Ask 411 Wrestling 11.14.12: Water Tossing, Naming Warriors, Roddy Piper's Stupid, More!
Posted by Mathew Sforcina on 11.14.2012
Would Vince McMahon ever sell the WWE? Did Lita injure Mickie James in her last WWE match? Did CM Punk rip off Wade Barrett's look when he took over the Nexus? All this and more covered this week in Ask 411 Wrestling!
G'Day, welcome to Ask 411 Wrestling, Mate!
What? I was told that accents are sexy.
Never mind then. This is still Ask 411 Wrestling, and I am still your (inexplicably) respected and beloved host, Mathew Sforcina. So that's good.
Not a great deal else to cover here. I mean, stuff has happened in the wrestling world, but nothing that is a paradigm shift or anything else worthy of those sorts of high class, expensive words. Just stuff. Some good, some bad. Most just there.
So let's get out of the gloom and into the other, slightly less gloomy gloom. If you have a question you want to ask me, you can do so by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org
You missed Heyman's Speech!: Well, considering I referred to the week prior as my all time fav, I assumed it would be considered automatic that it fits in with the best promo of all time. But in case you missed it, this is also a superb promo…
Paul Heyman: InVasion
Polls!: I'm hesitant to start throwing them in hilly-nilly, but if anyone would like to see a poll question I'm happy to toss it in, and/or if it is appropriate for something, if there's a question about the general consensus about something I'll toss in a poll, sure.
Your Turn, Smart Guy…
Who am I? One of my former tag team title holders was in the news recently. One of my former mentors isn't really well liked by anyone any more. I once pinned Hawk of the Road Warriors twice, in a row. In my first match in a company, I won tag titles off a verified hall of famer (although not a WWE Hall of Famer) and a legendary tag team wrestler who is better known for teaming with his brother. I had the option to join the WWF on Black Saturday, but chose not to. A guy who once worked under a mask and who once was a promoter, I am who?
Some Jerk got it. (Almost.)
Who am I? One of my former tag team title holders was in the news recently- The late Brad Armstrong.
One of my former mentors isn't really well liked by anyone any more.- Jim Cornette.
I once pinned Hawk of the Road Warriors twice, in a row.- In Georgia Championship Wrestling.
In my first match in a company, I won tag titles off a verified hall of famer (although not a WWE Hall of Famer) and a legendary tag team wrestler who is better known for teaming with his brother.- In UWF against Sting and Rick Steiner.
I had the option to join the WWF on Black Saturday, but chose not to. A guy who once worked under a mask- As Star Blazer and Kendo The Samurai.
and who once was a promoter-co-promoted Smoky Mountain Wrestling
I am who?- You are "White Lightning" Tim Horner
I meant Ole Anderson there instead of Jimmy Cornette. But it's all good.
Who am I? I'm Canadian, although that never really played into my gimmick (beyond one nickname). I'm part of a wrestling family. You could argue that Lex Luger stole a gimmick off me. I've teamed with Hulk Hogan, battled Bob Backlund for the WWF Title and I'm trained a few wrestlers, including one guy who has, according to the joke, invented every move ever. Who am I?
Questions, Questions, Who's Got The Questions?
Ace starts us off with a trip back to WCW.
Can you explain the storyline behind Bischoff joining the nWo in 1996? In my opinion this didn't come across well on TV. My understanding is that Bischoff, representing WCW, was trying to broker a contract between Hogan & Piper for Starcade'96 & phoned in to Nitro that he was at Pipers ranch in Oregon to make the deal. Then Piper showed up the next week on Nitro, confronting Bischoff saying that he never went to his ranch in Oregon, then the nWo came out & jumped him. Am I remembering this correct?
Pretty much, although you're leaving out a fair chunk of build up. See, in the weeks leading up to this point, the nWo was buying TV time, they had a section of WCW Saturday Night of their own, nWo Saturday Night, since only those members with WCW titles were able to wrestle on WCW TV.
