Bruce Prichard recently revealed his most memorable moment of the ‘Monday Night Wars’, during an episode of ‘Something To Wrestle’.
Bruce Prichard, along with host Conrad Thompson, were discussing ‘In Your House 5: Season’s Beatings’, a 1995 WWE pay-per-view, and the events of the professional wrestling world at the time. At the time, rival company WCW had launched Monday Nitro, a weekly show running head to head with WWE’s Monday Night RAW. The creation of the show would lead to many WWE performers leaving for WCW, and the two companies battling for viewership. This would create what would become known as ‘The Monday Night Wars’.
When recalling the inception of ‘The Monday Night Wars’, Prichard revealed what he felt to be the most memorable moments of that iconic time period:
“Number one is probably, more than any, I give it to Razor, the first time Razor showed up. Lex showing up, and Hogan’s turn.”
Razor Ramon was one of WWE’s top-drawing talent in 1995. Known as ‘The Bad Guy’, Razor captured the Intercontinental Championship four times. Ramon would be involved in several prominent storylines and matches, including the legendary ladder match against Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania X. Razor would jump to WCW in 1996 and appeared under his real name Scott Hall. Kevin Nash, known in WWE as Diesel, soon joined Hall with the two becoming known as ‘The Outsiders’.
Lex Luger appeared on the debut episode of Monday Nitro just one day after performing at a WWE house show. Reportedly, Luger allowed his WWE contract to expire without letting management know, and was therefore free to make the jump to WCW. Although pushed as a main event star in WWE, Luger never won a championship with the company. However, Lex would achieve huge success in WCW, becoming a two time World Heavyweight Champion and a Triple Crown Champion.
Hulk Hogan is considered by many fans to be the biggest star not only in WWE but in the entire history of professional wrestling. A career babyface, Hogan headlined the first nine WrestleManias consecutively. Leaving the company in 1993, he would debut for WCW in 1994 as the same fan favourite good guy. It wasn’t until 1996’s ‘Bash at the Beach’ where Hulk would shock the world of professional wrestling, turning heel and joining Hall and Nash to create the New World Order. This new faction launched WCW to new heights and posed a significant threat to WWE during the ‘Monday Night Wars’.
As well as Razor, Luger and Hogan, a noteworthy performer to jump to the rival company at this time was the WWE Women’s Champion, Alundra Blayze. Blayze, who was released from her contract due to financial troubles within the company, was still the reigning champion upon her departure. She would make her WCW debut as Medusa shortly after. In an iconic moment in professional wrestling history, Medusa would throw the WWE Women’s Championship into a trash can live on WCW television.
Recalling the act, which led to Medusa being blacklisted from WWE, Bruce Prichard admits that although seeing the championship disrespected in such a way, it made for compelling television and a crucial moment in the Monday Night Wars:
“It was definitely a blow, fuck yeah. You’re watching and you’re seeing one of your championship belts on your competitors show and [the] former champion dumping it in the trash can. Yeah, it a blow, it sucked, and that hurt. And, I think when you go back and you look at monumental moments in the history of the Monday Night Wars, that’s one. It’s going to be one of the top five.”
The ‘Monday Night Wars’ lead to fierce completion between WWE and WCW. This intense rivalry created a period that many wrestling revere to this day, the ‘Attitude Era’. WWE bought WCW in 2001, with the final episode of Monday Nitro running as a simulcast alongside Monday Night Raw.
Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, Lex Luger, Hulk Hogan and Medusa would all eventually make their way back to WWE. Though the battle ended almost two decades ago, the ‘Monday Night Wars’ are still a highly discussed topic amongst wrestling fans, and commonly regarded as one of the peak eras in sports entertainment.