Tommaso Ciampa recalls John Laurinaitis telling him he’d be back on WWE TV to sell injuries from The Undertaker’s attack

Photo Courtesy: WWE

Ciampa’s debut for the company was in 2005 as an on-screen lawyer. 

Present day, Tommaso Ciampa is a member of the Monday Night Raw roster and earlier this month, he challenged GUNTHER for the WWE Intercontinental Championship

18 years ago, Ciampa made his first appearances for the company as an on-screen lawyer for Muhammad Hassan during his program with The Undertaker. Chris Van Vliet interviewed Ciampa and he further spoke on being involved in that storyline. 

Ciampa shared that after Undertaker gave him a chokeslam and Tombstone Piledriver on SmackDown, John Laurinaitis told him he would be brought back to TV the following week in a wheelchair and neck brace to sell the injuries but the call never came. 

It almost became my career. Like, it was a career break (being involved in Undertaker-Muhammad Hassan storyline). But it almost became a massive break. I got a call the day after from I think (John) Laurinaitis who was like, ‘Hey, they loved it. You’re gonna come back next week, you’re gonna be in a wheelchair with a neck brace. We’re gonna really push this thing.’ And I never heard back after that phone call and then Hassan lost (at) the pay-per-view and disappeared. Yeah, it was like legit heat that happened.

There was another instance when Ciampa was trying to land a spot in the company. He had a tryout at Deep South Wrestling and remembers being there with fellow wrestler Arch Kincaid. They were told they’d be signed in a heartbeat if Ciampa had Kincaid’s character and Kincaid had Ciampa’s in-ring ability. 

Yeah, I was on like the Kofi (Kingston) track, man. And then they sent me — trying to think of what happened first. I want to say they sent me to Deep South with this guy Arch Kincaid. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of him. But if you are ever bored one day, go on YouTube. And you can go on an awesome Arch Kincaid promo thing. One time we were backstage and extras used to always have matches, always. They don’t anymore. But we’d have matches to be in front of like Arn (Anderson) and Randy (Orton) and it was so much pressure… And he’s like, ‘I’m just gonna referee today. I don’t feel like getting a sweat.’ I’m like, ‘Oh, okay. Sure.’ And at one point in a match, Stephanie McMahon’s like, ‘Hey, please don’t spill my water.’ The rest of the match, anytime they went near, (Arch said), ‘Don’t go near other waters! It’s Mrs. McMahon’s. You don’t want to spill it.’ He would just do these crazy Arch Kincaid things. And like, I remember watching him that day (being) like, ‘Oh my God, he’s gonna get signed because of a guest referee thing.’ Anyways, fast forward a few months and him and I go to Deep South for a tryout. I remember that critique being, ‘If we could give you his character or him your ability, you guys would be signed in a heartbeat.’ But unfortunately, they felt like I was lacking the character. He was lacking the ability.

Ciampa was not present on the 10/16 WWE Raw. Him and Johnny Gargano were ambushed by Imperium’s Giovanni Vinci and Ludwig Kaiser. Vinci is taking on Gargano on 10/23 and GUNTHER demanded that Gargano leave the arena on a stretcher.

About Andrew Thompson 8594 Articles
A Washington D.C. native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.