By Scott Keith on 13th November 2020
Starrcade 99 headlined by Goldberg vs. Bret Hart did a TERRIBLE buyrate. Do you think that's because the match itself just wasn't a draw or could some of the following factors have played a role:
-Russo gave the goddamned match away on Nitro like 3 weeks before the Starrcade ppv. A full on match. Sure there were shenanigans but Hart picked up the win. I mean yeah WWF gave away Austin/Rock the night after Survivor Series 98 and then had that headline
WM 15 but A. that's friggin Austin/Rock which ALWAYS felt huge no matter what and B. they at least waited 4 months before trotting the match out again which is a big difference than a few WEEKS.
-The rest of the card was complete and total horseshit. Maybe even under the best of circumstances Goldberg/Hart isn't a big enough match to save such a card?
-WCW was just too far in the shitter at this point. The first half of 99 and second half of 99 for WCW are like night and day popularity and relevance wise and come the end of the year they were really hurting. Maybe NO match in the company at this point could've
gotten a good buyrate?
-Should it have been Goldberg/Sid? I recall Halloween Havoc a couple of months prior with that match got WCW's last kinda sorta somewhat decent buyrate. Maybe save that match for Starrcade as was the original plan or do some sorta super duper gimmick match
to end the feud. Did fans want that over Goldberg/Hart?
-The booking. Simply put Russo's booking was largely terrible. And perhaps no match could survive that and be built to anything fans would be willing to pay to see.
I'm sure there's probably other factors but this email is long winded enough. Basically under the right circumstances does Goldberg/Hart draw as the main event of WCW's biggest show of the year in 1999 or would it simply have bombed no matter what because there
wasn't interest in the match?
Yeah, I dunno. That match was always gonna be a tough sell, especially with sympathy firmly on Bret's side for losing his brother in horrific fashion and no real coherent story to the match. If it was something where the famous Toronto angle was done to build up the match at the same time, it might have had something, but as it was it was clearly going nowhere and not getting followed up on afterwards, so what was the point? As you say, Sid was the monster heel they were building up, put him in there with Goldberg instead.