On a recent episode of The Wresting Inc. Daily, Wrestling Inc. Managing Editor Nick Hausman sat down with the producer of The Brian Pillman Memorial Show 20th Anniversary Anthology, Joe Dombrowski. Hausman and Dombrowski discussed the different talent from various companies that were at these shows, and Dombrowski named his most interesting crossover.
“It was a little moment, and it really didn’t mean much in the scope of the show, but it was just wild to me to watch Ricky Steamboat hug Kevin Nash,” Dombrowski said. “Just things like that where they don’t cross paths but the fact that you had ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin from WWE, you had Chris Jericho from WCW, you had Chris Candido and Al Snow from ECW [and] you had Sunny from WWE / F, and this was all just the very first Pillman event.
“This was the first time after [Chris] Benoit, [Dean] Malenko [Eddie] Guerrero and [Perry] Saturn had jumped from WCW. This is the first time that they saw many of their friends since then. It was the first time they shared a locker room with Shane Douglas, who was kind of controversially involved in that departure. So that’s something Shane talks about in our documentary feature.”
Dombrowski explained the situation between The Radicalz and Shane Douglas. He revealed what it was like between them when they shared a locker room at the Brian Pillman Memorial Show.
“Well, there was some discrepancy as to who was walking out of WCW. A lot of people were upset over the management changes,” Dombrowski explained. “Benoit, Guerrero, Malenko and Saturn ended up walking out. There were a number of other people, Konnan, Billy Kidman, Shane Douglas [and] Rey Mysterio, that were rumored to be joining them, and depending on whose story you believe, either some people left without the other person’s knowledge or some people decided to stay.
“There’s a little gray area there, but it was the first time really that a lot of those guys had shared a locker rooms since that had happened about three months earlier, and Shane talks about it. It wasn’t exactly the most friendly environment, but it was for Brian, so there was no heat. There was no drama. There was no issues.”
Dombrowski was later reminded of “the weirdest crossover” at a Brian Pillman Memorial Show. He discussed two future multi-time WWE Champions that had their first few matches with each other as well as a WWE Hall of Famer that was impacted at one of the shows.
“When you talk about the weirdest crossover to me, I don’t know if it’s necessarily a crossover but it’s something I did not expect and didn’t know about. 2001 Independent Showcase, there are two rookies from OVW that have a match with each other, and one is named ‘The Prototype’ John Cena and the other is named Randy Orton,” Dombrowski named. “So I think their first or second ever one-on-one match against each other is preserved on this set, which is wild to me.
“It was really different because that was the show where there was really only one company left. WCW was still represented but obviously was still under the WWF umbrella by that point, and Edge and Christian, and The Hardy Boys and Diamond Dallas Page and Kanyon in a three-team tag team match in the main event. It was Lita and Victoria in a women’s match. Mark Henry told the story on Steve Austin’s Broken Skull Sessions and he told it for us in this documentary feature that we have in addition to these shows.
“That match he had with Bill DeMott, Hugh Morris, really was a turning point in his career where he had a chance to go out, show what he can do athletically and after that match, he got some words from Ricky ‘The Dragon’ Steamboat that really helped just inspire him and put a huge smile on his face. So that meant a lot to Mark, and I think one thing that’s interesting is the amount of talent that look at these events and, by proxy Brian himself, as helping boost their career, or get them noticed or even get them contracts. So even no longer here in the physical life, Brian was still helping people and still helping the business.”
To order The Brian Pillman Memorial Show 20th Anniversary Anthology visit PillmanShow.com. A digital copy can be found at ProWrestlingLibrary.com. You can find Dombrowski’s full interview via the embedded players below: