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Saturday, June 14, 2014

George “The Animal” Steele Mangles A Baseball

Unlike Tiger Jeets Singh…George “The Animal” Steele still has range of motion (according to the new TheraBite Sabermetric System).

As noted earlier, WWE Hall of Famer George “the Animal” Steele threw out the ceremonial first pitch at The Charlotte Knights - Columbus Clippers MiLB game last Sunday at BB&T Ballpark in Charlotte, NC as part of “Animal Day.” You can watch Steele throw the pitch and mangle a baseball in the video above.

Repoz Posted: June 14, 2014 at 12:09 PM | 275 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: wrasslin'

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   1. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: June 14, 2014 at 12:33 PM (#4725823)
I have to avoid Steele's thoughts put out via social media or my fond memories of him get further tarnished.
   2. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: June 16, 2014 at 10:24 AM (#4727160)
I went to update the Daniel Bryan thread but comments have been closed. I want to thank YR for that Nikita Koloff link; pro wrestling is getting more and more fascinating to me as a form of performance art.

I know we have some smarks in here. Is there enough of a demand for an OT thread? I don't watch Raw or Smackdown until it's on Hulu+ the next day, but I'll happily participate in the discussion. I am thinking I will just give in and buy the Network in time for MITB.

Also, Bo Dallas is amazing.
   3. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: June 16, 2014 at 11:16 AM (#4727213)
Old wrestlers are one of the saddest things in existence.
   4. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: June 16, 2014 at 11:25 AM (#4727224)
I know we have some smarks in here. Is there enough of a demand for an OT thread?

I'd love to see a wrestling OT thread. The Daniel Bryan thread was on its fourth page, I'm sad to see it was closed to comments. Bo Dallas was hilarious on Raw, dancing to R Truth's rap intro. "Green Bay..what is going on?!?"
   5. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: June 16, 2014 at 11:26 AM (#4727229)
Old wrestlers are one of the saddest things in existence.


Old wrestlers may be sad but more sad is how few of them make it to old age...
   6. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: June 16, 2014 at 02:50 PM (#4727551)
Bo Dallas is 7-0 since being called back up to the WWE. Just you wait until he loses, when his true brilliance is revealed.
   7. Canker Soriano Posted: June 16, 2014 at 03:24 PM (#4727577)
Old wrestlers may be sad but more sad is how few of them make it to old age...

I had the same thought. I'd rather see them trotting out old wrestlers to throw out first pitches than read another article about some guy dying in his 40s.

I don't get Bo Dallas... yet. But I didn't watch enough NXT to get a good feel for what the character is all about.
   8. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: June 16, 2014 at 03:35 PM (#4727586)
It seems as if they're having two different story lines for Bo Dallas at once, between WWE and NXT. I don't know what the WWE has planned for him, but he's been crashing matches in NXT ever since he's been called up, as if he never wanted to leave there in the first place, with epic and hilarious results, as seen last week on NXT when Sami Zayn squared off against the masked Mr. NXT.
   9. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 16, 2014 at 04:16 PM (#4727636)
I want to thank YR for that Nikita Koloff link; pro wrestling is getting more and more fascinating to me as a form of performance art.


I strongly prefer the old days of wrestling when they at least made an effort to maintain the fig leaf of legitimacy over the "sport". I'm fortunate that there's never been more access to high-quality versions of old (pre-Hulkamania) wrestling via services such as YouTube and the WWE Network (whose content is slowly migrating to YouTube). I find myself increasingly fixated on watching the people in the crowds, mainly adults, many clearly emotionally invested in the participants in the ring to an extent completely unfathomable now. "Nikita Koloff" bringing a translator to sign a rental agreement, or The Destroyer showing up at his bank to deposit his nightly check while still wearing his wrestling mask, these things intrigue me far more than the intimate knowledge of who has "heat" with management or who refused to "do the job" at a show.
   10. JE (Jason) Posted: June 16, 2014 at 06:00 PM (#4727725)
Old wrestlers may be sad but more sad is how few of them make it to old age...

So what you're saying is that eating a turnbuckle twice a week is good for a wrestler's health?
   11. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: June 16, 2014 at 07:55 PM (#4727938)
I find myself increasingly fixated on watching the people in the crowds, mainly adults, many clearly emotionally invested in the participants in the ring to an extent completely unfathomable now.

Mid-South had to be where this phenomenon was strongest. I love listening to the Cornette shoot interviews talking about his run in Mid-South, particularly when they'd do a show at some small-town high school gym and the heat was such that he worried he was going to get knifed on his way to the ring.
   12. steagles Posted: June 16, 2014 at 08:54 PM (#4728023)
Old wrestlers may be sad but more sad is how few of them make it to old age...
i really hope that was just a 90s thing. i know it's not entirely a 90s thing, but the alcohol and recreational/performance enhancing drug abuse of that era exploded due to the influx of cash and i hope/think that now, between improved drug testing, WWE funded rehab, changes in way drug laws are enforced, innumerable cautionary tales from the last generation and the fact that that kind of abuse is not accepted (let alone encouraged), that era is passed.

