wrestling / Columns

Ask 411 Wrestling 07.02.08: Cats, Demons, TV Titles & more!

July 2, 2008 | Posted by Steve Cook

It’s time to Ask 411 Wrestling! I’m Steve Cook and I hope you’re having a wonderful week so far. Mine has been pretty darn good…I got to see some ROH action Friday night and I also got a promotion at work. Woohoo! I still managed to find time to provide over 7,500 words of content this week, so we’ll get that started right now.

Comments, Corrections & Other “C” Words

There were a couple topics of discussion the comments section last week…some of the readers took offense to my not worshipping the ground Chris Benoit walked on. Their arguments were feeble at best, but once one of them brought up a talking point that not mentioning Benoit on a wrestling show is like German teachers not teaching children about the Holocaust, they automatically lost the argument. Everybody knows that the first person to call the other a Nazi in an argument or even bring up the Nazis in a point they’re trying to make automatically loses said argument. I just don’t see how people can blame WWE for not wanting to bring up somebody that makes them look bad. There are plenty of other aspects of wrestling history that they’ve already ignored over the years, so it’s not like I expect total and complete accuracy from them. If they want to bring him up, fine. If they don’t, fine. I couldn’t care less. If they don’t go out of their way to mention him, does that say that they’re wiping him from our memory banks? Of course not. That won’t happen until we’re old and senile, which should happen around the age of 30.


Another reader was mad that I didn’t think Hulk Hogan slamming the Big Show on an independent show in Memphis that very few people in the grand scheme of things saw was a big deal. I’m sure it was a nice moment and got a good pop, but I don’t see it as a life-changing event or as one of the most impressive feats ever accomplished by mankind. I think the main difference between some of the readers and myself is that they care a hell of a lot more about this stuff than I do, and that probably isn’t healthy for them. Of course, I was probably one of those people at one point in my life, but eventually I realized there’s more to life than wrestling. Like beer, which I haven’t had nearly enough of lately due to being sick. Boooooooooo.

Anyway, the WWF had President Jack Tunney make a brief statement on the Saturday after ‘Mania VI during Superstars. The gist of it said that, due to the sheer enormity of the match between Hogan and The Warrior, they would waive the rematch clause and go back to business as usual with Warrior taking on new challenges. I was a big fan at the time and remember feeling vaguely ripped off. After the “rematch” they had in ’98, I should have counted my blessings.

I don’t know if indys count, but there’s a WWE feeder fed called Chaotic Wrestling that runs regular show here in Massachusetts. During a early bout in June ’03, “Intellectual” Arch Kincaid got a bloody eye caused, in error, by a masked wrestler named El Chupacabra. Arch got ticked off and nailed the guy with some kind of brutal helicopter-type maneuver. After a bit, the masked guy just laid there, so Arch called for the mic to stall. After it was clear El Chup wasn’t going anywhere fast, a portion of the locker room came out and carried him off out back. I remember asking a trainer for Chaotic (who used to work at the same place I did) about it and he said it was legit. That was also echoed during the Discovery Channel’s 2004 show N.O.W. (No Opportunity Wasted) when the owner warned a wanna-be pro that Arch had knocked people out in the ring before. All I can say is that my son and I were there, live, and it was pretty frightening. That’s not a knock on Kincaid, either. He’s a hell of a talent and nearly Jericho-esque on the microphone.Dave

Orton is still eligible to do the “other” grand slam this year. He won his title matches at both Royal Rumble and WrestleMania. I guess they weren’t the main events of these shows, but they were WWE Title matches.

Now the question is, will he be a go for Summer Slam. Probably not, so no Grand Slam this year for him.Casey

Just an aside to the NWA in WWF, I remember this exchange between Vince and Jim Cornette backstage of RAW after the NWA angle had run it’s course.
Cornette: Vince I have some great ideas for NWA and…


Back when RAW was at Manhattan Center weekly (bi-weekly, the second show was taped),there was a huge section reserved and taped off for friends of WWF.
But all the other seats were on a first come first serve basis. You can imagine the stampede when the doors opened! The show took place on the 3rd or 4th floor, so
who ever had the best cardio got the best seats J. “RUN FOREST, RUN!”

i had completley forgot about that frank stallone song. but, they definetley used it. that is not the one i’m thinking of, though. it was like a big instrumental that starting with guitar picking and had these big drums that came in. i still here the nba play it. definetley used around the time of the original horsemen and i thought it was used at starcade. maybe it was the great american bash. if you could put it out to your readers again i would appreciate it. it’s only been bugging me for twenty years or so. Thanks.Matt

