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Ask 411 Wrestling 04.09.14: Changing Booking, NWA Splitting, More!
Posted by Mathew Sforcina on 04.09.2014



Hello, and welcome to the only column now irrationally hoping for a Bryan/Shield V HHH/Kane/DAVE/Orton Wargames match for Extreme Rules, Ask 411 Wrestling! I am your host, Mathew Sforcina, and I'm really wishing I had committed to the gimmick in the roundtable. Sure, I'd be laughed at for picking DAVE in the main event, but picking Brock would have made me look like a GENIUS.

Anyway, for reasons totally unrelated to Wrestlemania (which I didn't get to watch, alas) this will be a Total Opinion Week, in that a few questions I'll be guessing at the answers so might as well be up front about it.

Got a question? Ask411wrestling@gmail.com is where you should send it.

In this new, scary, Post-Streak world, BANNER is still here for you.



Zeldas!



Check out my Drabble blog, 1/10 of a Picture! I just posted one called ‘Streak Breaking'. Guess what it's about? Plus Saturday's one was pretty good, if I do say so myself.

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Ax: Ah right, forgot him. My bad. But you can strike Miz out now.

Heels Winning Clean: I don't consider a heel's manager interfering as non-clean, for a heel. But if you insist on totally clean, then I guess Jericho V Edge at 26 fights HHH/Booker at 19 for the crown.

Working Snug: A step below working stiff, working snug is where shots are connecting, but in a safe fashion. Lawler's punches, for instance, are snug.

Hogan V Austin: I'm not trying to disparage either guy. I'm just saying that if wrestlers really don't want to do a match, forcing the issue can lead to problems. At the time, the two couldn't see eye to eye. Forcing them probably would have been all right, but why risk it?

Running Times: I appreciate the assistance, but the question… Look I'll post it here. Katamari Damacy asks…

Hi Sforcina, great job as always, I unfortunately have a stat based research question for you.
Due to your backlog by the time you get to this question, WMXXX may have already happened, which will make this list complete.

What the average time spent on in-ring action per Wrestlemania?
Non-in-ring action would be things like pointless skits, elaborate entrances, celebrity cameos, video packages, and other things that aren't in-ring action.
If you could also separate the time spent on Elaborate Entrances and Video Packages, then we'd be able to filter how much actual non-wrestling related BS occurs at Wrestlemania.
Would it be possible to do WM 1-10, then WM 11-20, then WM 21-30? I would like to know if time spent on in-ring action has increased or decreased over the years or if the averages change through the eras.


So I kinda want actual running times. Match lengths I can get off historyofwwe.com, but without hard running times, the ratios are off.

But hey, anyone with the network, just click play on each WM and tell me the running time. We can work this one out together! Brand new segment maybe, "Crowdsourcing Answers".

Or not.

Ultimate Summerslam: Well this was popular. And by that I mean a couple people liked it and no-one hated it. So it's a go.

Thing is, Summerslam's not nearly as neat as WM. WM has the regular beats, the title match, the streak, the celeb match. Summerslam is a little more all over the place. So, first step, what should the order be? There's just under 8 matches per show on average so…

Opener
Tag Match
High Flying
Technical
Non Match Segment
Grudge
Legends
Divas
Main
MITB?

How's that for an order? What matches should there be in this Ultimate Summerslam?

The Trivia Crown



What am I? I'm a Wrestlemania with two gimmick matches. Multiple matches featured managers, although no-one with a manager managed to win their match. No tag titles were defended, although the guys who held the belts did wrestle. I had a women's match, the Streak was on the line, two titles changed hands, and at least one WCW Champion watched the show. Oh, and I was cross marketed with something horrible. What am I?

Matias had it mostly on the ball.

I'm a Wrestlemania with two gimmick matches- Money in the Bank and Sumo match
Multiple matches featured managers, although no-one with a manager managed to win their
match- Christian with Tomko lose in MITB, Christy Hemme with Lita lose to Trish, Randy Orton with Bob Orton lose to Taker and Triple H with Flair lose to Batista

No tag titles were defended, although the guys who held the belts did wrestle- Rey Mysterio vs Eddie Guerrero

I had a women's match- Trish Stratus defending the Women's title against Christy Hemme
the Streak was on the line- The Undertaker vs Randy Orton
Two titles changed hands- New WWE Champion John Cena and new World Heavyweight Champion Batista
and at least one WCW Champion watched the show- David Arquette
Oh, and I was cross marketed with something horrible- The parody movie trailers?
What am I? WRESTLEMANIA 21


No-one seemed to get that last one. I was referring to the horrible Wrestlemania 21 game for Xbox.