   13. Good cripple hitter Posted: June 16, 2014 at 09:00 PM (#4728031)
Bo Dallas is 7-0 since being called back up to the WWE. Just you wait until he loses, when his true brilliance is revealed.


He was brilliant in a loss just last week.
   14. steagles Posted: June 16, 2014 at 09:04 PM (#4728037)
also, does anyone notice that wrestlers have body hair and are wearing clothes again?
   15. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: June 16, 2014 at 10:36 PM (#4728100)
He was brilliant in a loss just last week.

For a week now "Let me go quietly!" and "I'll call the real police!" has been randomly popping up in my head and I laugh out loud, wherever I am.
   16. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: June 16, 2014 at 10:58 PM (#4728117)
So what you're saying is that eating a turnbuckle twice a week is good for a wrestler's health?

Beats the heck out of cocaine, heroin, soma, and an assortment of other uppers, downers, and painkillers many wrestlers abused :-/

i really hope that was just a 90s thing

I only recently got back into wrestling but someone was telling me Triple H has been a positive influence on that and I saw where Bruno Sammartino finally buried the hatchet since he feels things have improved
   17. Spahn Insane Posted: June 17, 2014 at 12:19 AM (#4728159)
Steele was a lot of fun in "Ed Wood."
   18. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: June 17, 2014 at 04:20 AM (#4728176)
So what you're saying is that eating a turnbuckle twice a week is good for a wrestler's health?

Fiber.
   19. Publius Publicola Posted: June 17, 2014 at 07:04 AM (#4728179)
What a pencil-neck geek.
   20. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 17, 2014 at 07:45 AM (#4728187)
Grit-eating freak.
   21. Canker Soriano Posted: June 17, 2014 at 09:32 AM (#4728261)
I love listening to the Cornette shoot interviews talking about his run in Mid-South, particularly when they'd do a show at some small-town high school gym and the heat was such that he worried he was going to get knifed on his way to the ring.

He was brilliant back in the Mid-South days. His run with the original Midnight Express against groups like the Fantastics and the Rock and Roll Express is one of the things I remember about wrestling as a kid. He could work the crowd as good as anyone (particularly amazing given that he was still in his early 20s at the time). Those crowds were generally crazy, though - if you lived in the South at that time, there were rabid fanbases in Dallas, Mid-South, Memphis, and then Georgia and Florida, even before WCW started to annex some of the territories into a larger organization.

If there were a physical wrestling Hall of Fame, his X-Press tennis racket would need to be one of the items on exhibit.
   22. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: June 17, 2014 at 12:45 PM (#4728456)
I only recently got back into wrestling but someone was telling me Triple H has been a positive influence on that

Nothing to do with steroids or dying young, but what's interesting about pro wrestling these days are the extra layers of meta the Reality Era has added. If someone tells me they hate HHH, I need clarification. Do you mean HHH is a bad wrestler, or not a very good heel, or a heel that is successful in making you hate him, or you don't like him as a kayfabe Executive Vice President, or you don't approve of the non-kayfabe job he is doing as Executive Vice President these days, or....
   23. oscarmadisox Posted: June 17, 2014 at 12:52 PM (#4728465)
I, for one, would pay to see George "The Animal" Steele manage the Bridgeport Bluefish for a game.

   24. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 17, 2014 at 09:59 PM (#4728940)
If there were a physical wrestling Hall of Fame,


Wait, what?
   25. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:13 AM (#4728998)
Stardust! Wow.
   26. vivaelpujols Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:47 AM (#4729034)
Old wrestlers are one of the saddest things in existence.


This doesn't seem particularly sad to me. How many people in general are looking good in their late 70s?
   27. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:35 AM (#4729248)
Stardust seems like a pretty interesting gimmick for Cody Rhodes. I think Stardust and Goldust could have some good psychological matches with Rowan & Harper.

I'm surprised to see Alberto del Rio in the Money in the Bank match, there is virtually no build up to him being in it
   28. Canker Soriano Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:50 PM (#4729381)
Wait, what?

I had no idea.
   29. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:16 PM (#4729426)
I had no idea.


Me neither until recently, I moved to NY last year. Sabu is there this weekend, I haven't been yet but maybe that will be an excuse to check it out. I was never much of a Sabu fan but if he can even walk unassisted from his car to the front door I'll be more amazed than by any triple-jump moonsault he ever did.
   30. Canker Soriano Posted: June 18, 2014 at 03:12 PM (#4729601)
I think the last appearance I saw from Sabu, he was having difficulty just walking to the ring. So it wouldn't surprise me if he's gone downhill from there.

I guess you don't get to be homicidal, suicidal, and genocidal without having it take a toll down the road.
   31. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: June 30, 2014 at 09:47 AM (#4739533)
[SPOILER] Thoughts on Money in the Bank, before I fell asleep after a very very good Rusev vs. Big E match.

A Bo Dallas / Daniel Bryan feud would be a lot of fun, if they intend on using Bryan as he recovers.

Stardust and Goldust are so very fun. So are Rybaxel, for that matter.

God I hate the Usos but they put on a stellar match versus Luke Harper and Erick Rowan.