Hey man, Ivan asked the question on whether Vince had to be forced by the Undertaker to go to speak to Bret Hart the night of the Screwjob. I 100% believe this is true, Meltzer did a whole Observer on the Survivor Series 1997 not long after it happened that has been regarded by many, including the Hitman himself, as the most accurate piece ever written about the incident. I have not read it in a number of years, but I believe Taker banged on the door of McMahon’s office, told him to open up, then told him to “go and apologize to Bret right now!”
Now to support this, if you’ll remember on Wrestling With Shadows, after Bret got backstage after the screwjob happened, it shows him looking for Vince, then clips to him walking to the dressing room and saying “that piece of shits locked himself in his office.” There was quite a bit of time before Vince got there, as it showed Bret undressing and asking Shawn if he had any part of planning it out, then, according to Bret himself in many interviews, Bret was in the shower by the time Vince finally showed up.
The reason it did not mention the Undertaker was most likely due to the fact that they we’re respecting Mark Callaway’s wishes not to break his kayfabe, he never ever did anything publicly out of deadman character, and it wasn’t until just a few years back that he started to even loosen up a bit on it. Now throughout the whole documentary, he was the only one of Bret’s friends they didn’t talk to, and his name isn’t dropped during the film at all, despite being champion and having been the one to drop the belt to Bret during filming of the documentary, so he could’ve played a pretty big role in the film if he had wanted to participate.
I believe this was in Bret’s book as well, but don’t quote me on it, because I read the book once within a speedy two day period when I got it the day it was released, so that was damn near a year ago. I’ve been meaning to give it a second thorough read thru, as I’ve mostly only re-read the parts on Dynamite Kid and the early 90’s just picking it up here and there. I would look at the book right now, but it’s 3 AM and my wife will wake up if I go get it, and I’m stoned, and all the questions I have to put up with aren’t worth the effort, “why are you still up? were you smoking weed? when are you coming to bed? etc.” You get the point, but if you haven’t read it yet, I’ll check it out in the next day or so and e-mail you parts of it if your interested!
Anyways, obviously I’ve analyzed the shit out of the Montreal Screwjob, and am convinced Taker told McMahon to get his cowardly ass out and tell Bret he’s sorry. Naturally, Vince being Vince, has his own version on things that doesn’t make him look like a complete chickenshit!
Read the column every week and always look forward to the newest one, and btw, I LOVE the history of WWE angelfire website that you use as a reference tool, I never would have found that on my own, thanks for giving that out!
Daddy Long_schlong

I gotta say, Bret tells a pretty good story. And yes, History of WWE rules. Eventually you readers will figure out that accessing that site is probably less time-consuming than waiting for the Penguin & I to get drunk and talk about your questions. Until then, I will still have a job here.

IWA-MS isn’t the only promotion to hold women’s deathmatches. There have been some BRUTAL deathmatches over in Japan, specifically back in the days of FMW. I remember seeing an electric barbedwire ropes match between Megumi Kudo and “Mother In Law” (not sure her real name, but I’m sure that was one of FMW’s horrible attempts at Americanizing someone’s name). And these women bled A LOT.

Trish Stratus and Victoria also had a really good Hardcore match at Survivor Series 2002.Scott

Penguin *bgca says:
been meaning to tell you, I may have an answer to the hbk eye thing
Samoa Steve says:
Samoa Steve says:
Penguin *bgca says:
re-reading his book while shitting
Penguin *bgca says:
apparently after the birth of his first kid, he was still really bad on pills
Penguin *bgca says:
apparently he was going up the stairs to his room all fucked up, and fell, cutting his eye open
Penguin *bgca says:
being fucked up, he obviously didn’t get medical attention….so that might be it…lingering problem from that

That sounds a lot better than my original suggestion that he went cross-eyed at the nudy bar.

Comment of the Week

Umaga on Regis

Kelly Rippa – Our guest WWE superstar, YOUMANGA!
Regis – Save Gillman!
Umaga – BAH! SOMOA! (Spikes Regis’ head off)
Rippa – Does this mine its my show now?
Khali – (unknown gibberish) Head Squshy! (pops Kelly’s head like a zit)
Crowd – Applause!

OK, I’m sold on Umaga as a potential world champ.


Patrick starts things off with two questions.

1. Do you think Edge will ever be able to get more heat than a current girlfriend of his? Maybe it’s just me, but Vicky Guerrero gets tons more heat then Edge does, and so did Lita.

I think Edge has a lot to do with Vickie getting over big as a heel. Remember when she first became a heel and managed Chavo? Nobody cared all that much. Now that she’s in a storyline relationship with somebody that isn’t Eddie Guerrero, it’s more than acceptable to boo her. And since that somebody is the despicable Edge, it’s even more acceptable to boo her. I dare say that Vickie wouldn’t be getting the negative reaction she gets if she was with somebody that wasn’t Edge, which isn’t saying anything against her work because she’s really stepped her game up lately. And as far as Lita goes, when did she ever get booed before she hooked up with Edge? I don’t think you’re giving the Rated R Superstar enough credit.

2. Santino is insanely over, in my opinion, to the point that some people actually predicted he’d win the 2008 Royal Rumble. On the mic, he’s gold. But why do they make him look like a complete joke in the ring? There’s certainly been worse wrestlers who’ve accomplished much more. With such a strong character, Santino has potential to be a top heel, no?

