• Eric Bischoff On Why He Did Not Sign Jake Roberts During The Monday Night Wars
On a recent episode of his weekly ’83 Weeks’ podcast, Eric Bischoff talked about WWF Legend Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts and never signing him to World Championship Wrestling during the Monday Night Wars.
Jake did wrestle for Ted Turner’s WCW in 1992, but that was before Bischoff was in charge.
Eric could have signed him in 1993, 1994 & 1995, before Roberts signed with the World Wrestling Federation in January of 1996 and stayed there for a little over a year till 1997.
Bischoff could’ve signed Jake then at the height of the famous Monday Night Wars during 1997, 1998 or even later on in 1999 or 2000, but that did not happen.
Here’s the former WCW President’s explanation on why he never signed Jake:
“I think the consensus among the people that knew Jake best is indeed he had and has a really good mind for storytelling and characters but he was too far gone at that point, he was not in control. Everybody respected the hell out of him and everybody would’ve loved to have Jake on their team, especially in creative capacity.
I think the people closest to him, like DDP, acknowledged that he wasn’t in the right frame of mind to be involved. I see Jake whenever we go down to AEW, once every couple of months and make an appearance.
Before I leave I’m always like I’ve got to sit down, buy Jake dinner, just go away from the hotel, get away from everybody else and I just want to pick his brain. Get inside that head of his and see just how deep he goes and hear what he thinks in terms of what we’re seeing today and how to hold onto some of the formulas and presentation that has worked since the beginning of time but yet still balance that with what the audience has as far as expectations with athleticism.
There’s got to be a balance in there somewhere, right now for me, the emphasis is way too much on freestyle gymnastic floor exercise and not enough on storytelling in the ring and the physicality in the ring. I’d love to hear how Jake would approach it if he were calling the shots.
One of these days, I’ll get that opportunity but I haven’t done so yet.”
During his time as the WCW President, Bischoff ended up signing WWF Veterans like Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, Roddy Piper, Jim Duggan, Brutus Beefcake, Bret Hart, The Nasty Boys, The Big Boss Man, The Ultimate Warrior, Razor Ramon & Diesel, among several others. So it’s understandable that some fans would wonder why he never actually signed Jake Roberts.
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• ON THIS DAY IN WCW HISTORY (June 29, 1998) – WCW MONDAY NITRO
On this day in 1998, Ted Turner’s World Championship Wrestling aired another LIVE episode of their weekly TV show ‘WCW MONDAY NITRO’.
It was broadcasted from the Ice Palace in Tampa, Florida and featured matches, interviews & storyline segments on the road to the ‘WCW Bash at the Beach 1998’ PPV.
The match-card can be found here:
– Kanyon vs. Horace Boulder
– Little Dragon vs. Eddy Guerrero
– The Giant vs. Sumo Fuji & Judo Suwa
– Lex Luger & Sting vs. Davey Boy Smith & Jim Neidhart
– Perry Saturn vs. Reese
– El Vampiro vs. Brad Armstrong
– Alex Wright & Disco Inferno vs. Tokyo Magnum & CIMA
– Chris Benoit & Steve McMichael vs. Harlem Heat
– Goldberg vs. Glacier