Kevin Nash On When The nWo Got Aggressive, Influence Behind Their Famous Catchphrases, Diesel As An Ant-Hero
Last week The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling welcomed WWE Hall of Famer, co-founder of the nWo and “Big Daddy Cool” as Kevin Nash joined us to promote our TMPT Con 2 Pro Wrestling fan convention taking place on May 19th in Richmond, VA. In this excerpt from the interview, Nash explains why the NWO was such a revolutionary group in wrestling history both in the ring and out of the ring and how his run as Diesel in the tail end of his first WWE tenure was a precursor to the anti-hero that would become so popular years later. The full episode can be downloaded at this link.
Below are some interview highlights, with an h/t to The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling for the transcription.
Influences on the nWo style and catch phrases:
“When I met Scott, he was more of a country-western guy and I was born and raised in Detroit so I was always kind of a Motown guy and once West Coast rap got really hot and especially Death Row it was we began listening to Death Row a lot in the car and there was this old Mack 10 song and in this Mack 10 song they rob a McDonald’s and one dude says to the other dude in the car that he’d been wanting to do that for two years and the other guys says that he’d been wanting to do that FOR LIFE, so that is where we got that. Most of our catch phrases and those things we did we got from West Coast rap. Immediately, I remember I put my headband on backwards like 2 Pac. Here is a thirty five year old white guy with his headband on backwards but it worked.”
Great American Bash 96 and power bombing Eric Bischoff on Pay Per View:
“That is the first night that we became aggressive. Shortly after that I think we were in Charlotte (maybe the next Monday) where we brought out the aluminum baseball bats. That was (Kevin) Sullivan. Sullivan knew that two things sell in wrestling and that is sex and violence.”
“The three of us (Hall, Bischoff, Nash) were all there at the beginning. He was WCW and we were the invaders and this was before the third man was unveiled so basically he was the foil and we were the invaders and he was representing WCW. He did such a good job and it was his idea and along the way it was tweaked here and there but conceptually he laid it out to me even before I decided to come on over.”
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How the nWo changed the perception of wrestling in the 90s:
“I always say that we showed Vince how to build the Saturn V and once we built it he kicked our astronauts out of the castle and said I’ve got it from here, pal.
Being the WWE’s first anti-hero:
“I was trying to do it forever. If you look at when I lost to Bret, I made sure that when I said “m’fer” that they got that and at Royal Rumble when I went down and interfered with Taker and Bret I flipped Undertaker off and I know for a fact that I am the first person to flip somebody off like that on TV. They were both pay per views but it was something that was one of those things like how I always dragged the belt.”
“At that time the movie HEAT was popular and at the end I was talking to Vince and we had just had a conversation like a year earlier and we were all in a room with The Kliq guys and we said wouldn’t you rather have 15,000 people and have 7,500 for the baby-face and 7,500 for the heel? The anti-hero is the way to go.”
Lasting impact of The Kliq on wrestling:
“It’s one of those things where you get that status of at the beginning of The Kliq DVD and they talk to Shawn and Shawn says that a lot of people disliked us and a lot of people did this and that but after all these years they are still talking about us and still talking about what we did so obviously a lot of the things we did were spot on.”
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