Our next questioner Dave from Oz asks a similar question (along with several others), so I’m going to cover Santino after this…

Will Santino Marella ever be treated seriously as a legit performer and pushed to the top of the card? When I watch Raw these days I just fast forward to the point he grabs the mic – not much else is worth watching. He seems to be coming along as an in ring performer and losing to celebs – especially ones that most international audiences have never heard of is highly annoying! I worry that if he keeps being booked like this he may be condemned to the lower card.

1. Nobody in the 411 PPV Roundtable picked Santino to win the Rumble. So I don’t know who you’re talking about when you refer to “some people”, and I hardly think they were being serious if they were picking the Milan Miracle.

2. His promos are decent, but I can’t get behind the notion that they’re the highlight of any given Raw.

3. They make him look like a joke in the ring because he’s a comedic heel and comedic heels are supposed to look like jokes in the ring. That’s their job.

4. Worse wrestlers who accomplished more? First of all, I’m not going to count somebody like Great Khali because he’s a giant and fits into a completely different category. Khali can’t physically do things like hurricanranas and shooting star presses. Second of all, if you’re using the popular smark talking point that Hulk Hogan was a bad wrestler, he wasn’t nearly as bad as Santino is. Neither was Dusty, and neither is John Cena.

5. I will agree that jobbing him out to “celebrities” is a bad idea, and especially one like Cousin Sal that I wouldn’t classify as a celebrity. But I don’t think it hurts him too much. As long as Santino keeps making people chuckle and stops getting DUIs when he’s not even drunk, I think he’ll be ok.

6. I can’t see him as a top heel. I try to picture it in my mind, and it doesn’t compute. Sorry.

Rock & Bret – my favourite 2 of all time! Did they ever wrestle or cross paths in an angle?

They did have a match on the March 31, 1997 edition of Raw is War, which Rocky won via disqualification. This was on the same episode of Raw that Bret joined up with Owen Hart & Davey Boy Smith and began the re-formation of the Hart Foundation. You can find the match here…for now.

Bret returning to WWE – will he ever turn up on TV one day?

Bret did make an appearance last year on the June 11 episode of Raw during “Mr. McMahon Appreciation Night”, where he gave his thoughts and opinions on Vinnie Mac. I wouldn’t be surprised if he showed up on other pre-taped bits, but don’t expect him to be a main focal point of programming or anything like that.

Money in the chase! – last time I read Wrestling’s 101 the name of the game when it came to booking was there is “money in the title chase”(Actually I have never read it, but if there is such a publication send it to Titan Towers). I am really struggling watching the same 3 or 4 guys looking like legit challengers… it’s boring and been done to death. Why does McMahon and co have such a reluctance to push new talent? It would be more exciting than watching U.S citizens win $1m… Heck, it would probably cost less and not be any worse from a ratings standpoint. I guess Trips and Steph may be clouding Daddy dearest’s view…

WWE’s reluctance to push new talent may be due to one simple question…can they trust new talent? It seems like they’d really like to push Mr. Kennedy to a higher level, but every time they try to he either gets injured or suspended for Wellness issues. Of course, the posterboy for this phenomenon is Jeff Hardy, who always seems on the verge of the main event level, but just doesn’t make it there due to injuries or drugs or whatever. I’m not saying that the guys in the main event are immune to these problems (coughORTONcough), but in order to receive a main event push, a talent has to show that they deserve to be there, and perhaps more importantly, they can be trusted with the position and not do things that make the company look bad.

However, it seems like WWE is starting to spread the wealth. One look at Raw’s title scene should tell you that, since other than Mickie James none of Raw’s current champions have been on the WWE main roster for two years. Two of them weren’t on the main roster at the beginning of 2008. I think the bone of contention you have with WWE here may be starting to disappear.

Greg has three questions…

1) When Chris Benoit was on Smackdown and pretty much beating Paul Heyman’s lackey, WWE Champion Brock Lesnar in tag matches, was the storyline ever going to boil down to Benoit vs Lesnar?

That’s what they wanted you to think…that way when Benoit made the switch over to Raw and challenged for that title instead of Smackdown’s title, it came as a pretty darn big surprise. They built up that Benoit vs. Heyman/Brock thing for a while, as you’ll probably remember Heyman even went to the trouble of making Benoit the number one entrant in the Rumble for the purpose of keeping Benoit from winning so he couldn’t challenge Lesnar. Benoit won anyway, but it didn’t matter because he decided to go to Raw instead of staying on Smackdown and putting up with more of Heyman’s nonsense.

