Wrestling News, Analysis and Commentary

News  -/-  Recaps  -/-  Columns  -/-  Features  -/-  Reference  -/-  Archives  -/-  Interact  -/-  Site Info

Donate to Online Onslaught!
     Daily Onslaught
     Obtuse Angle
     RAW Satire
     The Broad

     Inside the Ropes
     OOld Tyme
         Rasslin' Revue
     Title Wave
Crashing the

     Smarky Awards
     Big in Japan
     Guest Columnists
     2 Out of 3 Falls
     Devil's Due
     The Ring
     The Little Things
SK Rants
The Mac Files
     Sq'd Circle Jerk
     RAW vs. SD!:
         Brand Battle
     Cheap Heat 
     Year in Review
     Monday Wars
     Road to WM 

     Title Histories
     Real Names
     PPV Results
     Smart Glossary
     Message Boards
     Live Chat 
     OO History

If you attend a live show, or have any other news for us, just send an e-mail to this address!  We'd also love to hear from you if you've got suggestions or complaints about the site...  let us have it!

and Other Acronyms!
November 8, 2002

by Rick Scaia
Exclusive to OnlineOnslaught.com


I love Fridays.  For me, they are the Gateways to Fun.

But if you're here, reading this, it means Fridays (and the weekends) are just another opportunity to go and read what some jackass has to say about rasslin'.  Which means before I switch my computer off and walk away for the weekend, I'd better do up a column for you!

Here goes:

  • What can I say about last night's SmackDown! that would be particularly fresh or illuminating? Nothing, so I'll just say what everybody else is no doubt saying.  Namely, "Wow!".
    The tag title match was about as good as it gets.  Forget the fabricated distinction of what constitutes a good "free TV match"...  by any measuring stick, Benoit/Angle vs. Edge/Rey last night was outstanding.  Put it on a house show, a PPV, whatever, and it's going to stand out above the rest.
    A match like that is the sort of thing that, if a non-wrestling-fan friend sits down and watches with you, they'll quickly lose their wariness.  The "Why do you watch this shit?" vibe will change into "Whoa, that was pretty cool."  WWE take note, as this is in direct contrast to what had been happening on most Monday nights, when "Why do you watch this shit?" would turn into "God, this shit is even dumber than I thought" among casual or non-fans.
    The first two falls of the best of three match probably did fall into that "good free TV match" category: solid, fast-paced, but maybe a bit perfunctory.  But once we got to the third fall, and then into the "bonus" fall after the ref reversed a decision, we were into special territory.  Including the two commercial breaks, we clocked in at just a notch over 30 minutes, I think, even though it ended up feeling like a blink of an eye.
    A match like that one also makes me wish I didn't have to expose myself to spoilers because I promise you this:  when Edge and Rey got the apparent third fall win, only to have the ref change his mind and continue the match, I would have bitten hard on the false finish.  Traditionally, the babyfaces get that "tease" win, only to have the heels go over in the end; I know there have been cases of the winner of the false finish actually winning the match, too, but by and large, that's not how wrestling operates.  I was still way into the drama and tension of the match, but would have been more so if I didn't know the outcome, already.
    A lot of people started tossing out the phrase "Match of the Year" after Angle/Benoit vs. Rey/Edge at the last PPV.  And while I think that's a bit presumptuous, what I will say is that last night's match was just about as good as the PPV showdown.  Awesome stuff.
    What else from SD!?  Well, the big push for the Big Show continues, and while I, personally, refuse to accept Show as a legit option for WWE Champ, they are doing an exceptional job of sowing the seeds of doubt among fans who might be more willing to buy Show at the top of the card.  And even for me, I grant that this is the most compelling thing Show's done in -- well -- years, really.  I just have zero desire to see him win the gold, and thus, his participation in a title match next Sunday doesn't quite butter my dinner roll.
    What is working for me is the relationship between Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman.  Or what remains of it, anyway.  It's played perfectly, so that Lesnar has been increasing a sympathetic babyface character, as seen by the very positive response he got during his Heyman-free match last night against Eddie Guerrero.  It's a good move, especially if you assume that once Lesnar is on his own, the WWE marketing people would have a new identity for him (no longer "The Next Big Thing") to ease into.  
    But then you have the finish to last night's show, with Lesnar being tossed off the stage by Big Show, and Heyman (and medics) rushing to his side.  Obviously, for all Heyman's frustration with his protégé, he still cares.  And from here, you could go a couple different ways.  Perhaps Heyman realizes Lesnar is not invincible, and the chasm between the two widens, with Heyman eventually showing up in Big Show's corner, because all he really wants is to remain with the champ.  [Note: for the same reasons I'm not too keen on Show as champ, I also wouldn't want to waste Heyman's skills on being Show's mouthpiece.  I'm a much bigger fan of Heyman bringing back Rhyno to take down the newly-babyface Lesnar!]  Or perhaps there's a twist:  Lesnar takes the show-closing attack as a wake-up call, admits he may have bitten off more than he can chew, and re-affirms his relationship with Heyman as he seeks guidance.  Cool stuff, here...
    Even the most painfully bad part of SD! -- Al Wilson's marriage proposal to Dawn Marie -- was really funny, thanks to Michael Cole and Tazz's commentary.  Al may much gratitude for bringing us Torrie Wilson, but the guy really shouldn't be a TV performer.  Luckily, Tazz and Cole were spot-on in the way they covered it; my one question would be if that was how they called the "action" live, or if they went back and re-dubbed it after the live crowd turned so viciously on the segment?
    My only real complaint:  the way they sacrificed Matt Hardy to the Big Show.  Just minutes after debuting his very first Mattitude Follower (Shannon Moore), he looked like a schmuck against Show.  I guess maybe the singles push for Matt is over, and they'll be moving him and Moore into a full time tag team situation (hey, those matches against Rey and Edge would rule the universe, too, so I will not complain too much).  A pointless aside: I know it's too early to say for sure, but I think I'd much rather be an MF'er than a Testicle.
    I'm pretty sure the Cubs Fan will have a recap for us soon, so you'll be able to catch up on all the SmackDown! goodness.
  • The overnight broadcast rating for SD! was a 4.5.  Since I didn't bother getting the ON number last week, I don't know if that's up or down or what.
    I do know that it's up one-tenth from TWO weeks ago, so I guess that's something...
  • TSN's website has picked up on the "Hogan splits with WWE" story that was going around a week or so ago, but I believe that all that's happened there is that they picked up on those rumors late, and only got around to publishing something about them yesterday.
    Which means I don't think it means that you can take it as final confirmation that Hogan really has left WWE.
  • WWE is set to lock Nathan Jones into a developmental deal following his showings during TV tapings dark matches this week.  As I said on Wednesday, most everybody agreed that he had a great look (as a former bodybuilder)...  but there was just about the same level of consensus that he was extremely limited in terms of in-ring and microphone skills at this point.
  • For the past month or so, I've been getting tapes of XPW (X-Treme Pro Wrestling).  As part of the group's shift to an east coast homebase (at the old ECW Arena in Philly), I guess they also decided to suck up to internet guys like me with free stuff.
    Hey, I'm easy like that!  So here's my assessment/free plug:
    More than anything, what's obvious is that this is a group in transition.  The vibe on the commercial tapes/DVDs they sent is exactly what I thought it would be: XPW was less a wrestling show and more a freak/stunt show.
    But starting with the weekly TV shows with September air dates (concurrent with the "Shane Douglas buys the company and moves them to Philly" deal), it definitely felt like the company was changing gears.
    Now, I don't know if that's just a function of trying to sucker the Philly fans in by bringing in familiar faces like Super Crazy, Chris Chetti, and Danny Doring to flesh out the card (instead of the never-ending train of garbagey-brawler type performers that abounded during XPW's west coast shows), or if it's a conscious decision to upgrade the direction of the company.
    I will say this, though:  it's a welcome move.  Wild "death match" style brawls or wacky gimmick matches (exploding scaffolding or whatever) should happen once per show.  They should be a unique change of pace, not the reason for having a company.
    What'll hurt the company is that, even if they are (whether consciously or not) emulating a bit of the old ECW formula now, they do not have the benefit of being fresh and innovative like ECW was 6 years ago, which means they may not be able to recreate that grassroots sort of path to success, where fans will go to extremes to support the company.
    Nowhere is this more evident than in the company's first extended World Title feud after the new direction took hold:  Shane Douglas vs. Terry Funk.  It was a feud over "who made ECW," and it included a lot of lengthy promos from Douglas, calling Funk old and washed up.  Now, Douglas -- at all of 30-something -- is not exactly at the end of his career.  But watching and listening to him, it's hard not to think "Geez, this is the exact same sort of thing he's been doing for eight years, now."  At the same time he's beating us over the head with how long Funk's been around, his own act -- he's even usurped one of the company hotties to be in his corner (but boy is Lizzie Borden ever way hotter than Francine!) -- is kinda stale and tired in its own right.  But with fresh challengers, hopefully Douglas will find the inspirado to reinvent his own game.
    And that's what I look forward to: watching to see if XPW can continue to evolve as my fresh package of tapes arrives every couple of weeks.  They no longer seem satisfied to be known as "the company where somebody almost died in a stupid stunt that has nothing to do with wrestling" (see: Vic Grimes, about one year ago).  They want to be a wrestling company, and in today's marketplace, I think we'd all agree that the more companies we've got trying to exist at a semi-national level, the merrier.
    I'll be sure to periodically comment on XPW, based on the latest tapes I receive, and I encourage you to keep track on XPW happenings and upcoming shows (and available merchandise) at www.XPWrestling.com.
    End cheap, but hopefully informative, plug.  [Hey, that reminds me: where are my Kaiju tapes?!?]
  • More reason to love SmackDown!:  after last night's show, I think we can look forward to another Angle vs. Benoit match at the Survivor Series PPV.  Plus, I'd bet that Eddie and Chavo Guerrero will be in line to challenge Rey Mysterio and Edge for the tag titles, which should also rule.  And Billy Kidman did pin Jamie Knoble in the mixed tag opener last night, so he might be in line for a Cruiserweight Title shot.
    In addition to Lesnar vs. Show, that'd be one hell of a strong line-up of matches for SD!'s contributions to the PPV...
  • We'll have to wait to see what else besides the elimination chamber and women's title matches RAW will serve up for the PPV, but they have already announced two matches for Monday's RAW:  Booker T vs. Triple H, and Jericho/Christian vs. Kane/RVD for the tag titles.  Eh, great:  more Makeshift Madness in the RAW tag division...
    But we'll have more on that stuff in Monday's RAW preview...
  • Lastly, some updates on wrestlers on non-wrestling shows...
    First, next week, the syndicated show "Blind Date" will feature one WWE star each day.  Actually, it'll be a former "Tough Enough" competitor in each case:  all four TE winners plus Chris Nowinski will be featured.  Check, as they say, your local listings.
    And to Rob Van Dam fans, you'll have a double shot of RVD this weekend: he'll be a participant in one of the gags on "Ultimate Revenge" on TNN this Sunday night.  The premise of the show sounds like that Norm MacDonald movie where you hire experts to get revenge for you on someone who has pissed you off, only in this case, the people you hire bring cameras along and put your revenge on TV.  That's Sunday night at 9:30pm on TNN.
    Also, tonight, RVD will be featured (with a couple other WWE stars) as part of a CNN segment on recent RAW brand storylines.  I don't know the exact time, but the segment's supposed to be a part of the Friday night edition of "Newsnight."
  • And with that, I can't think of anything else to say.  It's now officially the weekend, baby!  And not just a regular weekend of carousing, either.  No sir, this weekend brings us (well, me) the very first (preseason) look at the 2003 NCAA Men's Basketball Champions, the Dayton Flyers.
    OK, so I exaggerate.  But Duke fans, beware:  you might look down and see Dayton on your schedule and think "Ah, a nice patsy in there to relax between games against Top 25 teams."  But we'll give you a contest, I think.  Hopefully.  Maybe.
    BTW, if you want a laugh, type "Dayton Sammy Smith" into a newswire search.  His story is one half sad, one half freaking hilarious.  And hopefully, it will not be a distraction to the Mighty Flyers.
    Alright, I'm done for real, now...


