Between The Ropes
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Online at BetweenTheRopes.com
On Wednesday night, February 27, 2008, Ring of Honor Head Booker Gabe Sapolsky joined hosts Brian Fritz, Dickerman, and Vito DeNucci live on Between The Ropes to discuss the upcoming ROH show during WrestleMania weekend, the controversial angle involving Allison Danger, the growth of ROH, and much more.
The interview began with Gabe talking about the 6 year anniversary show last weekend in New York. Gabe said he was really happy with the way it went and the fact that it set up some interesting directions for the company to go heading into their shows in Orlando during WrestleMania weekend.
When specifically asked about the controversial angle with Alison Danger Gabe said “You don’t hit a home run every time out.” He also noted that ROH has not sought to be too controversial in the past and that this was one time where the crowd didn’t respond well so they would be moving in a different direction with the story.
When asked to explain how ROH has survived over the last six years when so many other smaller promotions have failed Gabe said that “it goes to the simple philosophy that if you put on a good product, and one worth supporting, the fans are going to support it. I think over the last six year’s we’ve put on that quality product and as a result the fans have supported us and made us grow. I think it all comes down to that simple formula.”
When asked how decisions are made regarding what areas to expand to next Gabe gave a lot of credit to owner Cary Silkin being able to gauge fan demand and being willing to go out and take chances when the time is right.
Talk then turned to ROH’s upcoming show in Orlando during WrestleMania weekend. Gabe said he is “really excited about the fact that TNA is there, and WWE will be there, and there’s us there, and there’s FIP down there. When you have that kind of competition it drives everyone to be better…the real winners are the fans. I think it’ll be a really fun situation, you know that no one wants to go into Orlando and have the fans say ‘that was the worst show out of all the groups that ran there.’ Everyone wants to go to Orlando and have fans say ‘wow, that was the best show of the weekend.'”
Gabe was then asked how he felt ROH’s jump into pay per views had gone so far. Gabe confirmed that the company is in talks to continue airing the pay per views and that he has been very happy with the results so far. “The buys have been right about what we thought they would be. The only negative is that we haven’t picked up as many new customers as we had hoped.” Gabe also discussed the DVDs which will soon be released in retail stores and said that previous retail DVD releases had helped bring in new fans and these new DVDs are even better than those previously released.
Asked if a national TV deal is on the on the horizon Gabe said “one thing people should know from our history is that we’re never content to just stay where we are…We’re always looking to take that next step, it’s just a matter of doing it the right way and at the right time. That’s something I think we’ve been really smart about.”
On ROH’s relationship with WWE and TNA Gabe said that since WWE really doesn’t see ROH as much of a threat it is easy to maintain a good relationship with them. On the other hand Gabe described ROH’s relationship with TNA as indifferent and said that since TNA has their talent under contract it’s really their call as to who books their talent.
The conversation wrapped up with a discussion about what it’s like to have to book for a company when talent moves on to other promotions. Gabe said seeing a guy move all the way up the card is the most enjoyable aspect of booking. He also brought up the point that talent moving on to other places has the positive effect of keeping ROH’s product from getting stale.
To listen to the entire Gabe Sapolsky interview, including having Necro Butcher and Austin Aries in ROH, going up against the WWE Hall of Fame show, and whether he has any plans to begin using more established talent on the ROH roster, as well as the entire February 27 edition of Between The Ropes in streaming audio, visit the show online at http://www.BetweenTheRopes.com. In addition to listening to this weeks show you can become a site member and access hundreds of previous Between The Ropes shows and interviews. Be sure to join us for two hours of Between The Ropes on its new night and time, this Tuesday from 6:00 p.m.