2) Was there ever a plan for Eddie Guerrero and Booker T to make a tag team? The segments for WrestleMania goes to Hollywood were hilarious. (Both guys were the enforcers from Pulp Fiction)

They did win a tag team match against Rene Dupree & Kenzo Suzuki on the December 16, 2004 edition of Smackdown, and were on the winning side of a 6-man matchup on the January 27, 2005 edition of Smackdown, as they teamed with Rey Mysterio to defeat a true Murderer’s Row of talent in Mark Jindrak, Luther Reigns & Orlando Jordan. A regular Booker/Eddie teaming wouldn’t have fit into their plans though, as Eddie was busy teaming and then feuding with Mysterio while Booker was busy doing…well, not that much at the time.

3) Do you think Cena should bring back the battle raps? How do you like Cena: a face or a heel?

I loved Cena’s battle raps, but it’s probably for the best that he stopped doing them before they got stale. My favorite Cena run was his run as a heel on Smackdown from late 2002 to late 2003, when he was really getting over as something that was fresh and different from other stuff that WWE was doing at the time. It was that period of time that enabled Cena to reach the next level and become what he is today, arguably the biggest star in WWE. There might not be an “arguably” about it, to be honest. I’d love to see him turn heel again, and maybe if I’m lucky they’ll turn him if he ends up feuding with Batista on Raw at some point in time.

I was just wondering when Chris “Wildcat” Harris will be making his debut on WWE television? I know he signed with them a few months back and he was one of my favorite wrestlers in TNA. Also is he allowd to use the “Wildcat” name? – Kevin

The “Wildcat” name is not an issue, as Harris was using it long before he got to TNA and they do not own a copyright on it. As for when he’s getting to WWE…your guess is as good as mine, quite honestly. He’s still training in FCW at this time and awaiting a call-up to the main roster. I’ve heard nothing on when we can expect to see Harris on television. Stay tuned…

411Mania’s own Elmo “The Mo” Machete has three questions for the column.

1.) I DO buy into the conspiracy theory of Edge/Matt Hardy. Matt was only ever REALLY over with the IWC, and the whole Lita situation broke on the Internet. Why wouldn’t the WWE pretend to have actually fired Hardy just to get one over on us nerds?

I tend to believe that Internet fans who think WWE is constantly trying to trick them overestimate the impact that they have on what WWE does. Sure, they keep an eye on what some of us have to say, but they know it’d be pure lunacy to actually do things that we suggest or try and work angles that only have appeal to us. I mean, why do you think Russo did so bad in WCW? He was trying to book for the Internet, and nobody liked it. I dunno, maybe I’m crazy, but I prefer to take things like Matt/Lita/Edge at face value and not spend too much time thinking about them. Their personal lives are exactly that: their personal lives.

Dos.) Why did the European title ever mean enough to be counted towards the “Grand Slam?” It was active for just a little over five years, and was never much more than a pale imitation of the WCW Television Championship, an unnecessary lower mid-card belt. On that note, what the hell did the TV title ever accomplish?!?

The Penguin and I were talking about the WCW TV Title last week, it’s a pity I didn’t save that convo. In any event, the TV title had quite an illustrious existence. It started out as a secondary title in Jim Crockett’s Mid-Atlantic promotion, where people like Ric Flair, Ivan Koloff, Tim “Mr. Wrestling” Woods, Ricky Steamboat, Paul Jones, Greg Valentine, Roddy Piper and others fought for it. When Crockett took over the NWA, the TV title became one of the centerpieces of Dusty Rhodes’ feud with the Four Horsemen, as he traded the title with Tully Blanchard & Arn Anderson during 1985-86. The TV title was the first major title that Sting won in WCW, and he had a memorable feud with the Great Muta over it in 1989. Another young star that claimed the TV title as his first major title victory was some guy by the name of Steve Austin, who won it from Bobby Eaton and later traded it with Barry Windham & Ricky Steamboat. I’m not sure what happened to that Austin guy, but in any event the TV title continued to remain interesting during the early days of my WCW fandom, which featured TV title title reigns by Austin, Steamboat, Paul Orndorff and Lord Steven Regal. Regal in particular had an entertaining reign, as he used the TV time limit to his advantage on many occasions where he would barely manage to hang on to his belt via time limit draw.

However, as Penguin pointed out in our conversation, the TV title pretty much died when the Renegade won it from Arn Anderson at 1995’s Bash at the Beach event. When you give a title like that to a guy who is obviously useless, it tells your fans that anybody can win the title and it means nothing. Heck, I was still a non-Internet mark in 1995 and I knew Renegade was an abysmal wrestler. The TV title still had some good times ahead, in particular during a feud with Booker T & Chris Benoit in 1998, but it never got back to the level of importance it once had.

III.) I guess I should have an actual “question” in here somewhere. Do you have any idea why Goldberg never wanted to feud with Chris Jericho in WCW? I mean, Jericho basically called him out legitimately on TV. Was it Billy’s decision, a booking choice, or some combination of both?

