Tag Team TURMOIL ~ !

Hey, Scott:

Watching some 1980s Survivor Series and some tag team queries crossed my mind:

1.) Breaking up The Rockers and giving Shawn Michaels the rocket push is one of the more famous examples, but has there ever been a high profile tag team split in which the *wrong* guy got the big solo push?

2.) Like you, I have an irrational amount of platonic man-love for the Hart Foundation. While late 80s Anvil still had some gas in the tank, obviously Bret Hart was…Bret Hart and their chemistry was off the charts. Who do you have as the most successful tag team to feature one guy who was a top-notch worker and a partner who was a step above “exhumed corpse”.

3.) In 1989, when sweet cocaine was openly flowing thru every nose in pro wrestling, Tully Blanchard fails a drug test that gets him fired from WWF and costs him a new contract with WCW. Was there any other unreported/locker room reason why Tully’s career (in the big two) was effectively over at age 35 when drugs were an open secret?

Thanks!

1.  I can't think of many off-hand.  Usually they got it right.  
2.  The Eliminators!  Man did Kronus ever get exposed badly after Saturn left.  
3.  It was more him pissing off the wrong people over and over.  The drug stuff was a convenient scapegoat so they could justify it. 

New Book Out Today – Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson: The People’s Champion

I feel like Rock probably didn't have much input in this one, but I can't knock the hustle, so here's a word about a new Rock biography coming out soon.  

Hello,


The following is to announce the official release of my
latest book, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson: The
People’s Champion – From WWE to Hollywood, which is out now. If I haven’t already, I will be
forwarding a PDF copy of the book to you within the next few days. Please feel
free to use snippets of the text or one of the images on your website. I hope
you read it and I hope you enjoy it!


All the best,


James Romero


FINALLY… Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson: The
People’s Champion – From WWE to Hollywood
is OUT NOW worldwide, available in Kindle
eBook and paperback formats.


From
childhood to getting cut by the Canadian Football League; from Flex Kavana in
Memphis to Rocky Maivia in the WWF; from the Nation of Domination to The
Corporation; from wrestling’s biggest box office attraction to the highest paid
actor in Hollywood. All the big storylines and why they happened. All the
backstage manoeuvrings and inside stories. All the on-screen feuds and all the
rivalries behind the scenes. All the people that got him to where he is today
and the co-workers who did their damnedest to hold him back.


Jam-packed
with quotes from his friends, family, co-workers and the man himself, Dwayne
“The Rock” Johnson: The People’s Champion
is the most comprehensive and
exhaustive biography ever created on “The Most Electrifying Man in Sports and
Entertainment”. If you
are a fan of the jabroni beating, pie eating, trailblazing eyebrow raiser,
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson: The People’s Champion has got you covered, if you
smell what The Rock is cookin’!


US Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08MB5ZV7D

UK Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B08MB5ZV7D

Canada Link: https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B08MB5ZV7D

Australia Link: https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B08MB5ZV7D

Buzz

Conrad Thompson namedropped you and the blog multiple times for research for a Heroes Of Wrestling watchalong with Tony Schiavone (bonus show on the Adfreeshows Patreon). Might wanna hook up with him

I've already got a mortgage. 

Losing Face



Hey Scott


I noticed the night that Randy Orton was scheduled to lose the WWE Title to Drew McIntyre he seemed to be off his game in his promos, kind of giving away that he was losing and just didn't care anymore. 


Orton's always been one of those guys that can give away a finish with his facial expressions before a match and when he looks like he's in a mood it's pretty much guaranteed that he's losing. 


Are there any other wrestlers in history famous for giving away a finish by how they act before a match?

 

Yeah Sasha Banks is very notable for her boo boo jobbing face in particular.  

Ron Garvin


I understand why Ron Garvin's NWA World Title Reign is universally

recognized as a bust. What I don't understand are all the people in

the comments of the Starrcade 87 thread that think the guy was an

idiot for accepting the push.

He was already well past 42 when he got the title, and earned main

event pay throughout his reign.  The exposure probably increased his

booking rate when he left JCP, and may have helped him land the cushy

WWF gig that gave him enough savings to retire comfortably. Why on

earth should he have passed up on that?

From a money perspective of course he would have been dumb to turn it down.  I don’t think anyone is arguing otherwise.  It’s more from a self respect and drawing power perspective that people argue against it.  

AEW/NWA Power Hour

Scott,

Hear me out on this – I think this idea might just work:
1. We already know that AEW and the NWA have some type of working agreement – NWA wrestlers holding NWA titles are appearing and defending them on AEW programming. So the two companies clearly can find a way to work together.

