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Jim Ross Discusses WCW’s Decision to Push Lex Luger As Their Top Face in 1990, Ric Flair Not Wanting to Pass the Torch

February 23, 2020 | Posted by Ashish
Lex Luger, Eric Bischoff

On the latest edition of Grilling JR, Jim Ross discussed WCW’s decision to push Lex Luger as their top face following Sting’s injury in early 1990, and how Ric Flair wasn’t thrilled with the idea of passing the torch to Luger. Highlights are below.

On the decision to go with Luger after Sting’s injury: “I think we took the easy way out, the lazy way out, and we went automatically with Luger, because Lex had that wonderful look, as good as anybody in the wrestling business before or after in many people’s estimation, but he didn’t have great chemistry with Naitch, and Naitch could have a great match, Conrad, with you and me, I just never felt that they clicked for whatever reason.”

On how much WCW wanting to make Lex Luger their top guy had to do with Luger having a similar look to Hulk Hogan and the Ultimate Warrior: “A lot. A ton to do with it, because again, lot of the higher up decision makers outside the booking committee, they only knew one kind of wrestling, and that was WWE, WWF at the time. So I think it had everything to do with it, and Luger had a magical look, he had a big money look, his 8x10s were world championship material.”

On Flair not being ready to pass the torch: “I just think that we just weren’t prepared and then nobody wanted to look for another way out, and I don’t know, I think Ric was getting frustrated, he was frustrated, passing the torch when you don’t think you’re ready to pass the torch is one issue, but having to pass the torch to somebody else, or potentially to somebody else, and Luger specifically, might not have been Ric’s cup of tea, that’d be a better question for him to answer. But it was just not good, it went right along with the chaos, the indecision, the vacillation. Most times that a talent is on a booking committee or creative process, there’s not a happy ending.”

“It’s hard for me to believe, with all the talent we had on that roster, that somebody could not have been seriously considered as a great opponent for Ric, other than Lex.”

If using any of the above quotes, please credit Grilling JR with an h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.

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Jim Ross, Lex Luger, Ashish