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Jim Ross On Claims that Heat On RVD and Sabu Nearly Killed ECW/WWE Relationship, WWE Paying ECW

July 22, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Rob Van Dam Jerry Lawler 1997

– On the latest Grilling JR, Jim Ross responded to reports from 1997 that Sabu and Rob Van Dam’s heat with WWE officials nearly killed WWE and ECW’s relationship. The report from Dave Meltzer at the time said that the two ECW stars were a source of problems backstage at the time, when WWE and ECW were working together and WWE was paying to help keep ECW afloat. The report noted that one source of heat was RVD not wanting to lose a match to Road Dogg by countout, comparing it to the idea that Bret Hart would lose to a ECW “job guy” which in turn angered WWE officials who thought RVD had too high of an opinion of himself. Finally, Meltzer reported that that the issue nearly killed the deal between ECW and WWE, but that Heyman’s ability to play both sides saved the matter.

Highlights from the discussion, and the full podcast, are below:

On RVD not wanting to lose to Road Dogg: “Two viable sides to the argument, both guys got a story to tell. Both of them could have decent cases to make. But at the end of the day, both sides, it’s like you wanna say, ‘Come on, guys. Really? Now let’s figure this s**t out, this is silly.’ And I think it was silly, I still think it’s silly.”

On Dave Meltzer reporting that it nearly killed the ECW/WWE relationship: “As far as Meltzer’s assessment, that he probably got from Paul, that this could kill the whole deal — I disagree wholeheartedly. I think we were paying, that budget we were paying around $50,000 a month to help Paul out. Nobody needs a pat on the back for that, it’s Vince’s deal. That’s what he wanted to do, so that’s what he did. And I know, because it came out of my budget, so big deal.”

On the particulars of the ECW/WWE deal: “I might be a little heavy on that [monetary] estimate. It’s been a long time folks, since I was there. I do know it came out of my budget, I know that we helped Paul for many, many weeks, or months, year or two, whatever it was. But it was never an issue with us. We knew what we were doing, we believed that what we were doing was the right thing to do for the business, and our business more importantly. It was a lot more money than — it wasn’t like, a grand a week deal. It was a lot more money than that, because you’re talking about having access to a library, talent. And that was a key thing, you know. Having a positive relationship with ECW was a win/win in a lot of areas. But for us, it allowed us to hire Taz and the Dudleys, and these other cats, other guys as I mentioned. And then Joey Styles eventually came on board. And Paul was there, Paul always knew. Look, Paul living in there, in White Plains, he knew he was always in the shadow of WWF, WWE. And he also knew that he’s so good at what he does and still does, that he’d get picked up or utilized by them at any time. So it was a way for him to recoup, because a lot of money had been invested in the company. So I looked at it as a win for everybody all the way around.”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Grilling JR With with a h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.

article topics :

ECW, Jim Ross, Rob Van Dam, Sabu, WWE, Jeremy Thomas