Many ECW fans aren’t aware that one of the ways that the promotion was different from other wrestling promotions at the time was its interaction with the fans. While many people learn about ECW’s fans based on videos seeing fans chanting, handing weapons for the wrestlers to use, and other in-person fan interactions – ECW was different for its time due to its embracing technology.
On Raven‘s website home page (click here for his website), he referenced a chat which Paul Heyman had with fans on the old Prodigy online platform. This was very unique for its time as the promoter/owner was interacting and answering questions from fans around the world via a moderator who used Prodigy’s chat feature.
This link will take you directly to the full chat which took place in March 1997, after ECW appeared on WWF’s (now WWE) Monday Night Raw show – but before ECW’s first pay per view on April 13, 1997:
When you click the link, have fun and “go back in time” to 1997 as ECW was getting ready to go live with its first-ever PPV!
Here are just a few snippets from that chat:
C Biggles (Prodigy Member) If you could afford to move out of the arena and into someplace bigger,would you?
Paul Heyman (Speaker) We can…and we don’t want to. We may run bigger shows somewhere in Philly in the future, but until someone tells me why it shouldn’t be…ECW Arena is our home.
C Biggles (Prodigy Member) Who do you consider the best worker outside of your organization?
Paul Heyman (Speaker) Steve Austin, Chris Benoit, Taka Michinoko, Kenta Kobashi….all qualify as superior athletes and tremendous performers outside of ECW.
GreedyFly MO (Prodigy Member) Paul – What are your thoughts on the way Raw was produced this past Monday?
Paul Heyman (Speaker) It’s none of my business. It’s not my concern. I only had to involve myself where ECW had the opportunity to showcase it’s talent. Who, How, When, Why, and Under What circumstances they present their guys is their business…it’s none of my business, and I don’t want it to be my business. I wouldn’t tell WCW how to do their show. I wouldn’t tell WWF how to do their show. I don’t want them telling me how to do mine.
C Xyminez (Prodigy Member) If someone goes to your wrestling school,do you hire them upon graduation?
Paul Heyman (Speaker) One of our original goals for the House of Hardcore was to create a new source of talent. If you go to the House of Hardcore and you have what it takes to graduate, then you have what it takes to get in the ring, because they don’t release anybody to the open market until that person is really really ready…as evidenced by the compliments ‘The Rookie’ Chris Chetti has received. If you are willing to subject yourself to a training regiment that can only be compared to the United States
Paul Heyman (Speaker) Military meets a qualified wrestling Dogo call the House of Hardcore (redacted number). If you’re not serious about it, though, don’t waste your own time. If you are serious, I believe in my heart, it’s the best place to learn today.
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