Week of 11/18/01

The following is a republished diary/commentary from ProWrestlingRadio.com.

First and foremost I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving this week. It has been an unbelievable year for myself, and I hope everyone can sit back and give thanks to their own fruits and rewards. It is amazing to think that this year has gone by so quick.

I want to start off talking about Saturday night’s UWF show at the Westaby Hall. I have to tell you, I had a blast. I was overwhelmed with the response from fans for myself and other CZW talent on the show. It was a great time meeting everyone. I want to say a what’s up, to my little brigade of fans in the front row. It was just a really nice time and the fan response was great. The hospitality shown to me by the staff of the UWF was first class. One of the reasons I hate ring announcing on the indies is that I am always afraid of getting burnt. Also, a lot of times you walk into a locker room of guys that have never done a damn thing and they walk around as if they headlined Wrestlemania III. Well, the staff could not have been more gracious and the boys were awesome. Most of them were local and were regular listeners of my radio show or had watched me on CZW. It was a great crew to be around and I just want to thank everyone from the top to the bottom for making me feel welcome.

One of the topics that everyone kept bringing up to me was the Cage of Death. I have a very strong feeling we are going to draw a thousand fans. The bus has already been increased for the NYC trip. All the fans that I had met Saturday told me they were coming and could not wait. I really have a hard time getting a read on how or if CZW has a following or the company’s popularity. If Saturday was any kind of accurate read, it is just truly something else.

The other topic that fans approached me about was Killer Kowalski’s interview on the show Saturday. Wow, can that guy talk or what? He was one of my favorite guests ever. I have the following week off from college, so I should have the interview transcribed by midweek at the latest. Look for it first over at 1wrestling.com and than on this site. Everyone really liked his appearance, and I will definitely have him back. I think experimenting with fans asking question went well. Sometimes I think the fans would cut him off to quick though in mid-sentence. One of my favorite callers on the show, Michelle has become quite a heel. Wherever I go people always say, “how does that girl always get on first?” I think it is great. I listen to WIP here and they have their regular callers and characters. I think she is great and I enjoy hearing from her every week.

The UWF show itself was quite good. I was shocked that they went all out with the thumbtack match. It was bloody and the fans loved it. I was real impressed at how packed the house was. If it was not sold out, it was damn close. The crowd was super hot from start to end. Maybe, I was wrong in saying that a family oriented wrestling promotion cannot be successful. While a thumbtack match is hardly family-oriented. the rest of the show was and the crowd was all families for the most part. The show went with a very good flow of two hot young guys in the opener, built up throughout the night, and the thumbtack (blood match) match that closed the show. I would highly recommend checking out this company. I am booked to return on 3/2, as the UWF will return to Westaby Hall. They are going to be bringing in 4 ECW stars in Danny Doring, Chris Chetti, Little Gudio, and Nova. UWF also has a great assortment of young talent.

Keep your eyes on Mean Gene Sniski. He is huge and very talented. He has money written all over him. Z Barr had what I thought was the best match on the show against Rich Myers and HD Ryder. Barr came just to hang out. I had invited Ruckus to the show as well. I told Moose and suggested putting the two together. It was going to happen, but Ruckus never made it. Moose was going over the show with me and he had a babyface vs babyface match in Ryder and Myers. I suggested throwing Barr in there, as I know he and Meyers are boys and would probably have a great match. I don’t think either disappointed. The Chain Gang are without a doubt the local favorites. These two had the crowd in the palm of their hands. It was nice just being able to walk into a show with no responsibilities other than doing my job and just relaxing and enjoying myself. It was a lot of fun.

I picked up some shoots from RF Video last week. I finally got a chance to watch them all. All I can say is, WOW. I first watched the Brian Christopher shoot. First off all, every young worker who has been in the business from one month-5 years should watch this tape. His work ethic is admirable from his Memphis days. It is a shame because a lot of today’s young talent do not have the opportunity to pay dues these days. He talks about the road trips, no days off, the injuries. I was fascinated listening to him talk about the road, as I ponder how many of today’s younger talent could actually hack that. His openness about his father’s relationship with Kat was very entertaining. It just seems as if he is a guy that loves to have fun. He has a story on everyone, and when it finished I already wanted more. Even more of a highlight were the matches and interviews they threw in on the video.

Next, was one of my favorite workers of all time Barry Windham. I would probably say that Flair, Steamboat, Windham, Michaels, and Funk are my all time favorite workers. They are five guys that you could put in a tape of any match and I would watch it. The cool part about this shoot is that Barry never really did any interviews over the years on radio shows, newsletters, etc. It was super interesting to hear him talk about the politics of Titan and Crockett Promotions/WCW. He is probably one of the few guys I have heard talk as open about Titan politics. His stories about Dusty and Florida were really good also. He seemed very humbled when he talked about his failed comeback recently. Another bonus was an incredible match they threw on there between him and Steve Corino. It was total old school and the place popped for everything. Another thing is that Barry looks to be in the best shape I have seen him in almost ten years.

