Fallah Bahh


Hey Scott,


Santa Claus is comin' to brawl…and he's bringing KM & Fallah Bahh!


That's the title of their new children's book. Fallah Bahh and KM did an interview with The Wrestling Estate to promote it. They also discussed their comedy segments, rising popularity in Impact and working with Scarlett Bordeaux.


Hope your readers enjoy.

Thanks as always,

John Corrigan

No problem!

Wrestle Kingdom

Not a huge NJPW fan, but have caught the last two Wrestle Kingdom's and really enjoyed them.  It occured to me yesterday that its coming around again, so just wondered if you, or the comments section, could give us casual fans some background on the card and the storylines coming into it.

Main event is Kenny Omega defending the IWGP title against Hiroshi Tanahashi, who is having a career resurgence (well, another one) after winning the G1 tournament and going undefeated since about June.  Omega doesn't feel ready to drop the title quite yet, but with the whole All-Elite Wrestling thing up in the air right now, New Japan might want to switch the title just in case, and Tanahashi is always a threat to be top guy again after a few years off in the midcard.  
The other main match is Chris Jericho defending the Intercontinental title against Naito in a rematch from Dominion, where he got a surprise win for the title and then kind of disappeared with it for a long time.  It should be a crazy hardcore brawl and will probably be awesome.  
There's also going to a NEVER Openweight title match between Kota Ibushi and Will Ospreay which will likely be mind-blowingly great.  
Here's a preview and rundown of the card from the fine folks at Cultaholic:

Backlund in ’84 Pro Wrestling USA, a Mr. Backlund promo

Here is a Bob Backlund doing a Pro Wrestling USA promo after leaving the WWF in ’84. Sure, it’s using his monotone voice promo, but he’s alluding to Hogan and steroids before the steroid scandal of the late ‘80s/early 90s in the sport.


The beauty of the Mr. Backlund character is that it’s not much of a change from the Bob Backlund character of the late 70’s and early 80’s. Do you think Backlund missed a great opportunity by going heel and using this pre-Mr. Backlund character? I understand that Vince suggested that Backlund dye his hair black and go heel, but I think Backlund’s stubbornness cost him a good run in ’84 when a heel Backlund would have been more over than years after his first retirement. Again, still think Backlund putting over Diesel days after Survivor Series ’94 was a bad idea then and more now.
Yeah, Bitter Bob Backlund could have had a run in the 80s for sure, although not as a top Hogan level guy.  But there's worse spots to be in than "Crazy former World champion terrorizing the B-show main events", especially when there was so much money to go around for everyone. Hell, Backlund could have easily been slotted into the Terry Funk role. 

The Future

Hey Scott

The WWE has a ton of money at their disposal right, the ratings and fan morale is down the toilet and getting worse.

The big reveal Monday was basically the McMahon family is going to be more hands on now……..JESUS!

Why not throw whatever $$$ it would take to bring in Kenny Omega, Cody Rhodes, The Young Bucks even CM Punk for a year as an nWo style group call them "The Illuminati" or something and have them run riot clearing out all the dead wood in the process.

The Elite are all under contract to either ROH or New Japan or a combination of both, and WWE will be trying to do exactly what you're suggesting once they're free and clear to do so.  Which is shortly after Royal Rumble. 

Wrestler you never thought would be World Champion?


Who were you genuinely surprised to see winning a wrestling promotion's world championship that you never envisioned would get a run with their main title?  There may be better examples, but Jack Swagger in 2010 in the WWE would be my pick.

That wasn't their main title, though.  The gold standard (unless we're talking freakshow acts like Arquette, Russo and McMahon) is always The Miz.  

“New Faces” Prediction Contest



Hey Scott,


Hope you and the family are well. With the McMahons promising new faces, you/we should hold a contest to see who predicts, say, the first three performers. Maybe the wonder gets a copy of one of your books or something.

My money's on Vanessa Borne, Kona Reeves, and a returning Raven.
Hmm.  I'm gonna go with Reverend D-Von, the guy from TM61 who didn't get fired, and the return of Emma, who will get another 12 weeks of vignettes and then get released before making it on TV again.  

So this Vince announcement………




Is to have more McMahons on TV?  I know, yada yada yada, "Fox is giving them a billion dollars" yada yada yada.  But he really doesn't fucking get it does he?  

I think it's kind of hilarious that the "shakeup" is so terrible that I'm getting angry e-mails while the show is still going on.  However, anyone who expected a "shakeup" that wasn't "More McMahons on TV" has obviously not been watching very long.  

Writing five hours of WWE per week


Hi Scott.  A few days ago there was discussion about how difficult a job the WWE writers have to fill five hours of TV per week.

I know it all comes down to Vince McMahon micromanaging everything but isn’t the whole problem that they actually do WRITE five hours of TV?  They could probably cut that in half by just telling the talent what to accomplish in every promo, match finish and angle – then let the wrestlers work with each other and the agents to do it “in their own voice/style”.

Did Vince Russo and Ed Ferrera intricately script every single minute of every single episode of Raw they ever wrote?  I doubt it.

Preaching to the choir, bro. 