I’ve heard conflicting stories on this, but noted wrestling journalist Mike Mooneyham had the best description of the situation that I’ve seen:
Involved at the time in a quasi angle with then-WCW heavyweight champion Bill Goldberg, Jericho had lobbied vigorously for a title program with the 6-3, 285-pound ex-pro footballer. Much to his dismay, however, the potentially lucrative and entertaining storyline was killed dead in its tracks.
The charismatic Canadian later learned that another big man, 6-10 Kevin Nash, helped sabotage his push by convincing Goldberg that Jericho, due to his relatively smallish stature, wasn’t a credible contender and would only damage Goldberg’s position as the company’s hottest star. As a result Goldberg pulled the plug on the program, spelling the beginning of the end for Jericho in the ill-fated company.

Goldberg was too new to the business to know what was really going on, so it was easy for Nash and others to shape his mind and tell him how things were supposed to work. The bookers had no interest in booking a Goldberg/Jericho program, and Goldberg had no interest in it either thanks to what he was told by other people.

When exactly did J.R. and The King stop calling certain moves, cause it seems like they’ve gotten VERY lazy in the past few years. I was watching youtube from ’98 when JR called The Rock Bottom, even mentioning it was a uranage. And the called moves for everybody, now it seems like unless it’s an F-U or Pedigree, it’s just “an impactful manuever”, or somethig else vague. – SS87

WWE doesn’t want their announcers to call moves, they’re supposed to tell stories. That’s why Joey Styles was doomed to failure in WWE, and why JR doesn’t often bother with calling moves anymore. It’s not that they’re lazy, they’re just doing what they’re told.

Anthler has two questions…

just wanted to ask a question about Matt ‘Evan Bourne’
Sydal. I was wondering how certain people are allowed to keep their
indy/real names (CM PUNK, Paul London, Brain Kendrick/Spanky, both hardyz)
while some other talent are saddled with obviously crappy non-catchy ‘slave
names’ (as big show eloquently puts it) like Harry Smith = DH Smith, Monty
Brown = Marquis Cor Von (wtf?), Ken Doane = Kenny, Brent Albright = Gunner
Scot? Does the WWE not want their investments to get over at all, or do they
already have ‘favourites’ that get the decent names (Ken Anderson = Ken
Kennedy)? hard to get behind someone when their name is not easily chantable
and unmemorable. Case in point is Matt Sydal, the clever minds at wwe
creative could have thought of a million puns to go with ‘sydal’ like
changing the name of his Shirauni-Kai (one man spanish fly) to the
‘Sui-Sydal’ or something, right? it’s MONEY!

I think WWE Creative honestly believes that “Evan Bourne”, “DH Smith”, “Gunner Scott” and “Marcus Cor Von” are good names. It’s not that they’re trying to bury these guys with bad names, they just happen to have bad taste. I agree with you, Matt Sydal is a much better ring name and could be shaped into a lot of different phrases. However, it was not to be.

second question would be regarding the naming again, as some say that the
wwe do not want people with the same names running around unless they are
already established (Chris benoit or Chris Jericho). But then they had Chris
Masters and Chris Nowitski running around while Jericho and Benoit were
around? so is there any proof that the wwe do not want people with the same
name running around at the same time? (Matt Hardy’s name cancels out Matt
Sydal, hence the use of ‘Evan Bourne’)?

That’s been more of a 2000s development, really. Back in the Attitude Era you had Steve Austin, Steve Blackman & Steven Regal running around at the same time, not to mention all of the Chrises. At some point (I think it was when Shane Helms came into the fold and they were afraid fans would mix him up with Shane McMahon) it was decided that certain guys should be given different names so idiot fans don’t mix them up. The most ridiculous example of this was likely when CW Anderson was re-christened Christopher W. Anderson because they were afraid people would mix him up with CM Punk. Seriously. That’s probably one of the main reasons why Matt Sydal is no longer Matt Sydal.

Dom has two questions about over runs…

#1- I was wondering what was the longest over run in wrestling tv history. I don’t remember if Smackdown or Thunder has ever had an overrun. I actually don’t remember if Nitro ever actually went past 11pm. The only two shows that I can remember that went past their time slots are RAW and ECW (wwe’s ecw). I was wondering what is that longest any show ever went past its normally allotted time frame. My memory tells me it was the episode of RAW where HHH “married” Stephanie in the drive thru chapel after he drugged her. I believe that broadcast ended at 11:22. Was any over run longer than that?

Dude, the whole concept of an over run was invented by WCW Monday Nitro. It was one of the “tricks” that Eric Bischoff employed to give Nitro an advantage over Raw during the early stages of the Monday Night Wars. They would start their show a couple of minutes earlier than Raw, and then they would end their show sometime after Raw went off the air, so they would get viewers that were changing the channel after Raw was over. I can’t say for sure which show ran the longest, but I remember episodes of Nitro where the main event didn’t hit the ring until past 11. Penguin says the latest he can remember a show going is 11:25, and it may have been the Ric Flair celebration earlier this year. The first episode of WCW Thunder lasted 3 hours and 15 minutes and threw the TBS schedule for the evening into disarray.

