WrestlingInc.com owner Raj Giri recently interviewed former WCW president Eric Bischoff. Among other things during the wide-ranging conversation, Bischoff discussed if he thinks Hulk Hogan will return to WWE and the pros and cons of the nWo reuniting to work with The Bullet Club.
Bischoff and Hulk Hogan have spent a lot of time together throughout their careers in WCW and TNA. Bischoff said that he keeps in constant contact with Hogan as the two of them share a close friendship.
"I stay in touch with him almost every week," he said. "He's my best friend, and in addition we have business together, so yeah, I talk to him on a regular basis, sometimes two or three times a week, and have probably for the last 20 years."
Fans had hoped Hogan would return to the WWE during the 25th anniversary show of Monday Night RAW in January, but the WWE remained steadfast in its decision to keep him out of the company. The WWE terminated its contract with Hogan in 2015 after a sex tape leaked that included him making anti-black remarks and expressing anger at the thought of his daughter dating a black man. Bischoff said he can't predict the future, but he believes eventually Hogan will be welcomed back to the company.
"Do I see it changing? Yeah, I do. I don't know when, I don't know how, I don't have any inside information. When he and I talk, we don't talk about that. But my gut tells me, you know as the saying goes, time heals all wounds," Bischoff said. "Hulk will always be a part of sports entertainment/professional wrestling history, and there's nothing that's gonna change that. His relationship with the WWE, whether it's official or unofficial, is something that can't really be erased. So I think when time heals the wounds, I think it's inevitable that they'll come back together again. But there's charred feelings on both sides of that equation."
Bischoff was also asked about the potential for Hogan and other members of nWo working with The Bullet Club. Hogan expressed an interest in working with the famed NJPW faction in a recent interview with The Associated Press, saying, "I'm about ready to jump on a plane and fly to Japan and get involved with that Bullet Club, man. I'm so excited about those kids." Bischoff discussed both the positives and negatives of the possible angle, pointing out that it would create a ton of intrigue for NJPW but would also face a hurdle of attracting the current generation of wrestling fans.
"Let's kind of play 'creative committee' right now. If we looked at the positives: if Hulk Hogan and myself, if I threw myself into that mix, or even Scott Hall and Kevin Nash, if the four of us stepped in as me being the guy that created the nWo and Hulk, Scott and Kevin as the personification of it. If we all came in as the grandfathers, if you will, came in and helped support it and endorse it and draw that immediate parallel between nWo and The Bullet Club which, by the way, is how it got started. It kind of became hot as a result of them mimicking or copying or emulating or paying respect, however you want to say it, to the nWo. That's how it got started, which is cool," Bischoff said. "If we were to at least recreate the components of nWo with Scott, Kevin, Hulk and myself and endorse it, it could have two effects.
"On the one hand, it could certainly bring a lot of notoriety, a lot of eyeballs, a lot of press, a lot of credibility, lots of good things could happen as a result of that. But on the flip side, a lot of bad things could happen, too. One of the reasons The Bullet Club is what it is, while it may be kind of a wink and a nod to the nWo, it's also young, fresh guys of a new generation. There may be a portion of that audience, whether it's a large portion or a small portion, that would go, 'Eh, we don't want to see that.'"
It was recently reported that this was unlikely to happen because negotiations between Hogan and NJPW didn't work out. Bischoff said that if this angle ever were to happen, there would have to be a lot of give-and-take on the part of the nWo. He stressed that it would be important for The Bullet Club to be put over.
"It all depends on how it's done. I think it would have to be done very carefully; the nWo can't just come in and 'Bigfoot' it. The nWo would have to pay as much respect to The Bullet Club and who they are and what they've become as The Bullet Club would have to pay nWo, because The Bullet Club are the guys that are in the ring doing the work and making the action happen," he said. "So it would have to be the art within the art of utilizing the success of the nWo and the people in it and using it to build The Bullet Club as opposed to perhaps diminishing it."
The second part of my interview with Bischoff is in the video above, or you can listen to it in the audio player below as part of our Wednesday edition of the Wrestling Inc. Podcast (at the 1:05:30 mark). In addition to Hogan, original plans for nWo Monday Nitro, nice favor Ted Turner did for him after WCW folded, getting burnt out in WCW because of the backstage politics and more. You can subscribe to the Wrestling Inc. Podcast on iTunes and on YouTube.