Former ref Mickey Jay on Eric Bischoff, mistakes in WCW

Brady Hicks sent this in.

Former WCW and WWE referee Mickie Jay Henson joined the IN THE ROOM podcast this past Tuesday, July 7, 2015, with Brady Hicks, former WCW wrestler The Stro, Kathie Fitzpatrick, Derrick McDonald, and Jordan Garber. This show can be downloaded at both vocnation.com and thebradyhicks.com. Check it out as Mickie Jay steps off his fishing boat to discuss his time with Championship Wrestling from Florida, WCW, and WWE, and compares each. He also talks about the bout with cancer that sidelined him from WWE, mentoring under Dusty Rhodes, and WCW having “too many chiefs, not enough indians,” Other points of interest include being a WCW guy in the WWE locker room; his brief wrestling career; the art of refereeing; WWE’s ECW and Vince McMahon’s dislike of Paul Heyman; and how WWE is positioned moving forward as its leadership changes hands.

This show is available in full here: http://wrestlingsmash.com/2015/07/08/in-the-room-with-referee-mickey-jay-henson/

Here are some highlights:

On Eric Bischoff’s Attitude Regarding Vince McMahon:
They took it pretty legitimately as far as a war with Vince … I remember the time when … we were in Norfolk, Virginia at The Scope doing Nitro, and [D-X] showed up across the street with a big tank … Eric actually thought that they were going to come in and interrupt the show. And it was at that same time that I remember Eric actually challenged Vince McMahon to a fight. We had a pass made up for him to come in, an all-area access pass. I was assigned to referee that “match” if it took place. I remember asking Bischoff, “Well, what are we going to do?” And he said to me, “If he shows up, call it as you see it. And if he doesn’t show up, ring the bell and count to 10.” So of course that’s what happened … I know Bischoff is supposedly a big karate guy, but I’m pretty sure Vince would have whooped him … Eric Bischoff is almost like a mark in certain ways.

On WCW Favoring Surprises Over Promotion:
Some of [WCW’s] ideas didn’t really make a whole lot of sense. Eric’s big thing was the element of surprise. For instance, we had James Brown appear on on of the pay-per-views … He didn’t advertise it. He didn’t tell anybody. So why would anybody tune in? … If you’re going to have one of the biggest superstars in the world like James Brown on your show, wouldn’t you tell somebody? … It just didn’t make any sense to me, and it still doesn’t … The object of the whole thing was to gain viewership, and to make your ratings go up. By announcing a James Brown or whoever you’re going to have on your show, it sure couldn’t have hurt.

Comparing Vince McMahon and Dusty Rhodes as Bookers:
Vince does things the way he wants them to go, and they go his way. If they don’t, you’re not there … Dusty would call you on something. If you didn’t do it right, he would let you know. He had such a way of letting you know that you remembered. It wasn’t like he’d just bring you into the office and curse you out. He would bring you in, sit you down, and explain to you what you did wrong, and why – if you ever do it wrong again – you won’t be here to do it wrong again.

IN THE ROOM airs live, weekly, Tuesday nights at 9 PM ET on the VOC Nation Radio Network (vocnation.com / thebradyhicks.com). Join Brady Hicks (Pro Wrestling Illustrated contributing writer), as well as The Stro (WCW’s Maestro), Kathie Fitz, Derrick McDonald, and Jordan Garber as they run down all that’s going on in wrestling, and sit down with some of wrestling’s top stars.