And so while no-one actually mentioned it, it became clear that the nWo had a lot of clout, a lot of pull backstage, given how much air-time they had, how much money they were tossing around. And then Piper came back to WCW at Halloween Havoc, challenging Hogan to a match. But then Bischoff, as WCW Executive Vice Preseindet (a.k.a the guy in charge) declared that the match wouldn't happen on Nitro, for ‘reasons he wouldn't get into'. And then later, he said that Piper wouldn't return his phone calls. So when Piper exposed Bischoff's membership…
It made a lot of smaller things click into place. Bischoff was trying to get the Piper match off the cards, plus it explained nWo's cash and reach, and a whole lot of other small things. Plus it explained the influx of talent (Bischoff told everyone to switch or face nWo's wrath) and how the nWo suddenly began to wrestle everywhere after that point, as the angle became the ‘war'. It tied together a lot of loose ends which WCW didn't make any big deal about prior. They probably should have, but they didn't.
So it did make sense at the time, it's just that the build up tends to be forgotten.
Also, why the hell wasn't that match at Starcade for the WCW Title? Their biggest match of the year, the "match of the decade" as they built it, & it wasn't even for the title? Is this how it was promoted, non title? Why wouldn't Piper - storyline wise - not request that Hogan put the title on the line?
Oh yeah, the WCW World Heavyweight Title Match that wasn't for the title. And what's worse, in storyline, PIPER wrote the contract. So HE made it non-title.
But it was total bait and switch, sorta. WCW did not ever state that it was for the title. At no point did they say it was a title match. Rather, it was Piper V Hogan, the WCW World Heavyweight Champion, in the main event of Starrcade 1996. They never said it was for the title, so they didn't actually lie. They just really really REALLY made it look like it was for the belt.
But then, if Piper won the title, that would have removed a lot of the heat from the Hogan/Sting match. Although that ended up being a whole other kettle of problem fish…
As for why Piper didn't make it for the belt… How about that he knew that the symbolic win was more important than a title win. Had he made it for the title, he knew Hogan would have weaselled out it, he would have gotten the DQ or just walked out. A non-title match, that would have just enough pride that Hogan would accept and not bail, because he wanted to prove that he could beat Piper. So Piper knew he wouldn't take a cheap ending, he'd want to pin Piper. So Piper could then beat him properly, and then use that to get a title match later on, which he did.
So that's one idea.
Rick talks security, in one form or another.
I have a few questions for you.
First of all during the attitude era one of the WWF security members was a rather thick dark haired guy with a moustache. He always wore a black leather beret looking hat. Who was he and what happened to him? He was always noticeably standing near the end of the ramp. Usually to the right.
That would be Jim Dotson, who was head of WWF security for several years, up until when he left in 2001. He travelled with the company, basically running their security. He would tell each arena's staff what to do, how best to keep the crowd under control and what have you. He was occasionally interviewed in WWF magazines, and there always something of a mild idea to have him step into the ring, since he was legitimately a strong guy, he could lift more than most of the wrestlers. The closest they got was where they began a sort of feud with him and Blackman, where he kept restraining Blackman when Steve went nuts. But he didn't want to be a wrestler, he preferred security. So it never went anywhere.
I read conflicting reports as to what he's up to now, so if he's out there, by all means drop a line and let us know how you're going dude.
Secondly, who is the black guy that has been shown on a lot of PPV's and raw's the last year or so that wears a we hate Cena shirt? He must have connections to always have front row seats.
The gentleman in question is commonly known as, brace yourself, ‘We Hate Cena Guy".
So glad to see the ECW Fan Naming Conventions still holding up after so much time.
Although his name is Marcus, apparently. And/or he might well be known as ‘We Hate Cancer' guy for the next couple of weeks as he's wearing that on a shirt now. From all accounts he's another in a long line of superfans who is willing to pay money to travel around and attend every show they can. From Vladimir to Rick The Sign Guy, some people have different priorities to the rest of us. And if they can afford it, great.
Although apparently some of the wrestlers do occasionally get him a ticket, the scuttlebutt says, because they want to needle Cena a bit. And/or because he and Cena are actually cool with each other. The whole thing began at a Wrestlemania where he and some buddies all wore that shirt, he's just been the one to keep it up. Sort of like the Fans Against Cena group that pops up at Wrestlemanias.
