Monday, October 3, 2022

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Brian Pillman’s Time In WWE


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WWE signing Brian Pillman started a new chapter in his career. Many fans view WCW and even ECW as the places where Pillman had his best moments, but the short WWE stint had its fair share of moments. Pillman was a fascinating character that gained respect in the industry for committing to character work and having underrated matches.

RELATED: 10 Things Fans Forget About Brian Pillman’s WCW Career

There were some many promising ideas for Pillman since he had so much potential and could make good ideas great in the right context. This wasn’t always the case, but the ups and downs certainly made his WWE time interesting in that manner. Pillman had the following WWE things that go overlooked today when looking back at his career.


10 Used Eric Bischoff As Leverage To Vince McMahon

The entire story of Brian Pillman joining WWE is fascinating in itself looking at the WCW departure. Pillman conned Eric Bischoff into legitimately firing him when he claimed he would return after selling his loose cannon gimmick in ECW.

RELATED: 9 Times Brian Pillman Crossed The Line As The Loose Cannon

The ECW step of the plan worked when he appeared there, but Pillman wanted to join WWE. Both WCW and ECW wanting to use Pillman made it more of a priority for Vince McMahon to get the deal done. McMahon signed Pillman before he went back to WCW after the verbal agreement with Bischoff.

9 Second Ever Guaranteed WWE Deal

Vince McMahon wanted Brian Pillman on the WWE roster enough to make an offer he almost never did. Pillman was just the second wrestler in WWE history to get a guaranteed contract after Marc Mero also secured one jumping ship from WCW.

Scott Hall and Kevin Nash getting such talent friendly deals from WCW made Vince realize he had to change his ways to stay alive. Neither Mero nor Pillman panned out as expected since neither made the main event scene, but it helped close the gap.

8 WWE Had A Press Conference To Announce His Signing

WWE pulled out all stops to make Brian Pillman feel like an important addition to the company. There was even a big press conference with Pillman signing his deal and talking to various media members with Vince McMahon.

There were almost never press conferences like this, so WWE was clearly hoping to play into that guaranteed contract. Pillman joined WWE with a world of hype when they showed clips from the press conference on television.

Bad luck hit everyone involved when Brian Pillman suffered an injury that prevented him from debuting in the ring. WWE placed Pillman on commentary for various shows to sell his character and keep him in the fans minds.

The charisma and unpredictable promos of Pillman made him a fun addition to the new role, but he wasn’t a natural fit on commentary. Pillman struggled to gain any momentum without having his best assets shown in the ring.

6 Infamous Gun Segment Was In Brian’s Actual Home

The most memorable segment from Brian Pillman’s WWE career was the time Steve Austin invaded his home and Pillman had a gun. WWE teased Pillman shooting Austin when the lights went out and gun shots were heard.

This ended up being a huge mistake that got WWE in hot water with USA Network and sponsors. Pillman still made sure he was remembered for this night, and it even took place in his home. WWE cameras went to Kentucky and filmed the segment at Pillman’s house with his wife present.

5 Steve Austin Turned On Him For Respecting Bret Hart Too Much

Steve Austin and Brian Pillman feuding referenced their past history together teaming in WCW. However, Pillman being injured saw him coming off as a sidekick as Austin was in the early stages of becoming a hot act.

RELATED: 10 Backstage Stories About Brian Pillman That We Can’t Believe

Bret Hart returning from a long absence to face Austin at the end of 1996 led to Pillman showing tension with Austin. Pillman talked about his respect for Bret and the Hart family to upset Austin. The attacks from Austin towards Pillman sold the feud with Bret since he wasn’t showing up until the PPV.

4 WWE Used Stampede Wrestling History To Add Him To Hart Foundation

Brian Pillman’s respect for the Hart family came from a real history with them during the earlier days of his wrestling career. The NFL journey for Pillman led to him wanting to chase the wrestling dream by working on smaller stages.

Stu Hart’s Stampede Wrestling promotion in Canada booked Pillman and helped teach him a lot of what he brought to bigger promotions. WWE referenced this to make Pillman the one non-relative member of the Hart Foundation faction.

3 Final Televised Match Was Vs The Patriot

The wrestling world was shocked when Brian Pillman passed away at a young age in the fall of 1997. Wrestling has sadly witnessed many young deaths, but this was one of the first times it happened to someone on television every week for WWE.

Pillman’s last televised match was not one anyone expected to see as a final anything. The Patriot faced Pillman on the secondary Shotgun Saturday Night show until Goldust interfered to chase Pillman away and sell their feud.

2 Was Booked To Face Dude Love Day Of Passing

Brian Pillman passed away in the afternoon before WWE ran a PPV that he was scheduled to wrestle on. WWE had Pillman in a feud with Goldust, but his match at In Your House: Bad Blood was meant to be against Dude Love.

Mick Foley was starting to introduce the Dude Love character for the first time and had a PPV match vs Pillman planned. WWE obviously had to cancel that and announced Pillman’s death on the show to fans finding out for the first time.

1 Terri Runnels Was Going To Turn On Goldust For Him

The final storyline of Brian Pillman was meant to have a proper pay off that never came. Pillman’s former relationship with Terri Runnels was used when she and Goldust entered a feud with him. One major stipulation in a match saw Terri being forced to live with Pillman for thirty days when he beat Goldust.

The segments aired for weeks of Pillman forcing Terri into his bed and wearing revealing outfits managing him at shows. Pillman passed away before the thirty days ended, but the original plan was for Terri to turn on Goldust and remain a heel with Brian.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by PostX News staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)


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