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Arn Anderson on why Mike Awesome flopped in WCW, why Starrcade 2000 was a depressing time

On the latest episode of the “ARN” podcast, Arn Anderson and Conrad Thompson talk about WCW Starrcade 2000. This was the final Starrcade event before the company was purchased by WWE.

Arn and Conrad talk about the condition of WCW at the time, and they talk about some of the names that were around at that time including Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Shane Douglas, the Steiner Brothers, Mike Awesome, and many others.

Arn was asked what he thought about Mike Awesome in WCW: “I think Mike, who was a nice enough guy, came into an environment of wolves and sharks. I think there was a little bit of sniffing out that hey, this guy is a big star in ECW and will be a big star here. I think the antenna went up on a lot of the top guys, the more vicious top guys, the smarter top guys and they figured we are going to have to get this guy to sabotage himself or we are going to have to sabotage him. It was not too many TV’s you started to see adding layers onto his characters that he didn’t need, putting him in precarious situations instead of just winning for 9 weeks. If the guy was big, he was a good performer, the easiest way to get a guy over today, tomorrow, 25 years ago, is to put him in matches that have enough time, give him an opponent that knows what time it is, and just go out and win every week and have good matches. I don’t think he really had a fair start. If he would have come to the company 10 years earlier, who knows what the guy could have been.”

Arn gave his thoughts on the state of WCW and Starrcade in 2000: “For me, I was having to look at this. I couldn’t sprinkle any magic dust on it. I couldn’t put a new coat of paint on it. I couldn’t rationalize it. For me, it was a period of my life that the companies that I really loved, which was Jim Crockett Promotions that morphed into WCW. Then it became WCW and I saw that it was on fire and the fire trucks were not going to make it in time. I was the guy who took the call. We were standing in front of the house and it’s ¾ on fire and the guy calls from the dispatch and he says, sorry Arn, we are still 45 minutes away with the fire trucks. We are not going to make it in time. Then there’s that moment where inside your head, you just go, this is over. The business as I know it is over. This company is probably going to be done. I can no longer wrestle no matter how much I will myself to do it. I’m just physically not able. It was a really down, depressing time for me, but I was looking at all the jobs, all the dreams, all the young guys like myself that dreamt of this their entire life and really wanted to make it an occupation of theirs, lifelong, they were never going to have it because when that company goes down, at least half the jobs in the industry is going to go down the sink with it. To sit there and have to watch it, it’s like somebody holding my head straight saying, watch the monitor. There is the future. It doesn’t look very bright. It was not a good feeling.”

If you use any portion of the quotes from this article please credit ARN (Arn Anderson’s podcast) with a h/t to for the transcription

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