wrestling / Columns

The Piledriver Report 08.10.12: Kevin Nash Stirs Things Up

August 10, 2012 | Posted by RSarnecky


Kevin Nash stirred up quite the controversy this week when he talked about the death of wrestling in a recent interview. Kevin said, “When Benoit and Guerrero hugged [at the end of WrestleMania XX], that was the end of the business.” “Has business been the same since that WrestleMania? Has it come close to the Austin era? Has it come close to the NWO or the Hogan era? You put two fucking guys that were great workers that were the same height as the fucking referees, and I’m sorry, man. Are you going to watch a porno movie with a guy with a three-inch dick? Even if you’re not gay, you will not watch a porno movie with a guy with a three-inch dick. That’s not the standard in porno films. So you put a 5-foot-7 guy as your world champion.”

Nash then talking about two top WWE stars C.M. Punk and Daniel Bryan as well, noting, “They are not bigger than life. I bet they could both walk through airports and not be noticed unless they have a gimmick shirt on and the belt.”

Thanks to the Internet, the wrestling world, and its fans quickly responded to Nash’s comments. Most of the fans were very negative. Although some fans did agree.


Jim Ross, while disagreeing, respected Kevin Nash’s right to his opinion. “I’m an old-school guy who thinks that wrestlers come in all shapes and sizes and that the final, final decree on how well said talents produce is ultimately left up to the consumer aka the fans. Nash is a brilliant guy…love him or hate him. He’s a survivor and by any means necessary which at times doesn’t sit well with some people… No, I don’t agree with Kevin on his smaller wrestlers theory as I like all that have true talent. But, I do defend his right to express himself and chuckle at the ability that he has to manipulate fans and peers alike in 140 characters or less.”

Chris Jericho and Kevin Nash got into a Twitter war over the topic.

Jericho: “Funny how @realkevinnash says wrestling ‘died’ when Benoit and Guerrero were champs-Yet the worst year for WWE biz was 95 when he was on top.”

Nash: “Once again the puppet master pulls the marks strings. Knew Jericho was a closet mark. First one eliminated on a bullshit sing show…REALLY!!”

Jericho: “Hope @realkevinnash doesn’t tear his quad tweeting! #typicalbigman #nwothirdwheel.”
Roddy Piper defended Chris Jericho, and MVP also chimed in


MVP: “Kevin Nash is right. Smaller guys don’t draw. I mean who would pay any money to watch itty bitty guys like Mayweather or Paquiao?”

“Let the record show, I LIKE @RealKevinNash he’s always been cool to me. I just don’t agree with his opinion. Doesn’t mean we’re hostile.”

“I’m not upset at all. I just sarcastically expressed a difference of opinion. Nash has always been real cool to me.”

The harshest critizism came from Chavo Guerrero Sr as he posted, “Nash remain a f— moron idiot just because he was a freak and bigger than normal people he stll has no clue wt a wrestler .. entertainer or worker is my grandson that i am training now cld have a better match than him, idiot i can take his fat ass down now .. cant do a promo and if u saw his last promo in WWE with punk punk punked him he had no clue wt a waste of body maybe .. maybe his a syncronized wrestler diesel my ass.”


Kevin Nash was on Busted Open with Dave Lagreca and Doug Mortman were he tried to clarify his comments (courtesy of 411 mania wrestling news section)

On his recent comments about the size of today’s top guys: “I’m talking about them as wrestlers, I’m talking about them as their wrestling persona as far as visual. I’m not talking about anything [else]. I’ve stated before, these guys are incredibly great technical wrestlers. All of them. But there’s a reason why Chrisitan Bale in Batman has armor on and is bigger than life. There’s a reason why in all these Marvel movies if [the guys] don’t have gigantic muscles and aren’t oversized, they’re CGIs. I don’t remember Stan Lee when he started Marvel Comics making a 5-foot-7 guy.”

On Shawn Michaels succeeding despite not being a ‘big guy’: “Shawn Michaels was 6-foot-1 and a half and weighed 225 pounds in his prime. That’s a big difference between 5-foot-7. That’s a difference between a 6-foot-8 power forward and a 7-foot-1 center. CM Punk doesn’t have Shawn Michaels’ physical ability. I mean, Vince Carter and [Michael] Jordan are the same size.”

On the PG Era and CM Punk: “I think the number one thing that hurts still is the fact that they’re PG. I’m a huge fan of Punk’s [but] I’m sorry, it’s hard for me to watch two grown men say they’re going to beat the crap out of each other. That’s my personal opinion. I’m also saying that it doesn’t look to me like he spends a lot of time in the weight room. I just think it would enhance his look and everything. We were all drug free and drug tested for years at the WWE, and there were a lot of guys that had great physiques. I think that comes with it.”

