Following WWE Raw after WrestleMania 14, D-Generation X needed a boost after Shawn Michaels had lost the WWE Championship to Steve Austin.
When you need a boost, who do you turn to? You turn to The Kliq.
Sean Waltman (X-Pac) joined Triple H in the ring and took aim at WCW and Eric Bischoff, officially jumping ship from WCW to WWE.
Speaking on his 83 Weeks podcast, Bischoff reflected on Waltman's defection.
"Waltman was a huge shot in the arm for them. I'm sure there are plenty of people who will disagree with me, and they may be right. I may be wrong. I'll never change my opinion when I tell you that I think Sean Waltman was as important to the turnaround for WWE than just about anything else, including Mike Tyson. Tyson was a bigger shot in the arm. It got mainstream attention and everybody talking about WWE. Tyson was at the top of his game, maybe not as a boxer, he was still better than anybody else, but in terms of a media phenomenon, Tyson was more controversial and hotter than anybody on the planet. Waltman, because he was part of the NWO and the NWO was such a dominant part of wrestling at that period, that when Waltman left the NWO, I think that was as an important piece of the puzzle for WWE than anything else. As any other one thing. I'll go even further, and I know this is going to piss some people off, I don't think D-X would have lasted four months at that point. Waltman is the reason D-X worked. Not taking anything away from anybody else, great group of talent that would go on to become huge stars in the business, and obviously Triple H is kind of at the top of his game, but at that time, I think Waltman made that D-X invasion work more than anybody else. More than Triple H, more than anybody else, Waltman made that work. That was a real shot across the bow. If I reacted to anything, I reacted to that," he said.
Bischoff continued, "It was the like the NWO defecting. It was as close as you could get to Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, and Sean Waltman saying, 'We're done, we're going back to the competition.' That's what that was. It was an important part of the NWO leaving WCW to go to WWE. That's why I feel so strongly about Sean and his value and significance in that move, creatively. Not to take anything from Triple H, Shawn Michaels, anybody. Sean Waltman was as much a part of NWO as anybody else, with the exception of maybe Hulk, Scott, and Kevin. Waltman personified the NWO in so many ways. For Sean to leave, because I fired him, for him to leave and cut the promo that he did, was as close as you could get to the NWO defecting, and that's why it worked. Otherwise, it was a goofy skit. A bunch of idiots jumping out of a jeep, dressing up as army guys, knocking on the door, creating this invasion. Cool, fun, I liked it, it was great entertainment, but it wouldn't have had any impact without Sean Waltman. Nobody can convince me otherwise."
Two weeks after Waltman jumped ship, WWE Raw would end WCW Nitro's 83 week winning streak in the Monday Night Wars. Steve Austin vs. Vince McMahon was the built main event for that episode, though the match never took place.
Waltman and D-X would be a staple of WWE programming during the Attitude Era and the group is still celebrated to this day, recently enjoyed its 25th Anniversary.
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