Eric Bischoff Responds To Booker T's Comments On Being A Black Title Contender In WCW

A somber revelation from episode three of VICE TV's "Who Killed WCW?" was Booker T's admission that he never believed he could carry the World Heavyweight Championship due to skin color. However, Booker proved his doubters wrong, winning WCW's top prize a total of five times before the company shut down. On "83 Weeks," Eric Bischoff offered his insight as to whether he personally witnessed racism while employed at WCW.


"I think it was an honest comment," Bischoff said. "I think Booker T probably grew up thinking a lot about things that wouldn't be available to him because he was black... He grew up in a stressful, tough environment. So I'm sure a lot of kids growing up with Booker felt the exact same way. And I'm sure — I'm guessing, I believe — that you probably carry that through with you into your adult life into your job situation."

Bischoff mentioned that he wasn't surprised or bothered by Booker T's comments, but did take some offense to the way Vince Russo depicted the situation. Russo implied that WCW had never had a black champion before – even though Ron Simmons became the first black World Champion in company history some years before — and that he was there to save the day.


"You can say what you want about WCW, but at least during my time there, I don't think anybody can accuse WCW of being racist," Bischoff said. "I certainly didn't try to hold Booker T back when I was there. Kevin Sullivan didn't try to hold Booker T back while he was booking. And Russo did make him the champion, to Russo's credit. It's just too bad it didn't happen under different circumstances."

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "83 Weeks" and provide a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.