Bischoff made his biggest mark in pro wrestling in the mid 1990’s, leading WCW to become the number one wrestling promotion in the world. Bischoff brought Hulk Hogan down south to WCW in 1994. WCW Monday Nitro came into existence one year later, and the nWo angle in 1996 became the hottest thing in all of pro wrestling, propelling WCW ahead of WWF in the Monday night war.
Bischoff’s achievements with WCW nearly put Vince McMahon out of business, so it was a surreal moment when he debuted for WWE on Raw in 2002 and enthusiastically hugged Vince McMahon. At the time, it was described as if hell had frozen over. Here we are nearly 20 years later, and hell has frozen over again, with Bischoff being enshrined forever in the WWE Hall of Fame.
Here is WWE’s bio on their newest Hall of Famer:
“Eric Bischoff, a pioneer behind the scenes in sports-entertainment, as well as an incredibly entertaining performer in front of the camera, is the latest inductee in the WWE Hall of Fame’s Class of 2021...
Bischoff broke into the sports-entertainment industry in the late 1980s for fellow Hall of Famer Verne Gagne’s AWA. He started off in sales but soon became an on-air talent, hosting the AWA’s shows on ESPN and interviewing the legendary territory’s stars. But as the 1990s arrived, the AWA was on the brink of going out of business, so Bischoff made a move that would eventually change the industry.
He joined World Championship Wrestling in 1991, hosting shows and calling the action on WCW’s weekly television shows. But by the mid-1990s, Bischoff had risen the ranks and became executive producer of WCW. He helped bring Hulk Hogan to the company and launched WCW Monday Nitro, the competitor to WWE’s Monday Night Raw that kicked off the infamous Monday Night War that helped make sports-entertainment a pop culture phenomenon.
Bischoff didn’t shy away from the camera either, joining up with 2020 WWE Hall of Fame inductees The nWo as they ran roughshod on the promotion. After WWE purchased WCW in 2001, he brought his brand of ruthless leadership to WWE in 2002 as the first General Manager of Monday Night Raw. His arrival was one of the most shocking moments in WWE history, and his time in charge of the red brand was defined by one simple phrase: ‘Controversy creates cash.’
Bischoff never strayed far away from controversy as General Manager, as he engaged in rivalries with the likes of ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin and John Cena. He continued to innovate, as well, with concepts like Raw Roulette and the Elimination Chamber, which lives on as one of WWE’s annual pay-per-view events.
For Bischoff’s innovation behind the scenes and his memorable performance in front of the camera, there is no greater honor than induction into the WWE Hall of Fame.”
Bischoff joins Molly Holly as the two current members of WWE’s 2021 Hall of Fame class. The induction ceremony, which will include inductions for the entire 2020 class as well, will air on Peacock on Tuesday, April 6. I suppose Bischoff won’t be retroactively added to the nWo as part of the 2020 Hall of Fame class, but there are still a few weeks for plans to change.
Congratulations to Eric Bischoff on his WWE Hall of Fame induction!