During his tenure as lead writer in WWE, Vince Russo was known for crafting storylines that elicited both criticism and acclaim. One of his most infamous creations, the “Brawl for All” tournament, stands out as a prime example of a concept that divided opinions.

According to Sean “X-Pac” Waltman on “Keepin’ It 100,” the tournament was among Russo’s less successful ideas, with its implementation ultimately being attributed to the backing of Vince McMahon himself.

Waltman revealed that McMahon supported the concept, and they were strategic in selecting participants. “Vince was backing it and they knew which f**king guys to ask to do it.” However, the tournament’s trajectory soon encountered challenges, particularly due to the dominance of Steve Blackman.

“They kept changing the rules as they went along because Blackman was destroying everybody! Honestly, if they wouldn’t have changed the rules it would’ve been — unless fking Bart caught a lucky shot — it would’ve been Blackman with that fker.”


The “Brawl For All” took a toll on the career of “Dr. Death” Steve Williams, whose prospects in WWE suffered as a result. Despite being a respected figure in the locker room, Williams’ participation in the tournament did not end favorably.

According to Waltman, the locker room perception of Williams compounded the impact of his loss. “The locker room perceived that he was JR’s guy that was the chosen one. As soon as Bart knocked him out, it was like Road Warrior pop 1988 in the f**king locker room and I felt so bad!”

Waltman’s insights shed light on the behind-the-scenes dynamics of the “Brawl for All” and its repercussions on the careers of those involved, highlighting the complexities of professional wrestling storytelling.

What are your thoughts on Russo’s approach to creative direction in WWE? Leave your feedback below!

Steve Carrier

Steve is the Founder of RingsideNews. He has been writing about professional wrestling since 1996. He first got into website development at the time and has been focusing on bringing his readers the best professional wrestling news at it's highest quality.

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