So yeah, some fans just do travel around. Either he's rich, or he's his own boss, or he has one hell of a credit card debt.
Thirdly, i constantly hear how ratings and attendance is down. And how great it was during the attitude era. Yet the venues, the ring, the ramp, everything looks better than it did during the attitude era. Every sort of of the production seems better now. Are they just now investing more money in that sort of thing or am i missing something?
You're confusing presentation with content, which is understandable. Certainly if you go back and look at some old wrestling, it's often dark, dingy and not flashy to look at.
Whereas WWE now has pyro, state of the art computer graphics, a giant HD level digital screen, and is much more presentable.
But I don't think anyone is really complaining that the set was better, no-one is seriously demanding a return to the giant R A W letters or anything. (The giant Smackdown fist, maybe…). I think those who are asking for a return to the Attitude era, to be generous, preferred the storylines, the unpredictability, the chaotic nature of the show.
Yes, the glitz and polished presentation does run counter to the general idea, but you can have a compelling, surprising but logical wrestling TV show with pyro and fancy graphics. You can also have one without them, but WWE looks more presentable with them, and in today's marketplace the company that looks presentable is much more likely to be seen as successful. They are spending a lot of money on the fancy set and graphics, but it's a necessary cost in today's marketplace.
Jeff asks about names.
I appreciate you answering my previous Video Gaming and Wrestling questions, so here's another!
I was participating in the jobbing-out of The Road Warriors in the 'Attitude Era' mode of WWE 13, and it got me thinking about their team name.
Hawk and Animal were of course known as The Road Warriors during their time pre-WWF, then when they signed they adopted the Legion of Doom moniker - I would assume because WWF didn't/doesn't like to acknowledge wrestler's careers before they reach the Fed'.
However, when you think about it, Hawk and Animal were part of *a* Legion of Doom back in Georgia (I believe it was), with the likes of Jake Roberts and Matt Bourne. So, *if* the WWF were trying to avoid acknowledging their previous accomplishments as the Road Warriors, why resurrect the Legion of Doom name?
...and for that matter, why bring in Paul Ellering, who only would surely only be known to more 'seasoned' wrestling fans?
Thinking about this even more (I have a lot of free time on my hands at work), could this changing-of-the-name be because the WWF were paranoid about copyright infringement with the Mad Max films?
However, in career retrospectives and video games ever since, they've reverted to calling them the Road Warriors again! This is especially odd considering that they never actually wrestled a WWF/E show under that name (although I suspect that they might have called Joe Laurinaitis 'Road Warrior Animal' on his final run with the company...)
So in summary then (yeah, that monologue turned out to be a little longer than I imagined it would) - what caused the WWF to initially rename Hawk and Animal as The Legion of Doom, and then why retrospectively revert back to The Road Warriors?
Thanks a lot sir
OK, let's deal with the timeline a bit, then deal with your question.
Animal was briefly known as the Road Warrior before Hawk came in, and so the two were given names and became The Road Warriors. And yes, this was in Georgia Championship Wrestling, and the team was a subset of Paul Ellering's stable known as The Legion Of Doom. As well as The Road Warriors, the Legion also had at various points Jake "The Snake" Roberts, The Spoiler, Matt Borne, King Kong Bundy, Arn Anderson, The Iron Sheik and the original Sheik. The stable broke up, but they did keep the name the name in the NWA, on and off. Halloween Havoc 89 they got both names, for instance.
Then in WWF, they used the Legion of Doom name for the team, Animal and Hawk (although, as in NWA, occasionally a ‘Road Warrior Hawk/Animal' would slip through). Then, to skip ahead a lot, Animal did work as a heel at the end of his last run in the company as The Road Warrior, back to his original name, back before Hawk came in.
Now then, why did Vince bring Paul in? To try and recapture the magic that Paul and the Warriors had, and maybe help keep them on the straight and narrow, but of course, Vince just had to mess around with the formula that step too far…
No, actually, I will not post a video of Rocco here. I'm not that cruel.