The Money in the Bank Ladder Match was pretty much fantastic and genuinely suspenseful in some parts, (even without the injured Bad News Barrett)...until the very end. What a waste. I will say that it didn't make sense for Dean to go after the briefcase when his real mission was to stop Rollins. I'm not sure if Dean's interested in the belt at this point when he's so hell-bent on avenging Rollins, but Rollins getting the briefcase does set up a further feud.



   32. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 10:13 AM (#4739555)
While you chumps were enjoying your "sports entertainment" I spent yesterday afternoon with a friend watching the 4-hour "Legends of Mid-South Wrestling" set. Ah for the good old days, when rasslin was real.
   33. Good cripple hitter Posted: June 30, 2014 at 11:04 AM (#4739619)
God I hate the Usos


I thought I was the only one!

While you chumps were enjoying your "sports entertainment" I spent yesterday afternoon with a friend watching the 4-hour "Legends of Mid-South Wrestling" set. Ah for the good old days, when rasslin was real.


That's the same set that features matches with the following stipulations:

Loser Leaves Town Match
Tuxedo Match
No DQ Match
Coal Miner's Glove on a Pole Match
Cage Match

Oh, wait, no. That was all in one "Loser Leaves Town No DQ Coal Miner's Glove on a Pole inside a Cage with the participants dressed in Tuxedos" match. And they say that Russo overbooked stipulation matches!
   34. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 12:39 PM (#4739772)
That match was *awesome*.
   35. Good cripple hitter Posted: June 30, 2014 at 12:54 PM (#4739794)
Oh, I'm not denying that. I watched it on Youtube once. It's just a hilarious collection of stipulations, especially the Tuxedo part.
   36. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 02:25 PM (#4739931)
Mid-80s Mid-South was just the best. So much fantastic talent there - Ted DiBiase, Steve Williams, Paul Orndorff, Matt Borne, Midnight Express, Jake Roberts, the Freebirds...man.
   37. andrewberg Posted: June 30, 2014 at 03:09 PM (#4740018)
God I hate the Usos



I thought I was the only one!


The Usos remind me of an 80s tag team that they would put with a semi-main eventer on the B squad house show circuit. Wouldn't a six man tag match of Brutus Beefcake and The Usos against Mr. Perfect and the Twin Towers fit right into one of those house show cards?
   38. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 03:20 PM (#4740035)
The Twin Towers - Sid Vicious and Dan Spivey? No, wait, they were the Skyscrapers. One Man Gang and Big Bossman?
   39. andrewberg Posted: June 30, 2014 at 03:35 PM (#4740054)

The Twin Towers - Sid Vicious and Dan Spivey? No, wait, they were the Skyscrapers. One Man Gang and Big Bossman?


That's the one, though he was Akeem at the time. Nothing better than this: OMG becomes Akeem
   40. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 03:36 PM (#4740056)
Following MITB the prevailing thought seems to be that we are headed for Cena-Lesnar at Summerslam with Lesnar winning. What are the exact details of Lesnar's contract? Is there rhyme/reason to how much and when he wrestles?
   41. andrewberg Posted: June 30, 2014 at 04:01 PM (#4740083)
Following MITB the prevailing thought seems to be that we are headed for Cena-Lesnar at Summerslam with Lesnar winning. What are the exact details of Lesnar's contract? Is there rhyme/reason to how much and when he wrestles?


The conventional wisdom is that he has a specific number of dates he can be used during the year and he and WWE can work out when those dates will fall. Over the last couple of years, it has been generally around SummerSlam and Wrestlemania. They used him more before WM this year but none at all after, so maybe they banked a few more live TV dates with him. Also, it is possible that they tore up this deal and convinced him to be on TV more often (particularly if he is going to do a run as champion). If he can stay on TV enough to be champ from SummerSlam to Wrestlemania, that would set up a huge opportunity for someone like Roman Reigns or Daniel Bryan to knock him off after a year of being undefeated.
   42. Chokeland Bill Posted: June 30, 2014 at 04:54 PM (#4740156)
The way I see it:

1. Lesnar takes the belt off Cena.
2. Either at Summerslam or Night of Champions, Lesnar wins/defends the title in a grueling match and Rollins cashes in (the Authority wants an active champ). Maybe Cesaro is part of it (angry that Lesnar didn't give him a title shot or something).
3. Bryan wins the belt from Rollins at Survivor Series
4. Lesnar gets it back at Royal Rumble
5. Reigns beats Lesnar at Wrestlemania.

That gives Lesnar three wins against people who have otherwise been unbeatable in fair matches ('taker, Cena, and Bryan), making it a pretty big deal when someone finally takes him out.
   43. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 05:16 PM (#4740179)
[41] Thanks for the explanation.

Ambrose, IMO, has really set himself apart from Reigns and Rollins in recent weeks. Of the young/new to the main event guys, I really really love him and Wyatt.
   44. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 05:19 PM (#4740182)
That's the one, though he was Akeem at the time. Nothing better than this: OMG becomes Akeem


It's like MacMahon thought, "I don't want to pay for a big fat white guy AND Kamala. Hmmmmm...."