Maravilloso is back again with this week's question.

I am an active wrestler. I won something that can remind some people of certain body part. I was trained by someone who had, at one time, a gimmick named in honor of a legendary Hall of Famer. The first time I wrestled for the company I'm working for right now, I used a name that in English is a disease (or a group of stars) and in its original language an animal. He defeated a former WCW star for his first singles title. I may have a strong feeling for someone who, even if it was in a very different circumstance, earned an opportunity somewhat similar to mine and a notoriously grumpy wrestler would like me very much. Who am I?

Getting Down To Business/One Man's (Important) Opinion



Nelson starts us off with the HOF. Yay…

Hey Mathew,
Welcome back. Two questions:

1. Why is Scott Hall being inducted into the HOF as Razor Ramon? Is it due to the negative image people associate with Hall, as opposed to his character, Razor?


The given reason, according to the scuttlebutt, is that they intend to induct the nWo at a later point (presumably just the base Hulk/Scott/Kevin trio) and so by inducting Razor they can give him this one and then induct Scott Hall as part of the group later. I suspect next year ‘Diesel' gets inducted and then one or two years after that the nWo gets in.

2. What the hell is going on with Evan Bourne? Why hasn't he been released yet?

Because they haven't decided if they want to fire him yet or not.

See, he's been good to go for a while now, since the start of the year at least. And he's done one or two NXT shows, but he is just sitting at home, waiting to get called into work.

And I can see both points of view here. I mean, on one hand, he's one strike away from firing territory, he never really got hugely over with the fans, and they have replacements either hanging around Main Event or NXT. But on the other hand, he is good at getting the crap kicked out of him, he does have something of a name and WWE appears to be heading to "Awesome Wrestlers on every level" so why not keep him around?

Hell, WWE Creative, you can have this for free: Have Colter bring in Bourne as Swagger's new partner (American Eagles? Soaring Freedoms? Pot Smokers Anonymous?) to combat Cesaro/Brock, so we get a tag match and have Brock beating on Bourne for 15 minutes. That would be good.

I has another HOF question, albeit one I can't answer, but perhaps you guys can…

Hi
Great column. Seriously I love it. Did you watch the WWE Hall of Fame this year? DDP mentioned Macho Man and I swear they sort of showed a profile shot of hunter and steph reacting, but I missed it. Were the clapping like everyone else? Just wondering... Thanks so much.


No, I don't have the network yet, so I didn't see the HOF. And no-one's uploaded it, so yeah. Readers? Did they clap? Look angry? Do anything to give that damn rumor more legs?

Tony talks The Streak, but not the obvious question you might be expecting.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought I read a rumor somewhere that CM Punk was originally planned to go over at WrestleMania 29 against Undertaker before Paul Bearer's death. After what happened at WrestleMania 30, is it possible CM Punk would have ended The Streak if Bearer didn't pass away during WrestleMania season?

There was rumors stating that Taker had ‘agreed' to lose to Punk at 29. The supposed logic was that Taker didn't want to retire undefeated, and that he felt that the streak should be broken by someone with a future and what have you, the standard thinking about breaking the streak.

(And remember, Brock is 36, which is only 4 years older than Bryan so he does count as "future"…)

But then, there were also rumors that Taker/Brock was meant to happen last year, but Taker got cold feet and chose Punk instead.

So, did Paul Bearer's death cause the booking to be changed? I think it certainly played a part, but the thing is, everything we've heard about Taker and The Streak, assuming it hasn't been put out deliberately by WWE to muddy the waters, has been that it's been an ongoing negotiation between Vince and Taker. The two men have talked, or at least Taker has talked to creative and vice versa, and they've worked together to decide if Taker was able to work and who and what and what have you. So probably at one point, Punk winning may well have been on the cards, and then obviously it was decided against later on. Was Bearer's death a factor in the decision? Quite possibly, it does make sense that you'd put over Taker to avenge Bearer's spirit. But I'm not sure it was the sole reason. Certainly if Punk had gotten screwed out of the Streak due to that, he'd have ranted about it. It's one thing for the booking to, after consideration, be changed due to a variety of factors. Another to lose out on immortality due to death.

