Former WCW World Heavyweight Champion, Goldberg, has sat down to detail the most vital parts of his WCW career, including naming the person behind his undefeated streak.
When the green Goldberg burst onto the scene in 1997, he captured the imagination of the fans thanks to his fearsome aura and his booking, which often saw him run through opponents in mere seconds.
Of course, there was a downside to his booking. When he was required to do longer matches against stars bigger than the jobbers he’d been crushing, the master of the Jackhammer would often blow up and be out of his depths within minutes.
However, that all changed with experience and the sultan of the spear demolished men like Raven, Steve McMichael and most importantly ‘Hollywood’ Hulk Hogan en route to the WCW World Heavyweight Championship whilst remaining undefeated.
Now, the wrecking machine has spoken to WWE’s The Bump in order to credit arguably the greatest manager of all time, Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan, and Mike Tenay for his famous streak:
“Well, I think Tenay and Heenan were the ones that really pounded it in there. Obviously, with the doing commentary, Tenay has that direction where we want to go. He grabs the crowd and pushes them toward that direction. He had about everything to do with the excitement that surrounded it. I mean, I took care of the physical part, but you have to set it up properly, and they did an absolutely stupendous job at doing their job each and every night. I think they both had an integral part in the streak.
We all know Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan’s place in this business; he’s royalty. For him to personally and professionally take time out of his career to help me along, I could never thank him enough or appreciate enough as to what that man did for me, the business, and WCW. Personally, I’d be remiss in saying that he wasn’t an integral part of what happened. You know, you could group a list of characters as far as the importance of the streak and he’d definitely be in the top-three people mentioned.”
The pinnacle of Goldberg’s time in WCW came on July 6, 1998, when he literally demolished Hulk Hogan in seconds to lift the WCW World Heavyweight Championship on Monday Nitro.
When asked about the moment that made him a dual champion and the hottest commodity in the company, Goldberg was humble and took no credit:
“I’m not going to pat myself on the back. Instead, I’m going to pat the bookers on the back. I truly believe it was bigger than anything going at that point in the wrestling universe. I was lucky to be the recipient of it. We were looking for anything to beat WWE’s ass, and they were doing the same to us. We were able to give them something completely different. It was something special and organic. It was like COVID right now; it was ever-changing.”
However, all good things must come to an end and on December 17, 1998, one of the most baffling booking decisions in professional wrestling occurred when WCW booker, Kevin Nash, decreed that he would be the man to end the streak.
Over the years, Goldberg has bemoaned the decision, but in hindsight he believes that Nash made the right call:
“I look back on that first loss, and I’ve been pissed at my answers a number of times. Yeah, that’s childish, but Kevin Nash was the perfect guy to do it at the time,” he mentioned. “It was the perfect time to do it; I think the streak was losing its momentum. Who am I as a professional wrestler to give my opinion? I’m just the guy who’s given a story and acts it out in front of the crowd. So, I’ll put it to rest. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter; I’m all good with it. It needed to be done. But damn it, did it really have to happen on my birthday?”
The rest of Goldberg’s time in WCW would be somewhat marred by the loss which he never really recovered from. In 1999, the star would enter a storyline with Bret Hart – and eventually end his career – while the NWO ruled the main event picture.
Credit for the interview: WWE’s The Bump
h/t for the transcription: Wrestling Inc.