Discussion in 'Sports Zone' started by MichaelWinicki, Feb 28, 2014.
LOL@ lavender suspenders...
Also the remark about the property values going down was hilarious.
Hacksaw Jim Duggan and the Junkyard Dog!
They are about all I remember from my youth...........oh, and Superfly Jimmy Snuka.
top 10 luchadore as well.
If I'm looking at the top-5 for the WWE/WWF/WWWF, my list would go:
1. Steve Austin – In many ways a bigger draw than Hogan was in the 80’s, in other ways he was not. However, he took over the top spot of a fledgling company that was struggling to make payroll. Hogan had a fairly successful company that was getting ready to expand its operations and make a move towards wrestling dominance that no other promoter could match. He also didn’t have the heels that Hogan had to work with and Austin did it as a heel and as a face. Not to mention he practically came up with the character by himself.
2. Hulk Hogan – Hate to put him here since I think after 1989 he’s been a burden to the business outside of his stint in New Japan where he was a limited time draw. He worked in wrestling at the time because he was a massive body builder looking type of wrestler who was much more agile than most of the wrestlers who were his size and more barrel chested. But, he had fantastic set of heels to work programs with. One after another…Iron Shiek, Roddy Piper, Terry Funk, King Kong Bundy, Andre the Giant, Randy Savage. When Bundy is by far the worst heel to work with…you’re doing quite well. Can’t deny the guy for how well he drew in the 80’s.
3. The Rock – Actually not a huge of his work and I think he’s much more limited that people think. He plays one character extremely well….the guy that cuts heel like promos, but works and sells like a babyface. And he has to cut some pretty long-winded promos. His short, but sharp promos were dreadful. However…he was extremely good at that one type of character and it still sells well. He’s also the only real wrestler that legitimately went mainstream. I don’t think he could do what Austin did. I think he could have done what Hogan did. Really close between him and Hogan.
4. Bruno Sammartino – Responsible for Vince Sr.’s success as a promoter. He also showed that you can put the belt on your top babyface and it can work. Vince Jr. took that and ran with it while other promoters usually put the belt on their top heel. Has the all time record of selling out MSG which was so vital to the company’s success.
5. John Cena – I’m not a fan of his character or in-ring work. But, the guy sells and is majorly over. What’s also unique about him is that he can wrestle a heel and the blow-off match will then turn the heel to face. All the while Cena still remains the face. Very difficult and valuable to pull off.
Based on just their WWWF/WWF/WWE contributions I'd say that's a pretty good list.
If you included their stints in other organizations/territories I would rank Hogan at the top of this list.
He had some success in Georgia and Mid-South (several early Hulk Hogan/Andre the Giant clashes) but his time in the AWA was very successful and gave a big boost to Verne Gagne's promotion in the early 80's.
I've wondered how things might have been different if Gagne had embraced the entertainment aspect of the business more and simply accepted Hogan as the AWA World Champion. It may have turned the wrestling world as we know it upside down with the AWA taking over the US as the major promotion. But Gagne kept Bockwinkle as the champ because he was cut from the Verne Gagne mold and Hogan left to go to the WWF and took several major stars in the AWA with him like Jesse "The Body" and Adrian Adonis.
I was nice growing up in Amarillo. There was lots of wrestling around here. The Funks, Ricky Romero, Million Dollar Man, the Von Erichs...
Now there isn't any wrestling here.
As I recall Texas had several terrific promotions.
Gagne was screwed either way. When he lost his land he had nothing to leverage. Hogan wasn't in the AWA for that long, but was way over. His Florida and Memphis runs were brief.
To me, Hogan was the burden of pro wrestling after 1989. Wasn't really that great of a draw for any consistent amount of time. He was the main wrestler from the 80's that had a shot of going mainstream, but he took all of these goofy movie roles and is such a carny in real life that it turned off Hollywood to working with wrestlers. Of course, McMahon's behavior didn't help matters either. Even the Rock had to deal with that stigma.
After '89, if Hogan drew it was usually a brief stint due to his huge stardom in the 80's. But eventually between him refusing to job and him being generally overrated as a talent (most overrated mic worker ever), it would die out quickly. He drew in New Japan, but that wasn't going to last long and he got out of there. He got an initial draw when he came to WCW, but that was because of his name and not being in the WWF. It then fizzled out badly and it hurt a lot of talent because they were jobbing to some old guy that looked pathetic in the ring.
