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Probably my hottest wrestling take is wrestling companies should ignore Twitter and social media and push/book whomever is best for their business. 

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Kona Crush should have been the eternal babyface and WWF champion. 

Hulk Hogan should have had to go through Johnny B. Badd to become champion and he should have lost. Johnny B. Badd should have won the tuxedo match and gone on to greater things. 

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On 4/5/2021 at 9:42 PM, Wyld Samurai said:

I think he'd be called out more today for blatantly ripping off a black wrestler in Thunderbolt Patterson and making 10000x more money doing so.

That's about 75% of pop culture in the US lol

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On 4/3/2021 at 5:13 PM, christopher.annino said:

Cody's a solid mid/upper-mid card dude who presents and books himself as a main eventer.

AEW does not have a bloated roster, it's problem is thinking nearly every match has to go over 10 minutes and through at least one commercial break. 

"Cody Rhodes is actually HHH" is a reasonable, room-temperature take, IMO.

So, my take is that the downside to the globalization of entertainment (and by that, I mean that it's very easy for people across the globe to access whatever company that they want to follow in 2021) is that wrestling house styles are amalgamating into One True Style that sort of is like what you mention here: Too many matches that are long for the sake of being long and where nothing matters until the finisher exchange in the last five minutes. Basically, the hardcore fanbase that still watches pro wrestling watches and influences the styles of all of these companies in a way that hurts the art. 

I've been going through the Portland set, and you know, it feels fucking GREAT to watch a style that doesn't feel the same as the AWA or WoS that I watched over the past three years. I would say, though, that there are fewer hard lines between a WWE, AEW, and New Japan match in terms of basic structure than people often think.

Also, and I feel bad for shitting on AEW here so much, but my scorching hot takes are that Jon Moxley's discount-SCSA gimmick is painful to watch and pretty shitty, and that it's a company with a lot of the same issues that WWE had/still has apparently - inconsistent quality of commentary;  a sense that almost no one is really must-watch most of the time; a bland ring product that depends too much on finishers, dives, and contrived spots; etc., etc.

 

Edited by Smelly McUgly
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4 hours ago, Hagan said:

Probably my hottest wrestling take is wrestling companies should ignore Twitter and social media and push/book whomever is best for their business. 

I actually think WCW had the best bite on this. Obviously WCW was before social media the phenom but all that Yahoo, AOL, and dare I say the DVDVR was what blazed that trail. WCW would throw 1 hardball straight at the head of that snake every week then run the rest of their show as usual. Sometimes it hit and and sometimes it missed but it never made or broke anything.

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22 hours ago, Matt D said:

Which wasn’t credit to Brock and his shitty narrative-less finisher spam, but an indictment of the modern WWE product.

I wouldn’t discredit Brock too much, although I partially agree. Part of the appeal was that those matches broke the formula. Of course, they then became overly formulaic themselves.

I associate the finisher spam shit with Goldberg more than Brock (although Brock was guilty as well). Again, part of the reason the Goldberg/Brock Mania match worked was because it broke the formula. Making that it’s own formula is stupid and only works if you have a sense of escalation (which itself is a bad idea), but WWE never did that so it was just the same couple moves on repeat. The two title matches at last year’s Mania without a crowd were particularly dreadful.

I think the suplex city formula had more potential for deviation and when they did mix it up there were some good matches (1st Reigns, Styles, Bryan).

I can’t criticise Brock too much as it’s sort of accepted that he doesn’t really give a shit, but Brock not giving a shit can still be really fun and he pretty much goes with what he’s given. He doesn’t seem to have an issue putting anyone over, he’ll occasionally bump big, and he’s a good seller. I kind of put the blame on WWE for those narrative-less matches, surely an agent should have been laying out different little stories (e.g. the Joe match I remember being fun) rather than just letting him do suplex city until the finish.

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Watched a match from Dark last night where Rex Lawless was squaring up with Luchasaurus. He spins himself around dramatically clockwise, plants his feet, and loads up a right hand. 

My hot take is wrestling should have fewer people spinning. Especially if you don't know which way you're going or are prone to forgetting mid-match whether you're right- or left-handed. 

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1 minute ago, John from Cincinnati said:

Watched a match from Dark last night where Rex Lawless was squaring up with Luchasaurus. He spins himself around dramatically clockwise, plants his feet, and loads up a right hand. 

My hot take is wrestling should have fewer people spinning. Especially if you don't know which way you're going or are prone to forgetting mid-match whether you're right- or left-handed. 

This would take away 99% of R-Truth's arsenal!

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1 minute ago, christopher.annino said:

This would take away 99% of R-Truth's arsenal!

