The history of WCW is met with both positive and negative reactions for all it gave to the wrestling industry. WCW was the only promotion to compete nationally with WWE for a few years. The great matches and moments will always stand the test of time in terms of wrestling history. WCW’s biggest problem was the backstage drama that always surfaced. Wrestlers’ egos got out of control and management was not that much better. The hostile environment provided rumors and controversial stories for years, especially during the height of the Monday Night Wars. A desire to overtake WWE sunk the company due to the backstabbing and petty issues to surface.
We'll look at some of the most confusing mysteries to exist in WCW both on screen and backstage. These stories have lasted for many years following the end of WCW. Various wrestlers have spoken out about most of these tales due to the world of podcasts, shoot interviews and social media giving options to share their opinion. Sadly, we don’t have confirmed proof about what went down with these stories. It is up to you decide if you believe them or not. Find out all the details regarding the fifteen urban legends from WCW that remain a mystery today.
15 Hulk Hogan Sabotaged Bret Hart's Career as Revenge
The WCW career of Bret Hart was one of the biggest disappointments in wrestling history. Hart’s name value was at an all-time high after leaving WWE in controversial fashion due to the Montreal Screwjob. WCW could have easily got the best of this by booking him strong to come in, but he was used in lackluster fashion.
Hart claims Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff conspired to use him poorly. Bischoff was running WCW with Hogan’s voice being a huge influence. Hogan and Hart had issues going back to Hogan’s departure from WWE. The story goes that Hogan refused to drop the WWE Championship to Hart and chose Yokozuna instead. Bret responded by drawing an offensive cartoon of Hogan and hanging it up in the WWE locker room. Many speculate Hogan sabotaged Hart in WCW as revenge for this moment and that includes Bret who still holds a grudge today.
14 Kevin Nash and Scott Hall Frequently Performed Drunk
Kevin Nash and Scott Hall both get a lot of credit for rise of WCW, but they also are burdened with the perception of being responsible for the downfall. The Outsiders helped create a shift for WCW’s success when making the jump from WWE. Hall and Nash added a cool factor to the WCW product that was lacking for a long time. Both men were rather young compared to the usually old wrestlers WCW signed from WWE.
However, they brought the backstage drama with them from WWE to WCW. Hall and Nash have been accused of trying to manipulate wrestlers into having heat with each other and management. It made them the sharks of the locker room that very few people trusted. Another reason wrestlers disliked them was due to unprofessional actions such as allegedly getting drunk before shows. WCW eventually wrote in the storyline of Hall wrestling drunk, but wrestlers have accused Nash as well.
13 Sting Caused Lex Luger and Rick Steiner's Divorces
Sting, Lex Luger and Rick Steiner all became close friends in WCW. All three men are close friends to this very day. Some of their bad decisions together caused them to get in trouble when one was caught. This happened in a major way when Sting’s wife found out he was cheating on her. Their marriage was in doubt as they tried to get through the issues.
Dave Meltzer reported that Sting told his wife that Luger and Steiner were also cheating to try to make it look less terrible. Sting’s wife responded by telling the wives of Luger and Steiner since they were all friends. Luger and Steiner ended up getting divorced when their wives found out what was going on. None of the wrestlers have confirmed it, but the story seems likely based on the time frame.
12 Eric Bischoff Planned to Have Mike Awesome Throw ECW Championship in Trash
WCW tried very controversial tactics during the Monday Night Wars to try to overtake WWE. Eric Bischoff was ruthless with actions such as giving away the results to taped WWE shows and having former WWE Women’s Champion Madusa throw her title into the trash can on Nitro. There was another rumored plan to have someone throw a belt in the trash.
Mike Awesome received a big contract from WCW in 2000 while he was the ECW Champion. WCW signed him away right when he became a free agent before losing the title. Paul Heyman claims Bischoff wanted Awesome to drop the ECW Championship in the garbage to start his career there. Bischoff claims that isn’t true, but Heyman said he had to get a lawyer involved to prevent it from happening. Awesome lost the title to Tazz and had a terrible run with WCW.
