Wednesday Night Thread

Tonight!  It’s NXT and NXT UK, as we prepare for the move to USA live next month!  Tommy has the writeups as usual.

Tomorrow, I go WAY off the usual path for the morning rant.  I think you’re going to enjoy it!  I had a lot of fun writing it.

Have a wonderful Wednesday.

What the World Was Watching: WCW Saturday Night – September 16, 1995

Tony Schiavone and Bobby Heenan resume their usual commentary duties and they are taped from Atlanta, Georgia.  According to, this taping took place on August 21.  This show is also a bit of a hidden gem because all but the last fifteen minutes of the original broadcast in the United States was pre-empted due to Atlanta Braves baseball.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: WCW Saturday Night – September 16, 1995

Monday Night Raw – March 21, 2005

Monday Night Raw
Date: March 21, 2005
Location: Jefferson Civic Center, Birmingham, Alabama
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler

Wrestlemania is less than two weeks away and that means we’re in the final stretches of the build. That can be both good and bad as some of the stories can be interesting but at the same time, some of them are running on fumes and not that great. Tonight it’s another Pick Your Poison match with Batista facing Kane. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Night Raw – March 21, 2005

XFL Reveals Team Names!

Yup, it’s really happening, whether anyone wants it or not.  Obviously as a Canadian I have no place to complain as long as the Ottawa Redblacks are a real team that exists, but “DC Defenders” sounds like a comic book lawsuit just waiting to happen.  Or else a bunch of nerds who are REALLY big fans of Batman v. Superman Dawn of Justice and are anxiously awaiting the Zack Snyder cut of Justice League.

Bob Sapp

Hi Scott,

Do you think Bob Sapp could have been a star in wwe? Huge guy, charismatic as hell, has a flair for the dramatic and clearly not afraid of goofing it up a bit (as evidenced by this gem ).

Or would petty backstage bs relegate him to one of the many wrestlers that came and went during 2003-2010?


I think Sapp could have been a big star in a lot of places, but I feel like Vince would have tried to WWE-ize him and ruined it.  I think he was better off in Japan, where they got him, even though New Japan was falling apart at the time.  Sapp in TODAY'S Japan though?  Holy cow.  

Championship rivals thrown together

I was hoping this "let's throw two guys feuding over a world title or are big singles guys together and give them the tag titles" trope was dead, but here we are with Seth and Braun as Tag Team champions. Has this EVER worked outside of The Bar (and even then, Cesaro unfortunately really isn't a main event in that sense anyway)?

Shawn Michaels and John Cena?  It's a very common trope but it doesn't have much success to back it up.  It's just another lazy crutch for booking, unfortunately.  

Mike Reviews: ECW Hardcore TV #330 – 21/08/1999

Hello You!

Back again with some more Hardcore TV, as we continue the march onto the debut of ECW on TNN. If you haven’t yet then I strongly suggest you check out Scott Keith’s reviews of those shows. I believe he’s something like 4 shows in now and it’s not only proving popular with the Blog readers but Scott seems to be somewhat enjoying it to a certain degree as well!

Sadly Hardcore TV has now kind of slipped into cruise control and is readying itself to play second fiddle in the ECW television hierarchy. But hey, I used to enjoy WWE Velocity back in the day, so if Hardcore TV becomes mostly a recap show with the odd good match chucked in then I can live with that.

So without further ado, let’s adorn our barbed wire hoodies and take things to The Extreme!!!

Read moreMike Reviews: ECW Hardcore TV #330 – 21/08/1999

The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro–09.01.97

The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro – 09.01.97

OK, I’ve got a couple of hours free here on my vacation, so time to finally get this one done and hopefully wrap up 1997 Nitro before the permanent switch to 3 hours.

When we last left off…

We start with a nice tribute to the career of Arn Anderson and a recap of the history of the Four Horsemen.

Read moreThe SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro–09.01.97

HBK & Smackdown

If HBK would have agreed to go to Smackdown in 2004, what impact would it have had on JBL and Cena? HBK winning the belt from Eddie could have gave JBL more time to flesh out his new character. I would loved to have seen a heel HBK vs. Cena at WM 21.

That would have been an interesting twist, actually.  Shawn fails at Wrestlemania and decides to get a fresh start on the other show.  Of course, in real life he had no interest in being World champion again, but I really like that solution and it would have spared us a year of JBL.  

Smackdown – August 20, 2019

Date: August 20, 2019
Location: Denny Sanford Premier Center, Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Commentators: Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, David Otunga

It’s Smackdown’s turn to do King of the Ring as we’re getting two more first round matches tonight. Last night’s pair of matches were pretty good so maybe Smackdown can keep up the pace. Other than that we get to find out who was behind the attack on Roman Reigns, or at least who Daniel Bryan and Rowan say it is. Let’s get to it.

Read moreSmackdown – August 20, 2019

bob cat

hi why does aew wwe not sign bob cat

Hmm, well you raise an astute point, my good man.  There's several ways you can interpret the lack of Bobcat signing thus far, each with pros and cons that go beyond the obvious permutations and…

Hey, wait a minute!  I see what you did there!

