Chris Jericho invented WWE’s ban on blood.
The 2008 rivalry between Shawn Michaels and Chris Jericho, which both men consider to be one of the favorites of their entire respective careers,was only ever supposed to be a one-off match. A match at the Judgment Day pay-per-view, which was built off of Shawn Michaels lying to Chris Jericho about an injury but still being cheered as a babyface, led to Chris Jericho turning heel and a subsequent match at The Great American Bash the following month.
In that match, Shawn Michaels wound up laying in a pool of his own blood, and this match is now considered to be the breaking point where WWE, who was already in the middle of a transition to family-friendly programming, decided to put a ban on blood in matches.
Chris Jericho reflected on the change during a recent Talk Is Jericho podcast.
“It’s very much the reason why we got away from blood," Chris Jericho said of his match at The Bash in 2008. "Shawn got so much blood in that first match of the series, just a normal match where he got color. I think it was in Omaha or something like that. Or somewhere in Kansas, Wichita, maybe. So much blood that Vince was like, ‘We’re done. No more blood.' Shawn will tell you, that was the one… I know that Shawn bled so bad that Vince was like, ‘We’re done with blood.” Because after that is when Dave Bautista got some blood in the cage and got that huge fine. I got fined when Flair got color, which is a whole other story. But he was fining people at that point in time. 'No more blood!' I’m not kidding, it’s a well-known story, he fined Dave Bautista a hundred grand for getting color in the cage match we had for the World Title in Tampa. He was very, very vigilant about it and it was because Shawn got so much color. Someone must have said something.”
These days, Chris Jericho works for All Elite Wrestling where blood is not a problem. Recently, Tony Khan stated that AEW’s media partners have had no issue with the amount of blood shown in the promotion. Learn more here.
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