My understanding is he recently traded away memorabilia in exchange for a championship reign. Maybe he's actualized as a wrestler to the point where he no longer has a need for offensive moves? 

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On 4/6/2021 at 7:46 PM, Technico Support said:

Thank you thank you thank you.  I have never been impressed with Osprey's schtick.  He just comes off to me like an overblown, overselling cosplay dork.  Everything he does is overdone, and not in a "playing to the back of the arena" way.  Not even in a "god damn, Ricky Steamboat is playing to the fans three states away" way.  Ospreay's moves, reactions, selling, and everything else is so overdone that it makes the whole thing look phony.  I usually think Meltzer is spot on and pretty smart with a lot of things, so I'm absolutely baffled by his reverence for this nerd.

A pleasure, mate. With you on all you say about Will Ospreay.

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WCW was an incredibly stupid company for most of its existence...but I don't think there has been a wrestling company since that has had a better mix of great wrestling throughout the midcard and big angles in the main event than the first year of the NWO run. They just couldn't get it off their own way. 

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2 minutes ago, supremebve said:

WCW was an incredibly stupid company for most of its existence...but I don't think there has been a wrestling company since that has had a better mix of great wrestling throughout the midcard and big angles in the main event than the first year of the NWO run. They just couldn't get it off their own way. 

Eh, I'd say that about most of WCW's run.  The in-ring portion was great in the early 90's, to the point that I still don't understand how they lost to WWF in '91-'93.  They were consistently undone by bad booking decisions and financial issues that were probably avoidable.  

 

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1 minute ago, Eoae said:

Eh, I'd say that about most of WCW's run.  The in-ring portion was great in the early 90's, to the point that I still don't understand how they lost to WWF in '91-'93.  They were consistently undone by bad booking decisions and financial issues that were probably avoidable.  

 

I agree.  I think WCW's run in 1994 before Hogan showed up is as good as American wrestling has ever been, but as soon as Hogan showed up it fell off a cliff. Matter of fact,  Hogan's entire WCW run before the turn was a complete and utter failure,  and the company was only good when he was out filming a movie or Thunder in Paradise. The problem was none of their best stuff ever made any money until the NWO came around. 

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WCW was great...always. I mean dang we’re never not talking about it to this day. It’s a shame how it ended, and how as great as it was it never reached it’s potential most of the time. That’s what all the tweezer picked complaints we have about this match and that match and this decision and that decision boil down to.

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I guess on the back of this comment, I have to slightly disagree with @supremebve, and what I say might be a hot take here: The TV directly BEFORE the NWO came around was both excellent and money-making.

I honestly think it was Bischoff's best storytelling as he weaved together multiple feuds/teases among his big stars. We had:

 

  • Flair/Savage with Elizabeth coming in and turning heel (this actually *did* make WCW money, which is where my slight disagreement with @supremebvecomes from)
  • Savage/Hogan tension predicated on both wanting to be champ
  • Four Horsemen/Hogan (with multiple high-heel international object spots, and I am not being facetious when I say this, that I absolutely loved and would watch right now if I could)
  • Flair/Sting (Flair had asked Sting for help and then turned on him as usual, but this time, there was an extra edge because Sting knew it was coming and did it "for the kids," but warned Flair that he'd break Flair after the inevitable happened)
  • Sting/Luger tension as Sting tried to support his weaselly shithead friend and Luger tried to take advantage of it
  • Sting/Hogan tension teasing since they both, get this, wanted to be champ, like that's actually a good enough reason to feud! Revolutionary stuff!

That all got dropped when the NWO angle started, and understandably so. It dragged a bit that last couple of weeks because, in retrospect, Bischoff was clearly in a holding pattern until he could get Hall and Nash on TV. However, go back and watch Nitro from its inaugural show in 1995 to the NWO angle becoming the full-on focus, and it's compelling stuff.

The midcard was good, too. Pillman/Orndorff was shaping up to be awesome before Orndorff got hurt again. The angle where Arn ruefully splatters him onto the concrete because he has to protect Pillman since Pillman's a horseman is wonderful stuff. The idea of a Horseman using the "protect our own" ethos of the group in a manipulative way to hide behind his own shitty conduct was really good. Of course, Pillman got injured and left soon after as well, but in the alternate universe where this feud happens in the four months or whatever it was before the NWO became the focus, I bet it was really fucking good.

Johnny B. Badd and DDP were also having a good feud full of fine matches. I really should re-visit that stuff because I feel like I'm not mentioning a bunch of mid-card stuff that I really liked on top of that, both in terms of the booking and the in-ring work.

