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Everything posted by Beech27

  1. That’s commendable, though not really something we can reliably track. Many, many wrestlers were/are enormous fans without making “student of the game” their gimmick and part of their company-branded mythos. And ultimately, it matters less how much Triple H studied than what that study yielded. There’s a proud legacy of non-fans who just went to work and were better ultimately than he was, just like there are footage-chasing obsessives who were better.
  2. And his batting average on the other end of the spectrum isn’t great either. Just looking at Wrestlemania, since that’s key to WWE mythology, for every Bryan match, Rousey tag, or triple threat, there are relative duds like the matches against Sting, Sheamus, and Booker, to bombs like the Orton and Reigns main events. Also, however fun the shows were for a bit, had his visions for NXT ultimately won out, I think it would have been a disaster for the global wrestling scene. The last thing anyone but WWE needs is the whole industry being pop-up franchises/a collection of corporate IP action figures.
  3. Cody may be a tedious geek with an inflated and mercurial sense regarding his own creative powers, but he is — according to everything we’ve seen reported — one of those good and kind people. Were I to guess — and that’s what this is, so maybe I just shouldn’t — I’d say he suffers not from an excess of carny cravenness as much as genuine flighty earnestness. I suspect he meant all the anti-WWE rhetoric when he portrayed it, but ended up feeling jilted and under appreciated by AEW and its fans.
  4. I suspect his entrance will get a pretty massive pop, if only because people love moments and surprises (even ones they know are coming), and an AEW founder switching sides in a war he uniquely insisted on is one. The problems come after, both right away and further down the road: 1) A Rollins/Cody match will be fine, but probably suffer a bit from “and then the bell has to ring” syndrome, after the debut. And I’m not at all sure the crowd will regard him as a massive face, the returning King from exile, that he/the company will probably want. 2) Any subsequent feud is going to be heavy on tedious worked shooty claims about who deserves to main event where, carrying companies, relationships to/with Triple H, etc. 3) He’s gonna get AEW chants basically forever, and I have no idea how he — and more importantly, Vince — will feel about that or respond to it. 4) As everyone else has said, Cody isn’t going to get anywhere close to the amount of creative control he got in AEW, and he found that amount to be insufficient.
  5. It really is great. I’ve been watching a lot of AJPW tags from that same era, and I guess the highest compliment I can give is that it doesn’t seem remotely out of place. Not just the pace and quality of the bumping and work itself, but — I think the key to great tags — clear tiers between individuals that influence strategy/teamwork, and a constant sense of which team is winning, with a constant drive to securing that result.
  6. Additionally, I wonder if the ROH title being available changes what the answer would have been. (If you want to rebuild the brand, an epic Danielson run seems a good way.)
  7. Agree that Kaito will have to be the ace if NOAH is going to have one, but I’m not sure how we can fairly evaluate Nakajima and Kenoh’s drawing power, considering that their HW ascendance and more developed personas coincided with multiple ownership/branding changes and then COVID.
  8. A while ago, he responded this way to a fan question about how many years he has left: He’s always also emphasized his frugality, outside interests, and desire not to wrestle with greatly diminished athleticism, all implying that he won’t be working to 50, but who knows.
  9. This is cool. Partially because it’s always a little sad, if exceptionally common, to hear someone utterly burnt out on a thing they were once passionate about, but also because I think Kenny would have a lot to contribute. Certainly he’s got some hammier tendencies and big-spot death-wish athleticism that either can’t or maybe shouldn’t be entirely passed on, but I think he also gets match layout in a way that should be. You can just watch his big matches and have a great time, but you’re also rewarded for watching the vlogs and that six-man in Beppu years ago when that guy did that thing. It’s not like he’s the first to approach things this way—he’s cited Marvel movies and 90s All Japan—but I think it’s a useful filter for the “cinematic universe” age of entertainment.
  10. Stray thought: LIJ and Kongoh is a faction vs faction match featuring a world champ on either side, but the world champ isn't the faction leader in either case. That feels pretty unique.
  11. It seems pretty clear that New Japan just doesn't see Suzuki as a featured player anymore, so he's happy enough to play the hits as a touring legend. I can't imagine the company is as stoked about White's extended absence, and what that could imply about his future plans. (Even if COVID does someday get sorted, it could be suggested that he's expressed his territorial priority, and he already lives in the States.)
