Eric Bischoff has spent time working for WCW, WWE and TNA and was hands-on with many things, whether it was on screen or backstage. Bischoff recently talked on his 83 Weeks podcast about the amount of work that goes into the roles he took with each company, and the reason he wouldn’t have ever bothered signing a one-year contract during those times.
“No, I’ve never signed a 1-year deal in my life ever and I never would,” Bischoff revealed. “Well, never say never, but at this stage in my life, I don’t want to get involved with anything for too long unless I’m having a really good time doing it. Back then, I would never look at an agreement that was a 1-year agreement. Not to be a d–k or make it sound like I value myself way too high, but to put yourself into something and to really connect to something, to really formally engage in something, it takes more than a year to kind of get your groove.
“I wouldn’t have put myself in a position where I’m going to have to dig and commit myself to the degree I have to, and for only 6 months in, I start realizing, ‘Man, the clock is ticking’. I don’t like to work that way and I never have. All of my agreements in WCW were either 2 years or the latter ones became 3-year agreements.
“Same with WWE when I was under contract. When I was there as an employee last summer, I was an employee; I didn’t have a contract. There were no contracts, but when I was under contract, they were all 2 and 3-year agreements. I never signed a 1-year agreement ever.”
Bischoff’s time in TNA has been a topic of discussion for many years, but Bischoff later revealed in the discussion that he was not part of the hiring or firing process. He apparently made it clear when negotiating his contract that he wanted no part in that. Another topic he touched on was that he felt like AJ Styles wasn’t a big draw in TNA.
“Outside of the TNA and the core audience they had at that time, not a lot of people knew AJ Styles,” Bischoff said. “I think he still fell into that much younger developing category even though he was heads and tails above so many others. He had been in the business for 8 years. He wasn’t really a big draw outside of the TNA core audience because he hadn’t had the exposure, not because he wasn’t good enough. Clearly we see that now in WWE; he’s one of the top talents in WWE in my opinion, but back then, he didn’t really exist in the mind of a lot of audiences outside of the bubble.”
Bischoff was also with TNA around the time that Kurt Angle’s wife, Karen, left him for Jeff Jarrett. While many thought that could be a messy situation, Bischoff revealed that all parties involved were cordial and got along so well that he never bothered giving it any more thought.
“I didn’t think about it much,” Bischoff said. “I have never been one that spent too much time thinking about other people’s relationships and what’s right or what’s wrong. It was certainly unique, especially since Kurt was still in the company. I was aware of how awkward the situation either was or may have been. I didn’t see any of that.
“When everybody was backstage, they got along as an extended family. There was no real issue within their family that I can see, not that I would judge it one way or the other anyway. When they were all together, Karen would often come backstage and bring the kids, and she would be with Jeff, and Kurt was there and Kurt’s soon-to-be wife, and everybody got along. So, I probably didn’t spend a total of 30 seconds thinking about it.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit 83 Weeks with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Mehdy Labriny contributed to this article.