A while back, I got a kick out of listing some of the great one-liners that Vince McMahon user to utter during his play-by-play announcing days, and since then I have looked forward to the day I also review Gorilla Monsoon’s memorable quotes.
So here goes, with a nod to Monsoon as an announcer and as co-host of Prime Time Wrestling (the precursor to Monday Night Raw on the USA Network):
- “He certainly doesn’t have any trouble getting a date on Saturday night.” — Used to describe a pretty-boy babyface, such as a young Paul Roma.
- “Highly unlikely, Jess.” — A line used to dispute whatever Jesse “The Body” Ventura (one of Mosoon’s longtime announcing sidekicks) said to malign a babyface.
- “He doesn’t know a wristlock from a wrist watch.” — Monsoon used this line often, but it was most famously said after he gave Muhammad Ali an airplane spin in a prelude to Ali’s match with Antonio Inoki in 1976.
- “Both feet have to touch the floor, Jess.” — This line described the rules of the traditional WWF steel cage match, in which the winner had to escape to the floor either through the door or over the top of the cage.
- “Oh, it’s Excedrin number five.” — Usually mentioned after a heel suffered some move or strike to the head.
- “He just got his clock cleaned.” — Same idea as the prior quote.
- “They’re literally hanging off the rafters here at the Boston Garden.” — Perhaps the most famous of all Monsoon lines, where you were left wondering whether Gorilla actually understood what he was saying. For the record, I never saw anyone hanging from the Garden rafters, although I did occasionally see people running along the rafter walkways.
- “He hit him in his occipital protuberance.” — That occipital protuberance is that little knob that we all have at the base of the skull. Why that ever worked its way into a wrestling match is beyond me, but Monsoon is the only reason I ever know what that body part is.
- “Ken Patera put the final nail in my career.” — Monsoon would often note that then-Intercontinental Champion Ken Patera retired him, thanks to the stipulations of a match the two had in August 1980 at the Philadelphia Spectrum.
- “This match could be a main event anywhere in the country.” — This was Monsoon’s attempt, which almost always failed, to convince fans that a subpar match was in fact a big deal. For me, I remember this line coming when tag teams split up to fight, such as Rick Martel fighting Mr. Saito.
- “Madison Square Garden: The Mecca of professional wrestling.” — This was a pretty accurate statement in the early 1980s.
- “Do something, ref, even if it’s wrong!” — The equivalent of McMahon’s “Oh, come on!” line when a heel got out of control.
- “You don’t get paid in there by the hour.” — Gorilla liked to remind people that the smart wrestlers were the ones who got their wins quickly.
- “You resemble that remark, Brain.” — Kind of Monsoon’s way of turning the tables on Bobby “The Brain” Heenan when Heenan would say something derogatory about a babyface.
- “The Garden has gone strictly bananas,” with my nod to my friend Tom for remembering this line — I’m not entirely sure what “strictly bananas” meant, but I think we all got the picture of a crowd going crazy for the antics of a match.
Surely I’ve missed some quote from Gorilla. Help me out in the comments section…