Chris Jericho's latest run in WWE might have come to an end, but Booker T said he is impressed with how Jericho continues to perform at such a high level.
Booker discussed Jericho during a recent episode of his Heated Conversations podcast, recorded just prior to the Payback pay-per-view, where Jericho defeated Kevin Owens for the U.S. Title. Jericho lost the title back to Owens two days later at Smackdown, then suffered an assault after the match that essentially wrote him off TV for the near future.
Jericho is taking time off from wrestling while he hits the road for another tour with his band, Fozzy.
"The guy's been in the business over 20 years and he's still going strong," Booker said. "That's the difference between the wrestling business and every other sport, like MMA and all these other sports. Chris Jericho, a guy that's 46 years old and he's still working at such a high level, I've got to give him a lot of credit."
Booker said that Jericho's run has been what every wrestler dreams of at the tail end of his career -- both from a quality and longevity standpoint.
"To finish your career the way that Jericho is finishing his career, it's something every professional wrestler wishes he could go out there and do," Booker said. "Because it takes a multitude of things to actually play out for something like that to happen for you. First and foremost, how healthy you are. As you get older, your body breaks down a little bit. What kind of shape you're in—as far as cardio-wise, how long can you go. 'Chris, can you go out there and give me 30 tonight?' "
Booker also lauded Jericho for his ability to blend with the current, younger generation of WWE wrestlers. Jericho's just completed run included series of matches with the likes of Seth Rollins, AJ Styles, Roman Reigns, Owens, Dean Ambrose, and others.
"It takes being a chameleon," Booker said. "You've got to know how to change your spots. You've got to be able to blend in to the atmosphere … and I think that's what Chris Jericho has done. He's almost like the carpenter, literally on-the-job training teaching these young guys what it takes to go out there and be the star for many, many years to come. That's what Jericho has done over these last couple of years."
A former five-time world champion combining his runs in WWE and WCW, Booker also is a WWE Hall of Famer and has been filling in on commentary on Raw the past few weeks while David Otunga films a movie role.