Garett Bischoff recalls being in TNA as ‘Jackson James’, keeping secret that Eric Bischoff is his father

The first talent to ask Garett for his true identity was Shannon Moore. 

While Eric Bischoff was working at TNA Wrestling, his son Garett joined the company as a referee. He went by ‘Jackson James’ and outside of higher-ups in addition to Brian and Earl Hebner, many within the company were not aware that ‘Jackson’ was Eric’s son. 

Garett detailed the lengths he and his father would go to keep it a secret. While appearing on Refin’ It Up, Garett said him and his father would not make eye contact or speak to one another backstage.

Nobody else knew who I was (referring to being Eric Bischoff’s son). In the big scheme of things and why we did it the way we did for TNA was at least to kind of give me a half-assed chance at getting a fair shake with making some friends, so to speak. I mean, you (Brian Hebner) know how it is. You’re second-generation. ‘You’re only here because of’ so and so. So I wanted at least to have the chance to kind of get somewhat of a fair shake. So not only was I still greener than hell. Now I got this secret that I have to play. Not just on TV, I gotta play it all day. It was to the point where my dad and I would even ignore each other. When we passed each other in catering, we didn’t talk, we didn’t make eye contact and it sounds easy, but it’s not. So it was nerve racking. But at the same time, it’s exciting because I was excited about the long-term goals of this and yes, you and your dad were the only ones who were smartened up for the most part and I can’t say enough good things about you and your dad… 

I’ll tell you the first person that picked me out of the lineup from recognizing me was Shannon Moore. He was the first one because Shannon, when he was young, he used to train at the (WCW) Power Plant, and when I was kid, I used to run around the Power Plant and jump in the ring with those guys and run around those offices all the time and I remember it. If you remember the sound stage, when you walked from the trailers to the bathroom where makeup was, there’s that long stretch of hallway and he was coming down, kind of getting warmed up in his gear. He had just done his makeup and everything and he pulled me aside, he goes, ‘Hey, Jackson, come here,’ and he looks around, he goes, ‘Garett, is that you?’ I said, ‘Yep.’ So he’s actually the first one. 

Once it became public that he is Eric’s son, he said not much changed because he had been on the road and established himself. He does not know if anything was said behind his back, but things remained the same.

He shared that talents such as Samoa Joe, Ken Anderson, James Storm, Frankie Kazarian and Christopher Daniels told him he could start riding with them to shows. 

If they did, they didn’t show it (Garett said he was not treated differently in TNA when it was made public that he’s Eric Bischoff’s son)… By that time, I think I had already been there now for, God, it’s been so long, it’s hard for me to remember but I think by the time everybody really found out is close to six months in. I had already had the chance to travel some house show loops with everybody and get in some car rides and share some road time. So, no, at least not to my face. There’s a handful of guys who may have thought differently, kept it to themselves. Everybody was very great there. It was a great locker room to be a part of. There was a couple of guys that went out of their way more than others; Ken Anderson, James Storm, Samoa Joe, (Frankie) Kazarian, (Christopher) Daniels, they’re the ones offering to, ‘Hey kid, jump in the car. House show loop, you can ride with us if you want’ so, there’s a couple that went out of their way more than others but, everybody was great. I never had a problem with anybody.

Later in the conversation, Garett was asked if there are goals he still wants to accomplish in wrestling. He feels those days are behind him, but he’s still happy to get a wrestling-related call to make an appearance, do a signing or a podcast. 

You know, I’ve kind of accepted with the fact that-that ship has for the most part sailed (Bischoff responded when asked if there are goals he still wants to accomplish in wrestling). I never say never. You never know what’s going to happen or what opportunities are gonna pop up or where they’ll pop up at. But that is definitely not a focus. I have a great career, a great job right now. My wife owns a salon down in south Tampa that’s very successful. We own commercial property so we’ve put our time and investments into other things for long-term wealth, setting our son up for success. I’d like to get more entrepreneurial stuff, whether that means more property or another small business. What those may be or what that may be, I don’t know yet but we’re always keeping our eyes and ears open for stuff like that. But as far as the wrestling business goes, I’m excited if I get a phone call and asked to come do a show or do a signing. I get the opportunity to come see some of the boys and see old friends and have a couple beers with some old buddies and I enjoy stuff like this. But, career-wise, those days are probably more behind me than in front.

Last year, Garett returned to IMPACT Wrestling television and was featured alongside D’Lo Brown and Wes Brisco to reform Aces & Eights. 

If the quotes in this article are used, please credit Refin’ It Up with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.

About Andrew Thompson 8465 Articles
A Washington D.C. native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.