… That came out wrong.

Mat has another WM question, this one about 27.

Hi Mat
Wrestlemania season means people talking about promos they loved. I agree with the consensus, generally.
But...... The Miz's video promo at 27. I've just never got what's so good about - but everyone else seemed to love it then, and still do now.
What am I missing? Help me!!
Thanks




Well, it's not nearly as popular as it was at the time, since most everyone has jumped off the Miz train. And like anything, not liking it isn't a bad thing, you're within your rights to not like it.

However, I do still like it. As for why, I think it's a perfect couple of minutes to show the Evolution of Miz from Reality ‘Star' to WWE Champion. His path to the top was unusual, in that his ‘dues' were paid on air. He didn't trawl the Indies and work his way up, he came in via reality TV as a joke, and had his balls busted from day one by both the fans and those in the back. But, to his credit, he stuck to it and worked damn hard, and through Miz and Morrison to ShowMiz to Triple Champion to MITB to WWE Champion.

It's sort of the inverse of Bryan's rise, in that where Bryan was the great wrestler who learned charisma on his way up, Miz was the charismatic guy who leaned wrestling (we believed at the time) on his way up. And the video was a good way to do that, with his evolution crossed with the WWE Title's evolution, and then a damn good choice for music and the stellar work as usual by the production team.

But again, since Miz has fallen severely out of the limelight since then, it's lost some of its lustre, sure. But for the time, it was damn good.

Mike R gets us well away from WM. Huzzah.


I remember (probably from one of the Flair/Steamboat 2/3 falls matches, but maybe from others too) announcers talking about how title matches, or at least World Title matches, in the past were always two out of three falls. Just wondering the history of that: is it accurate, and if so, when did it stop?


Yeah, two out of three falls used to be the standard, back in the very early days, like pre-kayfabe days, when the matches were shoots. Since it was ‘proper' wrestling, 2 out of 3 falls was traditional rules.

Then in the decades after they began to move from sports to sports-entertainment, they moved to it being just 2 out of 3 in title matches. The logic was that anyone can get lucky and get one fall on anyone any time. To get two proves you're talented and that you're better than the other guy, and thus you earn the championship. You can't luck your way to it.

That actually was part of the history of the WWWF breaking away from the NWA in 63, actually. NWA World Champ Buddy Rodgers dropped the belt to Lou Thesz in a one fall match, and WWWF didn't recognize the change since it wasn't a 2/3 falls match, so Rodgers was the WWWF champion. Plus he won a tournament so he was double championship material!

As for when did it stop, depends on the region. English wrestling had it through to the 70's and 80's, with Brian Crabtree, the long running MC, having the catchphrase of "Two falls, two submissions or a knockout to decide the winner."



The result: God exists by two falls to a submission, by the way.

In Mexico it's still fairly common today. But in the US, the gimmick was still being used throughout the 70's, but less for title matches and more for feuds and stuff. By the 70's one fall title matches were the rule, rather than the exception. They still occurred on occasion, but it was the 70's that killed it as the norm.

Hey, Mat. Two questions about the NWA during the period in the 80s when Jim Crockett Promotions first essentially went national and JCP/WCW became synonymous with "NWA."

1) To what extent was Flair still touring as champ to the other territories at this time? When did the touring champ thing effectively stop (I'm sure it was long before WCW and the NWA officially parted ways in 1993)?


Flair was very much touring the NWA during the 70's, as Crockett wanted him over everywhere else, to get him exposure in all the NWA territories and thus when he pushed for Flair to get the title it was an easier sell to the board. Up to winning the title for the first time in 81, Flair was touring the NWA extensively.

