Eric Bischoff Details How He Would Have Booked WWE Invasion Angle

Eric Bischoff recently shared his thoughts on WWE's Invasion storyline from 2001 on "83 Weeks." Explaining where he thought the angle went wrong, Bischoff likened the WCW names brought over in the acquisition to buying WWE and only getting "WWE NXT" prospects. 

"Look, there was an established WCW audience for several years prior to the acquisition," Bischoff started, "There were a certain number of people that represented that brand." He explained that even though WCW had brought in some WWE names, like Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage, there was a core roster that represented the WCW brand to the audience. Names like Sting, Ric Flair, Lex Luger, and the Steiner Brothers. But they were not present at the beginning of the Invasion. "So you've got the brand and if there was a critical flaw, it would be assuming that just because you had the three letters that the audience would follow and the audience is not gonna follow it. They didn't follow because they didn't have the talent that represented the brand so that the audience could relate to it."

Bischoff recalled Scott Hall and Kevin Nash's WCW debut in 1996. He noted that there was intrigue to their arrival and they told a progressively unfolding story to keep the audience hooked. He emphasized that the lack of a story was just one of so many missing elements to the Invasion, dubbing WWE's booking of the angle the "wrestling version of throwing s**t against the wall and seeing if it sticks." Bischoff also said that he was offered the chance to be part of the angle, but had to turn it down. He made it clear that his denial wasn't from a resentful standpoint, but rather just a timing issue. 

Eric Bischoff feels Sting should have been a part of the Invasion

Bischoff explained that he would have waited to do the angle, knowing that many key WCW talents were unavailable at the time. He said it would have taken a little more time, salesmanship, and money, but Sting could have been a possible signing to kick things off. "They could have worked something out with Sting if they worked enough at it and gave it some time," Bischoff opined. 

He delved into the perception at the time that WCW talent going to WWE would have been given an initiation of sorts, receiving unfavorable treatment and then potentially being discarded. He said that would have been the major crux to negotiations with Sting — trying to break that perception — as he felt the money wouldn't have been an issue considering the deals Vince McMahon was signing at the time. If Vince got Sting, Bischoff feels things could have been very different:

"Not to be disrespectful, but all you needed was one anchor like a Sting. If Sting would've come, Lex Luger would've come. Now that Lex Luger's there and Sting's there, guess who would follow shortly thereafter? The Steiner Brothers. If I would've made a different decision, perhaps I would've been leading that charge, then you've got an invasion that at least the audience feels like it could be true, right?"

Eric Bischoff describes a scenario which could have worked

Speaking about what he would have done if he were booking the angle himself, Bischoff said that he would consider his main event in three months' time and build to that. He outlined that the way Booker T arrived in WWE wasn't believable, and didn't offer the chance for the story to breathe and build. In his scenario, Bischoff would want to establish the reasoning behind Sting's arrival.

"A babyface comes in from WCW finally getting an opportunity in WWE, not as a WCW representative, somebody that everybody would recognize finally gets an opportunity," Bischoff laid out as a possible precursor to Sting's arrival. From there, he said that he would make it apparent to the audience that this former WCW star is getting screwed out of their opportunity by WWE heels. That would, in his eyes, provide the foundation for Sting to enter the storyline. "Now there's reason for Sting to go, 'Well this is f***ed up, I'm not gonna let this happen,' then bring in Shane McMahon and say, 'I agree with Sting, this is not the right way to do this,' or whatever the verbiage would be."

Bischoff conceded that the scenario he laid out wasn't perfect, but he felt it at least demonstrated a rhyme and reason to the Invasion storyline. Had the premise been more fleshed out when it was presented to him, and he had the chance to get "TV ready" as he called it, then Bischoff said he would have loved to have been a part of the angle. He reasoned that it could have been fun to work.