The Halloween Havoc PPV debuted in 1989 as a part of the National Wrestling Alliance. Two years later, it became an important yearly event for WCW every October. Fast forward to 2020, NXT has announced its first ever Halloween Havoc event on October 28th that will be hosted by Shotzi Blackheart.
During the latest 83 Weeks Podcast, Eric Bischoff covered Halloween Havoc 1992, which featured the first-ever Coal Miner’s Glove match between Sting and Jake ‘the Snake’ Roberts. Bischoff talked about NXT choosing to resurrect Halloween Havoc and why he believes it’s a great idea.
“I think it’s great,” Bischoff said. “Wrestling fans have a long memory; they love their nostalgia and history. I think the fact that WWE is bringing back Halloween Havoc in whatever version is paying homage to a great PPV series. Halloween Havoc went on to become one of the more important PPV’s for WCW, so I think it’s great. Hopefully it will be a tradition that continues long into the future.”
Bischoff continued to mention that the biggest issue with Halloween Havoc was the constant gimmick matches. He also talked about matches without stories, saying the stakes are meaningless, and mentioned current wrestling companies not following these exact guidelines.
“Stakes are a part of a story,” Bischoff said. “Stakes in and of itself aren’t enough to compel people to tune into a PPV or television. Stakes are important but they’re only important as it relates to the story. The story is what makes the stakes feel real and viable. The story is what allows the audience to identify with one character or the other, so that the stakes are then important.
“We see a lot of that today [in wrestling]. I’m not going to be critical of anybody. The stories that we’re watching today, with some exceptions, there’s just not the emphasis on story and stakes. We’ll put these two guys together – it will be great. We’ll put two girls together – it will be great. No, it won’t. The reason for us to watch isn’t there; the investment isn’t there. We just don’t care.”
As stated earlier, this PPV featured a Coal Miner’s Glove match in the main event. Sting defeated Jake ‘the Snake’ Roberts by grabbing the glove off the pole in the corner, putting it on and hitting Roberts with a punch. Bischoff talked about the gimmick of the match and how ridiculous it was. He said there being no build up made it even worse because nobody knew what the reason for a Coal Miner’s Glove match was.
“Horrible, horrible,” Bischoff said. “A Coal Miner’s glove match? What the f*** is that? Do coal miner wear gloves? What makes it so interesting? No story, no buildup, just a gimmick match for the sake of a gimmick match.
“It bothered me to see Sting, who I’ve watched in so many great matches– Sting was one of those guys who could be in any match and make it good. The chicken salad king! But even Sting had a hard time making sense of this.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit 83 Weeks with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.