2. NWA just unveiled their new weekly YouTube program – which is great. I loved Powerrr, and I have high hopes for this new venture.

3. AEW has openly talked about a second show on TV that would not just be Dark switching from YouTube. Things can always change, especially in the COVID era, but as of now I haven't heard that that is no longer the plan.

So…why not have that second TV show be a jointly branded AEW/NWA hour of weekly wrestling? Maybe three matches or so, mostly cross-promotion, but could still have the occasional match with wrestlers from the same promotion. You could even, if TNT was so inclined, bring back an occasional longer, Clash-style special where you might see a match pitting Champion Mox vs Champion Aldis, or some such. It could serve to advance storylines for both promotions, and create new ones, such as someone from AEW screwing over Mox, for example, allowing Aldis to get the win and claim bragging rights as the “real world's champ” but Mox having an out and a new feud.

Obviously the details would need worked out, but I think the broad strokes of this could work. Your thoughts?

Ugh, no thanks.  AEW is definitely the alpha dog in their relationship and to be honest, dragging them down with the NWA guys does nothing for anyone but Corgan.  It's not that the NWA didn't have talented guys to steal, but Powerrr is like a pleasant diversion on YouTube and not what I'd call a serious threat to any other promotion. 

Pedro

Hi Scott,

Once again: greetings from The Netherlands!

I enjoyed your review of the 1982 WWF show. I was wondering: what was the deal with Pedro Morales? When I started watching wrestling in 1986/87, I remember seeing him wrestling in six men tags with Tito and … Lanny Poffo? I guess.

Only later I found out he was a former WW(w)F champion. But in the mid 80’s pretty much a jobber (to the stars?). Was that just the way things went? I don’t recall many former champs in that role. (Yeah, Jinder….)

Why was that?

Usually the champs wouldn't stick around the WWF after they lost, they'd move onto other territories and use their status as former champion to make money elsewhere.  Ivan Koloff milked a whole damn career out of that.  Pedro is kind of a rare exception to that, as not only did he step down to a role as IC champion when he returned, but he then stepped all the way down to jobber as you note.  I don't really recall him being a big deal in other territories.  Maybe he was just loyal to Vince Sr.?  

2014 Daniel Bryan

Good sir – I wasn’t a very regular watcher of the WWE from 2009-2013.   I got sucked back in by the rise of Daniel Bryan and the yes movement.   So could you fill In a blank for me please

By the time I started watching and following Bryan’s rise it was at summerslam 2013 when he beat Cena for the title and the authority storyline kicked off.   Before that was there a specific match or moment that led to Daniel being so over?   Or was it more of a series of things that were built over time?

It was two specific factors.  First of all, Daniel Bryan was World champion and got himself over as a heel doing the YES! YES! celebration deal, which then turned into NO! NO! and a really good long-term storyline with AJ Lee.  And then what REALLY triggered the babyface turn was when he lost the title to Sheamus at Wrestlemania in 18 seconds, with the idea being that it was supposed to make Sheamus look like a world-beating badass, but in fact what happened is that it completely backfired and people felt like they were robbed of the title match they had paid to see, thus building sympathy for Bryan in the process.  It also destroyed Sheamus as a top guy because fans rejected him in that position as a result and only wanted to see Bryan, and he never really recovered from it. 

WHAT IF 1991 Russian Nightmare Edition


Nikita Koloff debuts at Summerslam 1990 as a megaheel instead of Slaughter, destroys geeks left and right, building up to the WM main event against champ Hulk or Warrior. Buys? No buys?


Vince was desperately trying to sign away Nikita in the 80s, but I don't know if he would have had much interest by 1990.  The whole Russian thing was kind of passe, especially since Nikita wouldn't have had the Crockett history to draw upon.  ALTHOUGH, although, although, thinking about it for a second, if he came in and teased a reunion with Dusty Rhodes as the Superpowers and then brutalized him, I bet Dusty could have gotten him over and taken him to that level pretty quick.  Yeah, actually, scratch my earlier hesitation, bring in Nikita, turn on Dusty and destroy him, and then shoot him to the top against Hogan.  Book it.  

Part of Roman’s Success


For countless reasons, things would be better if we were in a situation where it'd be healthy to have fans in the crowd, and not the Thunderdome stuff.

I was thinking, has it been easier for Roman to work as a heel due to a lack of audience. Obviously, he was already getting boos, but his heel work has been so superb, surely he would be getting significant pops as well. 

Yeah, people would probably start turning onto his side because he's dominant and awesome at the moment, but really that's a win-win situation because they want to get there with him again anyway.  People booing him because he's an asshole?  GREAT!  People cheering him because he's the alpha dog and clearly the #1 star in the promotion!  GREAT!  