But anyway, to finally answer your main question: Why did they downplay the Road Warrior name at the time, and then bring it back eventually? It's all about one man actually. The Ultimate Warrior. When LOD came in, Warrior was doing big business, so Vince didn't want people getting confused, and so he dropped the Road Warriors name to avoid confusion with the Ultimate Warrior. Now that everyone involved is retired and not liable to come back, he can use the name freely, since there's no chance now for confusion.
So yeah, Vince made the change to avoid confusion between guys with face paint named Warrior, despite the fact they teamed up on many occasions…
William takes us back to Lita's last Raw match.
In Lita's last match on Raw she easily defeated a blindfolded Mickie James, and it appeared Mickie suffered a serious injury from the match after taking Lita's moonsault. They had doctors in the ring as Lita was giving her final F-U to the fans, and Mickie looked to be out of it as she was escorted to the back. Was Mickie legitimately injured? If not, what was the point of this?
Considering that 6 days later Mickie James was A-OK…
I'd say she wasn't injured. However, the point was to establish that Lita was NOT AT ALL A NICE PERSON, and thusly you, as a sane, rational person, want to see Mickie James, who is A NICE PERSON, stop Lita from getting the sort of send off Trish got, since Lita WAS NOT NICE and thus didn't deserve to leave as Champion, undefeated, and instead deserved to be humiliated on the way out.
It was just a overhanded way to try and portray Lita as the slimy bitch and Mickie the plucky babyface, done with WWE's usual tact and subtlety.
Hey, another Promotionamania series! And given that it's not CZW, I can share it without qualms!
See, WWE doesn't have enough self-sung intro themes.
I would mark for years if anyone did this in a real match.
These are getting more self-referential and insular. I approve.
And this isn't funny as much as it is fascinating, given that it's a solid promo that is totally PG. It can be done.
David #40 wants to talk hair.
Something I have noticed, but not really heard mentioned anywhere.
Wade Barrett, as Nexus leader, was the only person to have the
hairstyle that held through every match he had, as if he had a tonne
of gel in there. Then Punk took over Nexus and Barrett got sent to
Punk apparently adopted Barrett's hairstyle, which continues to this
day. Yet, now when Barrett wrestles, his hair goes bats*** crazy
Is there a chance Punk copied Barrett, and since Punk went on to
greater things, Wade lost his 'signature look'?
… Are we suggesting that the secret to leading the Nexus was hair gel? Really?
Actually that would explain why Edge and Booker T feuded over Shampoo, they both knew that Japanese Shampoo was the secret to gaining a loyal army of Ninja Footsoldiers. And why the Summer of Diesel happened, it wasn't the talent, it was that hair.
My god, the WWE is secretly run by hair care products! Vince McMahon is just a puppet of Estée Lauder! Oh my god!
… Wait, does this mean Cena is Avon?
(Oh, and I think Barrett's hair change was more that his gimmick changed, he went more rough and ready, less an in-control leader and more a fighter, whereas Punk became the leader. So it's a coincidence I think.)
Ronrey makes me do some leg work.
So many a times WWF/E did angles where wrestler "A" would throw wrestler "Bs" belt (or medals or personal item) into a body of water, namely Austin and Rock I.C. title....Did they ever throw REAL belts into these waters, are any of them still out there unrecovered? That would be a fantastic find..thanks.
I believe that the vast majority of the time, when the angle is pulled (if it's intentional…) that they go and get the belt afterwards, or toss something else in. I'm fairly sure WWE never threw away title belts like that.
As for when WWE has done it…
Austin, IC Title.
Rock, Smoking Skull Title.
Austin, Gold Medals/Angle, Steve Austin.
Edge/Lita, WWE Spinner Title.
Punk, Chavo Guerrero.
That's all of WWE tossing X into Y (outside of a Hardcore Holly/Al Snow match that went to a river, which doesn't really count) that I am aware of. Unless I've forgotten one. Readers?
(And there's plenty others that aren't WWE, I know. But he specified.)
… Oh come on, really? This is getting stupid.
Air Duct Pencil Violator is up next…
Ya got Air Duct Pencil Violator here. Got a question for ya.
