Not only WWE 97&99 = WCW 2000, it's also WWE97&99=Russo TNA era.
The whole Attitude Era during Russo was full of shock moments, constantly face and heel turns, swerves, shoot promos, sex, stables, people kayfabe quitting the company, nothing different than WCW 2000. It's not Russo's fault that some fans think that for example supernatural feuds in WWE like Kane vs Undertaker are cool but supernatural feuds in WCW and TNA Sting vs Vampiro or Sting vs Abyss are embarrassing or that the ending of the empty arena match between the Rock and Mankind was cool but a similar ending of a Nitro and Impact main event was pathetic.
A last rites match in 1998 between Kane and Undertaker would be praised still today but the same match on TNA between Sting and Abyss is bashed as typical Russo crappy booking
I posted numerous times here that Russo proved in WCW and TNA only one thing and that's that he was solely responsible for the style, storylines and the whole success of the Attitude Era because the style of the shows looked exactly the same like in the AE. It's not his fault that fans think that Vince McMahon vs Shane McMahon was cool but Ric Flair vs David Flair was boring. It's also not his fault that David was not charismatic as Shane to make the feud look better.
I guess you could say it backfired in WCW and TNA, to a lesser extent, in terms of critical reaction, because people expected that kind of outlandish stuff from WWE. WCW had done some crazy shit, such as Robocop, Chamber of Horrors, Oz, The Yeti etc. But it hadn't done much crazy stuff so quickly as it did in 1999 - 2000. Whereas WWE had done it first: The Undertaker's 90's antics, Max Moon, Papa Shango, multiple Doinks for example.
I remember one critical reaction to when Russo and Ferrara took over and the company became very much like WWE's style and direction. The critic said that WCW trying to so blatantly emulate WWF Attitude is like Pepsi attempting to carbon copy Coca Cola to the point the font is the same. It was a bad business decision, which Bill Busch shouldn't have allowed.