On the widespread reaction his comments received: “You guys aren’t backstage, you guys aren’t around when the brass makes decisions. You guys aren’t around when they all say, ‘God, I wish he was bigger,’ [or] ‘God yeah, but the guy just doesn’t have enough size.’ It’s their opinion. I’m just stating my opinion. I’m not saying I’m right. But am I not allowed my opinion? I pay taxes, I’m allowed my opinion. In my opinion, that’s how I feel. That doesn’t mean anybody else has to jump aboard and say I have to agree with him because he says so. Number one, I’ve always been an Internet darling and always will be and if I were to say something and was just somebody that didn’t have an opinion, you wouldn’t be calling me. It’s just because Kevin Nash said it. Oh my God, Kevin Nash said it. Oh my God, Jericho rebutted. For Eddie [Guerrero] and Chris [Benoit], Eddie was a friend [and] Chris was a friend. When the tragedy went down with Benoit I think I was one of the few guys that went on TV and tried to make some sense of it. These people that think I’m desecrating deceased wrestlers; I’m talking about them as [wrestlers] and not the person. Sometimes I look at it and I just go you know what, don’t even have an opinion, be a sheep like everybody else.”

On Chris Jericho’s tweet that the worst year of WWE business was when he was champion: “[I] Absolutely disagree. When I walked in the door in 1993, we did a $100,000 gate at Madison Square Garden. My last show at the Garden we did $309,000 before I jumped to WCW and I was in the main event with Shawn Michaels. I absolutely disagree. The business was better when I left than when I got there.”

On the essence of his comments: “Number one, one of the classic stories of all-time is always going to be David and Goliath. Now I doubt it would be a biblical story if it was David vs. David. I think that you always need that bigger than life [wrestler], especially in a heel role. I always want the heel to be bigger than the babyface . . . That’s my preference. I hated playing the babyface. I never liked the role because it just doesn’t make sense; they end up working your leg for 20 minutes because they’re not going to be able to pick you up and throw you around. It just doesn’t work.”


When I first read Kevin Nash’s original comments, I thought he was insane. I respected the right to his opinion. Whether you agree with someone’s opinion or not, everybody has a right to express their opinion. It’s part of the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, and it’s one of the things that make this country great. As much as he has a right to his opinions, I also have a right to think Kevin Nash’s view was wrong.

First of all, the professional wrestling industry is not dead, especially World Wrestling Entertainment. Just look at the take from WrestleMania XXVIII. The WWE is doing just fine. Looking back at Kevin Nash’s career, he would be a good person to talk to regarding the death of the wrestling industry since he helped kill World Championship Wrestling. However, we aren’t putting any dirt on the WWE because they are pushing the like of CM Punk and Daniel Bryan EIGHT YEARS AFTER they pushed Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero.

Secondly, professional wrestling is in a new era. It’s no longer 1985 or even 1996. Fans are more demanding today. Hulk Hogan became a huge star because of his look and charisma. Hogan was, as Kevin Nash would say, larger than life. Hulk Hogan never wrestled a five star match, and nobody expected him to. He was Hulk Hogan, and the super hero look and aura was all we needed in the WWF. Now fans of the NWA, that was a different story. Eventually, the WWF fans got bored of the Hogan act. That’s when Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels stepped in. Both are billed at being over six feet tall and over 225 pounds. However, this is pro wrestling where heights and weights are exaggerated. Michaels even admitted at his Hall of Fame induction that he was 5’10” 185lbs during his career. What both men brought to the table was an athleticism in the main events that fans of the WWF were not used to seeing. Even when the WWF pushed Diesel as the WWF Champion, Bret and Shawn battled him in main event matches for the title.

Since the Bret/Shawn era, the WWF pushed Steve Austin, The Rock, Chris Jericho, Kurt Angle, Triple H, the Undertaker, Eddie Guerrero, Chris Benoit, Brock Lesnar, Randy Orton, Batista, Edge, and John Cena was their main top talent. While I am sure I am forgetting some, all these wrestlers have something in common. They all worked exciting matches in their time on top. These wrestlers are all different weights, heights, and muscularity. That’s because in today’s WWE, the fans want exciting matches. We aren’t mesmorized over a guy’s size anymore. We want to get our money’s worth. If we know that a guy can perform, we support him for his work rate and entertainment value. Today, a guy doesn’t need to look like Hulk Hogan to have us buy him as a main event wrestler. Sure, John Cena is a freak of nature, and the WWE pushes him to the moon. However, John Cena works entertaining matches for the most part. Despite Cena’s “super hero” look, CM Punk and Daniel Bryan are looked at as his equal despite being a lot smaller. It’s because their working ability is so good that what they lack in muscles, they make up for in technical skill. In 2012, the fans see past the muscle, and are looking for more. This is why guys like Punk, Bryan, and Jericho, who would never sniff the main events in the mid-eighties can flourish today.

When Kevin Nash tried to clarify his comments in his most recent interview, the former “Diesel” mentioned that he meant that they visually didn’t look the part. He wasn’t taking away their technical abilities. I agree that Eddie, Benoit, Punk, and Bryan do not “look” like your stereotypical champion. However, they do not need to be. Does Eli Manning look like an elite NFL quarterback? No, he looks like an average person. Does UFC Heavyweight Roy Nelson look like a skilled mixed martial arts fighter? No, he looks like someone you would find at your local saloon, complete with a beer gut. What about Floyd Mayweather Jr. or Manny Paquiao? They don’t exactly elicit memories of Mike Tyson. However, they are viewed as the best in the boxing world? You don’t hear that about any heavyweight. The point is that in today’s world, it’s no longer about the size of the dog. It’s about the fight he brings to the yard. That’s something that Kevin Nash doesn’t understand. It’s a good thing the rest of us do.


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