Omega/Ishii


Scott, 

You should probably just go ahead and watch/rant on last night's Omega/Ishii match from the G-1, because sweet merciful crap, it's the next great match that everyone is going to be on about. 

Dude, do you know how many Coliseum Videos I have to review as it is?  They put MOTHERFUCKING DEMOLITION up on there!  Plus the Bulldogs video, multiple Randy Savage tapes, the Shawn Michaels tape with the Action Zone tag match…how can I possibly have time to fall down the G1 rabbit hole as well?  I'm only one man!  Incredibly talented and eminently humble, sure, but still only one.  

Asuka Express


As we approach the 25th anniversary of SummerSlam 93, is it safe to say that Lex Luger is no longer the Superstar with 'Biggest Push with no Title at the end'?

Luger's run only began on 4 July. SummerSlam was in August, and he still won by countout.

Asuka, on the other hand, had her two-and-a-half-year (!) Undefeated Streak. She was the 'Empress of Tomorrow'. She got pushed harder than anyone in WWE not called 'Roman Reigns'. She won the First Ever Women's Royal Rumble. She got to beat the RAW Women's Champion(Alexa Bliss) less than a week before WrestleMania! She squashed everyone from Nia Jax to Charlotte to Ember Moon to…

And then Mania comes. And she loses clean by submission! When Carmella cashed in her MITB, and won the belt right after Mania, it seemed easy money that Asuka was getting the belt sooner rather than later. But shots at Carmella had her coming away empty-handed. And now, the 'Empress of Tomorrow' isn't even on the SummerSlam card!

(Don't get me wrong, I still think she'll get one of the Women's belts in the next year, but that Monster Jebus Push sure crashed and burned.)

Don't forget how they had to book the Mixed Match Challenge around her because they couldn't beat her there, either.  
You know, the irony of the whole thing is that they never wanted her on the main roster in the first place.  When she initially signed with NXT years ago, Meltzer was talking about how they explicitly brought her in to elevate the work of the crop of women in the system at that time, and work towards becoming a trainer.  She wasn't even supposed to be NXT champion!  And then she took off with the fanbase and kind of forced their hand.
For me, the really weird thing is that she was not a failure on the main roster at all.  This wasn't a Lex or Roman situation where they pushed her hard and there was backlash.  Or a Bayley situation where she was booked wrong and no one understood the character.  They pushed her hard as a badass, and fans completely bought it and were waiting patiently for her to win the title.   And then Vince changed his mind and now she's done.  It's incredibly mystifying.  

In a marginally better world…


Scott:


Suppose Grand Dragon Bollea's sex tape never surfaced and WWE never severed their relationship with him. Do you think we might have seen the "one more match, brother" that he'd been campaigning for by now? Obviously a singles match has been out of the question for some time, but might limited involvement in some sort of feel-good tag match have served as an adequate sendoff? (i.e., Hogan hits a big boot then invites his partner–Cena/Bryan/Rollins/whoever–to drop the leg, or something along those lines.)

I thought that's where they were going with the Kane injury at whatever the last PPV was, to be honest.  Although they can't ever top the Edge team so I don't know why they'd bother trying. 

Shane Douglas

Settle a bet for me and a friend: was Shane Douglas a "small name, big ego" type egotist who thought, because he was such a big shot in ECW, that he should have been a big deal in WCW and the WWF? Or was he, once upon a time, truly a bright rising star who's chance at making it big got snuffed out due to backstage politics and who spent his days in ECW never shutting up about it, rather than enjoying/being content with being the big fish in the small pond? 

Also, why didn't he blame Jim Cornette for his lot in life over Rick Flair? The whole Dynamic Dudes/Midnight Express feud and Dynamic Dudes in general seemed to have done more damage to his long term prospects than any slight, real or imaginary that Flair might have done.

Shane was a good worker and a good talker, but he grossly overestimates his own potential worth to the business.  His ceiling was probably around where he was in 93 WCW:  Half of a tag team championship team who was a believable threat as a single.  With all the injuries, it was kind of a miracle that Paul Heyman got him over as much as he did. 

Flair/Rude feud of ’93

When Ric Flair came back to WCW in 1993, he quickly won the NWA Heavyweight title only to drop it 2 months later to Rick Rude.   

How did they like working with each other?  Did Flair have a problem dropping the belt so soon?  Did the NWA want Flair to be champion longer, and that is why they ended their relationship with the belt and WCW?

Also the feud seemingly ended with a DQ at Halloween Havoc and then it was dropped.  Was there supposed to be more?

The NWA definitely had a problem with WCW changing the title so soon, and it was one of the biggest reasons behind their relationship falling apart like it did.  Although the original match for Starrcade 93 was Nasty Boys v. Flair & Steamboat for the tag titles, so clearly they were done with the Rude program. Really, the entire promotion was a huge mess at that point anyway. 

house shows


hi scott,

with all the gobs of money from TV, saudi's and network i had a question about house shows. 

are these big money makers? are they necessary in this day or like are they just a bone to throw to smaller towns to keep interest up?

do you see them cutting down on shows why or why not? 

thanks

Basically the entire purpose of the house shows now are twofold:
1.  Teach newer guys how to work and give experienced guys a chance to practice upcoming PPV matches.
2.  Put some extra money in pockets with merch sales.
From a financial standpoint, they can now eliminate them completely and not miss a beat.  They don't lose money, but it's one of the least important pieces of their business now, by a wide margin.

