Courtesy of WWE.com:
Nearly two decades ago on a muggy summer night, 1,000 wrestling fans packed into a bingo hall in a grungy Philadelphia neighborhood to witness history. After WCW withdrew from the National Wrestling Alliance, the NWA had been left without a World Champion. A young and exciting northeast-based organization called Eastern Championship Wrestling was selected to carry the torch of the NWA and steward the title. On that evening in Philly, an eight-man tournament was held to crown a new NWA World Heavyweight Champion. The action unfolded as normally as most sports-entertainment encounters, but after Shane Douglas was victorious in the finals, nobody could have predicted what happened next.
With the NWA Title on his shoulder and a microphone in his hand, The Franchise paid tribute to former champions like Dusty Rhodes, Harley Race and Ric Flair before committing the ultimate blasphemy by tossing his newly won championship – and 46 years of history – down to the mat. “I am not the man who accepts a torch to be handed down to me from an organization that died – R.I.P. – seven years ago,” Douglas proclaimed, referring to Ted Turner’s purchase of Jim Crockett Promotions. Instead, Douglas called himself “the man who ignites the new flame of the sport of professional wrestling.” He announced that he was the ECW Heavyweight Champion of the World, with the “E” switching from Eastern to Extreme.
In an in-depth and revealing conversation, we spoke with Paul Heyman about one of the most controversial incidents to ever occur at any sports-entertainment event. How was it orchestrated? Who knew about it? And why are there still rumors about ulterior motives? The speech had a ripple effect throughout the entire wrestling world and the battle lines were drawn. The era of Extreme had only just begun.
Recap courtesy of LordsofPain.net writer Marc Middleton:
Xfinity published an interview with WWE’s Paul Heyman. Here are some highlights:
On the significance of his role in last year’s WrestleMania: “It’s huge. Nothing short of it. And probably even bigger than that adjective. It’s exhilarating for me because you have the most unique, the most gifted athlete in the history of the WWE, or UFC, or college athletics in Brock Lesnar, going against a wrestler who probably has more heart, more determination, and the ability to overcome the odds better than anybody else that I’ve ever come across in my entire career in CM Punk. It’s a fascinating match-up. It won’t be over in 30 seconds. This is going to be an all-night affair. There’s an old expression in the professional wrestling business; “This match will be worth the price of admission.” I humbly suggest that Brock Lesnar vs. CM Punk is worth the price of admission alone.”
Courtesy of WWE.com:
So, what does it take to be a “Paul Heyman Guy”? Every day, I get calls, emails and tweets from people who want to know how to join the select group of those who can genuinely be called “Paul Heyman Guys.”
Courtesy of LordsofPain.net:
Paul Heyman recently spoke with Philly.com to promote WrestleMania 29. Here are some highlights:
Working with CM Punk and Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania:
“How could it be bad for me? I have two of the three main events properly represented on the biggest Wrestlemania of all time in the New York/New Jersey metropolitan area. How could things be going anything but splendidly for me? I’m ecstatic with my current role in WWE. I get to work every Monday with my two best friends: Brock Lesnar and CM Punk. I have ‘The Beast’ [Lesnar] and ‘The Best’ [Punk].”
AS I SEE IT: The Exciting History of the Original ECW
Pro Wrestling: Between the Sheets
ECW, originally known as Eastern Championship Wrestling, ran its first show on Tuesday, February 25, 1992 at the Philadelphia’s Original Sports Bar in center city Philadelphia in front of over 100 people. The first match in ECW history was a 20-minute broadway between wrestlers Jimmy Jannetty and Stevie Richards.
Much like ECW, the Philadelphia Original Sports Bar doesn’t exist any more…the site of the Sports Bar is now occupied by a Ross: Dress for Less discount store. Neither does the other site for early Eastern Championship Wrestling shows, the Chestnut Cabaret.
Editor’s note: David Dexter reported this interview:
MMAjunkie recently talked with Paul Heyman and here are the highlights:
On if Lesnar is a UFC Hall of Famer: “Of course he is [a UFC Hall of Famer]. Listen, here’s the thing: Look at the three that he lost to, number one. Number two, what if Brock Lesnar did what everyone else did and said, ‘Feed me a guy every other month for three years so I’ll get six victories a year. I’ll be 18-0 before you put me in there with a Frank Mir, a former UFC heavyweight champion, or Randy Couture and the legends of legends in UFC. But he didn’t do that. He walked in and said give me your best.”