WWF All Star/Championship Wresting

You're a better man than me for trying to watch and review these Backlund-era WWF shows. I tried to watch a few episodes of All Star Wrestling and Championship Wrestling on YouTube and while it is really neat to see future stars like Curt Hennig and Eddie Gilbert show up to take beatings from middle-aged Mr. Fuji, these shows are awful, have no energy, and the McMahon/Patterson announce team is so bad. (To be fair to Fuji, I've come to appreciate what a solid worker he was while watching these shows.) And to think, these bad shows are the shows that inspired young kids like Mick Foley and Tommy Dreamer to become wrestlers!

You've watched a ton of these shows from all over the territories from this time frame- are the WWF shows the worst of these? Even Randy Savage's ICW tapings, while on a shoestring budget, are more polished and more fun than the garbage coming from the McMahons.

Yeah, they're pretty terrible.  If you watch Mid-South or World Class from the same time on the Network, the shows are totally watchable and don't seem like they're from another century like the WWF ones do.  I think maybe that's why Vince had that image of territorial wrestling as “smoky halls” that he always put forth, because that's what his father's show was and that's what he knew.  Maybe he should have been watching the Von Erichs every week instead.  

Smo Joe


Hey Scott,
Here's a content question for the blog. Samoa Joe has probably lost out on at least one WWE title run because of his injuries, despite numerous times where he has demonstrated he has it all. Who else would you throw in the “injury bad luck” category when it comes to world championships?
Shawn Michaels!  Poor guy kept having to vacate his.

Losing on the way out of NXT


Hey Scott-


What do you think of the tradition of having talent lose on their way out of NXT to the main roster? Is it just a holdover from the territory days, or a way of checking people egos as they move up? It seems extra stupid today, to cool off a hot star on their way to what is supposed to be the big time. If you own both companies, wouldn't it be more valuable to receive a new star on a winning streak than somebody who has just dropped the championship/lost to someone who won't be out of development for a few more years?

100 percent agree.  Why beat Rhea before she’s leaving for the main roster?  It’s just holdover “we’ve always done it this way” thinking.  

Then who?


If not Rock, then who faces Roman at mania? A Daniel Bryan angle virtually writes itself. Roman complaining how the 2015 Rumble was supposed to be his breakout night only to be ruined by the crowd wanting Bryan would be an amazing promo. Maybe Big E? Although he probably isn't ready for that spot just yet, not like that's stopped them before from a too soon mania push (Roman WM 31).

Big E would be fine.  They can build him up and Roman can beat him and look badass.  They shouldn’t even be thinking about taking the belt off him for a very long time anyway, so the goal is to find credible challenges who can lose and still stay over.  

BSK/KLIQ



Hey Scott, hope you and your family are safe and well. I have been watching alot of Undertaker interviews lately. Why didn't WWE ever run with a BSK Faction? Was it ever discussed? I personally would liked seeing Yoko, Kama, Savio, Godwin's, and Rikishi being themselves with the Undertaker at the helm. BSK vs DX, or the Harts would have been cool as well. 

No, it was never discussed because they were more like a “secret group” in retaliation to the Clique backstage.  Most people didn't even know about them until many years after the fact.  

Undertaker on Cameo


How are we not talking about these yet? Undertaker earnestly delivering lines in character like “I also understand you’re quite the baseball player” and “AJ, you fine… Reeeaaal fine” for $1000 a pop is some of the funniest shit I’ve ever seen. This character is done after these. This is all I can think about now. Oh god, the “All… Elite… Scooby Doo” one broke me. I’m dead. I admire his commitment to giving these people their money’s worth, which is admittedly commendable, but this copy is some pure, uncut, Tim & Eric shit. I’m going to die laughing thinking about these.
Hey man, he spent 30 years taking himself incredibly seriously.  I'm glad he's able to do whatever crazy shit he wants now and make some money at the same time.

Lance Von Erich book released

Hey Scott,

Not sure if you were aware, but Lance Von Erich has officially released his book ” Lance By Chance: Wrestling as a Von Erich” where he speaks out about his wrestling career and his time as a “Von Erich”. It is a fantastic read, and he really goes into detail about alot of the backstage happenings during his time in the business. Co authored by Vinny Berry, it is well.worth checking out!

It can be ordered at www.LanceByChance.com

No offense to Lance, but his life story is pretty low on the list of things I'd want to spend 300 pages reading. 

Your own ring entrance music


If you could have your choice of theme sing hit right before you walk into your home or office, what would it be?
I thought I’ve covered this a few times.   Either “Battle Without Honor” from Kill Bill or “Uprising” by Muse.