Tony Schiavone Talks Lack of Interest from WWE, Leaving Wrestling in 2001


Tony Schiavone is back in Pro Wrestling after a lengthy absence. Now, a podcaster and occasional voice for MLW, Tony was the voice of WCW for the majority of the company’s lifespan.

However, when the company closed in 2001, Tony just about disappeared from the wrestling scene altogether.

In a new interview with Sporting News, Tony talks about losing touch with Eric Bischoff, and why he left wrestling. Specifically, Tony pointed to a lack of interest from WWE:

“When it all went down and WCW closed, we had no communication at all. I went cold turkey from the wrestling business with the exception of doing some things with the XWF. I taped some shows with Jerry Lawler. I had no communication with Eric. I didn’t call him or see how he was doing. I don’t know how he feels. I haven’t sat with him. I haven’t asked if he thinks any of this was my fault or what were feelings towards me when everything went down with WCW. I know that he was working for the WWE. I remember one time my phone rang and the person on the other line said standby for a call from Eric Bischoff. I waited and waited and eventually hung up. I thought maybe someone was drunk dialing me. I went another way and didn’t seek out how he was doing or anything like that.
We didn’t part ways on bad terms. I just didn’t give a damn. I didn’t care how he was. I hate to say it that way, but I didn’t.
I did look and try to go back to WWE. They didn’t want me. It didn’t long for me to discover that WWE didn’t want me. I didn’t want to go the independent route because you hear all the stories about shady promoters. It wasn’t until afterward that I made the decision to step away. I had enough of it. My wife told me that at the end of WCW that I wanted out of the business. I was miserable. She said I wouldn’t get out because the money and the benefits were too good. She told me I needed to do something else. And so I did.”

Tony also compared working for Eric Bischoff and Vince Russo as the leader of creative. Here’s what Tony had to say:

“Eric was a little more difficult to work because he was really demanding. I think I got along a little bit better with Vince because he worked with me more than Eric did. When Vince and Eric were going to work together when Eric came back, I thought it was going to work out great. I thought we had two guys who were great at what they did. But their relationship went south quickly. Eric was more difficult to work with, but I could work for anybody really.
You had two guys who definitely had different ideas of the business. They were too stubborn to not let go of it. I’m sure the problems that Vince had with Hulk Hogan did not help that relationship at all.”

To read the full interview, click here.

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