Author’s note: Scott left an indelible impact on my life and now, a career of doing what I love. I want to dedicate the following to him, his family, Kevin Nash, Sean Waltman, DDP, Triple H, Shawn Michaels and anybody who ever took a note of “cool” from “The Bad Guy.”
He may have never held a major world title, but Scott Hall was my undisputed champion in pro wrestling. His passing will forever create a massive void in my heart, but I’m happy that it does because it makes one realize how great of space he took up.
From my perspective, the “Lone Wolf” was so underrated from the mainstream scope of pro wrestling. That never mattered to Scott and isn’t that what made “The Bad Guy” so cool? “It’s not show friends, it’s show business,” Hall would infamously tell colleagues, and that immediately tells you the man understood the lay of the land. Scott, along with best friend Kevin Nash, changed wrestling for the better from a talent perspective when the Outsiders set sail for WCW, but Hall himself changed the wrestling fan’s perception of what cool was. Before Stone Cold, Razor Ramon was the true blue anti-hero. He’d turn himself sideways, extend his arms in order to not to be touched by fans on the entryway all with the intent to toss a toothpick in the opposing foe’s face. If that opponent was lucky, he wouldn’t paintbrush his scalp as a means of humiliation. Nobody did that. Nobody did a lot of what Scott Hall did and again, isn’t that what made him so cool?
Rest assured, Hall attended to every little detail in the ring. His “devil may care” mannerisms were a prologue to his emphasized work in the ring as when Scott struck or slammed, he made you believe while making it seem effortless. He had the best working punch in the business this side of Jerry Lawler, and The Bad Guy took note. He had jet black hair in the sea of bleach blondes and kept kayfabe when a fan’s cup of beer tried to disrupt those follicles. Nobody ever did that. But Scott Hall? Just too cool to let it shake him.
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You know what really made Scott Hall cool though? That eventual redemption story. Diamond Dallas Page housed him and just like he did with Jake Roberts, DDP showed him love when he needed it most. So many times throughout the years, Scott didn’t seem capable of expressing that love for himself and it was beautiful to see a friend step in and step up. Death’s door came knocking to Hall so many times and from 1998 to the 2010s, I remember being struck with expected sorrow anytime I would read new sites or message boards during The Bad Guy’s bad times. My hero was struggling and just being a fan, I felt helpless. But love is what defined Scott Hall in pro wrestling and in life.
He loved Dusty Rhodes. He loved shaking up the conventional by giving rookies unexpected wins and loved how doing good business with good talent would enhance his and his buddies’ checking accounts. He loved a dry sense of humor, he loved Elvis and he loved his children.
Many talents, whether their in-ring careers were positive or negative with Hall, came out to express their love for The Bad Guy when his passing occurred and it speaks to the good guy he truly was.
“I think Scott carried many heavy crosses long before I ever knew him,” wrote Bret Hart. “He was a good friend to Owen long before he became Razor Ramon. Wrestling life can be so much fun, and at the same time, it can take all you have at the same time. I will always remember Scott in the better times with his cool, dry sense of humor while playing gently with my sons.”
“Scott Hall and I didn’t always see eye to eye when we worked together, but I’m happy to say we cleared the air and became friends over the last few years,” said Chris Jericho. “What an amazing worker he was in the ring and out! He was one of the biggest stars I’ve encountered during my career….and he was by far the BEST pro wrestler I’ve ever seen to NEVER hold a world title! Love and respect forever. God bless you #BadGuy….I’ll never forget you.”
Whose words perhaps resonated most with fans was Kevin Nash as Scott and he were inseparable while on the road and in the business.
“I love Scott with all my heart but now I have to prepare my life without him in the present. I’ve been blessed to have a friend that took me at face value and I him. When we jumped to WCW we didn’t care who liked or hated us,” Nash wrote on Instagram before Hall was taken off life support. “As we prepare for life without him just remember there goes a great guy you ain’t going to see another one like him again. See ya down the road, Scott. I couldn’t love a human being any more than I do you.”
The kinship Kevin shared with Scott reflected the exact fandom of my brother and I and that’s forever given me memories to cherish that cannot be replaced. It was brothers at home watching “brothers” in the ring and they were our respective favorites.
Hall never let not holding a World Title bother him, and designated his own role in a 2016 interview with Chael Sonnen.
“I actually found myself in what I call ‘the Tito Santana spot’, like, the upper-middle babyface, as Razor [Ramon], where they’re building heels to either work with Diesel or then later Shawn Michaels, so as you squash the other guys, now you move up the ladder. Now you’re going to have a match with Razor and I was the guy where, if you had a good match with me, you moved up, and if you didn’t, you moved down. I was kind of like the Tito Santana of my era.”
To all of us, he was the “cool” of his era and there will never be another Scott Hall. R.I.P. to my World Champion.