Kayfabe, Lies and Alibis: Timeline – WCW 1997 with Kevin Nash

Big Sexy covers WCW’s high points, collapse, drugs, ribs and much more

Produced by Kayfabe Commentaries

Hosted by Sean Oliver

Scott Hall and Jerry Saggs started shooting on one another on January 4th in the middle of a match. Saggs got cracked with a solid plastic chair by Hall. As Saggs and Hall started to get heated, Meng got fired up and started laying in shots on Nash and Kevin screamed for the ref to call the match off. Hall ended up a bloody mess. Nash was ultra pissed and came after the Nasty Boys with a baseball bat once they got back to the locker room.

The following day, Hall was sent off for surgery and Nash confronted the Nasty Boys with a bat once again. Eric Bischoff was willing to fire the Nasties over the incident, but Hall told him not to.

An earlier incident saw Hall smash a chair over Saggs head, which injured his neck. JJ Dillon, acting as a WCW agent, told him to go work anyway. The two incidents lead to Saggs suing WCW and apparently naming Hall as part of the suit. Nash shits on him for going after the “boys” instead of the company and mocks him for taking 3 years off and ending up with a tiny settlement.

DDP and Eric Bischoff were legit friends. Bischoff was lenient to push DDP, lest people claim his push was only because of their friendship, not DDP’s talent.

WCW was a dead brand and the plan was to make the n.W.o the new brand for the company.

Hall and Nash pushed for DDP to get shine over them because no good guys had gotten one over on the Outsiders as of early 1997. Even with their backing, it still took three weeks to get booker Kevin Sullivan to make it part of the show, and even then he cut their time down on the planned segment.

“Macho Man” Randy Savage came back in early February. Nash points out the mass amount of talent WCW had allowed a major player like Savage to not be missed as much as he might otherwise have been.

The work rate guys could carry several segments, and as long as the announcers could push the headliners angles, fans stayed to watch great wrestling, while still becoming invested in the overall picture.   Now RAW has LONG promos to drag out the show, instead of just letting wrestlers wrestle and using the talking heads to sell the angles.

Hall and Nash were very open about what kind of salary they were drawing, because they had a contract clause that allowed their contracts to match whoever was making the most money. (Nash does not say it here, but I believe Hulk Hogan was the exception to the clause.)

Bret Hart’s contract gave Nash a huge salary boost. Nash loves him. Hart was a great worker. Kevin thinks part of Hart’s personality quirks come from the fact that he grew up with a shooter like Stu Hart as a father.

Dean Malenko was a great technician. He could work a hold/counterhold style that did not look phony like the indy geeks do today.

The WWF had strict rules on when the wrestlers were suppose to be on time and such. WCW had rules but no one enforced them. On Nash’s first night back in WCW, he was supposed to show up at noon, so he came 15 minutes early. Hall was with him and Chris Jericho showed up since he was debuting that evening. It took over two hours for any other WCW reps to appear.

They discuss the n.W.o PPV. Nash thinks the fat woman contest should have been full of actual top of the line hot women and if any n.W.o guys were going to lose, it should have been because they were exhausted from sexing up the models.

Nash did not complain about the PPV being such a mess, because he figured he could use it as evidence that the current bookers were not perfect and he could grab power.

The Steiner Brothers knew Nash from back in Michigan when they all worked out in the same gym.

RAW moving to two hours was a major commitment by Vince McMahon, because this was HIS money, meanwhile Bischoff was playing with Ted Turner’s cash.

Bischoff was convinced that he was going to put Vince out of business. Hogan and the others who knew McMahon warned him that Vince isn’t getting killed off…he’s just getting mad.

Syxx won the cruiserweight title in part because the n.W.o. needed some champions who actually worked house shows. Hogan almost never did, and Hall and Nash were on limited dates.

Nash was against pushing the Four Horsemen because they were a relic of WCW’s southern past that they needed to shed in order to grow nationally.

Lex Luger was a tremendous babyface. Randy Savage was probably a top-5 all-time wrestler.

When hot women would come up to Nash for autographs, he’d tell them he keeps his 8×10 glossies up in his room. They’d go with him and…. well you can guess the rest.

Nash supported the guys suing WCW for racial discrimination. He grew up in the middle of the Detroit race riots.

Kevin was a fan of wrestling, but did not want to become a worker until he went to a packed house in Detroit where Hogan headlined. This led to him finding out how much money the workers were making, and Nash began to lean towards becoming part of the business.

A fan beaned Nash with a rock on live MTV. Nash chased the fan down himself, which startled the MTV hosts. It turned out to be a teenager. The guy tried to sue Nash for assault. The lawyers settled for dual apologies – Nash wrote his in crayon.

Nash makes fun of workers who are afraid to lose. (Yes, Kevin Nash of all people said this.)

Mean Gene and Nash flew home from Wrestlemania together recently. They started drinking at 9 a.m. and kept at it for hours, telling stories and such.