The same happened when he joined the nWo. It was great at the beginning, but when they had to continue the program between his awful mic skills, his awful ring work and being unwilling to put anybody over, it killed the company to the point where their PPV buyrates were lower than ECW's.
The same when he came to TNA. Except by then everybody was sick of his act and the entire sex video scandal and his divorce just made him look more pathetic.
So when I think of all of the promotions and for all of the wrestlers, for me...Hogan would drop quite a bit. He did great by one promoter...Vince. Other than that, he was either a colossal failure or had success, but was brief. And in Verne's case, he screwed him over so I can't see how that would work in Hogan's favor.
World Class at one point was one of my favorites. They had the best heels. Gino Hernandez, Bruiser Brody, Chris Adams, Jimmy Garvin, the Freebirds, Gary Hart, etc.
I didn't care for the Von Erichs at the time. They were very Cena-ish. But, looking back corny faces work because they can make the heels much more effective. The only other issue I had with World Class is they insisted on having one of the oldest refs ever...who was painfully slow and screwed up the action. I could never figure out why they used him.
They also had the Sportatorium which was a great venue for wrestling. It's a shame they never kept it in good condition.
What does putting somebody over mean? I am reading these & you lost me with that.
To lose too. Hogan would refuse to put over/job to just about anyone. Rumors of Steve Austin refusing to put over HHH and Brock Lesner.
Ok. So the matches are staged & some wrestlers refuse to lose. Thanks.
I gather that is a no no in that business.
World Class was very good at one point.
I use to watch "Southwest Championship Wrestling" that was headed by Tully's dad, Joe Blanchard. If Brody had a "home" territory it had to be both this one and World Class.
I use to get the Houston Sunday paper in the early 80's and I remember them having AWA sponsored cards... Nick Bockwinkle vs JYD for instance.
There were very few wrestlers that had the chutzpah to tell a promoter/booker that they refused to lose. Bruiser Brody may have been killed because he refused to job to Danny Spivey. Many promoters/bookers were scared to suggest to Brody that he lose via pin-fall or submission. Consequently he didn't! Not often anyway. And when he did it was usually due to Brody owing someone a favor or another wrestler jobbing to Brady before or after.
One wrestler getting pinned or submitting to another (other than in squash match) was usually part of a strategic plan by the promotion to set someone up for a bigger draw match.
The classic scenario was a new wrestler coming into a promotion and first beating prelims via squash matches. Then the new guy would start to face mid-card talent (usually guys that won on TV but weren't in line for a championship opportunity) and would proceed to beat them via pin fall or submission. Guys in the WWWF like Chief Jay Strongbow, Baron Miguel Sicluna and Tito Santana would fit in that category. Then came the championship match. If the challenger wasn't considered a big draw the champion would beat them via pin fall or submission. Of course these two wrestlers would meet all over the territory with each match ending with the champion having a rousing victory.
But if the challenger was someone who could draw (Patera, Brody, Snuka, Pat Patterson) then the first series of matches would be inconclusive. Quite often with the challenger winning via DQ or count-out. Then a month later would be the return match where the champion would win conclusively.
Oh I'm not Hogan fan, but holding the world title for over 9 years between two organizations carries some weight with me. Combined with the electric affect he had on the WWF when he came back as a face and when he popped up on WCW... and to a lesser extent the AWA.
Again, I'm not a fan, but I have to pay the devil his due. For a while the wrestling world truly revolved around the guy.
Wrestling fans have their own language. Kind of makes me want to watch now.
No love for the Freebirds or VonErichs?
Kevin VonErich was my favorite when I was a kid.
If it were a list of tag teams the Freebirds would certainly be on it.
The challenges with the Von Erichs are:
1. They didn't wrestle for long... as we know.
2. For the most part they pretty much stuck to the World Class area. Yeah, Bruno wrestled his whole career in the WWF but that, even as a regional had a much larger population and covered many major cities... Plus Bruno was champ for several years.
3. None of them were World Champ for any significant length of time.
That's a big no no
Did you know that Snuka's daughter is currently in the WWE? She is on TV almost weekly.