I was wondering if you knew of any wrestling themed shows on Sirius XM
Radio. If you know of any, what channels and time slots are they on? I
read recently about Chris Jericho promoting his "Rock Of Jericho"
satellite show, and was wondering if there are any other wrestling
related broadcasts I can listen to while driving down the road.
Let's see here… Outlaw Country has one:
Hillbilly Jim's Moonshine Matinee
Saturdays 10 am - 2 pm ET
Rebroadcasts Sundays 2 pm - 6 pm ET
Former WWE superstar Hillbilly Jim and his good-for-nothing Cousin Spike have set up a white lightnin' still in Mudlick, KY, to serve up 200 proof country and southern-fried rock & roll every weekend. Tune in for tales from the top rope and the "Woods & Water Report" from Uncle Percy Mandoberg.
As does Fantasy Sports Radio:
First & Awesome with WWE Superstar The Miz
Wednesdays at 6 pm ET
The most must-listen-to radio show on the planet is back for hard-hitting fantasy football analysis and smack talk featuring the 2011 Celebrity Fantasy Football League Champion The Miz!
Sports Play By Play 92 has a wrestling show about Wrestling.
Monday, Wednesday, & Friday 2 pm - 4 pm ET
Join Dave LaGreca and Doug Mortman, to talk all about the world of professional wrestling. From the top stars of today, to the legends of the past, Busted Open hits you hard with the biggest names and news-makers in the business.
Apparently Jericho no longer does his show. Shows how long since that question got asked.
Patrick takes us to ECW.
Thanks for your contributions to the website, always look forward to reading your column. Just one question, one I've always wondered about. If you've answered it before, I apologize. Born to Be Wired main event, Sabu and Terry Funk, was the finish supposed to happen like that? It seems like it just….happened. And it looks so abrupt because it seems like they couldn't get apart from being so wrapped up in the barb wire. And Sabu also dropped the title right at the next PPV. Even the fans didn't know how to react, it seems. Any knowledge on this, sir? Thanks again.
Sort of. I know that the ending was botched, in the sense that they weren't meant to finish like that, but they just got so tangled up in the wires they had to end the match. That's why Funk kicks out the first time, he wants to keep going, but then he realises they are stuck and so he ends the match,
However, what the plans were, what the ending was supposed to be, I can't tell you. I believe Sabu was meant to win, but that's just an educated guess. All I know is that the ending was botched and the match was so gruesome and horrible that ECW never did another one.
My Damn Opinion
Rick has one more question.
Lastly, who do you think deserves a career retrospective DVD the most, that hasn't had one yet? I really would like to see one for Jerry Lawler, DDP and Rick Rude. Also I'm probably in the minority in this choice but I'd like to see a Shane McMahon DVD. He was really under appreciated as a wrestler, in my opinion.
A Shane-O-Mac DVD wouldn't be that bad, actually. It will never happen now, but hey, it wouldn't suck.
I am legally required to demand a Best of Victoria set here.
I demand a Best of Victoria set.
Kurt Angle doesn't technically qualify, as ‘It's True It's True' did come out on DVD, but that was in 2000, when he was still very new. But a Kurt Angle DVD set of his WWE work? Yes Please. Even without Benoit, Angle had so many superb matches, he has the TNA one, but a WWE produced one would be very nice, thank you.
Raven would be a fascinating one, starting with Scott Anthony, through Scotty Flamingo…
To Raven, in all his guises.
And all the Johnny Polo commentary you could get on a disc.
Other than that… Stevie Richards wouldn't sell but I'd love it, William Regal would be a great doco AND be filled with great matches, and Big Bossman might not suck, actually.
Wait, where the hell is a Million Dollar Man set? Why doesn't THAT exist yet? Come on WWE, step up!
Sam has some questions with no real thread between them.
