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SD!, Ratings, TNA PPV Preview, plus
Kane/HBK/Cena Updates and MORE!
December 3, 2004

by Rick Scaia
Exclusive to OnlineOnslaught.com


I'm just gonna say this one last time.... and then you won't hear about it again for 11 months. 
Online Onslaught is "reader supported." I've spent the last month doing varying levels of pan-handling and to those of you who've stepped up with a few (or many) dollars, you have my gratitude. You should ALSO have the gratitude of the vast majority of readers who don't donate, and who you're basically subsidizing for another year! Not that I'm trying to 

put anyone on a guilt trip or anything! We live in a free country, and if you wanna be a total mooch, bogarting the gOOdness that others have paid for, well that's your choice.

But because I'm a nice guy, and I'd hate to think you're all feeling a tinge of guilt every time you take a sweet, sweet hit of the OO, I'm giving you one final chance to square the ledger. Ease your conscience, puff out your chest, proud that you've done your duty! All you gotta do is Donate To the OO Pledge Drive.

Again: you'll have options of credit card, PayPal, e-check, real check, and cash! I want to make it as easy as possible for you to fork over your hard-earned dollars to me!

So that's it. That's my spiel. In a lot of ways, I think 3 years worth of amazing content here at OO should be more motivation than any lame guilt trip I'd lay on you. You've been reading, you decide what OO's worth to you. And if you decide "more than zero dollars," well, that's what the Pledge Drive Page is for.

Thanks again to all who have contributed already, and thanks in advance to those of you who'll pile on here at the very end.  It's much appreciated.

Here's a spot of wrestling talk:

  • Last night's SD! was.... well, between as disappointing as RAW was and being able to watch it on heavy-FF last night when I got home, I didn't mind the show.
    That said, I didn't much like it either. And usually, I'm at my most-easily-amused at 2am... so it's not like I'm foisting strong praise on the show either.
    Some stuff I liked: the Rey/RVD vs. Kenzo/Dupree feud seems like it's clicking well... it's four guys in their elements, and it's just free and easy and fun; it should make for a PERFECT crowd pleasing PPV opener next weekend. The related Hiroko vs. Torrie story? Meh, but I am finding myself perversely amused by Hiroko, whose little spitfire persona is oddly compelling, which of course means she gets her ass kicked by Torrie next week, right?....  the Eddie/Booker vs. Bashams match was the best of the night, and I in general like the way they are building up the Eddie/Booker/Taker/JBL thing to include plenty of tension among the faces; I honestly have no idea who'll win that match at this point; I probably don't CARE who wins as much as WWE would like, but the ambiguity is at least a few points in their favor....  Michelle McCool (further proof that The Rick is an outstanding judge of character! Michelle had a pretty decent performance in a backstage bit contributing to the Eddie/Booker tension; and yes, I said judge of character! For the time being, we are ignoring the fact that I originally latched onto Michelle, sight unseen, because I had -- for reasons not likely to be made apparent at this time -- had developed an attachment to the name "McCool" back in June or whenever; I'd never make such an arbitrary decision!).
    Some stuff I didn't like: all things Jackie, Dawn Marie, and Charlie Haas (poor Charlie; and poor Rick for declaring one year ago that Haas had the greater upside between the two members of the World's Greatest Tag Team)....  the Luther/Other Idiot Diva Search Loser spot; when not even Kurt Angle can narrate a skit like this and make it seem reasonably realistic, you got problems; instead this just seemed lazily misogynistic ("three big burly men will force some poor delicate flower to go out on a date with one of them") since nobody wanted to be bothered to come up with an actual GOOD way of setting up a run in for Big Show.  Craptacular, my friends.... 
    And stuff I didn't even bother watching: anything Tough Enough related. Of course, this shortened the show down VERY nicely. What was it? Maybe 20-25 minutes of TE crap this week? I mean, that sucks and all, but when you're just flying through the show late at night, it was pretty handy to be able to skip vast tracts of suck so I could get to bed at a half-way reasonable hour.  Do I even want to know why it looked like Snow had the TE dudes dressed as women? No, I don't!  HA!  Gotcha!
    You can get a more detailed report on last night's show in Big Danny T's SmackDown! Recap.
  • The prelim rating for last night's SD! was a 3.3 broadcast rating. That's a significant bounce back from the previous week's Thanksgiving-induced low, but isn't quite back all the way to SD!'s pre-holiday levels.
  • And since I didn't have it in time for Wednesday's column, I'll also mention that Monday's RAW did a 3.9.  That's the third week in a row that RAW drew a 3.9; which means if I wanted to, I could make a joke about how Randy Orton is EXACTLY as big a draw as Guest GM as Maven was!
    Except then, I'd have to make the same joke about Benoit being Maven's equal. And I don't want to do that.
    And also: the pressure's on Jericho on Monday.  He needs to at least match the 3.9, and depending on how Johnny Homeviewer felt about the ending to RAW, that might not be so easy. If the average fan was as put out by Monday's show as I was, they might not tune in for Jericho's week; but if WWE actually did manage to rope in a majority of dimwitted fans with last week's "cliffhanger," then Jericho might be the beneficiary of a larger audience than normal.
  • For wrestling fans looking for something to do this weekend, the TNA Alternative is in full effect on Sunday Night. The company is presenting its "Turning Point" PPV, which will be notable for the in-ring return of Macho Man Randy Savage for the first time in a couple of years, as well as the first chance for many fans to get a look at the Unretired Dallas Page (although he HAS worked a number of untelevised indie shows in the last few months, too).
    Now, my own general malaise towards TNA is no secret, but that does not necessarily mean that TNA is not for YOU. But cuz it's not for me, I'm probably not the best one to try to preview the show in an impartial manner and give you the best chance to decide for yourself what you want to do.
    With that in mind, OO Reader and Card Carrying TNA Fan Jason Longshore decided to mail in with a preview of his own. I think you'll find this quick run-down lightyears more useful than anything I'd have cobbled together:

