Successfully executing the spot where he would save Kevin Owens at Hell In A Cell was highly stressful for Sami Zayn--and not just because he was preparing to turn heel for the first time in his career.
The spot called for Zayn to pull Owens off the commentary table before Shane McMahon could land on him after leaping from the top of the cell. Zayn discussed the mechanics of it, and the lack of rehearsal, during an appearance alongside Owens on a recent episode of Chris Jericho's Talk Is Jericho podcast.
Zayn had just a few seconds to emerge from his hiding place and save Owens before McMahon crashed into the table.
"There's three lives essentially on the line: there's Shane obviously, there's Kevin if I don't get him off in time and there's me because if I ruin it, I'm dead," Zayn recalled, adding, "To me this is an elite Hollywood level stunt, and they're just kind of like, yeah, just pull him off. Hang on. When? When exactly do I pull him off? Oh, you'll kind of see Shane's foot come off [the edge of the Cell]. Hang on, I have 1.8 seconds to make sure that I go from invisible to grabbing him. And he's lifeless. You don't understand the margin of error for this."
As an additional complication, Owens was dealing with a lower back issue at the time that made it difficult for him to sit up and help Zayn pull him off the table.
"If you actually watch it back now, if you watch it in slow motion, Shane's body at that velocity comes maybe, tops, 3 feet away from Kevin's head when he's sitting up," Zayn said.
Owens felt it was even closer than that.
"You're overshooting," he told Zayn."I'm pretty sure it [Shane's body] came within a foot. I felt the wind."
Owens did note that the nature of the spot made it impossible to practice, while all the other high-risk spots in the Cell match between he and Shane McMahon were rehearsed prior.
"The only part of that thing that we couldn't try until we did it was that. Because we're not going to ask a human to do it," Owens said.
Click here to check out Owens and Zayn's entire appearance on Talk Is Jericho.
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