Flair pinning Hogan in 1991 with brass knuckles


What's up with this? In Flair's first run of non-televised matches against Hogan, he would pin Hogan with brass knuckles, be announced as the new WWF champion, only to have the decision be reversed. Here's handheld video of it happening in their second-ever match: https://youtu.be/QJA_BYb_eFI?t=16m40s  Just seems strange that Hogan, who was always protected, would be pinned by the little new guy from down south. Even if it wasn't televised, it was still seen by several live audiences. We've seen all kinds of hokey finishes in house show/dark match main-events, but Hulk Hogan being pinned to lose the title by a complete newcomer only to be awarded the title back on a technicality has to be the strangest right? So was this done to elevate Flair in the eyes of the live-show attendees? To gauge audience response? Did Hulk lose a bet? What gives?

​Well, clearly they were dead serious about pushing Flair as a big deal when he came in.  Yeah, the houses kind of sucked for the rematches and they lost interest quickly, but Flair had those matches going over Hogan and Piper even put him over, so it's clear there were plans.  I checked the WON for that week and despite a hilariously wordy review of the match from Dave, there's nothing about why they chose that finish, so it's probably just what they picked to build for the rematch, with Hogan trusting Flair enough to do a fake job for him.  Dave gave the match ***1/2 in case anyone is wondering.  ​

Brass ring?

So Vince goes on about nobody in the current era (aside Cena of course) going for the "brass ring".  But then we have the blatant examples of Zack Ryder who made himself into the most over guy in the world and was promptly crushed because… ?   Daniel Bryan turned a one-word catch phrase into a movement without any help from upper management and Punk before them.  Cesaro even got himself over by sheer force with the swing and his balls were promptly cut off after Wrestlemania.  Imagine if Austin spent months on Raw jobbing and getting beaten down after his KOTR speech.  Or HHH reforming DX then being left off the next 3 ppvs?   Why doesn't anyone (Austin, HHH) point this out to Vince?   You grab the brass ring, you're reward is getting jobbed out and humiliated until the crowd learns not to "like" you, then it's your fault
​I think in a more general sense that there's no "brass ring" to grab anymore.  The system is specifically engineered to make the brand a bigger deal than the individual guys, and the 50/50 booking means that even if you start to get over as a big deal (Dean Ambrose) you're just going to be used to attempt to make someone else a big deal as well (Bray Wyatt).  And then neither person is a big deal.  This is decidedly the WCW booking philosophy and part of what killed the product for them.  The only exception is Roman Reigns, where they've already decided in advance that he's going to be The Guy​ and so none of the rules apply to him and he gets to bypass all the same criticisms thrown at Cesaro (can't talk, doesn't connect with the fans).  So then they don't bother to make anyone else and if Reigns gets injured, we get four god-awful boring months of bullshit like we're stuck in now.  Oh, and you also get shows like Hell in a Cell, which did 20,000 buys.  That's TNA numbers.  And if their plan to have Brock turn Reigns into the big star at Wrestlemania doesn't work, then what?  Cena v. Orton again?  
Sadly, probably yes.