#2 RAw and Ecw still have over runs but usually not as long as the Monday night war days. How does the network deal with that? What do they do with the next regularly scheduled programs? Does the next show after RAW/ECW get cut down in content, do they just not show as many commercials and Vince makes up the difference?

Penguin *bgca says:
It has to do with the way advertising is paid for. Really though, it comes down to the fact that usa and sci fi are just going to turn into paid programming anyways, so time can be made up there.
Penguin *bgca says:
Further, when you’re the highest rated show on your network, there’s no reason for the network to not want you to be on for as many minutes as possible
Samoa Steve says:
I think both Raw and ECW are scheduled to end at 11:05 anyway
Samoa Steve says:
so the “over run” is built into the schedule now
Penguin *bgca says:
yeah my digi cable says five after
Penguin *bgca says:
I’ve seen it end as early as the hour and as late as twenty five after though

Sean has two questions…

1) What were the original plans for Wrestlemania 22 before Eddie Guerrero’s death and the injury to Batista? It looks like they were heading for a Batista-Orton Smackdown main event, but I’m not sure.

Batista vs. Orton was the original plan for the Smackdown main event, I have no idea what they would have done with everybody else involved.

2) Kinda odd question, but this one has to do with Jerry Lawler’s hair. I remember seeing a pic in a PWI magazine a years back of King fighting a young Rocky Maivia (or Flex Kavana?) around 1996 or so, and King had this massive bald spot. I also remember seeing King of the Ring 1996, and King looked to have some sort of artificial hair piece or something. Not that it really matters, but was Lawler start losing his hair & did he get hair transplants or something?

Terry Funk said Lawler got hair transplants in his book, and that’s good enough for me. Of course, Funk also refers to Lawler as a “baby banger”, so I’m not sure what to believe. I couldn’t find any good pictures of bald Lawler, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he got some work done. He had some cosmetic surgery done to his face in September 2002, so he’s not above taking steps to make himself look more presentable on television.

What was the reason behind Sabu wanting to fix his own wounds, instead of going to a hospital? – DarkNightwolf101

He’s hardcore, he’s hardcore, he’s hardcore. He’s also a cheap S.O.B. and probably didn’t have health insurance. Think about it, if you were an insurance company would YOU insure Sabu? I sure wouldn’t.

Brandon has two questions…

Aside from Rico and Mike Adamle, are there any other “American Gladiators” fellows (either contestants, gladiators, or whatever) that have gone into pro wrestling at all?

What about Ernest “The Cat” Miller”?… I think that was his name.

What ever happened to “The Cat” anyway? Last time I saw him, he was on commentary for RAW.

Unless I’m missing something, the Cat never made an appearance on AG. After his stint with WWE ended in early 2004, during which he served as a color commentator on Velocity and had a very brief run as a wrestler, Miller left the business. He is currently working as an actor and will have a major role in “The Wrestler”, a movie starring Mickey Rourke that has had tapings at a couple of Northeast indy shows. It should be released sometime in 2009.

Also, I’ve always been a faithful WWE fan (it’s becoming harder and harder these days) and not once did I ever switch over to WCW. Not even during the Monday Night Wars. But I did get stuck watching Nitro one night at my girlfriends fathers place (he was a Hogan lover). This was somewhere around 2000 i think, and KISS was there and they debuted this clown done up like Gene Simmons. I always wondered who the poor sap was and why he got stuck with such a lame gimmick. Did he ever do anything worth noting?

The KISS Demon gimmick had two poor saps get stuck with it. The first was Brian “Crush” Adams, who was the person in the Gene Simmons getup when it debuted during KISS’s appearance on Nitro. Adams didn’t much care for the gimmick, so he was replaced by Dale Torborg, who is probably most known for being the son of former baseball manager Jeff Torborg. The Demon went on to do not much of anything in WCW, although due to a provision in the contract KISS signed with WCW, he did appear in a “Special Main Event Match” at Superbrawl 2000. Oddly enough, it was the fourth match on the show. There were going to be other wrestlers dressed up like KISS people, but the idea was pretty much thrown off the table after Eric Bischoff was sent home by WCW. This article appeared on MTV Online before the debut of the KISS Demon…

Meanwhile, KISS’ involvement with the Ted Turner-owned wrestling outfit is a bit more elaborate. The band will essentially loan their endorsement and legendary makeup to a group of wrestlers dubbed in the press as “The KISS Warriors” (though a spokesperson for WCW says that a name for the collective has yet to be chosen). The first man to grapple under the KISS banner will be fashioned after Gene Simmons’ demon persona and will be introduced during WCW’s “Monday Nitro” on August 23. That broadcast, which will come live from Las Vegas’ MGM Grand, will see KISS turn up and perform to help introduce the new WCW personality. The move is similar to one that recently saw Master P guide his No Limit Soldiers into the ranks of the WCW and turn up at a number of WCW events.