During Flair's runs in the early 80's, he did indeed travel around. He would wrestle in WCCW about once a month on average, although it tended to be in close groupings of 2-3 shows every few months. Maple Leaf Wrestling too would see Flair fairly often, through the early 80's, up to about 85, Flair would still travel around the territories, not nearly as much as the other companies would like, but he did travel. 81, 82 he travelled a lot, then they began to become less and less frequent.

85 was when he pretty much stopped, as the NWA was falling apart somewhat, and Crockett merged with Georgia Championship Wrestling and WCW, as it would eventually become, was born. And while Flair was still nominally a touring champion (he'd appear here and there), he was pretty much solely Crockett at that point.

2) Was there much negative reaction by the other NWA members to Crockett basically becoming the NWA for most intents and purposes? I know my own bias if I were an NWA promoter in the 80s would be that the NWA as a whole body should get national tv time and broadcast angles and matches from a variety of regions, rather than just one. Sure, they had to compete with the WWF, but is it really a "we" thing when it's Crockett/Turner who is getting all the exposure and money?

Thanks,


There's a book to be written for the breakdown of the NWA, because Vince gets all the credit for killing the territories, but they did have their own self inflicted injuries too.

In 84, there was a civil war of sorts brewing in the NWA, between the southern power block (Crockett in Mid-Atlantic, Eddie Graham in Florida, Jim Barnett in Georgia) and the other hot territories (World Class, Mid South, Stampede, Portland). Flair was a Crockett guy, and before him, Dusty was Graham. In order for the companies outside of that group (Georgia being national now on the Superstation) to survive, they needed the next champ to be one of their guys, to break the grip Crockett had on the champ. Before Dusty/Flair, the champs like Race, The Funks, they were heartland guys, and while they worked in the South, sometimes a lot, they still toured. While Dusty and Flair did travel, they were focused on the South, working the dates the South wanted, and then others if they could. (Stampede pretty much lost all access to the Champ at this point).

In late 83, Von Erich, Watts, Geigel and Owen, among others, began to push for someone not in Crockett et al's pocket. Race was very much a peacemaker, and got the belt for a few months, but only because Crockett was building to Flair getting the belt back at Starrcade. They eventually decided, the story goes, on David Von Erich. That didn't happen, obviously.

But yeah, the other companies did see the problem of having the NWA end up as just the one company. But with WWF breathing down their neck, it ended up not mattering. The small companies sold or died or merged, and a few tried their luck going solo (World Class, UWF) like Crockett. Crockett was just the one that lasted the longest. By the time Crockett was directly facing off with Vince (and the AWA), anyone who could stand up to him had left already.

Peter has a follow up to a Who Am I from a few weeks back.

Hi Massive Q,

In the Who Am I from two weeks ago (for which the answer was The Undertaker), one of the clues was "helped a bad vaudeville routine be attempted (and on one occasion a genuinely funny show opening)". What moments are these referring to?


The vaudeville routine in question is "Who's On First", a classic comedy routine about baseball players with silly nicknames made famous by Abbott and Costello.



I've actually converted that to wrestling ("Who's The World Champ") a while back. No real reason. Just sitting there on my hard drive.

I do odd things sometimes.

Anyway, for those of you who visit Wrestlecrap a lot, you'll remember Who, a.k.a Jim Neidhart under a silly mask. He wrestled as Who so that the commentary team could riff on the Who jokes. And at one point, he wrestled The Undertaker.

As for the PPV opening, that would be 2002 No Mercy. In the weeks leading up to this first bit of the video, Undertaker on Smackdown has had to deal with Brock Lesnar breaking his hand, while Kane has dealt with HHH on Raw revealing the Katie Vick thing.



So let's burn through the rest of the Wrestlemania stuff, shall we?









And one to go on.



Martin asks a really easy question!

Who was the last person to get a pin on the Taker? I know he has been on the losing side in tag matches recently (well last year), but who was the last person to actually pin him? Was it Y2J at the Elimination Chamber before WM26?

Why, that would be Brock Lesnar just a few days ago!

*1/4 Chandler*

But ok, this was sent before that, so let's check the sources.

The 6 man tag against The Shield in England (the one with Sweet Helicopter Arrival for the Shield) saw them pin Daniel Bryan.