Next, was the Brain. I am one of the biggest Bobby Heenan marks you will ever meet. I used to tape all of his segments with Monsoon on Prime Time and cut the matches out. His line in describing Mike Mcguirk as a drippy faucet still cracks me up. I still have a tape of the Bobby Heenan shows. He was hilarious. He had nothing but quick one liners on this tape. If he could do this now on the air, I would hire him in a minute if I had a promotion. I won’t give away all of his lines, but one cracked me the hell up. They asked him about pushing Greg Gagne and if he was pushed too hard cause be was Verne’s son. He said, “No, he was not pushed hard enough. He should have been pushed off a cliff.” He was hysterical and he was very open about the WWF in the 80’s, and he is probably the most anti-WCW guy I have ever seen talk honestly on a shoot. He entertained me for 2 1/2 hours or whatever it was, and again I wished there was a part two.

Next, was Buff Bagwell. I could not wait to see this one. Here is a guy, that has maybe one of the worst reputations in the business. One of the most underrated pieces of video I have ever seen actually aired before the shoot. It was the “shoot” he had with Corino at MECW in Philly. The unreal part was when he walked into the ring and the entire place was yelling, “you got fired.” It is truly an unbelievable piece of tape. The crowd also yelled, “where’s your mom” which I thought was hysterical also. He is a guy that is hard to read. You want to believe everything he says in the shoot, but on the other hand everyone cannot be wrong. He did enlighten me about why people think the way they do about him. I was shocked at his answer on if his backstage fight with Dallas Page was a shoot? He also was very candid I thought about his two week WWF run. It was great. It definitely kept me glued to the screen the entire time.

Last and definitely not least was Kevin Sullivan. I was fascinated by him in the eighties. I used to get the wrestling magazines and see the pictures of his demonic gimmick in Florida. He was great. He talked all about the different territories and opponents. I liked the best when he would talk about booking. It was almost like a booking 101 video. He talked about what was good, but what will draw you money and why. It was fascinating and he would finish a sentence I would say to myself, “damn, he is right.” I was shocked about how open he was in talking about his split from Nancy and the Benoit situation. I don’t know, but this guy could inject some real life in to WWF’s storylines I think.

Of course, you can order any of these awesome shoots as well as a million others over at RFVideo.com. Make sure to wish Rob a congratulations on his recent engagement to actress Nina Hartley.

One of the best shows on television right now is 24. You have to see it if you have not. It is possibly the best concept for a show I have ever seen. It is one television series that takes place in twenty-four hours. It is all action, almost like a movie. It stars Keifer Sutherland so you already get that movie-like feel to the show. The cool part about is that there are just so many twists in this show. At the moment you think you have it all figured out, something happens that shocks you. This, and Curb Your Enthusiasm are the two best television shows on the air right now. Besides, Fake You TV of course.

I am going over to the ECW Arena Monday to shoot some promos with some of the boys. We are really trying to hammer home how huge this show is to the viewers at home. We are going to cut our last week before COD 3’s open and close from there. The key to making the show a success is making people at home feel as if they have to be there. The key during this show is giving these people enough of their money’s worth that they come back.

I forgot to talk about the Rock-Austin deal last week. I thought when Rock first called Austin out that it was awesome. Nobody expected it, and it got a hell of a pop. As Steve Austin got into the ring and went face to face with Rock, it became very special. Almost like seeing Hogan and Andre go nose to nose again. Let me tell you this, whoever wrote the rest of the angle should be fired immediately. It was horrible. Was it cute? Yes. Do I want to see cute as a wrestling fan? Hell no. Personally, I think it did a ton of damage to the Steve Austin character. It did nothing to help the Rock. If anything, I wanted to order Survivor Series even less. Talk about dragging something out forever. I, as well as most of you knew Austin was getting Rock Bottomed. Unless, a swerve was coming it was a lot of garbage for nothing. The skit they did with Rock and Jericho on Thursday was almost in the same vein. I have one question. What the hell are they thinking over there?

Finally, I want to make a quick followup on last week’s thoughts on Menace. I got bashed a little on our message board for my comments last week. I was accused of having to defend the company and not speak what is on my mind. I just want to assure anyone that reads this or listens to my show that I do speak my mind and have an understanding with CZW that allows me to do so. Anyone that listens to my show regularly knows that sometimes I get caught off guard. I will get asked a question that I may have to answer in a non-company response about CZW. Usually, I will preface it with a little laugh and say how I did not want to go here, but I was asked. I will than answer the question honestly. So, just be sure that no matter what happens with CZW I will never compromise the integrity of the show or my opinions.

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