The Announcer Landscape

Hey Scott–

Your dig at Matt Striker a while back made me pause for a moment; It's kind of incredible that a guy went from the Wrestling Observer's "Best Television Announcer" to one of the worst all because Vince McMahon started yelling in his earpiece. More over, after leaving WWE, he never recovered from Vince breaking him down and continues to suck even in 2019.

I feel like Corey Graves is going down the same path. Most folks were elated when he was put on both main announcing teams, but listening to him as the years have progressed has dramatically increased the amount of blood pouring out of my ears. I think I can safely assume it's because he's constantly hearing the phrase, "Argue with Renee about more pointless bullshit, PAL!"

So I guess the question is this: Once NXT goes to USA, how long do you give poor Mauro Ranallo before he walks away again?
Oh, I don't see Mauro doing the live NXT show.  I think it'll be one of the corporate drones working with Nigel.  Mauro will probably do the Takeovers and that'll be enough for him, I'd imagine. 

Tournament Format?

Do you think King Of The Ring should be a 1 night tournament, or doing what they are with it now;  Spread out over several shows?  It seems I'm in the minority here, but I actually don't mind the tourney being spread out.  I mean the last 3 were 1 night tournaments, and look how those turned out.  

If you're spreading it out over that amount of time, it just becomes a bunch of matches and also increases the possibility of someone screwing around with the direction and changing finishes and such.  It should be a one-night tournament because TOURNAMENTS ARE AWESOME. 

Wednesday night war ratings question

So 18-24 years ago was a 6-year period of ratings wars between WCW and WWF. Today though DVR exists. So my question is: how does DVR impact ratings? Like most wrestling fans, I’m going to watch either AEW or NXT and DVR the other to watch another time. Does the DVR’ed show count toward ratings?  It’s so much easier today to just watch both shows
Yes, DVR ratings are absolutely a thing.  In fact, it was also a thing during the original Monday Night Wars, but back then it was factored via VCR ratings.  The other thing to keep in mind is that we don't get quarter hour breakdowns and such any longer from Nielsen, so it'll be a lot tougher to do head-to-head comparisons and all that fun stuff.  Really, just watch what you watch, and above all else make sure to read whichever show I end up recapping on the blog. 

what´s USA Network expecting?

So it´s seems very clear what´s the idea to show NXT at wednesday on USA Network.
We could know it from the WWE side. But what´s with the USA Network side? Do they expect any numbers for that show? Besides AEW, I think that´s not what the channel cared. They want this or that way an calculated numbers at tv rating, no matter what other channels will show against them. So would be half of Raw be a success for USA Network?

Depends on what they're paying, which I'm assuming isn't much.  Here's the thing:  They got BLINDSIDED by Fox basically stealing Smackdown from them for the billion dollars, a deal they had no hope of matching, and that's a giant amount of ratings gone with nothing to replace it.  So it was inevitable that WWE was going to have to pony up some other form of content to replace it in October, and NXT makes the most sense.  From USA's perspective, anything is better than the nothing they're now getting from Smackdown, so they're likely happy with the million viewers it'll do.  

Either way, it's a good day to be Vince as long as these networks keep demanding programming. 


What did you think of the Main Event ending?  I guess you didn’t need twin referees to accomplish it. As long as Andre surrenders the title to Dibiase, you get a tournament.   I doubt they were thinking ahead but you could have had Dibiase run in and hit Hogan in the back with a chair and have Andre pin him.  Then Hogan gives him a receipt at IV.  
Dude, you're trying to rebook one of the most brilliant finishes of all time, that drew one of the highest ratings of all time?  LEAVE THE MEMORIES ALONE.

Schiavone hired

Scott- It was announced today that Tony Schiavone signed with AEW. Not a big surprise but it's believed that WWE had been working to sign him as well.

Didn't Schiavone try to go back and got rebuffed by WWE for years? Now all of a sudden they want him back because AEW is interested.

Is everyone not committed one way or another in play if they have even the smallest value?

Welcome to the Wednesday Night Wars, bro!  Pretty soon they're gonna be putting out press releases about signing the guy who caters backstage if it means one more eyeball on the product.  

But yeah, Tony had been trying to come back for years as a producer but they kept saying "they didn't want any more announcers", which is too bad.  I really wish he had gone to WWE because he lends a unique bit of credibility to their talking head stuff and he's just a really cool guy.  Best of luck to him in AEW, though.  

Rock Star Gary reflects on WCCW 12-24-1983

Taped from Dallas, TX

Airdate: December 24, 1983 (taped 12/09)

Attendance: unknown

Hosted by Bill Mercer

Can Adams and Mantell get the better of Gordy and Garvin? Will Kevin get involved? Ernie Ladd pays WCCW a visit with a date against Kamala? Who will prevail? Who will join me to bring you this holiday episode?

Read moreRock Star Gary reflects on WCCW 12-24-1983

Monday Night Raw – August 19, 2019

Monday Night Raw
Date: August 19, 2019
Location: XCEL Energy Center, St. Paul, Minnesota
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, Renee Young

It’s royalty night with the first round of the King of the Ring tournament kicking off. That means we should be in for some good wrestling, but it could also mean that we’re in for some annoying booking. This would also apply to the likely announcement of NXT moving to USA to fight off the combined forces of Marko Stunt, Orange Cassidy and Sonny Kiss. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Night Raw – August 19, 2019