On a recent edition of his “The ARN Show” podcast, WWE Hall of Famer Arn Anderson discussed the impact Eric Bischoff had in WCW when he was appointed the President in 1994.
You can check out some highlights from the podcast below:
On WCW lacking leadership direction: “Well, everybody that came in that was the boss was either not qualified or was trying to do something that was not plausible. I mean, Watts wanted to go all the way back to throwing a guy over the top rope was disqualification. I mean, that’s backtracking. When you come in and you’re edict to the WCW higher-ups is, ‘Hey, don’t pay me a salary, just pay me what I saved the company.’ Well that’s great if you’re going to do some cost-cutting measures that are things that were done improperly before. But when you’re gonna go right and take it away from the talent, what do you think that did to the attitude of guys?
“The one thing you could count on and the one thing you could be sure of which kept you going to work and working as hard as possible was no, matter what, every two weeks, getting paid. And now he wants to cut guy’s money? And ‘Take it or leave it’ was the attitude? Talent is the product, that’s what you’re selling. That’s what we all live off of is the talent. It’s not the production people, even though they have a part of it. It’s not the front office, they play a big part of it. But the product or the wrestlers. And when you tell a guy you’re gonna cut his money just because ‘That’s how I’m gonna get paid.’ When that gets out there, that was really bad. Cut out catering? ‘You guys are here from two to 11, but we’re gonna cut out catering. We’re gonna give you a box lunch.’ Ham sandwiches and a little bag of chips. You know, if you weren’t there and saw it, you wouldn’t believe it.”
On Eric Bischoff being the right guy for the right direction in WCW: “Yeah, and everybody chipped in. You know, one thing that needs to be said, and it’s just because it’s the truth. You had three guys: [Kevin] Nash, [Scott] Hall, who had established themselves up north. And they came down and brought the star power. Hogan, he was here. He had the star power, and the fact that he had never been a heel was a big selling point. And here’s the part that people forge but you need to make mention of: three guys who took over the company and laid waste to everybody else that was in the company. Now that’s picking your spots, and you have to be selective on how you do that so it’s plausible. But that means that every other talent sacrificed themself to get those guys hot, and to get them over. Because if you really think about it, why didn’t they just call a big meeting and go, ‘Listen, there’s just three of these guys. They’re trying to take over our company. For one night and one night only if we have to, let’s kill these guys.’ You know, that would have made sense. But for everybody chipping in and everybody selling, and getting hot backstage, the entire company got on board. And that’s why they got over like they did. Now they carried their end of it. You know, they held their end of it up, it’ll go down as one of the greatest angles in wrestling history. But still, you’ve gotta have a lot of guys sacrificing for that to work.”
During a recent episode of his podcast, “The ARN Show,” WWE Hall of Famer Arn Anderson discussed the impact Eric Bischoff had when he became the President of WCW in 1994. Anderson shed light on the lack of leadership direction in WCW prior to Bischoff’s arrival and how his appointment brought about significant changes.
According to Anderson, WCW had been struggling with ineffective leadership. The previous bosses either lacked the necessary qualifications or proposed ideas that were not feasible. For instance, Bill Watts wanted to reintroduce the rule that throwing a wrestler over the top rope would result in disqualification. This move was seen as a step backward and did not resonate well with the talent or fans.
Furthermore, Anderson highlighted an incident where the higher-ups in WCW suggested paying the President based on how much money they saved the company. While this approach may have been suitable for cost-cutting measures, it resulted in reduced salaries for the wrestlers. Anderson emphasized that talent is the product being sold, and when their pay is cut, it negatively affects their morale and attitude towards work.
Anderson also mentioned other cost-cutting measures that were implemented, such as cutting out catering and providing box lunches instead. This further demoralized the wrestlers, who relied on these amenities during their long hours at work. Anderson expressed disbelief at these decisions and emphasized that unless someone witnessed it firsthand, they wouldn’t believe the extent of the cost-cutting measures.
However, when Eric Bischoff took over as President, things started to change for the better. Anderson acknowledged that Bischoff was the right person to lead WCW in a new direction. Bischoff’s appointment coincided with the arrival of established stars like Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and Hulk Hogan, who brought star power to the company. Anderson noted that these three individuals essentially took over the company and dominated the scene.
Anderson also highlighted the sacrifice made by other wrestlers in WCW to help establish the new stars. He mentioned that the entire company got on board with the new direction, and everyone chipped in to make the angle successful. This collaboration and dedication from the wrestlers played a significant role in the success of WCW during that period.
In conclusion, Arn Anderson’s discussion on his podcast shed light on the impact Eric Bischoff had when he became the President of WCW in 1994. Bischoff’s appointment brought much-needed leadership direction to the company, and his collaboration with established stars like Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and Hulk Hogan propelled WCW to new heights. The sacrifices made by other wrestlers in WCW also played a crucial role in the success of the company during that time.