Old School

Vince Russo On The Real Reason Behind Eric Bischoff Signing Bret Hart To WCW

Bret Hart

During a recent edition of “The Brand” podcast, Vince Russo, Glenn Gilbertti (WCW’s Disco Inferno) & Jeff Lane (co-host) discussed Bret Hart ripping Eric Bischoff in a recent interview. Below is the conversation:

Jeff: Bret Hart had some strong comments about Eric Bischoff this week in an interview . He was talking about WCW and he said that the money they paid him was insane. He would be flying first class, he would be in luxury cars, luxury hotels, he’d get at the arena. And then like five to ten minutes after 6:00, assuming the show starts at 8:00 if they’re Eastern, Eric would tell him that he’s off, he’s off tonight. He’s not on the show. And then he said:

“Why did I fly all the way down here and then he would tell me not to work. He would just tell me not to worry about it and enjoy the day off. I don’t have a good thing to say about Eric Bischoff or anything he ever did. Talk about the Midas touch, he was the opposite. He would kill your career. He was too stupid to know what a career was.

It’s like if you had passion for your matches, it didn’t mean anything to Eric Bischoff. He was the worst loser maggot. He was a nice enough guy, but he was just the worst. We look at wrestling today it’s like monopoly. The wrestlers have no leverage. But before, if wrestlers weren’t going to get paid you could have told them you’re going to WCW like the old days.

That was so much better for the wrestlers because we had a bargaining table. But today? No. And that’s all Eric Bischoff’s fault. He killed the wrestling business. He was the worst.”

Russo: I was there when Bret went from WWF to WCW. I was there, bro, so like I know everything that went on. Here is the bottom line, and this is why Bret’s saying what he did and that’s why I think there’s a lot of truth, I know how Bret was booked before I got there. I know how Bret was booked at the WWF before he left. It was freaking night and day. Here is the bottom line.

Eric Bischoff went after Bret Hart not because he wanted Bret Hart, because he was going after Vince McMahon. You know, Bret Hart was such a huge star and icon in the WWF. That’s what Eric Bischoff wanted. It’s not like Eric Bischoff was looking at that WWF roster and saying – “Oh my god if I could have Bret Hart here in WCW”. That’s not what he was looking at. He was looking to hurt Vince McMahon by offering, as Bret said, by offering him a truckload of money. it was another dagger in Vince McMahon’s heart – “Oh look we’ve got Bret Hart now”.

He never cared about Bret Hart to wrestle. I sincerely doubt that Eric Bischoff was even aware of anything Bret did creatively at the WWF. I can guarantee you he didn’t see 90% of it. Because if you look at how he was booked there compared to what we did with him at the WWF, I mean, bro, it’s like all of a sudden the star of the movie had a walk-on role. I mean that’s literally what happened to Bret at WCW.

Russo: Nobody ever talks about Bret’s mic skills. Bro, I guarantee outside of a couple of guys at WWE right now, maybe The Miz and maybe Cena, Bret Hart was great on the mic.

Glenn: His interviews were never that entertaining like catchphrases. What he did have was is a level of seriousness in his tone of voice that strengthened the angle that he was in. A lot of guys don’t have that these days.

Jeff: And not only the believability in the promo, you look at his in-ring work. I guarantee you if you took somebody who’d never seen professional wrestling and you show them like a match from today, they’ll see it okay this doesn’t look real but then you can show them a Bret Hart match and they might be thinking this one is real. Because he looks that believable in the ring and I always thought that.

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