The week of #Hatch teases lead up to a major reveal on Raw last night (May 30), and while it doesn't appear it will have an immediate impact on the on-screen WWE product, the news that Goldberg will be in their next licensed game obviously opens the door to all kinds of speculation about the company's relationship with one of the biggest stars of the Monday Night War wrestling boom.
In the game, obviously (as the press release below indicates, along with quotes from the man himself) we're getting two versions of Golberg as playable characters.
The addition of a couple WCW-specific venues has triggered speculation that one of the Showcase/story modes available in 2K17 will be Goldberg's undefeated streak. So in addition to booking a battle of the bald guys between Stone Cold Steve Austin and "The Man", you can also spear Scott Hall before he reaches for his taser.
"Who's Next?" - 2K Announces Bill Goldberg as WWE® 2K17 Pre-Order Bonus
WCW® and WWE® legend, film and television personality and former NFL defensive tackle featured as two playable characters in upcoming edition of flagship WWE video game franchise
New York, NY - May 31, 2016 - 2K today announced that legendary WCW® and WWE® star Bill Goldberg will make his virtual return in WWE® 2K17, the forthcoming release in the flagship WWE video game franchise. Best known for his unprecedented 173-0 singles competition win streak in WCW from 1997 to 1998, Goldberg will appear in WWE 2K17 through two playable characters representing his WCW and WWE personas. The playable characters, along with two playable arenas - WCW Monday Nitro and Halloween Havoc - will be available as bonus content for those who pre-order the game at participating retailers for the PlayStation®4 and PlayStation®3 computer entertainment systems, as well as Xbox One and Xbox 360. WWE 2K17 is currently scheduled for worldwide release in October 2016.
"After 12 years away from the business, I'm incredibly honored to work with WWE and 2K while following in the footsteps of such greats as Ultimate Warrior, Sting and Arnold Schwarzenegger," said Goldberg. "My son was a big part of this coming together, and I can't wait for him to see his dad kicking ass in a WWE ring through the magic of video games. I encountered the likes of The Rock, Triple H, Brock Lesnar and Ric Flair during my WWE career, and now through WWE 2K17, I'll be taking on the biggest and baddest Superstars of today - showing them once and for all that I am still 'Da Man!'"
During his WCW and WWE career, Goldberg held several notable championships, including the WCW World Heavyweight Championship, WWE World Heavyweight Championship, WCW United States Heavyweight Championship and WCW World Tag Team Championship alongside WWE Hall of Famer Bret Hart. In 1998, as a result of his in-ring success and growing popularity, WCW began counting Goldberg's consecutive wins on television. In addition, his popular catchphrase, "Who's Next?" quickly caught on with fans and in part defined his career.
Following his WWE retirement in 2004, Goldberg appeared in a number of films, including The Longest Yard and Universal Soldier: The Return. He also remained a national television fixture, joining the ninth season cast of the popular NBC reality series, The Celebrity Apprentice, and serving as host of Garage Mahal for two seasons on DIY Network. In addition to his film and television endeavors, Goldberg served as a color commentator for several mixed martial arts promotions and developed his own podcast, Who's Next with Goldberg, via PodcastOne. Goldberg was inducted into the Jewish Sports Hall of Fame in 2010.
"Goldberg's return to WWE action through two WWE 2K17 playable characters, along with the WCW Monday Nitro and Halloween Havoc arenas, collectively delivers a unique opportunity to experience one of WWE's true living legends," said Chris Snyder, Vice President of Marketing at 2K. "Fans can now relive many of their favorite Goldberg moments, as well as create brand new ones, as they decide 'Who's Next?' in the virtual ring."
A closing image from the above commercial, where Goldberg smirks after the police car he's riding in passes a Suplex City sign, is rife with potential meaning, seeing as his disappointing WWE run ended in a reviled WrestleMania match against Brock Lesnar.
And then there's this...
If anybody could get a good match out of the 49 year old former National Football League lineman, it's the Swiss Superman.
What do you hope comes NEXT for WWE and Goldberg?