WWE Hall Of Famer Eric Bischoff Assesses His Impact On Wrestling Industry

During the height of WCW in the 1990s, in the era known as the "Monday Night War," the ratings of "WCW Monday Nitro" largely surpassed that of "WWE Raw" for more than a year — something former WCW Senior Vice President Eric Bischoff reinforced with the name of one of his podcasts, "83 Weeks." Speaking on a different show, "Wise Choices," Bischoff was asked to share what he believes his biggest contributions to the wrestling industry are, with the former executive prefacing his answer by stating that he'd try to be as objective as possible.


"I was the first person to take wrestling live, every single week, in primetime," Bischoff said.

Although "Raw" would sometimes broadcast live, WWE would also tape many episodes. Bischoff believes much of the interest in "Nitro" came because of the live element, as it's a rarity on TV outside of professional sports. Additionally, the prominence of the high-octane cruiserweight division during the transition between the first and second hours of "Nitro" helped retain viewers and bring in new ones.

"Having that cruiserweight action in the crossover segment, more often than not, helped make 'Nitro' what 'Nitro' became," Bischoff continued. "I think it's opened up the doors for a whole generation ... of smaller, faster, more athletic talent that we're now seeing everywhere but you rarely ever saw before the cruiserweight division on 'Nitro.'"


Bischoff also took credit for popularizing "reality-based characters" in wrestling. He did not elaborate on who he was speaking about, but it seems Bischoff may have been alluding to Goldberg — the former pro football player who entered WCW in late 1997 and went on an undefeated streak on TV that lasted for more than a year.

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit "Wise Choices" with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.