The SmarK Rant for Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling–10.17.81

The SmarK Rant for Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling – 10.17.81

Thanks for all the great feedback on these, mostly amounting to “Keep doing them!”. They do well and they’re a lot of fun to write. Also, for those into blog stats and such, Wrestle Kingdom 12’s rant has now climbed to the most-read post of the year, so it’s got legs like Jumanji.

So apparently we’re skipping a few weeks in the Network archives for some reason. The big news for this week: Sgt. Slaughter has won the US title tournament!

Read moreThe SmarK Rant for Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling–10.17.81

Monday Night Raw – August 18, 2003

Monday Night Raw
Date: August 18, 2003
Location: Van Andel Arena, Grand Rapids, Michigan
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler

It’s the go home show for Summerslam and the big story continues to be Kane, who is seemingly ready to squash Rob Van Dam, and his feud with Shane McMahon. That’s not it for Shane though as he’s in another feud with Eric Bischoff. Oh and there’s something about an Elimination Chamber match which hasn’t exactly gotten a ton of time. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Night Raw – August 18, 2003

Royal Rumble Countdown Special: Most memorable moments of the 2000s

Yes, it’s my very special Rumble countdown tie-in, with part 2 of my look at the most memorable moments in Royal Rumble history for the Sporting News, covering the 2000s this time. And while you’re there, be sure to check out part 1, covering the 89-99 run, as well:

NXT – January 17, 2018

Date: January 17, 2018
Location: Center Stage Theater, Atlanta, Georgia
Commentators: Mauro Ranallo, Nigel McGuinness, Percy Watson

We’re still in Atlanta as we’re heading towards Philadelphia for the next Takeover. Last week saw the Undisputed Era beat down Aleister Black to end the show, earning Adam Cole an Extreme Rules match with Black in Philadelphia. Odds are we’ll get the final card for the next Takeover tonight so let’s get to it.

Read moreNXT – January 17, 2018

Question about WWF TV in Canada in the 80’s and 90’s


In Canada in the 80’s and 90’s did you get any (or all) of these shows?

WWF Challenge (was this re-branded as something else there? I see a show on YouTube called WWF Cavalcade but I’m not sure if that was Challenge matches or what…)
WWF Prime Time Wrestling
WWF Mania
WWF Action Zone

I know you got WWF Superstars rebranded as Maple Leaf Wrestling with new host(s)  and commentary but the same matches.

Basically, what were your WWF TV options between say.. 1987 and 1995 in terms of what was available to you either over the air or on cable/satellite?

Just wondering. Thanks!

Well, the period you're referring to is when I was mostly living in the Vancouver area, which meant that I would just watch the wrestling block on KCPQ 13 out of Washington.  So unless it was some extraordinary circumstances, I was normally watching the US version of Superstars anyway.  Challenge was indeed rebranded to Cavalcade on Canadian stations in syndication, though.  
Prime Time was never available in Canada, nor was Action Zone.  However, I got a grey market C-band dish in 94 that allowed me to subscribe to USA Network, so I just watched US versions of those.  So I can't really speak to Canadian availability after that, since I didn't have Canadian TV again until mid-96.

Royal Rumble Countdown: The SmarK Rant for WWE Royal Rumble 2008

The SmarK Rant for WWE Royal Rumble 2008

– Live, in HD, from Madison Square Garden. This rant will also be presented in widescreen, so adjust your margins to 100 columns to match.

– Your hosts are Michael Cole and The Coach and Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler and Joey Styles and Tazz.

Read moreRoyal Rumble Countdown: The SmarK Rant for WWE Royal Rumble 2008

Ric Flair’s NWA World Heavyweight Title Bookings – 1/83-5/83

Have you seen this yet? That schedule was insane! 

Tim Hornbaker (@TimHornbaker)
Ric Flair's NWA World Heavyweight Title Bookings (1/83-5/83) – Official Schedule put out by booker Jim Barnett. Ric @RicFlairNatrBoy

​Yeah, Dave was telling a story on the radio show the other day, about how Nick Bockwinkel was half-ass offered the NWA World title by the promoters around the time, and he was like "Well, I can work 100 dates a year for $150,000 and vacation in Hawaii half the year, or work 300 dates a year for $350,000 and never have a life or see my family, so no thanks."  It was a pretty brutal lifestyle and it's amazing that Flair was able to last as long as he did without self-destructing.​

Never got the appeal

Who are some figures from the wrestling world whose popularity or appeal you never understood?

Gotta start with Gene Okerlund. An a-ok presenter and moderator, but nothing special at all. Also his grabbing and thirsty behavior towards women half (or more) his age was always offputting

Never understood the love of Roddy Piper. Always found his matches to be mediocre at best, to downright atrocious many times (WCW nineties run comes to mind). His sense of humor in his segments/interviews was always clichéd and lame in my view

​Clearly you're not watching it right, then.  Mostly what you need is old, pre-WWF Piper, before he decided to become an actor.  
For me, I never got Pedro Morales or understood why he was so popular in New York.  He had nothing in the ring, nothing on promos…I just don't get what made him into such a big draw at the time.​

The SmarK Rant for WWE Summerslam 2006–01.20.06

The SmarK Rant for WWE Summerslam 2006 – 08.20.06

(Originally written 01.16.18)

Live from Boston, MA, drawing 16,000 people and doing 540,000 buys (down from the year before by about 100K and really the start of the big downward plunge for the show’s buyrate until the Network killed off PPV for good.)

Your hosts are Michael Cole & JBL, Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler, and Joey Styles & Tazz

Read moreThe SmarK Rant for WWE Summerslam 2006–01.20.06

Someone to eliminate all 29 guys

Hey Scott,

I remember years ago, I think it was when Brock was coming up, you mentioned how cool it would be to have him enter the Rumble and eliminate all 29 guys by himself. I always that was interesting and a great way to push a guy to the moon. Something that would've been perfect for Strowman this year, in fact. 

Do you still think this is something they could do/should do with a guy? Is It worth sacrificing the entire roster to push one guy all the way?

​They can always try it by having Asuka run the table in the Women's Rumble, because it doesn't really matter who wins anyway.​

Rock Star Gary reflects on WWF This Tuesday in Texas

Live from San Antonio, TX

Airdate: December 3, 1991

Attendance:  8,000

Hosted by Gorilla Monsoon & Bobby “The Brain” Heenan

Can Hogan regain the WWF title? Does Savage get revenge against Roberts? Read on!

Read moreRock Star Gary reflects on WWF This Tuesday in Texas