Before that… Your winner is Kane, Hell In A Cell 2010 for the World Heavyweight Title in a, shockingly enough, Hell In A Cell match. Kane pinned Taker after Paul Bearer turned on him and then Kane chokeslammed his half-brother.

And now, Jed Shaffer ladies and gentlemen!

*'Applause' sign lights up.*

Howdy, sir. Cool to be back in print on 411 (wonder how many people reading will remember me being here once upon a time.) Got a pair of questions of you.

1) Has there ever been any reveal as to where the "mysterious benefactor" angle with DDP was going before it got dropped? I could swear I remember some hinting that it may have been Ted DiBiase (possibly as a lure to bring DDP into the New World Order), but beyond that vague memory that may be my imagination, that's all I have.


See, Jed and I go back a ways, so I can say this and he knows I don't mean a syllable of it: I hate you, Shaffer, you Cheese-in-a-can-sniffing, Bison-riding Booking Perfectionist. I know I rag on counting questions a lot, but at least those I can get a definitive, factual answer. This sort of stuff I have to rely on third and fourth hand scuttlebutt and I can never answer with anything resembling authority. But I'll give it the old college try.



Or, alternatively, I can find out that this got answered in an old edition of Ask 411 from before my time and I can cut and paste. My Google-Fu scares even me sometimes.

Anyway, from Newton Gimmick, by way of Gavin Napier

It was on a Saturday Night program where DDP got into the mysterious limo of the benefactor. They made a lot of fuss about it all over TV, but never said who it was. A few weeks later, they clearly mentioned that it comes to find out the benefactor was Kim, and that she was upset about losing DDP, (Rightfully so after getting passed around to Mero and then the Booty Man) and decided she'd go back to Page. Page had fallen on hard times and had seen the light and promised to treat her better, and not put her up for anymore "Date" matches versus Dave Sullivan and the like. DDP came back fresh and renewed and won Battle Bowl and all that jazz. The rest is history. Anyway at some point they did in fact reveal it was Kimberly, though it wasn't a big hoopla, as that angle had been set aside for a while due to everything else that was going on. But as someone who was really digging WCW around this time, I'll totally go to bat for WCW actually revealing this one, and paying the angle off, even if it wasn't as big as they could have made it.

That does agree with a couple other sources I found, so yeah, I guess this is WCW's "Who Rose The Briefcase" angle, in that they explained it on air but no-one noticed and now everyone thinks it was unanswered…

2) WWF's purchase of WCW popped up rather suddenly, given Fusient was trying to purchase them not a week before. At the time, WWF was ramping up to Wrestlemania, and were somewhat decent with what seemed like long-range plans. Assuming there was a long-term plan at the time, has there been any hint as to what directions WWE would have gone in if WCW hadn't been purchased? Again, could swear I've heard the major angle was The Two-Man Power Trip for a long time, until they broke up with Trips going face, building to WM18 being Austin/Trips, but that could be my imagination. Or it could be me confusing the supposed-but-never-confirmed plan for the Invasion prior to Trips' injury.

Yeah, the major angle was going to be Two Man Power Trip EXPLODES!!1!!~+, but there's a question about timing.

Some people claim that Austin would turn on HHH at Fully Loaded, and lead to Heel Austin V Face Hunter at Summerslam as the big match. Others think that he'd turn face and beat Austin at Unforgiven, like Angle did. And yet others think it would get stretched out to 2002, and HHH would win the Rumble and then he'd turn face and they'd work WM.

I suspect it was going to be sooner rather than later simply because they had the miscommunication happening right as Hunter tore his quad. Austin cost HHH the IC title due to steel chair at Judgment Day, next night HHH costs them the tag belts with the sledge. I don't see them dragging that out till WM.

But the thing is, the original plan, in the week or so between buying WCW and Wrestlemania, wouldn't have changed because the idea was always that WCW was going to be its own separate company. It wasn't until later, when they couldn't get WCW a slot, that they then went with the InVasion as we saw it.

So, the plan almost certainly was for the Two Man Power Trip to run until the blow up and big showdown at WM the following year, but then it got sped up due to Summer being turned over to the InVasion. But I have nothing beyond logic, guesswork and scuttlebutt on that one.

James has two questions.

Mathew... sorry about your pinkie. Thanks for answering my questions and I always look forward to your work. Sadly, it always leads to more questions...