One Man Gang was the largest man I ever stood next to in my life. He's actually a guy who looked smaller on tv.
   45. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: June 30, 2014 at 08:18 PM (#4740352)
I think Cena loses to Lesnar at Summerslam. Lesnar may not be a very active champ, but I like the idea of him being a monster than you lock up in a cage, and released to fight a worthy contender. Right now, the WWE does not have a worthy and/or interesting candidate for champion. John Cena or Randy Orton? Yawn. Sheamus or ADR? Who gives a ####. Daniel Bryan may never wrestle again. Who else can believably beat Lesnar? Cesaro and Reigns have not been built up enough, other strongmen have not been built up at all. I love Dean but I don't buy him beating Lesnar. Kane would be a terrible match. The contenders are just very very meh right now.

I think the best thing to do is to give Lesnar the belt until a champion that matters can beat him.
   46. Chokeland Bill Posted: June 30, 2014 at 08:36 PM (#4740368)
Ambrose has been killing it on promos, another great one on Raw tonight.
   47. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 09:12 PM (#4740390)
[46] Agreed.

Not particularly excited about a Cena-Reigns-Kane-Orton main event for Fatal 4 Way.

   48. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 10:13 PM (#4740425)
Just marked out due to Bray-Jericho.
   49. Chokeland Bill Posted: June 30, 2014 at 11:16 PM (#4740456)
That was a really good Raw. First one in a while.
   50. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: June 30, 2014 at 11:18 PM (#4740458)
First RAW that I watched in its entirety since about '01. Excited about potential upcoming Cena-Lesnar, Ambrose-Rollins, Bray-Jericho, Reigns-HHH matches.
   51. andrewberg Posted: July 01, 2014 at 01:03 AM (#4740492)
Don't forget AJ-Paige! Five matches I'd pay to watch on PPV.
   52. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: July 01, 2014 at 01:43 AM (#4740495)
It's just a hilarious collection of stipulations, especially the Tuxedo part.

I was a ~14-year-old full-fledged Mid-South mark when that match took place. IIRC, Duggan was named the "winner" of some poll declaring him to be the best-dressed man in Mid-South. (Who knew a 2x4 and an American flag do-rag were such classy fashion accessories?). Anyway, Duggan comes out in full tuxedo to the ring to accept his trophy and cut a promo thanking fans for voting for him, etc. DiBiase runs in to say he should have won, smashes the trophy, starts brawling with Duggan, loads the glove and knocks Duggan out, then strips the tux off of him.

Hence the reason for the tuxes in the blow-off match.
   53. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: July 01, 2014 at 10:23 AM (#4740590)
I missed RAW the other night, am I to understand that Jericho is back?

SWEET!!!!
   54. Rafael Bellylard: Built like a Panda. Posted: July 01, 2014 at 12:14 PM (#4740689)
One Man Gang was the largest man I ever stood next to in my life. He's actually a guy who looked smaller on tv.


While not a wrestling fan, the WWE was putting on a show in Chico, CA when I was living there, and I ended up standing in a grocery line behind One Man Gang at the local Albertson's.

I'm 6'3" and was about 290lb at the time, and you wouldn't have seen a trace of me standing behind him.
   55. Good cripple hitter Posted: July 01, 2014 at 01:17 PM (#4740777)
Hence the reason for the tuxes in the blow-off match.


Thanks for the explanation.

WWE Diva Emma missed Raw because she was arrested for (reportedly) stealing an iPhone case from a Walmart. The arrest log is up on the Hartford police blotter.
   56. andrewberg Posted: July 01, 2014 at 01:25 PM (#4740788)
Oh Emma. So silly.
   57. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 01, 2014 at 09:13 PM (#4741602)
I'm hearing she was arrested because she accidentally stole it while going through one of those self-checkout kiosks. She bought $30 worth of other things, but didn't pay for the phone. So unless she was trying to get a cheap kick from exploiting the system, it's an understandable mistake.
   58. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 02, 2014 at 06:11 AM (#4741734)
Who knew a 2x4 and an American flag do-rag were such classy fashion accessories?


So you've never actually been to Louisiana?
   59. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: July 02, 2014 at 12:29 PM (#4741915)
Wrestling OT thread please!
   60. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: July 02, 2014 at 04:49 PM (#4742153)
Just watched No Mercy 2003. Very strange witnessing a Face Angle go against a Heel Cena where Heel Cena was getting loud "Let's go, Cena!" chants in response to the crowd's "Let's go, Angle!" efforts.
   61. Chokeland Bill Posted: July 02, 2014 at 05:15 PM (#4742178)
Emma has been released
   62. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: July 02, 2014 at 05:16 PM (#4742181)
I guess you don't get to be homicidal, suicidal, and genocidal without having it take a toll down the road.