There were also plans for there to be a WCW/KISS PPV on New Year’s Eve that would have featured the Demon in the main event against Vampiro, but that was also thrown off the table after Bischoff left. Which was probably for the best. Torborg went on to become the conditioning coordinator for the Chicago White Sox, and made another appearance in wrestling in 2005, when he accompanied Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski during a couple episodes of TNA Impact. They also appeared on a TNA show in early 2007.

During the Hardy/Cena match on Raw a few weeks back, some dumbass fan tried to storm the ring. This also happened a week or so before at a Smackdown/ECW taping, in which Bam Neely supposedly handed the fan his ass.
Anyway, that got me thinking, what is the earliest record of an idiot fan jumping the railing? Has this been happening as long as wrestling has been around? Did it start when wrestling begun being featured on TV? – Toddo

The tradition of idiot fans jumping the railing goes all the way back to the days of the carnivals. Of course, back then it was allowed because the whole gimmick was that the wrestler could not be defeated and if any fan could defeat them, they would win some money. It used to be a shoot, but in these days challenges are always accepted by a plant, which is somebody who is brought in for the purpose of accepting the challenge. Idiot fans jumping the railing is not a phenomenon exclusive to pro wrestling by any means. Idiots run onto baseball fields, football gridirons, tennis courts, soccer pitches, and pretty much any type of sporting field except for a racetrack. That, I haven’t seen.

Moving on, which wrestler has the most finishers? I was thinking that the Undertaker can use the Chokeslam, Last Ride, Tombstone, and the Googoplata or whatever its called. It that the most number of finishers that any wrester has ever had? – Taiso

Penguin *bgca says:
do all of rvd’s signature moves count as finishers?
Samoa Steve says:
list em and I’ll tell you
Samoa Steve says:
for RVD I’d say…frog splash, split legged moonsault, Van Terminator
Penguin *bgca says:
van daminator
van terminator
rolling thunder
five star frog splash
Penguin *bgca says:
split legged moonsault
Samoa Steve says:
I don’t think he won anything with rolling thunder
Samoa Steve says:
van daminator might have won a match or two, but I didn’t really think of it as a finisher
Penguin *bgca says:
ithink he did with the assist of a chair
Samoa Steve says:
you may be right
Penguin *bgca says:
foley had a few
Samoa Steve says:
Samoa Steve says:
mandible claw, double-arm ddt
Penguin *bgca says:
double arm ddt
madible claw
elbow drop
Penguin *bgca says:
seems like he had another too
Samoa Steve says:
barbed wire baseball bat?
Penguin *bgca says:
Penguin *bgca says:
benoit had two i can think of
Penguin *bgca says:
micheals had three i can think of
Samoa Steve says:
actually, Benoit might have more now that I can think of it
Penguin *bgca says:
or…actually hbk had four
Samoa Steve says:
if you want to call them finishers
Penguin *bgca says:
top rope dropkick
reverse fall away slam
fisherman suplex
Samoa Steve says:
well, I think the reader’s looking for somebody that had 4 finishers at the same time
Samoa Steve says:
HBK moved from move to move until he landed on the superkick
Penguin *bgca says:
Penguin *bgca says:
well undertaker is the obvious choice here, im just trying to find other possibilities
Samoa Steve says:
Benoit: Crossface, Sharpshooter…maybe diving headbutt, dragon suplex in WCW
Samoa Steve says:
he did a tombstone off the second rope in Japan
Penguin *bgca says:
i think he finished some with the rolling germans as well
Samoa Steve says:
Jericho had all sorts of finishers, but most of them didn’t get over
Penguin *bgca says:
oh god the list of jericho finishers is a mile
Samoa Steve says:
almost as long as his list of moves
Penguin *bgca says:
im thinking finishers of people who were nationally known when using them though
Penguin *bgca says:
Samoa Steve says:
Edge had a few, but none of them got over either
Samoa Steve says:
the spear looks good sometimes
Penguin *bgca says:
i think undertaker is the best answer…though im sure readers will come up with all sorts of indy and roh finishers for people like paul london or whatever other indy jobber is the flavor of the week
Samoa Steve says:
yeah, I’m trying to stay away from indy finishers
Samoa Steve says:
Bryan Danielson used like 30 during his ROH title reign
Samoa Steve says:
most of the guys I can think of have two or three
Penguin *bgca says:
yeah, that’s how i am
Penguin *bgca says:
even lawler only had two i can think of
Samoa Steve says:
piledriver and fistdrop
Penguin *bgca says:
oh well three
Samoa Steve says:
yeah, let’s go with Undertaker and let the commenters try to prove us wrong
Penguin *bgca says:
becauase he actually used a punch for a while
Samoa Steve says:
Penguin *bgca says:
pretty sure
Samoa Steve says:
with a chain?
Penguin *bgca says:
nah dude, johnny b badd style
Samoa Steve says:
Samoa Steve says:
speaking of Funky, I’m trying to remember what his were
Samoa Steve says:
piledriver, spinning toehold…maybe that’s it
Penguin *bgca says:
didnt he use a sleeper for a while?
Samoa Steve says:
yeah, everybody used that back in the day

We got nothing.

