When I Saw Rock Bottom

Kevin Kelly

Luckily for me, I was able to avoid addiction. For the most part, I stayed away from drugs when I was in the WWE but I did my share of partying. But, if I wanted to, I could have easily slid down into the bottomless pit that has claimed so many. One man I saw at the end of his rope was William Regal.

When I read that Mr. Regal was suspended again for a Wellness Policy violation, I knew he had not slipped from his recovery because I will never forget how bad he looked in 1999.

We were in Houston at the old Summit, which now ironically is a church. Regal had just gotten started doing the “Man’s Man” gimmick but he was an empty, souless shell. During the day, around 3 or 4, Regal woke up from a “nap” and was needed to get dressed to do a pre-tape. The Rock and I were in the dressing room chatting as Regal began to babble incoherently.

It began as uncomfortable moment that stretched into several minutes of agony for me. Despite his best efforts, Regal couldn’t pull himself together as Rock and I looked at each other in disbelief.

Soon after, Regal was gone and eventually to rehab where he got his life together. The next time I saw Mr. Regal was on tape from the 2000 Brian Pillman Memorial Show, where he made his return against Chris Benoit. I could see the difference in Mr. Regal… the drugs were out of his system and the soul had returned to his body. He still looks the same today.

He violated the Wellness Policy not for painkillers or GHB but probably for some muscle-building substance. I know it because the soul never left Regal’s body as it did in 1999. Whether he took it knowingly or by accident doesn’t matter. Is he a “drug user” once again? Is there a difference between abusing drugs or steroids?

Did steroids kill Eddie Guerrero, Davey Boy Smith, Rick Rude, Louie Spicolli or anyone else that has died from wrestling? While steroids are drugs, I don’t see them the same way. Steroids don’t take your soul like painkillers do.

How ironic it is that Mr. Regal is one strike away from being fired for using drugs, when he freed himself from the grip of drugs that surely would have killed him.

Email me with your thoughts on whether steroids are drugs and whether the WWE Wellness Policy is a good or bad thing for the industry to kevinfsu90@yahoo.com.

As a post-script to my last article, I got many great responses on what makes a good creative team. Those of you who responded, would you be involved in the creative process for a wrestling company if given the chance? I am working on something that may give you the opportunity. Shoot me an email if you would take advantage of that chance if it was offered to you.

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