1. Will Kane be in the Hall of Fame?


Thanks, the finger is better now. And yes, Kane will be in the Hall of Fame, barring any unforseen crimes or blow ups with the McMahons. Kane has been around for so long and done so much and reinvented himself enough times that he's a shoe in. Again, assuming he doesn't piss the McMahons off for some reason.

2. Could Stephanie make a better Mr. McMahon type character than Triple H?

That's actually a difficult question to answer.

There is a school of thought that says that women can't be effective authority figures because fans don't take them seriously, but apart from the inherent sexism involved in that, given that the target audience is no longer 18-34 males but 5-12 boys and girls, a female authority figure is fine.

But, for all her talent at pissing people off, which she does have, and the continued ‘Does she deserve her position' question that helps give heel authority figures more heat since they don't deserve their power, for all the reasons why she could be a better Mr. McMahon than HHH from a talent perspective, there's one major problem.

She's a woman.



Wait wait, that's not a sexist remark! Honest!

The thing is, as a woman, faces can't get revenge on her physically. A major component on why Austin/Vince worked, and while Bryan/Hunter is going so well right now, is that Austin got to stun the boss. That Bryan got to knee The Authority's face off. Wrestling is built on two guys who don't like each other, and the ring to settle it, but the mortar holding it together is the fighting. Wrestling is a violent form of entertainment. No more than movies or video games, they can be much worse, but wrestling still has inherent violence.

Stephanie cannot be touched, there are too many legal restrictions for ratings for Bryan to Knee Plus her nose off. Roman Reigns will not be spearing her any time soon. (At least not in the traditional sense.) And with the lack of the endgame of violent interaction, you're left with humiliation which is either uncomfortable or unsatisfying, or worse still will get women's groups on your case about sexist attitudes to women.

So while she may or may not have more raw talent at being Mr. McMahon than HHH, the fact that you'll never see Bryan V Steph in a match means she can't be a better Mr. McMahon.

Tom has another interesting question, this one about dirty words.

Yo Mathew

I also seem to recall somebody saying that it's easier to get over when you're allowed to curse, be a badass and so on. I think it might've been Flair on one of the Legends of Wrestling roundtables, and I sort of agree. Do you think Steve Austin would've become a superstar if he'd started in the PG era?

All the best,


Superstar yes, mega-ultra-giant-super-duper-star, no. And not just because of the lack of being able to flip the bird, although that's part of it.

Austin was, and still is, a talented son of a bitch. Guy can talk, he got the business, and before the neck injury turned him into punch-kick-finisher Austin, he could GO. So provided he got a push, he'd always get over, always become a star.

But his rise was very situational. Being able to curse and be a bastard was meant to make him a bad guy, which today he'd be, but the fans loved him, and then just as he began to rise to the top, Montreal happened. And that gave birth to Mr. McMahon. And while the drinking and the swearing helped his persona, at the heart, it was still blue collar stiff V white collar boss. And that, at the time, was the zeitgeist. Being able to kick your bosses ass? For the young male audience they were targeting, that was nirvana. The fact that Vince deserved it, plus there were boobs to look at, all helped make the Attitude Era and Austin as its centrepiece a superstar.

But without that angle, that feud? Austin might get to a Cena level, or at least Orton since he'd probably be a heel, he'd be one of the biggest stars in Wrestling, but like Cena, if he cameoed on SNL he'd go totally unnoticed like Cena. Talent and ability is all well and good and will probably ensure you become a star, but to break through to the ultra-star level, you need luck for that too…

Andron asks about the Ryback push.

Just been thinking what do you think went wrong with the Ryback Project relaunch? I recall seeing something on him saying that he was going to make a face turn, and was supposed to take on Brock Lesnar at WM. But it's like they broke him off from Curtis just to realign him back with Curtis Axel. Do you think a push attempt for Ryback would be something like Batista's recent failed attempt for a face run? or is wwe still vex at ryback for that error with big show?

