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Why Triple H and D-Generation X were told by WWE to invade a WCW show in a tank


These days, it’s the Wednesday Night Wars between All Elite Wrestling and NXT fans love to watch.

But the Monday Night Wars in the 90s and early noughties between WCW and WWE are legendary.

Vince McMahon and Eric Bischoff were the fiercest of rivals during the Monday Night Wars, but Bischoff ended up working for the WWE boss

The stakes were legitimately high – it was life and death for those promotions at some stages.

In April 1998, Triple H had refreshed D-Generation X following WrestleMania. With Shawn Michaels gone, Road Dogg, Billy Gunn and X-Pac joined Chyna alongside The Game to create one of the most important stables in WWE history.

The tide had turned for WWE in the ratings leading up to WrestleMania 14 after 83 consecutive weeks of defeat and some of that turnaround could be attributed to the fantastic use of Mike Tyson.

However, WCW were able to continuously draw millions of viewers and the war was still raged.

War is the appropriate word here, as on April 27, DX drove a TANK right up to WCW’s show while both we’re live on air.

It’s an historic moment with plenty of context. So how did it happen?

DX were a staple of the Attitude Era

DX were a staple of the Attitude Era

“WCW had this mentality, where they wanted to attack us, but it wasn’t about them doing well, it was about us doing bad,” Triple H told WWE.com.

“If we booked Hampton, they’d be 20 minutes down the road at the Scope [in Norfolk]. Mr. McMahon was pissed. This was the fifth time it happened.”

Today, WWE has an army of writers for each main roster show. Back then, there was maybe five guys overall who were involved in the writing process. [Chairman] Vince McMahon, Ed Ferrera, Bruce Prichard, Ed Koskey and Vince Russo.

“I’ll never forget it,” Russo started. “I’m sitting at my desk and I’m thinking to myself, You know what, I’m just going to write down, for the hell of it, ‘DX drives a rocket launcher right up to the building.’”

As is often the case with WWE, an outlandish idea needs to tread carefully and many of DX didn’t know about what they were doing that day until they did it.

“Nobody knew, just me, Mr. McMahon and Russo,” Triple H explained. “[X-Pac and The New Age Outlaws] came up to me and said, ‘There’s a bunch of military stuff outside, like a tank. Is that for us? What are we doing?’ I said, ‘I can’t tell you yet, but it’s going to be awesome. Trust me.’”

DX rallied the fans outside of WCW’s arena before attempting to enter

DX rallied the fans outside of WCW’s arena before attempting to enter

“Just to be clear, we went down there with no clue what we were doing,” The Game continued.

It was a volatile situation between companies at the time and certainly a rivalry, but add live TV into the mix and it really made the whole situation very unpredictable.

“You’ve got to understand, WCW has a live show going on at the time,” Russo explained. “We have no idea what’s going to happen. We don’t know if [WCW boss] Eric Bischoff is going to send 10 guys out there to beat the crap out of them.

“We don’t know if he’s going to call the cops and they’re going to get arrested. But that was the appeal of it, the unpredictability. How in God’s name can you turn that off?”

Up until that point, WWE had scarcely mentioned WCW on their television show. WCW had no problem taunting WWE.

As you can imagine, the site of WWE’s hottest stable turning up to WCW’s tapings drove the fans outside the building crazy.

[The fans at Nitro] went crazy,” Billy Gunn recalled. “I think they were just as shocked as we were that we would actually do that. They were chanting ‘DX’ and chanting for WWE, anything other than what they were there to see.”