On Tuesday, Dark Side of The Ring explored the Brawl For All, the ill-fated WWF idea that had wrestlers compete in shoot fights. The Brawl For All started because Vince Russo wanted to shut up JBL, who had been running his mouth backstage, claiming he'd beat up everyone. It ended with Bart Gunn knocking out JBL in the finals. In-between were plans gone wrong, injuries, and rules that changed by the week.
Some have called it the worst idea in pro wrestling.
But Vince McMahon reportedly wanted to try it again a decade ago.
According to former WWE writer John Piermarini, McMahon wanted to do the Brawl For All using NXT superstars under the original format. Before NXT became the third brand in WWE with a network television deal, it was closer to a reality competition show.
@jasoneisener @evanhusney incredible job with both seasons of @DarkSideOfRing. Funny story - while on creative in either 2009 or 2010 Vince wanted to do another Brawl For All with the guys competing on NXT (in its original format). He had to be talked out of it.— John Piermarini (@JohnAsHimself) April 8, 2020
Piermarini would later say, "Conversation started and ended in the production meeting."
Shad Gaspard commented on the report, saying he was asked about his fighting career while in WWE.
I do remember Jonny sitting me down and going over my fight history, then asking if I would do a shoot MMA or Boxing match----— Shad Gaspard (@Shadbeast) April 8, 2020
Gaspard was never part of NXT, but was in WWE in 2009 and 2010.
The first season of NXT, which premiered in February 2010, included names such as Wade Barrett, Daniel Bryan, Ryback, Heath Slater, and PJ Black.