Paul Heyman


Hi Scott, I have been seeing Heyman helping alot lately with Talent. He was at NXT helping with promos, which I am all for. I also heard he has been doing some writing for RAW. Do you think the ice is starting to melt between Paul and the McMahons? Are they easing him back into a full time role? It makes sense, the man is good at his craft as long ad he does not burnout.


This leads to another question. Why not use Jake Roberts for promos in NXT or the main roster? The man can cut a promo and with limited skills in the ring, could tell a story. I know Lawler is dealing with stuff, and I hope and wish him the best, but he is great on the mic as well and could tell a story. Wrestlers with a limited moveset i.e. Elias could use either. 

Heyman has a lot of other irons in the fire and I don't think he has any particular interest in coming back full time.  Plus he is Brock's legit business manager so if Brock goes back to UFC on a full-time basis, that's where Paul would need to be.  And from what Meltzer has said, there's zero chance that Stephanie is going to live and let live with Heyman.  
And there's lots of people that they COULD use to train and agent, but instead we get Billy Kidman and Road Dogg teaching people to be top stars.  That's the world we live in now. 

AJW article plug

Hey Scott, 

Think I've been reading your stuff for 15 years now which makes me really old, thanks for all the good work and long may it continue.


I did an article for my friends website on All Japan Women's Pro-Wrestling and reviewed a few matches from Manami Toyota and Bull Nakano.

Abso-smurfly, best of luck!

Music Follow-Up


Hey Scott–


A little while ago, you gave a reader a great crash-course about how licensed music works on WWE broadcasts, and why most of it has been eliminated on the Network.

Do you have any idea what the deal is with music they produced in-house? I'm working my way through old SummerSlams, and Rick Rude's original music has been completely scrubbed. Wasn't that tune created by Jim Johnson (I think that was old boy's name)?

There have been times Demolition's song has been scrubbed, "Jive Soul Bro", the Bossman's theme, Koko's "Bird Bird Bird"… is there a reason beyond "Vince gonna Vince"? He can't possibly be paying that close attention to old footage on the Network, can he…?

No, I've talked to actual lawyers about this and they can't figure out the exact reasoning behind the choices, either.  Basically there's a lot of moving parts in play that affect what music can be played and how:
1.  Who wrote the song
2.  Who currently owns the rights
3.  What show it was on.
4.  What media you're watching the show on (DVD v. streaming)
5.  Who produced the masters (WWE v. Coliseum Video)
6.  What service digitized the show (WWE 24/7 v. WWE Network)
7.  Who's involved in the match and/or commentary
And on and on and on.  I swear they must have a whiteboard flow chart in Titan Towers to keep track of whether or not "Demolition" can appear on a given show. 

Bot fed a year worth of RAW recaps

Someone in the Reddit universe fed a bot a year worth of RAW recaps to see what it would come up with. If Vince McMahon doesn't immediately make Baron Corbin's gimmick that he can't stop walking backstage, then we've learned nothing from this exercise.

https://www.reddit.com/r/SquaredCircle/comments/944mhp/i_fed_a_bot_a_years_worth_of_raw_recaps_and_made/

“This is awesome!”  Clap clap clap clap clap. 

I loved Seth sarcastically laughing.  

Royal Rumble bookings


A typical rumble has 30 people in it right? However… the way they book these things you can only see say max 5 people having a shot at winning. Thus you only care about those 5 and rest is filler…Why not make every participant count? Why not give every single one a royal rumble back story instead of being filler? Say a jobber like Ellsworth could cut some promos how you gotta believe in yourself and how he's gonna prove anyone can do whatever they put their mind to etc.. some other jobber could say he's never ever eliminated anyone in the rumble and how he will finally eliminate someone for his dying grandpa in the hospital watching… I mean I literally wanna see 30 people who all have angles revolving around the rumble match.. That way there is no filler.. every moment means something. 

That's how it used to be with the pre-match vignettes and mini-promos during the show! 

WCW Supershow

How did Ross and Tony do commentary for the WCW/NJPW shows? They talk about being there,but they look like they're standing in front of a green screen, and they line up a little too well with the Turner cut.

They were lying to you, my friend.  The Supershows were taped weeks in advance and then they added commentary in post. 

50 year old wrestlers


Greetings from Niu Zillind,

My missus & I are up to night 5 of the G1 so far.  Other than the shockingly good Yano Toru matches so far & maybe fellow Kiwi Jay White’s wins over Okada & the Ace, the story for me so far is Suzuki’s 0-2 start to the tournament.  Which all got me to thinking, has there ever been anyone wrestle at the age of 50 as Suzuki has for 2018 so far?   The dude is incredible!



Indeed he is.  I'd say Terry Funk is in the conversation for "having best matches at 50 years old night after night" but Funk was more of a midcard attraction at best and Suzuki is having high level main events with top, top guys. 

Hey Fearless Leader


I have a friend who's a long-time wrestling fan and he's hit a rough patch. I was hoping you'd share the link to his GoFundMe to signal boost it a bit. In return, I will continue to strike down any who oppose you, our dark lord of smark.


Your eternal servant,
Cat Minion

I’ve been lacking in a good minion for a while now.  I shall consider your offer and make a list of those who I wish to be smoten!