THAT'S RIGHT, DADDY! HE'S HOMICIDAL, SUICIDAL, GENOCIDAL, SPERMICIDAL, HIGH TIDAL, MATINEE IDOL, OFF THE SCHNEIDEL!
   63. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: July 02, 2014 at 05:18 PM (#4742185)
When Steele first toured with the WWWF, he had no manager, and did promos with Vince. He called everyone "Daddy", and had a lisp.
   64. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: July 02, 2014 at 06:21 PM (#4742253)
Emma has been reinstated.
   65. Canker Soriano Posted: July 02, 2014 at 06:34 PM (#4742266)
I was a ~14-year-old full-fledged Mid-South mark when that match took place. IIRC, Duggan was named the "winner" of some poll declaring him to be the best-dressed man in Mid-South. (Who knew a 2x4 and an American flag do-rag were such classy fashion accessories?). Anyway, Duggan comes out in full tuxedo to the ring to accept his trophy and cut a promo thanking fans for voting for him, etc. DiBiase runs in to say he should have won, smashes the trophy, starts brawling with Duggan, loads the glove and knocks Duggan out, then strips the tux off of him.

You and me both. I've been meaning to pick up that Legends of Mid-South set, just so I can remember what it was like to be young and totally into this stuff. We got Mid-South on Saturdays and then World Class on Sundays, and it's all been downhill since then.
   66. Canker Soriano Posted: July 02, 2014 at 06:36 PM (#4742270)
Emma has been reinstated.

Good. Maybe this will be like when they "released" Bryan after he choked the announcer during the original Nexus invasion, then brought him back and found something better to do with him. Poor Emma needs to get away from Santino and back to putting on the quality stuff she was doing in NXT.
   67. Canker Soriano Posted: July 02, 2014 at 06:47 PM (#4742282)
It's like MacMahon thought, "I don't want to pay for a big fat white guy AND Kamala. Hmmmmm...."

I think Kamala was in the WWF for awhile, because I think Steve Lombardi played his handler (Kim-Chee?). Poor Steve, constantly repackaged into whatever crazy gimmick they came up with.
   68. Rowland Office Supplies Posted: July 02, 2014 at 07:00 PM (#4742294)
You and me both. I've been meaning to pick up that Legends of Mid-South set, just so I can remember what it was like to be young and totally into this stuff. We got Mid-South on Saturdays and then World Class on Sundays, and it's all been downhill since then.

Bill Watts was the master of nuclear-heat booking in Mid-South. Almost every TV show ended up with his good guys face down in a puddle of their own blood.
   69. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: July 02, 2014 at 07:09 PM (#4742299)
I've been meaning to pick up that Legends of Mid-South set, just so I can remember what it was like to be young and totally into this stuff.

Get it! You won't be disappointed! Lots of great footage of the very young, but already very good, Jim Cornette too.

We got Mid-South on Saturdays and then World Class on Sundays, and it's all been downhill since then.

I was in far SW LA, so I don't remember seeing much World Class. But we got Paul Boesch's great promotion out of Houston on weekends too. It ran late night on the Beaumont, TX, station. More great old time action and I remember it being a lot bloodier than Mid-South, which is saying something because Watts's guys bled a lot on TV too.

ETA: Like [68] said!
   70. Canker Soriano Posted: July 02, 2014 at 07:54 PM (#4742324)
Bill Watts was the master of nuclear-heat booking in Mid-South. Almost every TV show ended up with his good guys face down in a puddle of their own blood.

Yeah, he really knew how to do it so that, when they finally gave the heels their comeuppance, it was glorious. It was a lot more like modern wrestling too, in that the heels were kind of cool. The way they booked a guy like DiBiase back then, or Jake Roberts, they'd get massive fan love these days.

With World Class, it was a lot more clear cut - everyone who was a von Erich was good, and everyone who wasn't a von Erich was either a heel or a face who would eventually turn heel. But damned if the fans didn't eat it all up and come back for more. Those old Sportatorium crowds were just rabid.
   71. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 03, 2014 at 01:23 PM (#4742725)
I hate the Miz but damned if it's not because he's so good at making me want to kick the #### out of him.
   72. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: July 03, 2014 at 07:57 PM (#4742951)
Started plugging away at the WWE PPVs again. Just finished Wrestlemania XX. What was it in the WWE water that (a) made Guerrero and (especially) Benoit get super over with the crowd and (b) made the powers that be decide, #### it, let's put the belts on the two short guys? It's really sad/###### up knowing what will happen to both guys in less than 2 years, but the finish at No Way Out (Eddie's win over Brock) and WM XX (Benoit over HHH&HBK;) were some of the best moments I've ever seen.

Still really weird seeing a more or less heel Cena be completely over with the crowd.

EDIT: Not sure if anyone has the answer to this, but how did the Royal Rumble work in the dual title/brand extension era? As best as I can tell, the WWE belt was on Smackdown and the World Heavyweight belt was on Raw, but then Benoit (a Smackdown wrestler) won the Royal Rumble (a dual brand event) and got thrown into a WM main event for the World Heavyweight (Raw) title? So, I'm assuming either I missed/misunderstood something or the winner of the Rumble was allowed to choose which belt they go after?
   73. Canker Soriano Posted: July 03, 2014 at 08:58 PM (#4742982)
So, I'm assuming either I missed/misunderstood something or the winner of the Rumble was allowed to choose which belt they go after?