Rick Scaia is a wrestling fan from Dayton, OH.  He's been doing this since 1995, but enjoyed it best when the suckers from SportsLine were actually PAYING him to be a fan.

SMACKDOWN RECAP: Bonding Exercises
RAW RECAP: The New Guy Blows It
PPV RECAP: WWE Night of Champions 2012
RAW RECAP: The Show Must Go On
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Boot Gets the Boot
RAW RECAP: Heyman Lands an Expansion Franchise
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Losing is the new Winning
RAW RECAP: Say My Name
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Deja Vu All Over Again
RAW RECAP: Dignity Before Gold?
PPV RECAP: SummerSlam 2012
RAW RECAP: Bigger IS Better
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Hitting with Two Strikes
RAW RECAP: Heel, or Tweener?
RAW RECAP: CM Punk is Not a Fan of Dwayne
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Returnening
RAW RECAP: Countdown to 1000
PPV RECAP: WWE Money in the Bank 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Friday Night ZackDown
RAW RECAP: Closure's a Bitch
RAW RECAP: Crazy Gets What Crazy Wants
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Five Surprising MitB Deposits
RAW RECAP: Weeeellll, It's a Big MitB
RAW RECAP: Johnny B. Gone
PPV RECAP: WWE No Way Out 2012
RAW RECAP: Crazy Go Nuts
RAW RECAP: Be a Star, My Ass
RAW RECAP: You Can't See Him
RAW RECAP: Big Johnny Still in Charge
PPV RECAP: WWE Over the Limit 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: One Gullible Fella
RAW RECAP: Anvil, or Red Herring?
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Everybody Hates Berto
RAW RECAP: Look Who's Back
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Care to go Best of Five?
RAW RECAP: An Ace Up His Sleeve
PPV RECAP: WWE Extreme Rules 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Sh-Sh-Sheamus and the nOObs
RAW RECAP: Edge, the Motivational Speaker?
SMACKDOWN RECAP: AJ is Angry, Jilted
RAW RECAP: Maybe Cena DOES Suck?
RAW RECAP: Brock's a Jerk
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Back with a Bang
RAW RECAP: Yes! Yes! Yes!
PPV RECAP: WWE WrestleMania 28




All contents are Copyright 1995-2014 by OOWrestling.com.  All rights reserved.
This website is not affiliated with WWE or any other professional wrestling organization.  Privacy Statement.