Eric Bischoff asserts his inclination towards the title ‘Sports Entertainer’ over ‘Professional Wrestler’.

Eric Bischoff asserts his inclination towards the title ‘Sports Entertainer’ over ‘Professional Wrestler’.
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In a recent episode of the “83 Weeks” podcast, Eric Bischoff reflected on WWE’s escalation during the 1998 Monday Night Wars with WCW, and also discussed the differences between wrestlers and sports entertainers.

Here are some key moments from the podcast:

Discussing his frustration in 1998 and the climb of WWE, Bischoff said: “The exasperation started in ’98, specifically in August of 1998. That was the moment when I first asked, ‘What exactly is happening? Who are these individuals, and why are they dictating my actions?’ So it began in 1998. Up until that point, it was surely getting more competitive but fun nonetheless. We were minting money, which takes me back to ‘Yes, we should have run [Hogan vs. Goldberg] on pay-per-view.’ We weren’t in need of money then. Our obstacles were decreasing momentum and market share loss. You can only ensure long-term revenue by safeguarding the market share originating it.”

His emphasis was on television as a medium driving all business channels. According to Bischoff,the only solution was to get TV ratings back as every other business line would then follow. He fiercely defends this stance and he also emphasized revenue creation going far beyond projections in the late 90s.

Regarding the choice of using a wrestler or sports entertainer, Bischoff said: “The terms ‘sports entertainer’ and ‘wrestler’ are interchangeable for me. I am more inclined towards ‘sport entertainers’ because it rings as a fusion of athleticism and entertainment. In addition, being entertaining is crucial in order to retain audiences and be successful. Thus, ‘sports entertainer’ does a better job of defining what professional wrestling really is.”

While he acknowledges the argument that wrestling is more of a game than a sport, he argues that the focus should be on the entertainment factor of the profession. Eric concluded by acknowledging the value of eliciting strong reactions from audiences in order to have a successful career. He thanked listeners for being part of the podcast.

The full episode of “83 Weeks: King Of The Ring 1998” can be viewed below:

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