There is no question that WCW had a huge impact on the history of professional wrestling, but the legacy of the company is something that is still debated to this day. Perhaps no one was more closely attached to the company during its heights in the mid-90s than former WCW Senior Vice President Eric Bischoff. The former WCW executive summed up what he perceived to be the legacy of WCW in one word on the “Under The Ring” podcast – “innovation.”
There was a lot of things that WCW did differently at the time, from reality-based storylines to the focus on cruiserweight wrestling, all of which helped the company dominate the ratings for their famous 83 weeks against WWE. But for Bischoff, there was one thing he instantly thought of when he found out the company would be going head to head with Vince McMahon, and that was “to go live.”
Bischoff admitted that going up against WWE directly is something he “didn’t expect” and a situation he “didn’t want” or “had never thought about.” But even though it “blindsided” him and wasn’t on his “list of things to do,” before he had even reached his own office, his creative side was kicking into overdrive.
“I stopped on that bridge and had a conversation with myself in my head and I knew right then in that moment that the only way to be successful was to be different than WWE,” he said. “I sat down with a pen and paper and I made a list of all the ways I could be different than WWE … WWE was taped, alright I’m going live, I’ve always believed that live television was better than taped television anyway, but now I had a reason to do it and I could justify it, because it’s more expensive.”
Bischoff’s plan to go live is something that served the company well, particularly because WCW was able to spoil the results of “Monday Night Raw” every week at the start of their own broadcast.
If you use any quotes during this article, please credit “Under The Ring” with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
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