Some random questions (cos thats how I roll obviously)
1) How does it work with who defers to who in a match. So obviously if you have a fresh newbie against a veteran than the veteran would call the shots from a respect point of view and experience. But when you get two guys who have similar experience and background (and neither are champion) - does one naturally take the lead or is there some etiquette
Well it's like most things in life, the who takes the lead is the leader type, the sort who is generally a leader in his life, the more dominant person between the two of them will be dominate, obviously. However, finding a point where two guys are exact equals is fairly rare, unless they are both new, in which case it's possible neither man takes control, but they go to a booker, or trainer, or even just someone more experienced for help. I've often been dragged into helping out some of the newer female wrestlers work out their matches, probably because I wrestle like a woman anyway so I'm experienced I'm just so respected and well-liked by everyone.
But if both wrestlers are dead even in terms of seniority, and they can't work together amicably, and they don't or can't go to someone else for help, the heel will generally call it, since he's the one who leads it most of the time anyway.
2) I understand why Linda McMahon wants to a be a senator and why Vince wants to be seen a legit high flyer without all that wrasslin business but surely they realise that they will always be associated with it and will never seen as credible winner no matter how much money is thrown
I've sat here for like 15 minutes trying to crowbar in the fact that Alexander wept because he heard how there were many more worlds out there, and he had not yet conquered one, and then include a parenthesis telling you to go look it up, but I just couldn't work out how to do it without being laughed at or looking stupid for overreaching and trying to be something I'm clearly not.
But then, now I know how Vince feels.
*sits back for a few minutes to relish in his smugness brilliance*
But honestly, I think that the drive that makes Vince want to conquer Hollywood and be a media mogul is the same drive that got him to where he is now, so expecting him to turn it off is silly. I do think he should strive to be the best he can be at what he clearly does well, sure, but I'm not Vince, and I do get why he has the drive.
I just wonder how many times he has to fail before he'll give up. Probably he'll keep trying till he shuffles off the mortal coil.
3) If Vince's non WWE ventures ever became really successful and started making WWE type money, do you think he would ever look to see WWE if someone came in with deep pockets?
Honestly, I think if someone came in and put a stupid amount of money on the table, like a Billion and a Half Dollars or something, he'd sell now. Hell, something deep down inside of him would LOVE the challenge of selling WWE and then he'd go and buy TNA or something and then take down his former creation, kill it himself, be the guy who both built and killed the WWE…
But sure, if Vince did become a media mogul, and someone did have extremely deep pockets, he'd sell. If someone had Marianas Trench level pockets, he'd sell tomorrow.
4) Being a Brit, I'm keen to seeing a first WWE british champion - do you think it will happen to Wade Barratt in 2013?
Hmm. I don't know. I think he might well win Money In The Bank in 2013, but the thing is, the WWE title is pretty much solidly booked until WM, where Cena beats Rock for it, and so you're either seeing Barrett beat Cena (which is technically possible) or you look at whoever takes the belt off Big Show, which I'm suspecting is either Sheamus or Orton, again at Wrestlemania. But then, Big Gold is going to Dolph after WM, so…
WWE Title, off Cena, at Money In The Bank 2013. I'll call it now, and then if it happens there and then, I expect a parade and/or Tara at my doorstep.
And some questions about you
Oh, I don't like to talk about myself.
*Chandler blows up*
4) Do any of your opponents or people you work in the industry - know you do this column and if so do they have a reaction to
Tends to be more fans, actually. It's the guy coming up to me after a show who mentions it, or the occasional catcall during a match, or even the wrestling fan who ends up working with me in their line of work who puts 2 and 2 together.
That said, I know several actual proper wrestlers who have referenced stuff I've written in here, be it agreeing with me that they'll make it overseas or asking me what the hell is the deal with Matthew Perry or what have you. It's yet to cause a major beating or anything, no-one has, as yet, told me off for doing this.
Of course, having said that, I now expect such a reaction to come down upon me in jest…
5) Who would you say the most famous wrestler you've worked with? (and please don't ask me to define famous :))
Easy, Sonjay Dutt. Wrestled him the night after I lost the AWF Australisian Heavyweight Title to Iron Ben Coles. Had a damn good match with him too. I'd had plenty of interaction with ‘famous' wrestlers backstage and such, but Dutt's the biggest name I've worked with.
And on yet another self-aggrandizing note, I bid you goodnight for now, and I'll see you back here next week. Unless I'm torn apart by angry wrestlers who only just now realised who I am.