2018 WWE Hall of Fame inductee Bill Goldberg recently spoke to DigitalSpy.com about his 2016/2017 comeback in WWE, as well as his thoughts on Undertaker, Roman Reigns, and more.
How was working with Kevin Owens?
"It was cool. I mean, you know, it's tough. I'm greatly appreciative that he was a professional storyline-wise, and I went out there and beat him in a very short period of time. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to have a little program with him of any substance because it was a conduit to get to getting somewhere else.
"And he's a great worker. Great heel. He's a good kid. And it would have been exciting to be able to smash him a couple more times, as opposed to just once or twice. For a guy like me to go back, it's tough to sit and have programs with all the guys that you want and with all the newcomers, because it's just not apples to apples anymore.
"I've created something very fortunately with the help of a lot of people and that's what I stand on now. And thank God for that, because I'd hate to have to come back and earn my stripes again. You know, Kevin's a great talent, and like I said, there's a number of guys I'd love to work with, but things are a little different now."
Fans popped hard for your return in October 2016 and even more at Survivor Series, but you started to get booed at the Hall of Fame. You hadn't changed anything as far as being Goldberg. Why do you think they turned the corner?
"I can understand a little bit in that I was extremely limited when I came back. I think I did three moves, and that gets old. I mean, when you're in your prime and have three moves, that's one thing, but when I'm asked only to do a pretty short skill set, it further reinforces why they'd probably want to boo.
"That, and I mean, let's just take the Hall of Fame induction night. I mean, I spoke to Vince and that's gotta be changed. It has to be. It does a disservice to the people being inducted, it does a disservice to the people watching at home, and as you watch the crowd dissipate, it does a disservice to the people watching in person.
"These days, it's a whole new generation of kids, I mean, a couple generations since I've been in there, seemingly. But, you know, it's all about them. 'Hey, look at me. I wanna take a video on my cell phone and show everybody where I am and what I'm eating and what I'm wearing and what I'm doing'. It's too much. They want to be the ones that start that goofy chant. They want to be the ones to mess the guy up when he's doing his promo.
"I remember a day where they sat back and were entertained by what we did. They didn't try to dictate everything. Now, they wanna dictate stuff. So, you know, I jumped on them a little bit after [WrestleMania] that night, when I got a little indifferent when I went out there and was speaking from my heart. I will have absolutely none of that.
"There are repercussions in this world still today, and some of these fans who are nothing but poison to the rest of them, they need to have repercussions, too. I don't know what they are, but maybe the rest of the fans need to single them out.
"It's not fair to the kids out there busting their ass, bleeding, you know, going night after night after night on the road, being away from their families only out there to entertain the fans. And it's kinda gotten to a point where I wouldn't put up with it anymore. Something's gotta be changed. But, maybe that's just me the old man talking."
What do you think of The Undertaker nowadays? Do you think if he can go, he should keep going, or should he hang up his boots?
You know, it's not my decision. If you asked him the same question about me, he'd probably say the same thing. At the end of the day, it's up to the person lacing those boots up, and my opinion is nothing but that. And one person's opinion doesn't mean that things are right or wrong.
"I believe that in Mark's head, Mark knows when to call it quits. He'll do it when he wants to, and nobody can tell him otherwise, except for Vince, maybe. You know, they can sit down and have a man-to-man, and when it gets to the point where the performance isn't there, or you're enduring too much pain [where] you have to prepare too many different ways to get into the match, then it's time to do it.
"But, it's a really very hard thing to do. And money doesn't drive it. People think that money drives them, and that has nothing to do with it. We're talking about careers here that need to be made or broken in one or two matches, or one comeback. One of the old-time programs.
"You know you don't want to change your legacy. So, it's something very much to consider, and it's tough. I mean, when I got offered the opportunity to come back, it was tough for me. I mean, I didn't know — personally, I didn't want to do it.
"For the family, there wasn't an iota in my mind that didn't want to do it. So I had to meet myself in the middle, take a sacrifice, and take one for the team and go out and do my thing. I wasn't prepared the way I wanted to be, but I finally got prepared enough, and then it was time to hang them up again."
You talked about Roman Reigns' Spear in your Hall of Fame speech – could we see Goldberg vs. Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 35?
"All I got to say is, it ain't up to me. Whether it's Reigns or 'Taker, and, I don't know, I'm not gonna say anybody else. Hey, Reigns and 'Taker are the two guys on my list right now. I mean, obviously for two different reasons, but I'd be honoured to get in the ring with either one of them. And I still owe Brock one, but I'm two-and-one on him, so it's all good."