11 NWO Ripped off NJPW
The inception of the New World Order created a boom period for WCW to overtake WWE in the Monday Night Wars. WCW not only topped WWE but started to bring in record ratings and buy rates. Fans tuned in mostly due to the hot momentum from the nWo after Hulk Hogan turned heel to form the group with Scott Hall and Kevin Nash.
Various insiders have claimed that Eric Bischoff stole this angle from a prior invasion storyline in New Japan. The relationship between WCW and NJPW gave Bischoff incentive to study the Japanese product since he was the one making the deal. Bischoff claims it wasn’t a rip off and the idea was due to parties in WCW. Even if he did copy it from NJPW, most ideas in wrestling are inspired from prior angles.
10 Shane McMahon dissed Lex Luger and Buff Bagwell on final night of Nitro
The final night of WCW has gone down in history as one of the most shocking nights in wrestling. WCW was in bad shape, but no one expected Vince McMahon to purchase it and simulcast the final episode of Nitro. Shane McMahon and Bruce Prichard showed up to run the show in the way WWE wanted to end WCW and set up the company’s future.
Prichard shared stories about the infamous day on his podcast. One humor accusation regards Shane having fun at the expense of two other wrestlers. Lex Luger and Buff Bagwell were apparently singled out as two people McMahon gave a condescending greeting to when entering the WCW locker room. Luger lied to WWE during his contract negotiations to end his time there. Bagwell had no history with McMahon to that point but had a horrible WCW career to follow it up.
9 Kevin Nash and Hulk Hogan Plotted to Ruin Goldberg's Run
The downfall of WCW took place gradually with bad decisions continuously ruining them. You sensed it reaching the point of no return in 1999 when they could barely put together a competent television show. Goldberg was the last hope during his incredible undefeated streak making him the face of WCW in 1998. The rise of Goldberg as the only young star to make the main event scene bruised the egos of other wrestlers.
Kevin Nash and Hulk Hogan allegedly set out to end Goldberg’s momentum in hopes of keeping the top spots for themselves. As the head booker at the time, Nash booked himself to be the one to end Goldberg’s streak. That was controversial enough, but Nash lost the title to Hogan a week later with the infamous finger poke of doom. It was all reportedly done to hurt Goldberg more than provide an interesting story. WCW continued trending downwards in 1999 until going out of business two years later.
8 Tammy Sytch's Locker Room Antics
The career of Tammy Sytch is remembered for all the wrong reasons. WWE received the best of her career as Sunny in the mid-90s when she was the most downloaded woman on the internet up to that point. The battles of addiction with drugs and alcohol hurt her career and is still negatively impacting her life to this very day.
Sytch had a short run in WCW after Vince Russo hired her and Chris Candido. A backstage story has circulated for years that she used to use hardcore drugs backstage. Kimberly Page allegedly reported Sytch to Eric Bischoff after Sytch’s syringe was found in the women’s locker room. It led to Sytch getting fired. Kimberly denies this, but Sytch and a few other wrestlers have blamed her for it. Regardless, anyone but Sunny getting blamed for this seems like a bad call.
7 First Class Upgrade Ruined Scotty Riggs' Career
Backstage politics can hurt a wrestler’s career for the silliest of reasons. Scotty Riggs shared a story about why he believed he never had a fair shot in WCW. The tag team of Riggs and Buff Bagwell achieved success as the American Males. Both wrestlers were viewed as future stars with potential by WCW management. Bagwell received many opportunities, but Riggs was never given a great role.
Riggs claimed he was planned to get a push in the mid-card picture with a few wins. This was until he was given a first-class upgrade at random following a show. WCW management personnel Terry Taylor did not receive the same perk leading to tension between the two. Riggs endured a losing streak before being his bookings diminished. Taylor punishing Riggs for getting a flight upgrade would be an all-time high of pettiness.
6 Vince Russo's Shoot Promo on Hulk Hogan Started as a Work
Vince Russo attempted to change the WCW product drastically when joining the company. One of his favorite things was to try to skew the scripted aspect of wrestling with reality in the form of worked shoots. The problem is only diehard fans would understand the level of storytelling going down and most didn’t like it due to being down poorly.
