Vince McMahon allegedly told Keith Lee that “you sound too smart for your own good”

During an appearance on Chris Jericho’s podcast, Keith Lee talked about the end of his run with WWE and his backstage dealings with Vince McMahon…

“What happened is, when I was about to come back, they hit me with the vision for the Bearcat thing. During that time, I was like, ‘I don’t understand what that is. I’m not sure I’m feeling that.’ They brought me back as myself and then, my second match — first match, lost to (Bobby) Lashley. Second match, lost to (Karrion) Kross — In the middle of the show, Vince pulls me to a room and wants to have a talk. Vince doesn’t leave the show. Middle of Raw, semi and main event coming up and he’s like, ‘Let’s go chat.’ ‘You’re the guy on the headphones, what are you doing?’ It was in that conversation that he was basically like, ‘I need you to do this and I need you to be this.’ ‘I work for you. If that’s what you want, that’s what we’re going to do.'”

“The weird thing, you mentioned the way that I speak; my cadence, the way I seem thoughtful about how I deliver things, my choice of diction, all of those things were something that Vince was not a fan of. To the point where he literally told me, ‘You sound too smart for your own good.’ I don’t understand what that means. He wanted something more grimey. I don’t think I delivered that for him. He wanted some intense guy and I think I can be intense, but I need a reason to be intense. It’s easy for me to flip a switch, but if it doesn’t make sense, it’s hard for me to do that. I can’t be…I tried…I don’t think I’m very good at it and that’s something that facilitated that. I’m not a big angry grunty yelling guy. I’m not that until someone makes me that and it’s usually a match or story that causes that. When there is no competitive match that pushes me or no story that gives me reason for a character to be that, it’s something…maybe that’s what he means when he says ‘I’m too smart,’ to me, it’s illogical. I like to do my best to make sense of what we’re doing” (quotes courtesy of