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Eric Bischoff On WCW Roster’s Reaction To Hulk Hogan, Scott Hall & Kevin Nash’s Backstage Behavior

Eric Bischoff recently was on the Sarah O’Connell Show. Plenty of interesting subjects were touched on in the lengthy hour-plus interview, and Bischoff opened up about various parts of his WCW stint. He discussed the roster’s reactions to WWF stars jumping over, and the emotional toll being on the road takes.

Transcription by WrestleZone Senior Editor Tyler Treese.

How WCW roster members reacted to WWF stars coming over like Hulk Hogan, Scott Hall, and Kevin Nash:

There are two reactions that everyone has their personal reaction and then their public reaction. For the most part, people were excited for Hulk Hogan to come in. I can’t speak for everyone, but I think the majority were excited because it meant that WCW was serious about trying to take that next big step and to go from being a distant number two to trying to be a serious competitor. So, I think the general consensus was very positive. I’m sure some people were jealous, it’s human nature. Jealous of either the money he was making or the attention he was getting, but they never really voiced that publicly to me.

Now, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall? That was a bit of a different story. They had a reputation, their friends really loved them and those that weren’t their friends really didn’t. They were trouble makers in WWF and it wasn’t a secret. People were concerned that they would bring that level of malcontent to WCW.

On if Scott Hall and Kevin Nash were troublemakers in WCW:

They really didn’t. Scott Hall was on his best behavior for a while, and Kevin was great. There was an anticipation that it was going to be much worse than it was, but they both came in and were very professional in the beginning. It went downhill after that…Sorry, Kev. I’m just telling the truth. You don’t want to walk in and turn the place upside down, but the honeymoon lasted quite a while. Like anything, people that are creative at a high level they are wired differently. They have different needs and egos.

So many people equate egos as a negative, but I don’t think it is. I’m proud of my ego, I nurture my ego. My ego drives me to be better tomorrow than I am today because I want to be the best I can be. But once it gets out of control and overwhelms the rest of your behavior, then you have a problem. In general [creative people] all have a different kind of ego and a sensitive nature about them. They can become difficult to manage the more successful they are.

The challenge of becoming successful is fun. In my case, I had nothing to lose. Striving to be number one, I was fearless. Once you get there, you’ve got everything to lose. That’s why it’s harder to hold on to success than it is to become successful sometimes. Staying there is a challenge. A lot of artists once they get there, that insecurity begins to effect how they conduct themselves.

The stresses of travel on wrestlers:

It’s not the physical stress [that is the biggest issue], that is over discussed at times. Everyone knows wrestling is very physical, and I’m not suggesting for a second that it’s not, and it does take a toll…but I think it’s secondary to the biggest challenge which is being away from home for 200-300 days a year. If you’re young, in your 20s and single, you think that’d be a great lifestyle…but I can tell you from personal experience that being on the road and away from home, no matter how nice the hotels and restaurants are, you’re not sleeping on your own bed. You’re away from your wife, husband, friends, your dogs, your kids, your own car. To be able to get up and grab clothes and not live out of a suitcase. The emotional toll that being on the road 300 days a year probably leads to more problems, whether it is drugs, alcohol, or personal relationship issues.

Check out the full interview below:

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