The Crow's Nest - The Eye of the Storm (and Other Wrestling Thoughts)
Apr 8, 2012 - 5:18:23 PM
1) The Eye of the Storm (and Other Wrestling Thoughts)(07/04/12)
Father vs. Son
Over the past few columns, I've typed that hashtag in one form or another more than a few times, and for reasons that should be obvious. From a management standpoint, Eric is continuously putting forth bad ideas that take away from my enjoyment of the TNA product. From an entertainment standpoint, Garret has absolutely no value and does not deserve to be on TV in any capacity, let alone as part of one of TNA's bigger storylines. So what exactly is new here?
At Lockdown next Sunday, both Bischoffs will lead a team of wrestlers into the annual "Lethal Lockdown" match, and the losing captain must leave TNA for good.
On one hand, it looks like one of these idiots is about to be taken off TV at least for the foreseeable future (we all know how "you're fired" storylines work in this industry). On the other hand, "Lethal Lockdown" is one of my favourite TNA matches of the year and more often than not it produces a MotY contender. While it could still very well be a solid match, the fact that both Eric and Garret are rumoured to actually be participating in the match doesn't sit well with me. Neither man has any business being in the ring.
That being said, the one good thing that will come out of this match is that one of the Bischoffs will be taken off TV for the time being. But which one will it be? If I had it my way it would be both, but since that isn't likely to happen, my guess would be that Garret is sticking around for now. I'd rather Eric stick around because at least he has the ability to be an effective on-screen character, but TNA seems insistent to push his son as the greatest thing since sliced bread.
TNA needs to purge themselves of both Bischoffs, or at the very least get rid of Garret and keep Eric around strictly as an on-screen personality. As long as this ridiculous father/son feud ends next Sunday I won't be entirely disappointed, but at the end of the day I don't see the purpose in keeping either of them employed.
Steiner Joins the "Let's Bitch on Twitter" Club
I've had mixed feelings on Steiner over the past few years. While his promos are usually good for a laugh or two, the man can barely move in the ring anymore. There's only so far that hilarious promos can take you before it becomes apparent that it might be time to step away from the wrestling industry. Steiner is far from being a draw anymore (though it could be argued he wasn't ever much of a draw) and aside from the aforementioned entertaining promos, he carries very little value anymore.
That being said, I can't necessarily disagree with the things he's said on Twitter about TNA management, specifically Hulk Hogan. Hogan is the perfect representation of someone who can't grasp the concept that it's time for him to step away from the limelight for good. Same goes for a guy like Ric Flair, but at least Flair is just a wrestler whereas Hogan has legitimate backstage power. Hogan just can't let himself stay away from TV as evidenced by his most recent return as iMPACT's new authority figure, and I can understand why a guy like Steiner has a problem with that.
On the flip side however, I'm not really in agreement with Steiner's feelings towards management wanting TNA talents to sign up for Twitter and post messages to continue storylines. As much as people shit on WWE for cramming Twitter down our throats, at least they've learned that social media can be a fantastic tool to progress storylines. Some TNA guys seem to have grasped this, and I don't get what Steiner's problem with it is. How is management telling you what to tweet any different than them telling you what to say before you go do a TV interview? Or even a promo for TV? It's the exact same concept, but on a different form of media. I get that older people have problems sometimes grasping new forms of technology, but with as long as Steiner's been around the industry he should appreciate the need to evolve with the times.
Airing dirty laundry like this on Twitter is not only unprofessional, but when these wrestlers use such atrocious grammar while doing it, they end up looking like jokes. If Steiner were to put together a well written blog entry (or series of Twitter posts in this case), I might be able to read it without laughing. But even in cases like this where I agree with much of what is being said, that's all ruined by the immaturity of it all. Twitter and other forms of social media are all a part of the next generation of professional wrestling, and even the veterans of the industry need to jump on board, because it's not going anywhere.
"Extreme Reunion" of What? The Geriatric Society?
"Vince and Dixie, you've been served."
Apparently Shane Douglas seems to think he's winning right now by showing up at a WWE event trying to start something and posting videos of him outside some rundown arena and ranting about how awesome he is. All this talk about "a second revolution" is so far beyond old it's almost not even worth laughing at now. Much like Hogan needs to realize that his time is up, these former ECW guys need to realize that ECW is dead and it's never coming back. There's a reason the company went the way of the dodo over a decade ago.
These guys like Douglas, Raven, and Sabu might have had some value in the wrestling industry at some point in time, but that point has long since passed. These ECW reunion shows seemed like an okay idea at first because a lot of wrestling fans were feeling nostalgic and it was nice to see some old-fashioned hardcore wrestling again. But now that the nostalgia is gone and the creativity behind these reunion shows is depleted, these guys just need to stop. No one cares anymore and all they're doing is shitting on the already burnt legacy of the real ECW.
So no, Shane Douglas, you have not "served" Vince and Dixie. The only thing you've managed to do is make yourself look like a sad old man that can't hack it in the modern world of pro wrestling. Do yourself a favour and get all the fucking way out of here.
The Eye of the Storm
Anyone who has read a column of mine in the past should have some vague idea of who my favourite wrestler on the TNA roster is. I haven't exactly made it a secret that I'm a big fan of Bobby Roode and have been for a long time. Factoring in his improvement over the last few months since joining the main event, Roode is essentially the total package of a professional wrestler. He's got the right look, he can talk, he can wrestle, and most importantly he can draw a reaction from the crowd. Outside of the ring he's also a hell of a guy and the couple of times I've had the pleasure of meeting him he took the time to actually have a conversation with me. Plus he's Canadian and from my hometown, so that's pretty cool.
That being said however, there is someone in TNA that now rivals Roode as one of my favourites. Another name I've always been a fan of, but until fairly recently never really looked at as a top name that could represent the company in the main event. James Storm has done a hell of a job of establishing himself as someone who belongs in the World Championship scene and seems just about ready to break through to the next level. Like Roode, Storm is pretty much the total package when it comes to wrestling, but perhaps in a different way.
I would relate Storm to Stone Cold Steve Austin in the way that he may not have the best look and he may not be the best in-ring wrestler, but he makes due with what he has and makes it work. Storm is that rare kind of wrestler that is average in many regards but, because of his ability to connect with the fans, it doesn't matter as much. Being that TNA is mostly based in the Southern United States, it isn't a big surprise that Storm's cowboy gimmick is over like crazy, and while part of the praise there should certainly be given to the TNA creative team for giving Storm the shot, Storm deserves most of it as he's managed to make himself into a sort of "everyman".
While he certainly hasn't reached Austin's legendary status just yet, there are certainly comparisons to be made between the two men.
Next Sunday, Storm will face off against Roode inside a steel cage for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. I really don't know which prediction to make at this point because I could argue for either side. Roode has been a phenomenal champion so far and it's great to finally see TNA giving him the shot he rightfully deserves, but Storm is in a position where he could very well be the next great main-eventer for TNA. He turns 35 this year, but considering he's in decent physical shape and has remained mostly injury free his entire career, there's no telling what kind of future he still has ahead of him. TNA needs big stars that aren't pushing 45 years old, and they have the perfect opportunity with Storm and Roode.
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