My Two Centsss - Hey, Yo, IOC: What's Your Problem?
By Super Chrisss
Feb 12, 2013 - 8:43:37 PM
If you're a member of the International Olympic Committee, I want you to take a good, long look at the above image. Do you see what I see? Because I see a young Kurt Angle crying with happiness after winning a gold medal in the 1996 games after competing with a broken, freakin' neck. That picture may be seventeen years old, but history has not erased the emotion and joy from Angle's face.
Unfortunately, these bastards known as the IOC want to erase amateur wrestling from their prestigious Olympic games. You know, the same sport that has been part of the Olympic Games since 1896, way before the likes of WWE, Vince McMahon and Hulk Hogan were even born. The same sport that thousands of young men and women spend their entire years training for just a chance to compete for their country every four years. Apparently, the IOC has deemed amateur wrestling "[not] right with the (other) 25 core sports."
Apologies all you amateur wrestlers, you've just wasted a large portion of your lives. Because according to these brilliant, extremely-in-touch-with-society-and-tradition members of the committee, you'll have to look for a new hobby. You know all those intense workouts at the gym, those protein diets, and twenty-mile runs you've been doing the past number of years, trying to earn a chance to wrestle for an Olympic medal? That was all for nothing. The Olympics simply had to make room for other top-tier, nail-biting events like table tennis and canoeing. After all, what could be more exciting than watching two people bounce a tennis ball off a table, back and forth?
Simply put, the IOC needs to get all the way outta here with the shit they pulled today. Wrestling has been a part of the Olympics for over a century. Who do they think they are, claiming tradition is irrelevant and it's time to modernize the Games? Do they have any idea how many people they've upset by removing wrestling from the 2020 games and onward? Think about it - I wasn't exaggerating earlier when I said people spend practically their entire lives training for an opportunity to compete in the Olympic games, be it figure skating, soccer, or amateur wrestling. Imagine being in your mid-30s and feel like you're finally ready to compete for a chance to qualify for the 2020 wrestling team, after years of training. Oh, wait, you can't. That's because even if the vote is appealed, the earliest amateur wrestling can officially return to the Olympics would be eleven years from now, in 2024. Suddenly, that 30-something year old's dream of wrestling in the Olympics has been destroyed. He knows he will most likely be in no condition to qualify for a spot against guys who are at least ten years younger than he is. His aspirations are done, gone.
Such a realization could push someone over the edge. Imagine spending your whole life dreaming about being a firefighter but circumstances out of your control prevent that from happening (blindness, paralysis, etc.). Instantly, you feel like you wasted most of your life and you don't know what to do with yourself. You certainly have no thoughts of a better and brighter future. You would drown in self-pity, if not doing something worse.
That's what a lot of people are feeling right now. So many popular wrestlers became superstars through their accomplishments at the amateur level. Kurt Angle, Brock Lesnar, Dolph Ziggler, Shelton Benjamin, Jack Swagger - the list goes on and on and on. Had amateur wrestling never been around all these years, then there's a good chance none of the above names would even had made it to WWE, as it was their amateur backgrounds that helped get them noticed by WWE officials in the first place. For all we know, maybe there's a batch of future Angles and Lesnars training in the Olympics, but will give up and explore other career paths due to today's announcement from the IOC. Quite frankly, the future of professional wrestling has already been altered, all thanks to a group of ignorant people from Switzerland.
Now, I admit to not being an avid fan or follower of the Summer Olympics, Winter Olympics, and definitely not the Paralympics (not to offend anyone who is), but that doesn't mean I don't recognize the importance of the Olympics, and what the event means to the athletes who participate in the Games. The Olympics have been around for more than a century, and they have a tradition to uphold. What if the NFL released a statement next week, decreeing that next year's Super Bowl would be contested under no contact rules? Or what if the 2014 Grammy Awards would suddenly be exclusive to American-born artists only from that year onward? In either case, people would be outraged, as tradition was being hampered with. How many football players would want to play tag football, and who would want to watch? How would international musicians ever achieve their dream of winning a Grammy? It's blasphemy, and so is the IOC's decision to remove wrestling from the Olympic Games starting in 2020.
Look, beloved members of the IOC, I understand most of you don't like wrestling. That's fine. Myself, I don't watch your lame skiing or curling events because they put me to sleep faster than a Big Show promo. But liking one thing and respecting it are two very different things. You might not be a wrestling fan - amateur or professional - but that doesn't give you any right to tinker with tradition and re-write history. You're messing with people's lives, with people's fandom, and that's just not cool.
Does the wrestling world have a right to be upset? Of course they do. The IOC has instantly become the largest heels in the wrestling universe, maybe of all-time. Does the IOC deserve all the hate they've been getting from wrestlers, personalities, and fans across the world over the past few hours? Damn right they do. And this isn't something that will blow over by next week. Unless something major happens, we will be hearing about this for quite some time.
You thought the Internet Wrestling Community hated John Cena? You haven't seen anything yet. Good luck with that, IOC.
Well today's column almost reached rant territory, but don't worry - my next two columns I plan on posting this week will be a lot more 'relaxed'. I'll be dropping a "What If?" either tomorrow evening or sometime Thursday, and you can also catch my Elimination Chamber predictions (featuring that bastard Skitz, of course) sometime before Saturday, so keep your eyes pealed!
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Thanks for reading!