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Larry Zbyszko – ‘Scott Hall Was The Best Wrestler To Never Win A Major World Title’

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On a recent edition of “The Snake Pit” podcast with Jake Roberts, Larry Zbyszko discussed Scott Hall’s (Razor Ramon) role in WCW, Hulk Hogan’s heel turn in 1996, and more.

You can check out some highlights from the podcast below:

On whether he came up with the idea for Scott Hall’s WCW debut: “Well, yeah. There was a big meeting going on, they were laying out some stuff. And then Eric looked around and said, ‘Does anybody have any comments?’ And I went, ‘Uh, I do.’ And everybody there, the Crocketts and all, they look at me like, [gasps]. I said, ‘Look, here’s what I would do.’ And I laid it out. Because instead of Scott doing some idea where he’s just sitting at ringside half the show like a nobody, you know. I mean, if it’s an invasion angle, have him invade! Have a match going on in the ring, and have Scott walk right down and butt in. And the two guys go, ‘What the hell’s he doing here?’ Make it look real.

“The thing now — I mean, the fans enjoy it for what it is. But to make the fans love it more and get into it more, the wrestlers have to believe it’s real when they get in the ring. If you’re in a real fight with a big guy, you’re not gonna slap him in the chest. He’d knock your head off. You know, so do it like, ‘What would you do with this guy if it was real?’ But so I suggested how Scott entered and started in on the other guy, and how to build up some things. And then it got so hot, Eric wanted to be there. So we programmed stuff and I put together a thing for me and Eric, that we had a match where I saved Nitro from the New World Order and all that. And then he was smart enough to listen to good ideas.”

On Hulk Hogan’s WCW heel turn in 1996: “Well, I listened to the crowd. And after it happened, I thought it was great because if people bought. I mean, Hulk had a true heat. They were mad at him for real, you know. So it worked out great. So you know… good! Let’s keep these contracts coming.”

On who had the idea to get him physically involved in the angle: “You know what? It kind of happened unexpectedly. I was doing the commentating on the show, maybe just at the very beginning of the New World Order thing. And the table was next to the ringside. It was by the ring apron before they built the set. So I’m sitting there at the ringside, and Scott was in the ring and he had a match with somebody and beat him, is doing his thing. And then he came over — and I had no idea what he’s going to do. He came over to the top rope, looking down at where I was sitting next to [Tony] Schiavone or whoever. And when he looked at me, I’m went ‘Damn,’ so I ripped off the headsets and I stood up. And when I stood up, the crowd blew the roof off the place, to the the point where I didn’t expect it. And me and Scott both looked at each other, and we talked through our eyes. And we said basically, ‘People want to see this.’ And the way I programmed stuff, because I knew people want to see that so bad, I programmed me and Eric, saving Nitro the pay per view before I wrestled Scott because I knew people want to see that so bad. Programmed that out.”

On whether he saw any backstage drama with Kevin Nash and Scott Hall in WCW: “You know what? I never did. I mean, here’s how it worked. I mean, we would go there, me and Bobby Heenan doing broadcasting. And me and Bobby, I mean we never had meetings before the show, you know. Everything we called was ad-lib. And me and Bobby would hang out, take a walk out back and have a smoke while everybody else was doing their thing. So we never dealt with the office, or the boys, or the matches and stuff they were putting together. Me and Bobby were just having a good old time. We’d sit down and ad-lib over everything we’d see, and it was like a night off. In fact, I did the first hour. Then when Bobby came out, I left the building and got out of there an hour before the show was over. Went to a casino if there was one, had some fun. It was really a gravy job for ten years, and I really didn’t deal with much of anything except the New World Order stuff. But yeah, it was a great life.”

On whether Scott Hall is the best wrestler to never win a major World Title: “Well, I don’t know. I mean, if you’re over like Scott was, it doesn’t matter if you’re the world champion or not in terms of drawing money and being a value. And Scott did a great job.  God, it such a sad thing. I mean, he had some problems, but he had the ability to come walk in with a toothpick. Made bad guy being cool. And he was really a talented guy. And yeah, it really breaks my heart to know he had a devil in him. But he was a really talented guy. And it was a night of being with him in the ring doing stuff.”

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