As previously noted, AEW World Champion Chris Jericho recently hosted a podcast from Chris Jericho’s Rock ‘N’ Wrestling Rager At Sea: Part Deux on the subject of the rise and fall of the nWo.
Among many other things, WWE Hall Of Famer Scott Hall talked about his decision to leave WWE for WCW, his fellow WWE Hall Of Famer Kevin Nash initially not wanting to leave WWE, two-time WWE Hall Of Famer Booker T turning down nWo membership, who he would like to see inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame as part of the nWo, and whether he knew WWE Hall Of Famer Hulk Hogan prior to the formation of the nWo.
According to Hall, he left WWE for WCW after WWE boss Vince McMahon rejected his requests at a pay bump. Hall indicated that he would have stayed in WWE for less money as long as he had a guaranteed deal.
“Well, I was schooled kind of in the old school art of doing business with promoters by Curt Hennig, so I pulled Vince aside one time at TV and I said, ‘hey boss, can I ask you for some advice?’ because Curt said the smart guys like to help. He wants to help, so I said, ‘hey boss, is it my ringwork that needs to improve or do I need to work on it?’ [Hall imitates McMahon scoffing] ‘Absolutely not! You’re one of the best we’ve got!’ I said, ‘is it my mic skills? Can you help me get better?’ And he went, ‘I love what you’re doing.’ And I said, ‘because I want to make big money like the guys who preceded me, and I’ve noticed that my pay has kind of plateaued although I feel my value to the company is increasing.’ I said, ‘I’m a babyface that you can leave laying and they chant my name.’ I would put guys over and [the crowd] chanted my name still. I was in a good spot, I felt like. I just said, ‘I want a little bit more’ and he said, ‘no.'” Hall reflected, “I would have stayed [in WWF] for less. I just wanted a guarantee and he just wouldn’t do it.”
Hall divulged that his WWE his downside guarantee contract was worth $1,500.
“My [WWF] contract, as was everybody’s, except for maybe Hulk [Hogan] and stuff, [Ultimate] Warrior, [was] 10 days at $150 a date, guaranteed.” Hall said, “yeah, you made more than that, but that was what you were guaranteed. $1,500 and you give up everything for $1,500.”
Apparently, Nash did not want to leave WWE at first. Hall claimed that he showed Nash his WCW contract and said he should ask for more money than Hall because Hall had a most favored nations contract clause in his deal.
“I remember when I gave my notice to Vince, we had this famous most favored nations clause, which in legal terms means if someone else is coming in and getting paid more, I get more too.” Hall exclaimed, “God bless Barry Bloom! He’s somewhere on this boat. And so I remember telling [Nash], ‘I’m out of here.’ And he goes, ‘I’m staying.’ And I go, ‘if you leave, make sure you get more than that’ and I showed [the contract] to him.”
With respect to Booker T, Hall said ‘the five time, five time, five time champ’ turned down nWo membership.
“Do you know what Book said?” Hall asked rhetorically. “You know, Book is smart. And now nWo is gaining momentum, we’re adding a guy every TV. So I remember talking to Book and he went, ‘naw, I appreciate the love, man, but I’m a solo act.'”
According to Hall, Eric Bischoff, who was not contacted by WWE officials in regards to the nWo’s impending WWE Hall Of Fame induction, should be inducted along with the stable he created.
“They’re inducting the nWo into the [WWE] Hall Of Fame, but, nah, not the guy who thought of it. Leave him out because [imitating McMahon] ‘you kicked my ass for 83 weeks!'” Hall noted, “you know how things operate up there. It’s not about what you produced or ticket sales. It’s all popularity. I’d certainly think I’d start with Eric.”
Hall said he never knew Hogan prior to nWo, but that he was always a mark for ‘The Hulkster’.
“Yeah, I didn’t know Hulk at all, but, like anybody in the [pro] wrestling business, you kind of a mark for him. I’ll admit it. And I’ll never forget how, when you’ve been around a long time, you’ve kind of experienced all the highs and lows and it’s fun to share them with the guys that you’re working with. And here’s Hulk, who to me has done it all, been to the mountaintop. And to see how excited he was Bash At The Beach and then later at Starrcade when he did a job for [Roddy] Piper in the sleeper. And he didn’t have to, but we talked him into it. We said, ‘just go on Nitro and lie about it.’ Just say, ‘no, I kicked Piper’s ass.’ And to see him so excited again was really cool for me.”
Listen to the show here. If you use any of the quotes from this article, please credit Talk Is Jericho with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.