orlando. Jericho stayed a little longer after WrestleMania to put a bow on their feud, which showed how much her was interested in working with Owens.