I believe that's correct - the winner of the Rumble could choose to compete for either championship.
   74. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: July 03, 2014 at 10:39 PM (#4743046)
What was it in the WWE water that (a) made Guerrero and (especially) Benoit get super over with the crowd and (b) made the powers that be decide, #### it, let's put the belts on the two short guys?

Benoit was my all-time favorite wrestler. Obviously his life ended horrendously but he was one heck of a wrestler. I'll never be more into wrestling than I was from 1995-late 90's so they'll likely never be I wrestler I care more about winning or being pushed. His WCW days were frustrating. He joined the Horseman but was underused, then wasted in a feud with Sullivan, finally gets to face DDP for the US title only to lose, then beats Raven and loses back to Raven, and would get oddly jobbed out to someone like Scott Norton and have it help neither man.

I had some New Japan tapes and Benoit was nuts in their Super J Cruiserweight division, he just manhandled Liger, Otani, etc. I thought his suplex and power gimmick was perfect for thr lightweights but against the guys 240 and up his german suplexs looked terrible not sure if someone like HHH made it look so purpose but Hunter bent at the knees to help so much it looked bad. I'm not saying he couldnt hang with the 240lb+ guys but he shouldve been more of a high flyer vs. those types of guys

Das Wunderkind Alex Wright was also a guy I rooted for circa 95-96 but he just never developed a decent finisher and floundered

I think maybe the little guys got over since the fans were sick of the tall Nash, Hogan types or muscle bound Lesnar, Goldbergs and they probably didnt figure Chris and Eddy would truly get that far
   75. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 04, 2014 at 01:40 PM (#4743275)
I had never seen Benoit wrestle (have only been back into it for about a year) and I was curious so I selected a match based on Meltzer's ratings versus Shawn Michaels at some PPV. And, well, it was fantastic, but a part of me felt like I was watching a snuff film, especially when Michaels is laying on the mat near the northwest turnbuckle and Benoit climbs up the southeast turnbuckle. I'm thinking there's no way he can do anything from that distance, but then he lands the most vicious ####### flying headbutt. I literally cringed. A career doing that, plus drugs and alcohol and painkillers...it's not something that's pleasing to think about. I didn't get much pleasure out of watching the match, and I don't think I'll be going out of my way to watch his stuff again.

It must have been difficult to have him be your all-time favorite wrestler when the unfortunate happened. I don't envy you.

EDIT - I can't remember the match I watched. I could've sworn it was versus Shawn Michaels, but I can't find a PPV where those two (and only those two) squared off. Anyone know if the WWE Network has a history log/feature?

   76. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: July 05, 2014 at 09:10 PM (#4744453)
It must have been difficult to have him be your all-time favorite wrestler when the unfortunate happened. I don't envy you.

I mostly watched Benoit from when he joined WCw in late 1995 to sometime in the late '90's. I did watch some WWE in '01 when he unsuccessfully faced the Rock for the title and watched it a lot in '04 when he was champ. By '06 when the murders happened I was fully out of wrestling. It was tough to hear and still hard for me to imagine--too me its like a different person did the murders than the person I saw wrestle and rooted for professionally to succeed.

I do remember seeing him miss a diving headbutt and his head smack on the canvas, I'm sure that moved caused a few concussions for him over the years. I still tell people he's my all-time favorite wrestler since I know I'll never root as much for a wrestler to succeed as I did for him in the political WCW of the mid-late '90.
   77. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: July 05, 2014 at 09:32 PM (#4744458)
I don't think I'll be going out of my way to watch his stuff again.


Obviously, I don't condone what Benoit did. I feel like in some ways he and his famliy are the most unfortunate victims of the nastiness of the wrestling business--kind of like an extreme version of Junior Seau who was victim of the NFL. However, his wrestling was excellent and many matches are worth seeing. I did see him live at least on two occasions--once at WCW house show in '96 & also at World War 3 in '95 where he lost a match for the US title against Kensuke Sasaki (who he had beat only a few weeks prior on Nitro before Sasaki was champ--strange WCW booking)
   78. Good cripple hitter Posted: July 05, 2014 at 11:37 PM (#4744517)
EDIT - I can't remember the match I watched. I could've sworn it was versus Shawn Michaels, but I can't find a PPV where those two (and only those two) squared off. Anyone know if the WWE Network has a history log/feature?


Closest I can find for that is CageMatch's database. Only non-Royal Rumble PPV matches involving Michaels and Benoit were the two triple threat matches with HHH.
   79. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 06, 2014 at 11:20 AM (#4744643)
Just from that one match I saw, Benoit was a fantastic wrestler, and he showed me a couple things I hadn't seen before (like that flying headbutt from a million feet away), but I just felt uncomfortable the entire time. Maybe it'd be different if I had followed wrestling the entire time but it's very hard for me to separate the two things. Do people feel comfortable watching OJ Simpson highlight reels? But had he been my favorite wrestler (and he could have been), I'd've been very conflicted.

Closest I can find for that is CageMatch's database.

