I spoke with legendary wrestling journalist Bill Apter recently about his new book, Is Wrestling Fixed? I Didn't Know It Was Broken! During the course of the interview, the longtime writer and editor opened up about how his magazines often caused friction between himself and the WWE.
After leaving Pro Wrestling Illustrated, Apter received a lucrative offer to head up WOW Magazine, a full color print which competed directly with WWE's RAW magazine. According to Apter, WWE wasn't too happy with it.
"WWE hated it," Apter said. "It was going head-to-head with them on the newsstands and it looked better than theirs. Also the publisher was paying their wrestlers to be on the cover. Nobody else had done that. They weren't going through the WWF to do that, they were contacting the wrestlers on their own. They were like outlaws of wrestling magazines. I remember seeing Linda McMahon at an event, and she said that if I went to them, I was still family, but they wouldn't be able to help me. So I became an outlaw."
Despite the professional rivalry, Apter said the WWE and he were on good terms personally. Eventually, Apter was asked back to participate in several productions for the WWE Network.
"A couple of years ago I got a call from a WWE producer who was starting content for the fledgling WWE Network. He asked them why they didn't have Bill Apter as a talking head, and they were like 'who?' Some of them didn't know, because they were TV people, production people. About that time, Triple H got in touch with me as well. When the WWE Network went on the air, WrestleMania Rewind was the very first show, and I'm on there as a talking head. About a dozen WWE employees congratulated me on breaking ground and being on the first show," Apter said.
We'll have the interview up in two parts, with the first coming this week. Also, don't forget to check out Bill Apter's new book, Is Wrestling Fixed? I Didn't Know It Was Broken!