WCW was probably never better creatively in 1994-1995 when it comes to Bischoff's reign. I actually think 1992 is the best year for them both creatively and in-ring, but man, the back-half of 1995 was a pretty great half-year. 

But yeah, I know that 1997 WCW is held up as the pinnacle, even if I disagree. Then again, I also think 1997 WWF was exponentially better than basically every other year of the Attitude Era outside of maybe the first three months of 2001 and is the last great full year they've had (excepting 2015 NXT because that was not main-roster stuff) so I'm full of hot takes. 

Edited by Smelly McUgly
I don't proofread. This is the reason for almost every edit I do.
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@Smelly McUglypre-NWO WCW was great, but it went from good to great as soon as Hogan left.  Hogan was still doing goofy shit with the Faces of Fear, and Kevin Sullivan and it was dragging everything down.

When Hogan left we got more focus on Flair and Savage, who were once again having a great feud,  Sting and Luger doing their face/heel friendship thing,  the Horseman coming back into prominence,  the start of DDP's rise, and the cruiserweight division starting up... that's a hell of a lot of good that would have never got it's shine if Hogan was around challenging The Giant to monster truck fights and getting Ed Leslie on TV every week. 

 

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Hulk Hogan is a far better wrestler than Kenny Omega. He has undeniably better punches, storytelling, facials, bumps, promos, and look. Kenny does more stuff and has longer matches. 

Shawn Michaels damaged the wrestling scene more than any other wrestler alive, promoting the good match narrative to the point no one cares about winning their matches anymore.

Hardcore matches (and any premutation of them such as death matches) all suck and have sucked since hardcore wrestling became a thing.  They were fine when they had a purpose and served to blow things off. Now you are more likely to see them for no good reason and its a way to hide a lack of talent.

Factions are a short hand for your characters. The Horsemen are all a bunch of rich elitists. The nWo are all a bunch of outsider assholes. If you have 10 factions, you have 40 guys who are all defied by their associations and not their individual traits. It's lazy.

If I can't describe you without saying what you look like or the moves you do, you are not a good wrestler.

You can tell the Young Bucks aren't good at wrestling because no one talks about their feuds, just their matches. 

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17 minutes ago, Goodear said:

Shawn Michaels damaged the wrestling scene more than any other wrestler alive, promoting the good match narrative to the point no one cares about winning their matches anymore

Someone earlier said something similar about All Japan in the 90s too, and I agree with both. I love both, and still think they've done more harm than good. This is kind of related to my WCW point above,  but everything can't be a five star classic main event.  There is an art to working a great midcard match that seems to be lost these days. If you go back and watch Eddy Guerrero, Dean Malenko, Rey Mysterio Jr., and Diamond Dallas Page,  from 96-98. You'll see that you can have a great match in limited time that doesn't overstay its welcome or suck the energy out of the building. These days everything is so artificially inflated that nothing ever makes a huge impact.  

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Re WCW stuff Hogan had some moments in WCW before the NWO but he ultimately sucked. Add everything together and it was still pretty good. The cruiserweight matches, Savage, Sting, Pillman, Horsemen, and more. Some of it was resolved before BATB like Luger and Savage’s relationship (they made up when they were selected to represent WCW) and some of it was extended like the Sting and Luger tag team (they feuded with Hall and Nash). It wasn’t just dropped. 

That doesn’t mean there isn’t truth to the fact that it was better without Hogan. Look at the spring of 1999. He went down with the knee injury and low and behold it looked like they were going to actually fix the whole heap of shit. That obviously didn’t happen but it was better than it had been since the build towards Starrcade 97.

Edited by BloodyChamp
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On 4/5/2021 at 9:42 PM, Wyld Samurai said:

I think he'd be called out more today for blatantly ripping off a black wrestler in Thunderbolt Patterson and making 10000x more money doing so.

Bad News did call him out on it.

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8 hours ago, Goodear said:

Factions are a short hand for your characters. The Horsemen are all a bunch of rich elitists. The nWo are all a bunch of outsider assholes. If you have 10 factions, you have 40 guys who are all defied by their associations and not their individual traits. It's lazy.

I don't think this makes any sense. It's possible to be part of a group that has a collective identity while also having a distinct individual character. LIJ, for example, have a group identity, but I wouldn't say the members are defined just by their associations with one another.

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15 hours ago, Goodear said:

Shawn Michaels damaged the wrestling scene more than any other wrestler alive, promoting the good match narrative to the point no one cares about winning their matches anymore.

When did Michaels promote a good match narrative above winning? I don't recall him taking his losses in great matches well.

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"Mr Wrestlemania" Shawn Michaels, who had a losing record in Wrestlemania matches?

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