Verne Gagne's Son Greg Explains His Father's Downfall With AWA

AWA founder Verne Gagne is a legendary figure in the world of pro wrestling, who trained Ric Flair, promoted Hulk Hogan, and did many other things during the days of territory wrestling to lay the foundation of modern wrestling as we know it. However, the AWA was essentially absorbed by the competition between WWE and WCW (formerly Jim Crockett Promotions). 

On a recent "Busted Open Radio" appearance, Verne's son Greg Gagne recalled the warring egos that led to his father's downfall.

"It's hard to sit and talk about it because it was so frustrating," Greg said. "I knew all these promoters and I knew the people he trusted and the people who trusted him. They worked on a handshake. Eddie Graham was as honest as the day is long. Bill Watts, who Verne trained ... wanted to do things his own way but he always came to Verne and bounced things off of him. Bill, eventually, his ego got in the way. Crockett's ego got in the way. Jerry Jarrett, same thing." 

The turn frustrated Greg Gagne. "Verne worked with The McMahons for years and gave them talent all the time," Greg said, exasperated. "And Vince sent Verne talent. But everybody had their own egos and let their egos get in the way." 

According to Greg, his father raised him to never let his ego get in the way. After the AWA folded, Verne Gagne was eventually inducted into both the WCW and WWE Hall of Fame. He lived until the age of 89, passing away in 2015 in his home state, and the AWA's former home, Minnesota.