The Ryback thing is one of those situations where we don't really know the full story, we just see the effects. Big Show wasn't the problem, supposedly his match at Wrestlemania with Henry was the clincher, so they turned him heel and then it all went downhill from there. Supposedly. Most of the depushing and chaos is about his backstage attitude being poor, according to the rumors. Now, you can see why that might happen, or you may not, the fact is that the audience doesn't see that, they don't know he's got a bad attitude backstage, they just see the on air product, and that has been disjointed, confusing and bad for his future chances.

That said, could he be pushed again? Sure, you can always try again. And certainly if you were to have him come in and attack Cesaro in Revenge of the Heyman Guys or The Authority as he finally sees what The Shield were trying to do, he'd get some positive heat by association.

Almost no-one is ever truly lost. No matter how stale or boring, one good match, one good promo, one good storyline, one gimmick change, whatever it takes, it can be turned around. That's the beauty of wrestling.

Mark finishes us off with a few nice list based questions.

I was recently watching some old Flair matches and I started thinking about his widely acknowledged classics. Steamboat, Funk, Sting, etc. Then I started thinking about all my personal favorites which, while not underrated, are overlooked. For instance, I think his title vs title match with Rick Martel is just fantastic. I enjoy that match every bit as much as his other classics. Anyway, I was wondering if you could list your top 10 favorite overlooked matches? The criteria is all yours with the caveat that the match can't have been included on a DVD compilation release.

Damn. I know I'm going to forget stuff. But off the top of my head, matches I really like, in no order…

Feb 7th, 2000. Raw. Triple H, X-Pac, Chris Benoit, Perry Saturn, & Dean Malenko vs. the Rock, Cactus Jack, Too Cool, & Rikishi
April 10th, 2000. Raw. Triple H defends against Taka Michinoku.
April 11th, 1999. Spring Stampede. Blitzkrieg v Juventud Guerrera.
January 28th, 2007. Royal Rumble. Cena defends against Umaga.
March 14th, 2004. Wrestlemania. Jericho V Christian.
July 18th, 1999. Heatwave. Taz defends against Tajiri.
June 19, 1994. King of the Ring. Owen Hart V The 123 Kid.
April 2, 2006. Wrestlemania. Shawn Michaels V Vince McMahon
October 20, 2002. No Mercy. Angle/Benoit V Edge/Mysterio
November 17th, 2002. Survivor Series 02. Trish defends against Victoria.

Let's say WWE opens up their library to a new DVD on demand service. The way it works is you can choose any superstar in history and WWE will produce 2 discs of their greatest matches or matches of your choice (excluded are matches from other DVD compilations). You are given 10 free choices. Which wrestlers would comprise your top 10 career retrospective DVD choices?

Again, in no real order. And cheating slightly with the rivalries/teams ones. If you don't want them, just take the first name listed.

Victoria
William Regal
Kurt Angle
Raven V Dreamer
Bob Backlund
Shane McMahon
Arn Anderson
Tully Blanchard
The Midnight Express V The Rock n Roll Express
The Shield

I don't want to harp on the death of WCW, but I still think the Starrcade 97 fiasco helped create the opening for WWE crawl back in the game and started the slide WCW would never recover from creatively. If I had a time machine and could assume an identity, I'd go back in time, be Eric Bischoff and play hardball with Hogan. I'd assure him he's still the top heel, but that Sting is going over clean. With a time machine, the ability to assume an identity, and absolute power in mind, give me your top 10 moments in wrestling history you wish you could change...and no preventing deaths...keep it light and stuff from the show.

Yet again, in no real order…

Starrcade 97. Sting goes over clean in 3 minutes without selling a single thing.
Thunder April 25 2000. DDP keeps title. Screw David Arquette.
King of the Ring 01. DDP and Taker have proper match, DDP wins.
King of the Ring 99. Put Road Dogg over X-Pac into final.
King of the Ring 99. Put Road Dogg over Gunn in the final.
Wrestlemania 9. Yoko wins belt, Goodnight folks!
Wrestlemania 19. Booker T beats Triple H.
Extreme Rules 2012. Brock destroys Cena.
Summerslam 1996. Vader squishes HBK.
Any time Victoria is backstage getting changed
AWF PsychoticSlam 2010. Make Iron Jay's title win off me 100% clean.

And on that self serving pick, I bid you all good day for now. Assuming you're able to have one after Wrestlemania…





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