Jericho and Kevin still have some heat from Nash’s comments about how smaller guys working on top ruined the larger than life aspect of the business. When Nash broke in, WCW was full of large guys, crusty vets and wacky characters. The current WWE roster is largely homogenized.

Hogan, Nash and Jericho got shit faced on Vodka while flying together. Jericho passed out on the plane. Nash blacked out and drove home when he got to the airport.

The Kliq in the WWF changed things for everyone by actually having 5 of the top guys bonding and comparing payoffs. This allowed them to bitch and have things changed.

The Berlyn gimmick is buried. Apparently TNT was releasing a Holocaust movie around the same time Berlyn debuted.

Ernest Miller’s shooter gimmick was not the type of thing Nash could get behind. Miller may have been Eric’s son’s karate teacher.

NFL great Reggie White was very humble. He was a total badass who had nothing to prove.

Ric Flair was full of great wrestling stories as he came up through the territories. Nash visited a number of Caribbean Islands and every place he went he could find people who had Flair drinking stories from the area.

Roddy Piper and Nash got into a backstage altercation after a match. Piper and Flair went against the match layout and it led to Piper being stiffed by Nash in the ring. Piper ran to Hogan after the match, and Nash confronted him – Nash swung first. (Nash and Piper have differing views on how this confrontation went down. Each man humbled the other, depending on who tells the story. )

Raven is incredibly smart, which makes him incredibly unlikable as he’ll explain his philosophies about life and expect you to agree with him. Nash enjoyed being around him.

Curt Hennig helped groom Shawn Michaels and Scott Hall in the AWA and it made him a “godfather” figure to the Kliq a decade later.

Hennig and Owen Hart were the king of ribbers. Hennig was a devious shit-in-your-hat kind of ribber. Owen would set things up and watch the world crumble around him.

Dennis Rodman had his own tour bus, which became party central. Nash implies Rodman offered him Carmen Electra to fuck. Nash will not confirm or deny.

The Nitro Girls caused issues as the rules stated they should not fraternize with the wrestlers.   This made Nash and others public enemy number one.

Sting was pissed when Hogan lost the WCW title to Luger for a week in August. Sting wanted Hogan’s first title loss to be to him after the long build.

Nash hated the Sturgis Rally cards as he didn’t give a shit about motorcycles, the locker room facilities were less than bare bones and the hotels stunk.

Mongo was a great guy. His ring work sucked, but who the fuck cares?

Nash and Hall had to work B-show TV tapings, but they made sure to bitch about it as much as possible. They tried to convince Bischoff that they were already over and did not need more TV exposure.

Arn Anderson taught Nash a ton while they worked a series of house shows in the early 90’s. The Horsemen were totally down with the n.W.o parody of Arn’s retirement, then they called home and their wives told them what fools they looked like. This led to heat with Arn, Flair, and others.

Goldberg rode with Hall and Nash in his early days in WCW. Nash rips on WCW’s shoddy streak booking where a bunch of wins seemed to be made up every few weeks.

Winning streaks in wrestling does not guarantee the person getting over. Tatanka, Glacier, etc.

Nash knew Goldberg from back when Bill was still a college football player. Once he became a worker, he was stiff but safe in the ring.

After WCW went under, Disco Inferno hung out with Nash everyday to train, drink and do drugs.

Scott Hall tried to teach the young guys that they should not flex and pose because your body is the first thing to go, and if your body is your gimmick, you’re screwed.

Dick Murdoch was a big influence on Hall, and Scott got him a WWF gig briefly.

The slippery slope of drug abuse is explained.

Randy Savage was looked at the “Babe Ruth” of the locker room in the WWF in 1994. His jumping to WCW was the only time Nash was every affected by someone leaping from one company to another. He was a bit hurt that Savage did not give him a heads up before leaving, as he thought they had bonded.

Nitro had RAW on TV in the backstage area. They did their best to counter program what they could. Sable’s segments on RAW were particularly damaging to Nitro’s ratings.

Nash heavily implies Montreal was a work.

WCW lost because they were a entertainment company while Vince was doing wrestling. Now Vince does entertainment…where’s the wrestling?

Larry Zbyszko taught Nash how to do as little as possible during a match.

Watching Wrestlemania 14, with Mike Tyson, was the point that Nash realized WCW was screwed. The world wanted to see Tyson and Vince made sure each match had a video package that introduced the angles to a new audience.

Final thoughts: The stories behind the Monday Night Wars have largely been told and retold, making new material hard to come by. In cases like that, you have to hope the subject being interviewed is engaging, and for the most part Nash is.  He’s still sporting the ultra-jock, too cool for the room persona, and I found it a little grating after 3 hours.

Written by Andrew Lutzke

The grumpy old man of culturecrossfire.com, lover of wrasslin' and true crimes.

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