Best WWE PPV 2018?



Scott,

I’m clearly all for the hard questions so without putting NXT into the mix, which WWE PPV/Special event would you consider to be the best from this year?

Hell in a Cell? Wrestlemania?

Thanks.

Hell in a Cell?  Seriously?
For me it’s either Survivor Series or Evolution.  SS grossly over delivered so I’m leaning towards it, but I really enjoyed the women’s show as well and it was something different.  

Consistently Best Post Match Celebration?


Hey Scott. Who do you think consistently had the best post match celebration?

I always thought Bret did a great job of celebrating but making it look like he just was in a fight…..maybe because it was all real (in his head).


Pretty specific discussion topic there.  

I'd say for me, young Sting.  He was always a guy who looked happy to be there entertaining people and seemed to be entertained himself.  Once he got all dark and brooding in the 90s, less so, of course.  

Best series of matches


Scott, looking in your hypothetical crystal ball in 10-15 years time which series of matches will stand the test of time better in your mind Flair-Steamboat or Okada-Omega?
Not to discredit how great the matches between Misawa-Kawada and Misawa-Kobashi were, but between the above two pairings.
I'd say Flair-Steamboat from a personal perspective, but Kenny Omega and his crew are already insanely influential on newer guys right now, so it could certainly end up with the other one winning in the long run if we get a bunch of Elite fans making waves in the business. 

Kerry Von Erich Alternate Timelines


Hey Scott, it's Andy PG.  Thanks for letting me review Star Wars '81.  Now, on to business.  It's no secret Kerry Von Erich is one of my favorite old-school wrestlers, and seems like a huge what might have been.  So three possible alternate career arcs I'd like you to consider.

1) Fritz allows Kerry to leave WCCW and travel the world in 1984 after his NWA Title run.  Where would he best succeed – WWF, JCP, or Japan?

2) Kerry never gets in the motorcycle accident that causes his amputation and addictions.  Where does his career go in the late 1980s?

3) Kerry puts the gun down in 1993 and turns himself in.  Assume he gets 3-5 for possession.  When he emerges from jail, he's clean, sober, not yet 40, and a free agent right in the middle of the big wrestling boom.  Where would he be best used?

1. He was exactly the kind of guy that could have been a huge star for Crockett in the Luger/Windham "top of the midcard babyface" spot with occasional challenges of Flair.

2. He was deep in the shit way before his motorcycle accident.  It was just accelerating the inevitable, because World Class was going down with or without him and you don't just do mounds of coke for years and then walk away.  The NWA didn't even trust him to hold the title for more than a week at the height of his popularity as it was.  

3.  Anywhere that's not wrestling, maybe talking to kids in schools about drugs.  40 year old one-footed Kerry coming off a 5 year prison term for drugs is not something that either company is gonna touch with a 10 foot pole.  

Down…….down………down

Scott – can you give a 1 or 2 reason explanation for the low ratings and seeming downfall of quality in the WWE lately.   Does it boil down to a couple of things or is there a bigger picture

Bonus question – with the roster they have now – shouldn’t every “network special” be filled up down the card with 3.5-4.5 star matches???  Why the mediocrity with so many talented performers on the roster???

The show is too long and can be recapped by a 5:00 YouTube video, plus there's no stars on it that people are compelled to take time out of their life to watch.

WWE IS DEAD

Just kidding. Ratings are down but they don’t mean anything. There were nearly 500 shows with new episodes made in 2018. An 85% increase since 2011. There is so much stuff out there to watch and companies are dying for content that has an audience. Netflix paid between 70-100 million dollars for one year of Friends.

It’s the same reason is bringing back the XFL. If you make content, people will pay crazy prices for it. It doesn’t have to be good. Is the content bubble going to burst? Sure, but who knows when that’ll happen. 2022 maybe?

We can bitch about the product and not like what’s happening on the show, but WWE isn’t going anywhere. Just wait until Disney owns the entire thing one day.

Doesn't mean USA can't decide tomorrow that it's not worth the money and cancel the deal.  
Personally, I think it's time to end RAW.  Keep doing a Monday night show, but end the RAW branding and come up with something new and different, so they can redo the sets and maybe find a new concept.  No show can sustain for the length of time RAW has been on the air.  Just look how often NFL football changes networks and presentation strategies. 

How to fix the Women’s Division


Scott,

With all the talk of Becky Lynch being the new Stone Cold, I realized the best way for the WWE women to get over is to give the women gimmicks of past Superstars

Just imagine 

Becky Lynch: Goes full Steve Austin and drinks several cans of Guinness after a match 

Sasha Banks: Becomes the Big Boss Banks and handcuffs her opponents to the ring rope for Law and justice. Plus when she turns heel Michael Cole can call her sadistic 20 times in a five minute span.

Asuka: Leaves wrestling to become a manager, always has ceremonial salt on hand and stars in Asuka Vice and Asuka Bandito.  .   

