Liam Johnson attended the You’re Next: An Evening with Goldberg event in Manchester, England last night at the Comedy Store and wrote this report.
The show was presented by Kenny McIntosh and started with a video of Kenny backstage walking out of Goldberg’s dressing room only to be phoned by his mom (his phone played Brock Lesnar’s music). Kenny explained to his mom what he was up to and said something along the lines of, “Goldberg. The baldy guy from WCW”.
Kenny got on stage and introduced Goldberg (who again was shown backstage on the screens exiting his dressing room).
Goldberg was greeted by loud cheers, applause and Goldberg chants.
Part 1 – WCW
A video package was shown of Goldberg’s WCW career including highlights from the streak as well as his loss to Kevin Nash at Starrcade 1998. Bill said after the video package that the prod that Scott Hall used was Bill’s own idea but Bill wanted to use a much larger prod. WCW wouldn’t allow the use of a larger prod for safety reasons hence why the smaller one was used.
Goldberg made a point that he was grateful for the amount of respect and support like the fans in attendance at the Comedy Store showed. Goldberg said that unfortunately, a lot of fans in the US have forgotten manners and make up chants and songs to hijack shows and make it about themselves when it shouldn’t be like that. Goldberg’s point was that wrestling should be about the performers primarily followed by the fans joining in.
Goldberg said that it took a bit of time adjusting from American football to being a part of pro wrestling. A lot of people were used to seeing him as a football player rather than a wrestler.
Goldberg spoke about his title win over Hulk Hogan in the Georgia Dome and said it was his greatest night in the business at that point. Goldberg said he was intimidated by the occasion as it was Hogan but they did what was needed to be done at the time.
Steve Austin’s name was brought up as both Austin and Goldberg were huge stars at the same time in the late nineties. Goldberg said the fact that he shaved his head and wore black trunks was purely coincidental and that he ignored what Austin was doing at the time. Goldberg joked that he used to get offended when people confused him with Steve Austin as Austin was probably about 230lbs max as opposed to Goldberg who was around 275lbs at the time.
The finger poke of doom incident from the first WCW Nitro of 1999 was mentioned. Kenny implied that this was the catalyst for WCW’s downfall and that whilst it looked like Hogan should have faced Goldberg for the title again, it never happened. Goldberg agreed with Kenny as if he was stating the obvious.
Vince Russo was mentioned too. Bill said that he often thought Russo was a plant from WWE sent to kill off WCW (not the first time that’s been said either). They talked about his heel turn and how he hated it. Particularly because he had to attack Hacksaw Jim Duggan who’d come back from having cancer in his kidney. Bill said he went to meet a Make-A-Wish kid who had terminal cancer on the same night and felt terrible and emotional about the situation. It didn’t feel right and he was glad his heel run didn’t last very long as he didn’t want to give that his best shot at all.
Goldberg said he waited for Russo to put a helmet on before he speared him. Goldberg said that had Russo not have been wearing a helmet, he’d have probably killed him with the force of the spear and proceeded to say, “Vince, you’re welcome”. That pretty much summed up Goldberg’s opinion of Vince Russo.
Part 2 – WWE.
Goldberg said that WCW wasn’t as business-ike as WWE. WCW was more like a group of friends hanging together all the time doing what they enjoyed. Goldberg said that he felt that WWE never really wanted him. Goldberg mentioned the time when he was put in a backstage skit with Goldust where they put a wig on him (Goldberg had nothing bad to say about Dustin, his point was that WWE seemed to be doing whatever it took to diminish Bill’s character).
Goldberg also mentioned an incident from back in the early 2000s at a Toy Fair where Bill verbally confronted Triple H who was there with Stephanie at the time (WCW and WWE were still two separate companies). Triple H had been saying negative things about Goldberg so this was the result. Goldberg felt as if this incident went against him in WWE and that Vince McMahon didn’t really talk to him during his run between 2003 and 2004.
Goldberg really struggled to think of any highlights in his first WWE run and only really mentioned spearing Chris Jericho through the Elimination Chamber pod.
Bill mentioned working with the late Rosie when he was playing the Super Hero In Training character. He said whilst he liked Rosie, he was never comfortable being involved with offensive acronyms or any of the other edgy kind of stuff that WWE used to do at the time.
The match between Goldberg and Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 20 was mentioned and how the crowd “Rosie’d” all over it. Bill said that Vince was livid that both Lesnar and himself were leaving and that Vince must have been less angry with him because he was put over.
Overall, it was obvious that Goldberg didn’t enjoy his WWE run but he said he came back for his young fans.
Part 3 – WWE Return.
A video package was shown of highlights of his latest WWE run including seeing his son on WWE TV. Goldberg welled up and said that even though he’s a tough guy, seeing his son watching him as a wrestler makes him emotional. Goldberg said he came back for his son this time.
Bill said that his training regime for coming back last time was strict. A lot of calories had to be consumed and a lot of weight lifting was done. Bill also said that he was also doing Muay Thai and the problem with cardio is that it melts away the weight. Bill said that whilst he wasn’t in the same shape as was in his 30s, he was still in great shape for a 50 year old.
The original plan was for Bill to come back in January but obviously that was brought forward to Survivor Series instead.
Goldberg said he wouldn’t beg anyone for a job. WWE would have to call him if they wanted to use him. When asked if he’d be back, he replied with “never say never”.
The show ended with Goldberg taking selfies with fans and shaking their hands. Overall, a really good show.