I Gotta Say This #5 - What I Like About You
October 4, 2003 - by Brad Dykens
I gotta say this:
Okay okay okay! I submit.. My last few anti-Goldberg/anti-HHH columns didn't exactly "get over" with the fans of OWW all that much. Apparently, I spend too much time "bitching" and not enough time "praising". I guess you all missed the parts I wrote about TNA, but whatever. But you, those who ragged me out, DO have a point, I don't talk nearly enough about the "good" as I do the "bad" so I'm going to break character (har har) and tell you what I DO like about wrestling, and what I think makes wrestling so great, as opposed to what makes it SUCK (cough, cough Goldberg cough Triple H -- but I promise that will be that last I utter those names until my next column)..
NWA: Total Nonstop Action - Yeah I get beat up on for praising TNA too much, but really come on, this product is so damn good! They have refreshing storylines, talented champions, titles that mean something and workers who literally work their tails off for the product. Every episode of NWA TNA delivers!
History - The one thing that keeps me going is the history of wrestling. I will never get tired of researching the internet for old-school wrestlers as far back as George Hackenschmidt, Ed Lewis, Lou Thesz, Whipper Watson all the way up to Buddy Rogers, Pat O'Connor, Bruno Sammartino and the list goes on and on. For a wrestling historian there is always more to learn, like the structure of the old regional territories, and who wrestled here, and who wrestled there. It's fascinating to me how a guy could be the top babyface in one territory, and then become a regular jobber in another territory! Guys like Bruiser Brody & Andre the Giant made a living off of jumping from promotion to promotion all over the world! There are thousands upon thousands of wrestlers to learn about and tag teams, promoters, managers, there will never be an end to what a guy like me can keep himself occupied with.
Eddy Guerrero - This guy is the epitome of "getting over" with the crowd, and the funniest part about it is that the WWE didn't do it! Eddy Guerrero did it! And what makes it even more inspiring is Eddy Guerreros real life battle with his demons and coming out on top. This is a man who has heel blood going through his veins and is quite possibly the most over wrestler in the WWE!
AJ Styles - You know how much I love TNA, well this is TNA's "franchise" -- AJ Styles is the "perfect" World Heavyweight champion; He puts on five star matches with LOTS of different opponents, he has an amazing list of moves, and he told the WWE to "stick it!" when they offered him a contract. Who better to represent TNA than a guy who stood up to the competition!
Kurt Angle & Brock Lesnar - They put the "wrestling" back in World Wrestling Entertainment. They are the product leaders on the Smackdown! roster, their style paves the way for all other Smackdown! talent. I would like to see Brock Lesnar tone down the "power" aspect of his repertoire and turn up the "amateur wrestling", that's why his matches with Kurt Angle are so great, because Kurt just brings the greatness out of his opponents..
Raven - I watched the WWE ruin this guy! I thought, maybe the years behind him have just worn the guy down to a mere shell of his former self?! Maybe he was on his last legs? Then he was released by WWE, and popped up in TNA and engaged in classic storylines and matches with Sandman, Jeff Jarrett, AJ Styles, James Micthell & others - whoa! He's still got it!
Ric Flair - Sometimes I get so disenfranchised when I see old guys like Hulk Hogan & Roddy Piper walk into a company thinking they are still the real deal and expect to get booked in main events and get paid more. What makes it worse is they run their mouths about how they're coming back for one more run to "pass the torch" or "help out the young guys" when all they do is do things to better their own selves or their bank account. Which brings me to Ric Flair, I don't care what you say, he IS THE GREATEST OF ALL TIME! "Whether you like it or not, you better get used to it because it's the best thing going today" it's so true.. Ric Flair IS the greatest of all time, but it doesn't show, his modesty is always apparent and that is probably why he's able to hold down a job for more than a few months (unlike Hogan & Piper). AND he is giving a little back to the business by helping guys like Randy Orton, and participating in matches with younger guys and putting them over. I know if I were a young wrestler, I would work FOR FREE to get a chance to wrestle Ric Flair just once! Even standing in the same ring would inspire me to be the best that I can be, and I'm sure all the young up-and-coming wrestlers in the WWE feel that way!
John Cena - The new blood of the WWE, and probably 1/2 of the WWE's only chance for the future (along with Randy Orton). This is the first "rookie" to be great on the microphone in a long long time, and Cena has a great look, and consistently improving ring skills, and a great attitude outside of the ring -- I wish I had a nickel for every time I heard about John Cena interacting face-to-face with the fans before and/or after a show -- Word Life!
Ring of Honor - I haven't even seen Ring of Honor yet! But all my favorite wrestlers work there, and I mark out just from READING Ring of Honor recaps. The product just seems so good, pushing all the aspects of pro-wrestling that I enjoy, and lots of it!
Underappreciated Talent - Lance Storm, Chris Benoit, Rhyno, Ultimo Dragon, Spanky Paul London, Chris Nowinksi, Stevie Richards, Tommy Dreamer, Jimmy Yang, Nova and last but certainly not least, Paul Heyman..
My Favorite Indy Wrestlers - Steve Corino, Chris Daniels, Elix Skipper, Low Ki, Amazing Red, Jody Fliesch (retired), American Dragon, Jonny Storm, Trent Acid, CM Punk, Homicide, Tony Mamaluke, Sonjay Dutt, Shark Boy, Chris Sabin, Frankie Kazarian, Michael Shane, America's Most Wanted, The Briscoe Brothers, Evil Eddie Watts, Bobby Rude, Chi Chi Cruz, Gary Williams and many many more!
by Brad Dykens
Chris Peacock wrote::
I just have a few things to say. First off TNA and CZW's promotions have ten times the talent then the WWE will probably ever have. Don't get me wrong there are good wrestlers in the WWE, All on Smackdown but that's not the point. Raven has been my favorite wrestler since I seen his first match in ECW. I have followed him through all his wrestling things as Raven, I even remember Johnny Polo. Anyway I just wanted to say that your right the WWE wrecked him but I am glad to see him in a promotion that is using him. Another one of my favorite ECW men is Tony Mamaluke. He is probably one of the greatest technincal wrestlers of all time, and I dare to say there isn't a person in the WWE that could out wrestle him. Well maybe Chris Beniot but probably not. And one last thing I have to say about indie wrestlers is that since I started watching CZW I have been impressed by one person alot. That person is Sonjay Dutt. This guy has alot of skill and talent and I am glad he is getting his in CZW. But yeah for story line Indy wrestling my not have it all together all though I haven't seen much TNA so I don't really know. But when it comes to wrestling (Which most of us wrestling fans actaully watch wrestling for) Indy Wrestling is where it's at.
Cid Carter wrote::
I'd have to agree everything said on this topic, but another Unappritiated wrestler would have to be Nathan Jone, now im not saying this because i am to australian, but he is a great new talent, he has already worked with Taker(one of my favorites) he has a great build, but i barely see him on Smackdown, is it just me or could they do much more with Jones, the WWE are wasteing alot of talent.. They should re-think there storyline and talent!
Joe Joe wrote::
I agree with most all of what you said. Although I gotta ask, why in particular do you not like Triple H? Also Goldberg can't even begin to compare to Triple H let alone most all the wrestlers in the top promotions. To the person talking about Nathan Jones, he is a horrible wrestler who shouldn't of been hired. Wait maybe you already knew that and figured by how the WWE books a lot he should be very high on the card. Whatever the matter is Nathan Jones is still isn't good and should be released.
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