    Turning Point, on paper, should be a far better show for TNA than last month's Victory Road.  They thankfully left off the filler of the Victory Road card (In the Pit with Piper, Trinity's open challenge, the Mexican minis) and just filled the card with seven quality matches.  I'm sure there will be something extra thrown on, TNA is notorious for that, but I think the matches will be better this time around.  Here's a quick look at the card, with a few personal predictions thrown in:
    Kid Kash, Michael Shane, and Frankie Kazarian v. Sonny Siaki, Hector Garza, and Sonjay Dutt:  This all started at Victory Road when Kash hijacked Piper's Pit.  Siaki, Garza, and Dutt have all been victims of coconut-bashings at the hands of Kash.  Shane and Kazarian have had little alliance with Kash for a while now, so they've joined in the fun.  As far as "let's throw these guys on the show for a PPV check" matches go, this should be a good one.  Kash has been one of the best heels going for a long time now, with Shane and Kazarian not far behind.  Siaki and Garza are good in the ring and Dutt's high flying moves are fun to watch.  I'm assuming this will open the show,  it should be a good choice.
    Abyss v. Monty Brown:  We've arrived at this one after the Monster's Ball match at Victory Road between these two and Raven.  Monty won the match by pinning Raven, and Abyss wasn't very happy about being powerbombed into thumbtacks.  It's a Serengeti Survival Match, so expect some hardcore shenanigans.  Abyss hasn't been shy about bringing in thumbtacks, maybe Monty will bring the skull of a wild boar to counter.  I think Monty's headed for serious World Title contention, so he should get the win here.
    DDP v. Raven:  DDP made his big return to wrestling on the Impact following Victory Road, running out of the crowd to give the Diamond Cutter to Raven.  After a few more sneak attacks, we got a little explanation on this week's Impact.  They're playing off of their feud from WCW, but adding some insinuation about Raven and Kimberly Page.  Erik Watts also somehow figures into the equation.  I missed the original feud in WCW, but heard very good things, so I'm looking forward to this one. 
    America's Most Wanted v. XXX:  I'm really intrigued by this one.  First off, the losing team must disband.  Second, they're coming off their worst match together, at last month's Victory Road.  Elix Skipper's concussion about midway through the match didn't help matters in that one.  This was one of the best feuds in TNA history, highlighted by the first cage match in TNA history.  They're returning to the cage, this time the Six Sides of Steel, to finish off the rivalry.  Based off the past, and the fact all four guys want to make up for last month's PPV match, this should be great.  I don't see any way AMW doesn't win here, Storm and Harris wouldn't be as valuable as singles wrestlers as Skipper and Christopher Daniels. 
    NWA Tag Team Title Match:  3 Live Kru (champs) v. Team Canada:  This has been a decent little feud, but has paled in comparison to AMW/XXX to me.  3LK is possibly the most over team though since the move to Orlando.  Konnan has a shoulder injury, and will be replaced by Ron "The Truth" Killings.  Eric Young and Bobby Roode have been great as the Team Canada tag team and I expect them to get the belts back in this one, probably due to interference from the "Canadian treasure" Scott D'Amore.  A reprise of the AMW/Team Canada feud should be excellent, and it will allow 3LK to move into the feud against the Kings of Wrestling, which they've been involved with a little up to this point. 
    X Division Title Match:  Petey Williams (champ) v. Chris Sabin:  Sabin became the number one contender after winning the Ultimate X match on the Best Damned Sports Show special.  Williams has held the title since August, and he's held off the challenge of the X Division golden boy AJ Styles in the process.  The feud has been based off Williams' claims that there is no counter for his Canadian Destoyer flip piledriver finisher.  Sabin has caught at least three times now with different variations of a counter into his own finisher, the Cradle Shock.  Since they've already given that away, and the fact he's been great in recent months, I think Williams will get keep the belt.  I would also have no problem with this feud continuing.  Sabin has been one of the more underrated guys in TNA, he deserves the payoff of regaining the title after a longer build-up. 

    Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, and Jeff Jarrett v. Jeff Hardy, AJ Styles, and Randy Savage:  Kevin Nash was supposed to be Jeff Hardy's corner for his title match with Jarrett at Victory Road.  Of course, he double crossed him, joining his buddy Hall by Jarrett's side.  The Kings of Wrestling, as they're called, did the usual "We're taking over," speech that Nash should have memorized by now, both in front of and behind the cameras.  AJ Styles, the closest thing TNA has to an MVP, was the first to answer the challenge, followed by Hardy.  Savage was then out to defend TNA's honor. After some political backstage tomfoolery, Savage signed on for the match.   Honestly, I would have rather seen DDP in this role, but I've never really hated Savage, he was still pretty decent in the ring last time he was around in WCW.  As long as they keep Nash out of the ring for the most part, this should be decent.  I would throw in a shot at Hardy too, but both his ladder match with Jarrett at Victory Road and cage match on the Best Damned Sports Show were very solid.  Of course, the sooner he's out of the World Title picture (and stops wearing the stupid fingerpaint), the better, but I can't complain about him recently.  I'm figuring Savage will pin Jarrett here, setting up a World Title match between the two sometime soon.  Hopefully, that will be on Impact with Jarrett retaining.  Then, either Monty Brown or Styles can challenge at the January PPV.  With Dusty controlling the book at this point though, anything is possible.  
    Thanks again to Jason for throwing together a few quick thoughts about the show from an Actual Fan's Perspective...  
    And if anybody cares what I think? Well, DDP/Raven's where it'd be at for me; they got about 8 years of history, and Raven's seemingly busting out the ECW/Lori Fullington vibe for his focused mind-fuckery, and that's when Raven's at his best. Those two can have a good match, though I would suspect this might be more about the STORY for now, which should also be fun.  I'd also want to try to PRETEND to have a hard-on for AMW/XXX, but I'd hate to get burned again like I did when I called them the best reason to check out TNA's first PPV.  [On the flip side, my own instinct is that this main event is pretty lame; it SHOULD exist for somebody to pin Jarrett and set up a title feud, but then you look at the crap on the babyface side, and unless it's AJ Styles, then you couldn't pay me to care about TNA main events for the next month. Another thing you couldn't pay me to care about: Monte Brown vs. Abyss.]
    If 'tis your wont, check out TNA's Turning Point Sunday Night on PPV. And if you don't, well, I have just moments ago received word that Jason'll be back with a PPV recap, which you can check out Monday here at OO.  

  • Looks like we won't have to wait till the Royal Rumble for Kane to return, afterall. He's on house show line-ups starting immediately after the New Year (facing Snitsky), which I'd have to assume means that he returns at either the 12/27 or 1/03 RAW. If I had to wager, I'd say 1/03, since that RAW taping is at Nassau Colisseum, and WWE usually tries to save up a surprise or two when they're in the NYC metro area.
    That should also mean that Kane'll be available for the 1/09 RAW-only PPV.  And I'm assuming unless this changes in the next month, that this means that Kane's movie "Eye Scream Man," is chugging along on or ahead of schedule.
    This is in direct opposition of how John Cena's "The Marine," is still in production, when the original schedule called for Cena to be back on the road after Survivor Series. I don't think that was a case of "The Marine" falling behind schedule as much as it was they had a delay getting started, but still: you shouldn't need me telling you why Cena's been "re-injured" for TV purposes and hasn't been seen in 3 weeks.
    The only real remaining question in terms of Major TV Returns is now Shawn Michaels, who had originally projected to beat Kane back onto TV. Although Shawn should be approaching 100% following knee surgery in October, and most had anticipated he'd be cleared medically before year's end, they might hold him back for the Rumble or something... if I leave my own fantastical fantasy booking at the door, and just try to puzzle together what WWE will really do, I think we can pretty well pencil in Edge vs. Shawn at WM21. Right? Doesn't it feel the same way to you? And whether you add in any extra stuff (ladder match, anyone?), you don't really need a ton of time to build that up. In fact, holding Shawn off would become a wise move, since if he returns at the Rumble, the next time RAW is on PPV will be at WM21, so you can slow burn the thing with Edge if you want. [Whereas if Shawn returns sooner, it becomes tempting to do HBK vs. Edge either at the 1/09 PPV or at the Rumble...]
  • You know what? I could probably scrape together a few more newsbites for you here today. Except that one of them would involve "Chyna," "X-Pac," and "sex tape" all in the same sentence, and frankly people, I'm not going there. 
    [Although on a side note: the newest South Park, which relates to another talentless quasi-celebrity who has a sex tape, might have given me yet another slant on my "WWE Diva Hiring Practices" rant.  Which I promise I'll figure out the way I want to do it and present it before too long, folks...]
    So instead, I shall just wrap it up for this week. I wish you all a couple nights of fun, or at least more fun than I'm figuring I'll be having come Saturday night: because if you have any interest whatsoever in Sharing My Pain, the Dayton Flyers make one of their three 2004-2005 appearances on ESPN on Saturday afternoon.  We host the hated Bearcats of Cincinnati at our palatial fortress at 4pm on Saturday. I fully expect to get waxed by 25.
    I also expect the sorrow drowning to commence by 6pm, and to be home, weeping gently at the prospect of a 9 win season before midnight.
    Prove me wrong, Flyers. Prove me wrong.  And the rest of you: see you Monday, with the return of OO columns that include absolutely NO begging for money!

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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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