One instance where Russo did manage to leave everyone wondering featured Jeff Jarrett laying down for Hulk Hogan to pin him. Russo then cut a promo ripping apart Hogan for his backstage attitude hurting the company. Hogan left WCW and sued the company for Russo’s promo. The urban legend is that Russo and Hogan agreed to this promo before Hogan got offended backstage at what Russo said about him. Russo started the promo in working mode and ended up turning it into a shoot with Hogan truly walking out.
5 Who Drove the White Hummer?
WCW attempted to create a compelling mystery to get attention on the product when it was floundering in 1999. Randy Savage had a mysterious person helping him get the better of Kevin Nash. Fans saw a white Hummer slam into a limo with Nash attempting to severely injure him. The identity of the driver became a huge mystery on the show teased every week.
Savage claimed this bodyguard would be revealed when he faced Dennis Rodman on a PPV. The bodyguard never appeared, and the storyline randomly ended. Eric Bischoff appeared in a white Hummer about a year later making it seem like he was the driver. It made no sense since Bischoff wasn’t a bodyguard nor was he part of the original storyline. Rumors circulated that WCW wanted to sign a celebrity for the role, but discussions fell apart. We sadly have no clues as to who the real driver was meant to be.
4 Merchandise Sales Rigged to Help Veterans
Chris Jericho’s first book revealed a lot of secrets about the bleak backstage life for younger wrestlers in WCW. The opportunities were limited for anyone under the age of 40 or that wasn’t a former star in WWE. Jericho showed tremendous potential during his heel run adding great promos to his already stellar in-ring work. WCW however treated him with little respect which led to him leaving for WWE.
One factor in Jericho’s unhappiness came from the merchandise sales. Jericho claimed his wife purchased his first action figure set of him and Dean Malenko. The receipt stated she purchased the action figures of Hulk Hogan and Sting. This led many pundits to believe that WCW rigged the merchandise sales to give extra money to the legends even when buying the items of young stars.
3 Eric Bischoff and Diamond Dallas Page more than neighbors
Eric Bischoff and Diamond Dallas Page did not just work together. The promoter and wrestler became close friends as neighbors. Bischoff was hesitant on pushing Page during his hot streak due to this connection, but DDP earned his status as a top WCW star. The friendship between Page and Bischoff grew closer through the years. Bischoff was the one to induct DDP into the WWE Hall of Fame showing they are close today.
There have been rumors about them being more than your average neighbors during their time in WCW. A few wrestlers have claimed they were swingers with Page’s wife Kimberly and Bischoff’s wife in their personal lives. WCW had an angle when Kimberly turned heel on DDP to become the love interest of Bischoff to add fuel to the rumors.
2 WCW Hotline scam
Any fan to watch WCW in the 90s has memories of Gene Okerlund trying to con you into calling the WCW Hotline. Wrestling fans have always wanted to hear or read about the inside dirt. Unfortunately, the internet didn’t always exist to give you easy access to all the juicy details you wanted to know about. News letters and phone hotlines became the top sources for fans to indulge in wrestling gossip.
WCW tried getting in on this by creating a hotline specifically for wrestling news about their company and even some WWE things. Okerlund would tease viewers about potential spoilers and names in discussion to sign with the company. It is unknown who came up with this idea and how much information it gave to callers. Most assume it was just a scam. It’s hard to disagree based off the way it was marketed.
1 Vince Russo Sent as WWE Plant to Kill WCW
One of the biggest urban legends in wrestling history is about Vince Russo’s involvement in WCW. Following a strong run as the lead writer of WWE during the beginning of the Attitude Era, Russo’s reputation was at a high. He brokered a deal to jump ship to WCW for huge money after selling that his ideas were why WWE reached such success.
WCW found out quickly this wasn’t true, and Russo lucked into a perfect position at the right time for WWE. Under Russo’s regime as head writer, WCW started bleeding money at an alarming rate causing them to bring Eric Bischoff to work with him for a few months. Russo was so bad that many pundits believe Vince McMahon sent him to kill WCW from the inside. Everyone involved denies it, but fans watching WCW shows back question if anyone could be unintentionally do their job that poorly.