In honor of his 2021 WWE Hall of Fame induction Eric Bischoff appeared on the After The Bell podcast with host Corey Graves to talk all things pro-wrestling, which included a conversation about WWE bringing in the famous WCW NWO faction back in 2002. Hear what Bischoff had to say on the subject below.
Says he was offered a storyline part to bring the NWO into WWE back in 2002:
“I’ve spent a couple of minutes in WWE as a talent, and I think I was there long enough for my coffee to get lukewarm as an executive. While I was there all those years, I’ve never really asked the question, but I’m pretty certain right before that angle launched – I know it because I got a phone call from Jim Ross. Jim and I are very close now, and we have a blast together. But back then when the WWE version of the nWo angle was unfolding, I got a call from Jim, which really surprised me because of the tension in the relationship. He was very professional but very distant and offered me an opportunity to come in and join WWE as part of a storyline.”
Why he turned it down:
“Now, I’m never one that’s like I’m only interested if you tell me what the story is. But he offered me an opportunity to come in, and the timing wasn’t right for me. It just didn’t feel right. Jim wasn’t being as forthcoming as I would hope he would be, at least to get me excited about it. So, I passed on it. I’m pretty certain it was shortly thereafter we found out Vince McMahon was behind the whole WWE/nWo story. So, I think to answer your question, had I decided to take that opportunity and jump at it, I think it may have been revealed that I was bringing the nWo with me into WWE. I think that could’ve helped a lot because I just don’t think anybody brought in the story of Vince McMahon bringing in the nWo to ruin his whole company.”
Why WWE’s version of the faction only featured the original members:
“That was obviously by choice. You’re looking at Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, and Hulk Hogan. If you want equity in your characters, you can’t get more equity than those three characters as nWo. I thought that was brilliant. The expansion and exponential growth of the nWo in WCW was really two things. It was holy cow, this is really working, let’s keep going. The other part of it was the intent originally to grow the nWo large enough so it could have its own roster so it could have its own show. Unfortunately, halfway across the river, the horse broke a leg and we went down and now we’re stuck with a whole bunch of guys with nowhere to go. From the outside looking in, it was kind of a cluster.”
(H/T and transcribed by 411 Mania)