  12. In an SI interview (https://www.si.com/wrestling/2021/12/13/ring-of-honor-final-battle-champion-jonathan-gresham), current ROH champion Jonathan Gresham elaborates on his plan to keep defending the title (only under Pure rules), saying he needs to wrestle both CM Punk and Bryan Danielson to keep the spirit and essence of the company alive. Obviously there's precedent for a traveling third-party champion losing their title on an AEW show, and if ROH is ever to reboot the exposure would be tremendous. But I wonder if -- even with the Pure rules offering something different, and the name having some lingering cache -- AEW would see real value in a potential defense/exchange. (Although, Punk is basically defending the 'being CM Punk' title in one-offs already, and Danielson could certainly showcase tons of challengers once he presumably fails to unseat Page. So.)
  13. Promo ability and color commentary don't correlate 1-to-1, but Liger has been an announcer for long time, and is I think considered to be really funny in that role. And while we're discussing extras to pad out his resume, he also kept a room in the dojo forever, acting as trainer/mentor figure for several generations of wrestlers.
  14. Long-term NOAH fans might have deeply unpleasant flashbacks if Suzuki gets a prominent singles match. I'd also like to see KENTA/Marafuji go another round, but I wouldn't be surprised if we get Naito/SANADA vs Mutoh/Marafuji.
  15. Just quoting Wikipedia: New Japan Pro-Wrestling star Will Ospreay was accused by a former female wrestler, Pollyanna, of having her blacklisted after she made allegations towards another wrestler, Scott Wainwright, who is a friend of Ospreay's.[27] While Ospreay denied the accusation, International Wrestling League would release a statement that contradicted his denial.[28] However, in October 2020, IWL retracted their statement.[29]
  16. I think the match ends as Omega is seconds from tapping, or on the count of two while he's out cold. Danielson would have won, but technically didn't. With all the talk lately of Danielson in the G1, and of course Omega having been in several, maybe my head is just in the space to borrow the sort of finish that tournament has featured. Whatever the case, it develops the tension between Omega and Callis further: the latter just wants to keep his meal ticket viable, while the former increasingly wants to reassert himself beyond that. Alternatively, they could rerun something from Omega's New Japan arc, where his faction-mates want to interfere more than he's comfortable with. Either the distraction works and he beats Danielson (but doesn't feel good about it), or is himself distracted and loses (but with an excuse). It's exciting, though. I can talk myself into all sorts of finishes, and the match that leads to any of them will be great.
  17. It's an adage, but mostly it's a reworded and taken out of context Chekhov quote referring to nature writing that people have flogged for decades since whenever they dislike anything having to do with fictional exposition. Anyway, yeah, a 15-30 second clip would have been perfectly fine. I feel like we're all (myself included!) investing too much in incredibly marginal aspects of the presentation, though. Suzuki showed up and choked out/spiked Moxley. They're gonna fight, now. And they also, smartly, had Punk -- who most 'casual/mainstream' fans would have tuned in to see -- put over Suzuki as a big deal. I don't think AEW is trying to be a niche promotion, just one that acknowledges a broader wrestling universe exists. A perfect balance in how they present that isn't possible for all viewers. If they missed for you, in this case, that is what it is.
  18. I get your point, but this is some wild hyperbole. He's a multiple-time world-champ (which they told us) and has been once of the most famous Japanese pro-wrestlers/MMA pioneers (which they told us) for the last 25 years. You don't need anything approaching encyclopedic knowledge of the puro scene to know who Minoru Suzuki is. You need... basically, more than zero knowledge. Of course, plenty of viewers do have zero knowledge of that scene, which is fine. But you can't explain everything at the level of the least-knowledgeable hypothetical viewer. That would be incredibly tedious.
  19. Yeah, I would assume New Japan would have no qualms about providing footage to hype Suzuki. And he's promoted his own shows, too, the footage of which he presumably owns, and could provide if AEW wanted. But Suzuki isn't a flashy wrestler, and (if you don't know who he is) I'm not sure what him choking anonymous (to you) people out for thirty seconds would accomplish. The best possible characterization was done by Moxley at the PPV, honestly. His face, combined with the announcers' call, told you everything you needed to know. (I think what they did was fine, and a short video/promo would have been fine.) Most fiction benefits from less exposition.
  20. Per Dave, Omega does want to wrestle Ospreay somewhere, at some point, and they appear to be working something on twitter. Maybe one of these shows would be the place.
  21. It's a risk, but there is potential for reward, a rising tide to lift other boats, etc. As ever, the execution will tell.
  22. I'm not a huge Steen/Owens fan, but no one could rationally argue he'd be a nepotism hire. If your point is that reason needn't enter into it, that people will feel aggrieved... sure. That's always been the business. Wrestlers will compete for spots, and/or go other places where they can get the spots and money they think they deserve, (maybe there will be enough leverage to form a union!), and companies will have to compete for the wrestlers they want. Everyone won't come out making a fortune in main events, but this is still way better than what the status quo has been for years. (And if the pandemic ever really ends, the indies/ROH/NJPW will have more room, too.)
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