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Lesnar Newsflash, Some Other Stuff
March 10, 2004

by Rick Scaia
Exclusive to OnlineOnslaught.com


I had not intended for today to be a regular news column...  you've got Spoilers.  You've got Erin "Uecker" Anderson's column.  You've got the massively updated Road to WM Stats Feature.  And you want more?  I'd say that makes you greedy and I should punish you by remaining mute.

But no, Brock Lesnar has to go and render my Monday column wildly inaccurate with a huge bombshell last night at SD! tapings.  So here's a short set of bullet points, because if I didn't do 'em, it'd mean I was probably watching A-10 tournament basketball instead of doing the job you don't pay me for!  And where in the world would be able to find an A-10 tournament at THIS time of year?  Oh, yeah, right....
Anyway, I've torn myself away long enough to type this up for you:

  • Last night, Brock Lesnar announced to the SD! locker room that he intends to walk away from WWE following WrestleMania XX.
    Now, going back months, it's been no secret that Brock's been increasingly frustrated with his job: the travel, the wear and tear, and what-not have led Brock to arrange for his own charter flights and accomodations on the road since the New Year.  
    Going back to Monday, it's been no secret that Brock and WWE were on rocky enough terms that they were CONSIDERING a post-WM20 cooling off period, not unlike what Steve Austin needed to get his head back on straight.
    But going back to last night, Lesnar's announcement sounded quite final: he was not "taking time off," he was leaving.  He even told the boys that his intention is to try-out for the NFL, that he thinks that might be something he could do.
    A side note: the 26-year-old Lesnar has not played organized football at any competitive level in his entire life.  However, just because of his size, he DID receive try-out invitations from a couple NFL teams upon his college graduation in 2000, according to sportswire stories that have picked up on this development.
    This announcement took most people I talked to by surprise.  Then again, they're the ones who told me the whole thing was probably getting blown out of proportion and that Lesnar just needed a month or two to cool off after Mania, so....
    Other things that may be contributing to Lesnar's bad mental state: he was asked to travel with the crew to SD! shows in South Africa, and expected to be in major matches on the show.  Instead he semi-squashed Bob Holly in mid-card matches....  and also, his relationship with Rena "Sable" Mero is apparently way more serious than I'd previously been told, and the two are a legitimate couple, not just screwing around.  Some couples can do it in wrestling, but others can't deal with fighting their own political battles AND their significant other's, and I don't think I need to repeat how Sable's past significant other did on that front a few years back....
    Lesnar's announcement is baffling to some, upsetting to others (who think the guy came in, did his 2 years of almost all main events, made his money, and then ditched ont he company), and viewed as an opportunity to another group (who look at this as a top heel slot opening up on SD!).  Me, maybe I've just got too much of that Monday column still swirling in my head, but I wouldn't necessarily bank on Lesnar's spot being vacant for all that long.  This just doesn't sound RIGHT, you know?  And at some point, Brock might start feeling a similar sensation and come on back to the biz with a different attitude.  Who knows?
    It certainly makes Sunday's Lesnar/Goldberg match even more interesting in a completely ludicrous sort of way: how to book a match where both guys are probably not gonna be on TV next week, but your special referee will be?  But we'll cross that bridge in the PPV preview on Friday...

  • Since I'm here and talking about wacky shit going down at SD!....
    Apparently Sable herself was not immune to controversy, and got into a shouting match with Torrie Wilson that needed to be settled behind the closed doors of Jim Ross' office.  Nobody has any idea what it was about, since the two had been pretty cordial to each other up through the release of their edition of Playboy.
    Could it be a simple case of one couple (Torrie/Kidman) who have figured out how to make life together on the road work rubbing a couple that is having its trouble making it work (Sable/Brock) the wrong way?  Dunno... but that was one theory, on the grounds that if there was professional jealousy/general cattiness at work here, it wouldn't have waited until the last few weeks to surface....
  • Also, for the second week in a row, Big Show kind of ran afoul of the APA guys...  Not clear on what the story is there, but I guess Show fingered Bradshaw on some bad behavior on the South Africa tour last week, which actually got him some respect from the other boys.  But when Show tried to stand up again this week in a company-wide meeting, Faarooq and/or Bradshaw didn't much like that and tried to cut him down and tell him to mind his mouth.
    Even if I was wrong about Lesnar, I'd guess that *this* one is probably just a case of something minor being blown out of proportion and feeling like its more newsworthy than it is because of everything else going on in that locker room.
  • In addition to the SD! craziness, I'll also tell you that the rating for Monday's RAW was a 3.8, which is exactly the same as the week before.  That means even with everybody KNOWING (instead of SUSPECTING) the Rock would be there, the Fed got no appreciable bump in ratings.
    If we can theorize about "moral victories," then maybe this is one of those cases where it looks like a draw, but it's really a "moral loss"?
  • Last night's Ten Best WM Matches special on SpikeTV was largely OK.  They mixed up the undeniable in-ring gems and historically-significant stinkers in just about the right ratios.  I guess you HAD to put Hogan/T vs. Piper/Orndorff in there just because without it, there'd have been none of the other WM matches.... but I would have probably argued strenuously that only one of the Hogan/Rock and Hogan/Warrior matches should have made it on the list (and I'd have gone for Hogan/Warrior, because Hogan/Rock was REALLY shitty in spots, no matter HOW much fun I had watching it).
    Of the in-ring gems, the only one that's disputable was the #10 entry on the list, Benoit/Angle from WM17, which was very good but not great, and which was also a disposable part of the undercard, so it didn't really have any significance in the grand scheme.  But at #10, it just snuck in, so I guess can't complain too much (but I think both HBK/Jericho and Angle/Lesnar from last year are about its equal).
    I won't even try to dispute the ordering of the matches.  Yeah, I'd have put them in different order, but anytime the Fed and I pretty much agree on 8 out of the 10 items on any list, the stars have already aligned eerily enough.  Suffice to say: I think maybe I agree with Ric Flair, who seemed to put over Bret/Austin and Steamboat/Savage more than any of the other, higher-rated matches on the countdown...
    You should keep an eye out, because the special is being repeated on SpikeTV several times throughout the rest of the week (including tonight at 11pm, Sunday right before Heat, and probably a few other times I'm forgetting about).
  • I guess I could get into some of the promotional appearances by WWE stars so far (and upcoming) this week, but I said I was just doing a short thing here, and I'm gonna stick to it.  You've got enough other good stuff to read.


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.

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