Jim Ross has discussed the New World Order in WWE and how the group failed to recapture the magic they had during their first run in World Championship Wrestling.
The New World Order was formed at Bash At The Beach in 1996 when Hulk Hogan shockingly turned his back on WCW and joined the two outsiders of Kevin Nash and Scott Hall who had recently joined the company. With their trademark black and white and catchy theme song the NWO soon swept aside all in front of them as they dominated the landscape of WCW.
Fast forward to 2002 and WCW was out of business with Vince McMahon having to share power at least on-screen with Ric Flair. Deciding to inject a lethal dose of poison into his own creation, McMahon revealed that he was bringing in Hollywood Hogan, Kevin Nash, and Scott Hall to reform the NWO in WWE.
Jim Ross explained:
“Well the NWO had their greatest run obviously with Eric [Bischoff] in WCW. It’s hard to repackage and put the genie back in the bottle to be quite honest. They contributed a great deal, it just wasn’t quite the same and a remake is never as good – as a rule – as the originals. They still did great, it was hard to do things that were new with them because they had done everything so we kinda had to rehash some stuff. So I thought that they contributed very well to what we were doing.”
“Here’s the irony of the deal, I don’t think Vince [McMahon] has probably watched ten consecutive minutes of the NWO when they were in WCW. He wasn’t a mark for their work, all those guys had been with us prior to going to Atlanta.”
JR then talked about any thoughts Vince McMahon had on the group from their time in WCW, despite not seeing much of them:
“He was impressed with their ratings, he was impressed more with data than the creative process. Vince is like me in a lot of ways as far as being around a long time and seeing everything.”
“[Vince] was trying to figure out how to make the NWO feel new again. That’s hard to do so I don’t know, I think he respected what they accomplished. I know personally, he’s always been pretty close with Kevin Nash, they had a good rapport. And he created Hulk Hogan by and large, I know people will disagree with that but go back to the early WrestleManias and he was pulling the wagon. That was Vince’s leadership, Vince didn’t throw a dart against a wall ‘oh Hogan will be…’ He had a vision for Hogan and how to create a new hero.
The group did not last long in WWE despite Sean Waltman, Shawn Michaels, Booker T, and Big Show all joining the group at one time or another. Their leader Hollywood Hogan reverted to the red and yellow of the Hulkster after his monumental reaction during his match with The Rock at WrestleMania X8.