AEW producer and manager Arn Anderson spoke about the downfall of WCW on the latest episode of his Arn podcast. Highlights from the episode can be found below.
Recalls an incident that made him realize the company was going to fail:
So we had a show at the MGM [Grand]. And I remember coming down the elevator, and I walked out. The elevator door opened, and it would in those days where we stayed, the MGM, there was a Betty Boop Lounge. As soon as the doors opened to the elevator, right there it was. So you had to pass through the bar area to get to the casino or to get out of the hotel or whatever. And doors open, and man I just heard the guys laughing, and yukking it up, and roaring. I followed the sound, and I went out and it was all the guys from the school. And they were over there and they were drinking, they were having a good time ’cause they’d been on TV now for four of five, six weeks. And they were living their dream. They were on television, they were being featured, they were in competitive matches with each other. The only problem was, nobody knew who they were and nobody was watching.
And it just flew all over me, and I went over and went ‘Hey guys, what’s going on?’ ‘Hey hey, Double-A!’ ‘What’s going on here, guys?’ ‘Oh man, we’re just having a blast, living the dream.’ Well I just so happened to have gotten the numbers for the previous week. And they were the lowest in the history of the company. That’s the knowledge I stepped out of the elevator with. And I went over and like I said, said hello to all the guys. And they gave me their feedback. And these were guys that would have been asking, at a couple of them, ‘Hey, how are the ratings doing?’ And somebody would have told them, ‘Hey, they’re terrible.’ In the face of steadily dropping ratings, no house show business, and the fact that the lowest rating in the history of the company had just came down, I didn’t see nothing to be yukking it up about. I didn’t see nothing to be happy about, didn’t see anything to be positive about. I would have been damned sure in the dumps if I was a guy featured on that television show and it did the lowest rating in history.
How it broke his heart to see WCW on its last legs:
It just broke my heart, because it just showed me the mentality of the company at the time, and knowing that it was a sinking ship. I didn’t blame all those kids, because they didn’t know any better. I just blame the company for not trying to fix all the holes in that boat before it started sinking. And it just, that day in particular, that set of circumstances just broke my heart. Because I knew we weren’t gonna be around much longer.
Full episode is below. (H/T and transcribed by 411 Mania)