Nia Jax: Either gets Jimmy Hart as a manager and become the Canadian Nia Jax or Slick and become the One Girl Gang

Emma: gets rehired, wears a mask and call her Repo Girl

Alicia Fox: With her captain's hat gets the gimmick she destined for as the new Tugboat, tooting through her matches  

Surely you can smell all the money they'll make if they do this!  The only ques tion is who can Tamina and Natalya emulate?
Wait, wait, I know this one…

Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart in late 1997

Hey Scott, question about Jim Neidhart at the end of his WWF run in 1997.  I must have had a faulty memory cause when I think of his last few appearances in the WWF at the end of 1997, I always remembered that he got completely buried on the way out of the company(joining DX just for them to turn on him, getting beat down and having spray painted with WCW on his back, getting handcuffed helplessly to the ropes for a beatdown etc…).  But I just rewatched his final match with HHH and he got a lot of offense in and was booked pretty strong.  After getting spray painted, he got right back up and clotheslined both Michaels and HHH and was only taken out cause it was 3 on 1.  Even cuffed to the ropes, he kept fighting back and landed some shots on Michaels.  He also held on to Chyna while Slaughter and Shamrock took out HHH and MIchaels in a cool visual to end the show.  Not to mention Neidhart looked to be in the best shape of his career.  He was ripped for this match.  I know the money angle seemed to be Owen/Shamrock vs Michaels after Montreal but was there ever a thought of keeping Neidhart to run a program with Michaels after the screwjob?  That could have been a hot feud too to keep Michaels busy before the Royal Rumble.  And it made sense as well. And obviously at the end of the day he wins the feud and eventually moves onto Austin, so that doesn't change.  But would this have been a better opponent for Michaels over Shamrock at the December PPV and could it have been negotiated at all?  Or was Neidhart 100% set on leaving and joining Bret and Bulldog in WCW?  

There was zero thought of keeping Neidhart.  They literally only hired him for Bret in the first place and he wasn't even working with a contract as far as I know.  

Vince coming to Raw on Monday


Do you think Vince coming to Raw this Monday to "shake things up" is a good sign as at the very least it shows he still cares about the state of the show, and/or he's getting shit from USA about the ratings?  After hearing Seth Rollins and Xavier Woods make lame excuses for the Raw writers and calling the fans who complain "spoiled infants", this was actually more than I was expecting, sadly.  

The issues are a long-term audience erosion and Vince coming out to announce that Malibu Stacy has a new hat might work for a month, but he'll grow tired of the new hat like everything else and then it's back to Baron Corbin and Stephanie every week. 

Hansen and the AWA Title



Soo…Why did Stan Hansen run over the AWA title?



To get to the other side?
Anyhoo, Verne Gagne wanted Stan to do a job to Bockwinkel and drop the title to him, but Stan was (rightly) more concerned with making sure he kept the title for his Japan tour because Baba paid better.  Stan refused to return from Japan until after the tour, and Verne called the lawyers demanding the title back. So Stan sent it back, complete with tire marks.  In later interviews, Stan admitted that he might not have handled it with the utmost professionalism.  

SummerSlam 91 Randomness

1) Was there talks of a backup plan for someone else to get the IC Belt into Bret if Perfect's back was so f**ked he couldn't go? Or would they have just done a shorter easier match?

2) Coming off the awesome Jake the Snake heel turn, why wasn't the new hot evil Snake/Taker team not booked on the show? Was the blow off of Slaughter's team THAT necessary? Why not run Hogan/Warrior vs Slaughter/Jake/Taker? Slaughter could still do the job with the same finish, and the match might've been watchable…

3) I read Savage legit was trying to step away from the business to try to have a family with Liz, and we have the big wedding with the reception snake angle & Savage is back wrestling a month or so after that? When between Mania 7 Retirement Match & his return was he planned to be back? 

1.  The Perfect match was planned for months and they gave him time off before the show specifically to make sure his back was ready enough to do the match.  There was no backup I've heard about.

2.  There's a lot of ways that main event could have been better.  The lack of Jake and Undertaker on the show was indeed a little mystifying.  

3.  Savage was indeed trying to have kids with Liz, but Vince basically begged him to return when Warrior left and Sid got injured, which immediately torpedoed all their fall plans.  Hence, the hasty reception angle to make Undertaker a new top babyface and bring Savage back into the fold.  

ROH Final Battle

Hey Scott,

TK O'Ryan did an interview with The Wrestling Estate ahead of Final Battle weekend where he'll be facing RUSH in his ROH debut on Saturday in Philadelphia. He also mentioned he'll be teaming with Vinny Marseglia against the Best Friends and the Bouncers on the PPV, which ROH hasn't announced yet. 


Hope your readers enjoy.

Thanks as always,

John Corrigan
Well this weekend is pretty packed, innit?

Too much buildup for feuds?

What programs/feuds do you think were ruined because they actually took too much time building them up so when they actually faced off against each other in a match, the audience more or less didn't care anymore?  I know I was like this for the Goldust vs R-Truth feud last year.  

Roman Reigns v. Brock Lesnar.  They spent a year getting there and by the time we got to Wrestlemania everyone was just like "Get it over with already!" and then they went LONGER with it.  That feud was a valuable lesson about missing the peak of a feud because it HAD to be at Wrestlemania instead of where it made sense.