Thanks! Those are the only PPV matches vs Shawn Michaels I found, too. I'm pretty sure it was the main event on the card, and that he lost (it may have been a title match but he didn't have the title), but left to an appreciative crowd. Now it's driving me nuts, especially since one has to look for his matches in a roundabout way on the Network since his name doesn't come up in the search.
   80. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 07, 2014 at 10:20 AM (#4745075)
Chris Benoit was arguably the best active wrestler in North America, and one of the 5 or 10 best in the world, for a good portion of the 1990s. What made him so outstanding was how well-rounded he was as a wrestler - he could chain-wrestle extremely well, he could participate in high-spot-laden bouts with big moves and flying, and his overall intensity translated well into brawling. It took an enormous amount of effort by WCW booking committees to keep Benoit's popularity suppressed.
   81. Canker Soriano Posted: July 07, 2014 at 11:31 AM (#4745154)
For those who haven't heard, Santino Marella has retired from in-ring competition due to neck problems. Sounds like it's an Edge situation, where one more bump could land him in a wheelchair. Apparently he's likely to stick around in a backstage or on-camera role.

I hope he gets a proper sendoff on Raw tonight. Former IC champion, US champion, and tag team champion, and the man embraced his role as comic relief like fewer others have. That power walk around the ring while playing an imaginary trombone is etched in my memory, not to mention taking something as silly as the Cobra and getting it over as a finisher.

There was a big part of me that wishes the WWE had given him that Royal Rumble win back in 2011, instead of del Rio. The crowd reaction for that would have been insane.
   82. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: July 10, 2014 at 09:17 PM (#4748435)
Watching Backlash '04 on WWE Network and Benoit was walking out to defend the WHWC in Canada and...they showed a shot of his cheering family. Brutal. Not sure if I can make it through this match if they keep showing them.
   83. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: July 10, 2014 at 11:54 PM (#4748530)
Back in 1996 when they paired Benoit with Woman, I would have never guessed they would become a couple--they just seemed to have zero chemistry and honestly she had gotten old looking

On a happier note, Bo Dallas was hilarious on Monday when he beat El Torito and knocked him over during his "victory lap"

Worst nickname ever is Y2J as by 2001 that was dated, yet he still uses it a decade and half later
   84. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 11, 2014 at 12:05 AM (#4748535)
I really really want Bo Dallas to be truly booed, but I'm starting to think that's not going to happen. If getting called out by Daniel Bryan and man-handling a little person isn't going to do it, what will? He's going to have to beat someone like RVD or even Roman Reigns to get true heat.
   85. The District Attorney Posted: July 11, 2014 at 01:56 AM (#4748552)
too me its like a different person did the murders than the person I saw wrestle and rooted for professionally to succeed.
FWIW, I think the people who knew him best in the world would say this exact same thing. Afterwards, I was expecting to hear a bunch of "in retrospect, I should have suspected something was up when..." stories. But it never happened. Everyone has been amazingly consistent in stating that they saw no warning signs and were utterly shocked.

Unfortunately, what that probably means is that 100% of his simmering anger was directed at Nancy, and that her life was hell for years. I don't think I've ever heard of anyone who was able to compartmentalize his psychosis to the extent that Benoit apparently did.

Benoit was, of course, not a good promo. So he usually got a "he's too badass to talk!" gimmick, and his success depended to a large extent on how well that worked. Guerrero, on the other hand, was a tremendous personality, and he rose up in large part because he was so immensely entertaining in midcard angles. (And anyone at all familiar with WWF/WWE midcard angles knows how difficult that is.) It really was a case of the fans identifying the most talented guys in the company and resolutely demanding en masse that they get pushed.
   86. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 12, 2014 at 01:57 PM (#4749438)
So I kinda like the introduction of Titus O'Neal and Heath Slater as partners. Roster cuts and the lack of tag-teams kind of forced them together but they're demonstrating potential to make the most of it.
   87. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 16, 2014 at 11:53 PM (#4752496)
Anyone else excited about KENTA? I just watched this and Daniel Bryan and CM Punk are basically rip-offs of this guy.
   88. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: July 17, 2014 at 12:11 AM (#4752511)
[87] Nope. Don't think I'll ever be excited about what the WWE might do with almost any non-White wrestler, especially a foreigner.
   89. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: July 17, 2014 at 12:25 AM (#4752519)
I watched the Kenta clip and I'm excited to see him in a WWE ring but also (echoing NJ) hope he is used right

Some other recent things:
The Jericho/Wyatt feud seems to really be killing Wyatt's heat

Albert Del Rio trapping his opponents in the ring apron is something I've never seen before (I was out of wrestling until recently) & I'm impressed by how Del Rio & some others deliver crisp enzugari kicks without needing their opponent to hold their leg for balance

   90. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: July 18, 2014 at 11:31 AM (#4753611)
Speaking of Kenta, Cheap Heat podcast covered WWE's race issues this week.
   91. A Fatty Cow That Need Two Seats Posted: July 18, 2014 at 12:08 PM (#4753653)
Anyone know if the WWE Network has a history log/feature?


haha, expecting a user friendly browsing experience from a company that has had five months to get its #### together ahead of the next subscription renewal date. I'm not even desperate for them releasing more territory footage. I watch the network sparingly enough that I'm probably fine with access to old ppvs, countdown/wrestlemania rewind and their dvd profiles. But the fact that their search capabilities are such #### and that I can't resume viewing where I left off (like every other streaming service provides) is absurd. Better care at scheduling their live feed would be appreciated, too (and so easy!!). Why not show WCW Saturday Night...every Saturday night?
   92. The District Attorney Posted: July 18, 2014 at 12:42 PM (#4753680)
Isn't the Network being run by... MLBAM?