I saw some videos on youtube that showed Hogan in his “dark side” phase. He was in all black and clean shaved. It was quite a little while before he turned heel. I saw another video where he took off the black and had the yellow on underneath, and said something about the dark side being over. What was this whole thing about? – Casey

The whole red & yellow thing just wasn’t working for the Hulkster in WCW. The fans there saw Hogan as an outsider representing the cartoon style of the WWF, and they didn’t really care for the WWF. They wanted to see their favorites like Ric Flair & Sting on top, and they resented Hogan for pushing them aside and bringing in fellow ex-WWF wrestlers like Randy Savage, Jim Duggan, Honky Tonk Man, Brutus Beefcake and many others. They didn’t want to see those guys, they wanted their WCW dangnab it. So they came up with the idea to change up Hogan’s character a bit, and after Hogan lost the WCW title at Halloween Havoc 1995, he decided to go back to his roots and show his “dark side”. It didn’t get over any better than the red & yellow stuff did, but there was potential there. So Hogan went back to his old self and remained that way until Bash at the Beach 1996.

I just got the new Rock DVD. Pretty damn good if you ask me, anyway my question is about the Icon vs. Icon match at WrestleMania X8. When Hollywood comes out, his music is really weird, its completely different from his VooDoo Child and nWo’s Rockhouse, I’ve never heard it before. Why is it different? Did I just not notice he used a different theme or is there a reason, because it sounds like the theme that was used was dubbed over the video. The only other thing i can think of was WWE might be having to pay the Jimi Hendrix Experience for the use of Voodoo Child, if that’s what Hogan actually used that match. Sorry if you answered this before, but its buggin the fuck outta me. – Nick

You already answered your own question…they didn’t want to pay royalties for the use of “Voodoo Child”, which was what Hogan used for the match. For the record, Hollywood Hogan is my favorite persona of the Hulkster. Sue me!

Just one quick question I have always wondered about Ric Flair not being the original nature boy what is that about did he steal the gimmick? – Anthony

The original Nature Boy was a man by the name of Buddy Rogers. Rogers was one of the biggest stars in pro wrestling during the 1950s and early 60s, winning the NWA championship in 1961 and becoming the first champion of the World Wide Wrestling Federation in 1963. He retired soon after losing the WWWF title to Bruno Sammartino and only wrestled occasionally for many years afterward. In 1978 he returned to a more active schedule in Florida, and then went to the Mid-Atlantic area, where there was a young man named Ric Flair that fancied himself as the new “Nature Boy”. Rogers ended up putting Flair over after a brief feud and went to the (W)WWF and became a manager/part-time wrestler/talk show host. Not only was Rogers the first Nature Boy, he’s also credited with inventing the Figure-Four Leglock, a hold that Flair has used at least a few times over the years.

So to answer your question, yes. But it didn’t matter because the person stealing the gimmick went on to become arguably the greatest professional wrestler of all time. When you reach that kind of level, people will forgive you for using a gimmick that has previously been used.

I remember a best of series between Ric Flair and Steven Regal back when Flair returned to WCW from WWF. If I remember correctly both had singles titles at the time (World and TV) and both may have been heels. Do you have any insight to this series of matches, the storyline around it and who ultimately won? – Laszlo

The Marquis de Queensbury series took place during early 1994, between Flair’s title victory at Starrcade 1993 and the WCW debut of Hulk Hogan. Flair was the babyface WCW champion while Regal was the heel TV champion…it was a best-of-five series with rules that were quite different from traditional wrestling matches. For starters, there was a five-minute time limit. After doing a move, you had to wait for your opponent to get up before you continued attacking. If there wasn’t a winner after five minutes, the victor would be determined by a panel of judges. There wasn’t much of a storyline to the whole thing, it was simply a challenge from Regal to Flair and the point of it was to determine who the better wrestler was. Flair wound up winning the series by a score of three to two. It was a pretty good piece of business, I remember enjoying it a lot when I saw it fourteen years ago.

I might just have an extremely warped mind, but knowing Vince’s love for bad taste( eddie guerrero storylines)
What do you think of Vince being “crippled” almost one year to the day of Chris “the crippler” Benoit’s suicide…could we be seeing the beginning of a Benoit curse/ghost angle?
At first I’d like to say I hope not, but at the same time it would be cool to see how low Vince can go.
Great work on the column! – Steve

That sounds like a terrible idea that could not possibly spawn anything good. But I include it in this week’s column so you will get credit if WWE was to use an idea like this. On that note, I think it’s time to hit the ol’ dusty trail. If you have any questions, thoughts, concerns or porn, send ‘em to [email protected] Until next time, booooooooohica!


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