WrestleMania X-Seven came mere days after Vince McMahon purchased WCW, resulting in several ex-WCW wrestlers, Bill DeMott amongst them, almost making the cut for the Houston, Texas card.
1 April 2001 saw WrestleMania X-Seven take place, widely regarded as the greatest professional wrestling pay-per-view ever. Featuring The Rock vs. ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin, Vince McMahon vs. Shane McMahon, and Edge and Christian vs. The Dudley Boyz vs. The Hardy Boyz, the event has been praised tremendously over the past 21-years.
During the McMahon vs. McMahon Street Fight, a few ex-WCW wrestlers appeared in a skybox inside the Reliant Astrodome. Shane McMahon was initially due to introduce ten wrestlers from World Championship Wrestling in an in-ring segment instead, with Bill DeMott and Lance Storm among them. Once their debuts were leaked online, though, this was instantly changed.
“I have an opportunity to start my WWE career in the ring at WrestleMania 17 next to Shane McMahon. They flew us in secret squirrel at two o’clock in the morning to some rinky-dink airport and we stayed at a hotel outside the city limits. We got woken up at six o’clock the morning of Mania, and ‘You’re fired. Get everybody in a lobby, be there in five minutes,’ and it was Johnny Ace. ‘Get everybody down there. You’re all fired.’ I’m trying to figure out what happened between the time I landed, and then you’re trying to put it together.
Like I flew in with these couple guys. Nothing happened. You know, we’re here in the hotel. Lance Storm comes down. Now he’s pissed, which, you know, he’s so even-keeled, you don’t know if he’s mad, happy, or breathing half the time, he’s just so straight. Now he’s talking to me, and he’s on fire.”
Bill DeMott continued as he explained the call came from Kevin Dunn, who currently serves as WWE’s Executive Vice President of Television Production. Once the names were leaked online, WWE’s plans changed dramatically, which is a stark contrast to their reaction to online leaks nowadays.
The former WCW United States Heavyweight Champion wrestled for WWE until 2004, before returning in 2011 as the head trainer for Florida Championship Wrestling and subsequently NXT and the WWE Performance Center. Bill DeMott resigned in 2015 after a number of allegations arose against him.