(So I'm surprised to hear your -- and many others', don't get me wrong -- complaints, since MLBAM seems to be quite well-run. I suppose the bright side is that the Network is probably worth $10/month to a wrestling fan even in a gimped form.)
   93. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: July 18, 2014 at 01:35 PM (#4753718)
I'm not even desperate for them releasing more territory footage.


The only way they could get a dime out of me would be to have a comprehensive archive of old territorial shows indexed by date. I grew up watching Florida Championship and Georgia Championship weekly shows, I'd like to recreate the experience with Mid-South, WCCW, Mid-Atlantic, or whatever else I had a fancy for. I've managed to collect some old footage from various territories and it's a good bit of fun for me to finally see so many of the matches and angles I'd only read about in Pro Wrestling Illustrated.
   94. andrewberg Posted: July 18, 2014 at 01:46 PM (#4753722)
They have WCCW indexed by date. It is one of my favorite parts of the network. The long-running rumor is that they will add Lawler and Jarrett's Memphis territory and probably Mid-South at some point too.
   95. The Kentucky Gentleman, Mark Edward Posted: July 18, 2014 at 02:30 PM (#4753755)
The lack of a resume feature is incredibly irritating. Is it that difficult to technically implement?

I'm not too put off by the search features though I wish they'd have a yearly timeline. Like if I wanted to watch everything from, say, 1995 in order (TV shows, PPV's, etc.). Currently I'd have to go back and forth between areas of the Network.

It's still well worth the $10.
   96. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: July 18, 2014 at 03:04 PM (#4753782)
Like if I wanted to watch everything from, say, 1995 in order (TV shows, PPV's, etc.). Currently I'd have to go back and forth between areas of the Network.

THIS!!! My purchase of the Network coincided with getting back into wrestling this Spring. My goal was to wash everything in order to see all that I had missed. If it wasn't for Wikipedia, I would have had a hell of a time figuring things out.

Regarding the resume feature, I have that on the Network on my PS4. I have to remember the PPV/show I was watching, but once I open it, it jumps to whatever point I left off. This isn't the case when I watch on my laptop though.
   97. NJ in DC (Now with Wife!) Posted: July 19, 2014 at 09:26 PM (#4754548)
Anyone interested in 2 tickets to the Nationals game tomorrow?
   98. The Kentucky Gentleman, Mark Edward Posted: July 20, 2014 at 10:19 PM (#4754916)
This is the worst-booked show in a while. The audience's complete indifference to Miz winning the IC title was hilarious though.
   99. CWS Keith plans to boo your show at the Apollo Posted: July 21, 2014 at 12:30 AM (#4754964)
I had higher expectations for this PPV. I liked Usos vs Wyatts -- favorite tag match in quite a while, actually. I feel like one of the only ones who actually like the Usos (*), and I'm curious to see if WWE can either (a) keep the Usos/Wyatts story interesting through SS or (b) incorporate Cody and Goldust. I suppose my main frustration is with Bray losing yet again. He loses a bit of luster if he can't beat anyone of significance. Further, I was really looking forward to Ambrose/Rollins, but maybe in the long run, it's better to delay their eventual in-ring showdown.

(*) Besides the crowd, of course -- the Usos are very much over.
   100. Canker Soriano Posted: July 21, 2014 at 11:53 AM (#4755162)
I was surprised by how bad this was, though the build was almost non-existent. It's not clear to me why Jericho and Wyatt are even fighting - Wyatt had a clear path/pattern from the time of his introduction. This just feels thrown together, especially if you're not going to use Jericho to put him over. I was surprised by the poor crowd reaction to AJ/Paige. I was not surprised that no one cares about the Miz, though I hope that TPTB took note of the excitement over Ziggler fake winning. The crowd is itching to see him get something.

I think they're setting up Ambrose/Rollins for something bigger at Summerslam. It's either going to have to be a no holds barred/falls count anywhere to let them run around the arena, or put them in a cage. I still love Ambrose - he's like a deranged Roddy Piper.

I hate that the bloom is apparently off Cesaro. How they managed to pair him with Heyman and kill his heat I'll never understand. People were rabid for that guy just 4 months ago, and now he's just an afterthought in the battle royale to be eliminated by Heath Slater?

What the main event really highlighted to me is how much the WWE misses Bryan and Punk. You had Kane (who it would make no sense to put the title on), Orton (him again?), Reigns (still pretty young for that push), and then Cena. But that's basically the top of the card right now. They need to throw a pile of money at Lesnar and get him to come do an extended program, because he's really the only other guy out there who could inject some life into this.

It's stunning that a company that seemed so exciting 6 months ago just put on this PPV.

(Also - there were a lot of botches last night. Almost every match you saw multiple times where stuff got screwed up. That's not something I'm used to seeing out of the WWE either.)
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