Saturday, January 19, 2013

Random

1. Is it just me, or do bookers try REALLY hard to come up with screwy finishes to ‘I Quit’ matches?  About the only one I can think of that had a no-fooling clean ending was Flair / Funk in 1989.  Were there others?

Magnum TA v. Tully Blanchard was about as clean of an ending as you can get.  They were generally all clean before the Attitude era, in fact, when Russo decided that people wanted to be SWERVED and thus stipulations ended up meaning nothing.

2. I know that everyone has a big ‘idea’ for changing wrestling, but one simple change that I think would have an impact is, for tag matches, bringing back the tag rope and being ‘stricter’ with only one man in the ring.  The ‘tag team formula’ worked so well for TWENTY YEARS because the whole ‘face in peril’ was such an effective heat builder.  Especially with the focus on younger viewers, couldn’t this hook a whole new generation?

Probably not.  The first step is to push tag team wrestling as a big deal again, and really after that tournament in 2012 they’ve kind of forgotten about it again and we’re down to Hell No and the Rhodes Scholars as the only serious contenders again. 

93 comments:

  1. The tag division disappeared and the divas division is heading that way. Soon Raw will just be Cena's smirk and whatever old timer they can get to show up that week...just what Vince wants.

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  2. Outside of Rock/Mankind, I can't think of an I Quit match that had a screwy finish.

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  3. I can't remember who it was but I remember some scenario where the dastardly heel held someone hostage on the ramp and made the face say I Quit "or else"

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  4. Rey vs. Chavo.. "I Queet, I Queet"

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  5. Tag team wrestling was pretty much always my favourite part of the show as a kid, and I do miss it a lot.


    I also think that it's no coincidence that the two hottest periods in WWF history had strong tag divisions.

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  6. Ric Flair vs. Mick Foley was along those lines. Mick and Melina had a friendship, and Flair was threatening to hit her with a weapon or something and Foley quit.

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  7. I really enjoyed the story on that Rock v Mankind match. Rock wasn't going to say "I Quit" due to his huge ego; Foley wasn't going to say "I Quit" due to his incredible pain tolerance. So, there had to be a trick to get out of the match. But trying to capture lightening in a bottle by doing it again is stupid.

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  8. HowmuchdoesthisguyweighJanuary 19, 2013 at 12:02 PM

    Leading to Chyna swerving HHH and then Triple H joining the corporation! Lots of turns haha

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  9. That happened? Hmm. I just watched all the Raw and Smackdowns from 1999 and I don't remember any of what happened lol. Pretty bad.

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  10. The new "I Quit" trend is: the face beats up the heel, then sets up a highspot, and the heel is such a coward he says "I quit" to keep him from hitting it. Of course the face still hits the spot anyway, because "be a star". This was the finish Cena used against JBL and Batista, and it was also the end of Hardy vs.Hardy. I'm not a fan; it comes across as cartoony and it undersells the feud it's meant to resolve.

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  11. Wasn't Hitman/Backlund an I Quit match?

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  12. Yeah, but there wasn't a screwy ending.

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  13. I Quit and Strap matches are some of my least favorite gimmick bouts (of the standard, frequently used ones). It feels like there have just been a few worth watching -- Tully vs Magnum TA is incredible and Bret vs Backlund was solid. For strap matches, the only one that comes to mind is Sting vs Vader which was very good.

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  14. That was one of Cena's best matches, not sure why you're hating on the ending.

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  15. What I really can't stand is contrived draws in Last Man Standing matches

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  16. Because someone can like the match, but not like the ending. I love Cena vs. JBL I Quit but the finish was deflating.

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  17. I would've sworn that the tag rope has been back for a couple of years now.

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  18. The problem with I Quit matches is that(besides shenanigans) You are almost guaranteed a face victory. Especially in the WWE when it's usually their top face in the match. The heel winning via shenanigans is usually not creative and contrived, and the face winning is predictable. There's no winning. In my opinion they should start building up a feud in the midcard that leads to an I Quit match. You could elevate some young guys and it wouldn't be as much of a forgone conclusion because the face isn't the top guy. I'm imagining like a Cody Rhodes vs. Daniel Bryan type situation. Elevate both guys the face winning is likely but not totally predictable(especially with how they book Bryan) and I think it'd be a hell of a match.

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  19. Owen tricked his mom into throwing in the towel. Which wasn't too screwy. In fact I think they should bring that back. Of course they really don't have managers to effectively do that. But if they were to pair someone with Cena like Zack Ryder. Then build an I Quit match against (insert heel here) then Ryder could throw in the towel, cost Cena the match, turn heel, and job to Cena.

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  20. I think it's back, just not strictly enforced.

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  21. austin vs. savio vega was good too

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  22. And wasn't Flair the face and Foley the heel in that situation?

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  23. I read Bret vs. Backlund as Black Bart, and thought for a moment someone from this board was giving props to the guy. It was a terrifying few seconds.

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  24. That's actually an awesome finish if it's not overused. Certain heels are just plain cowards, so it stands to reason they'd quit out of fear.

    To be honest, I wanna see an I Quit match where the heel quits immediately before the face can even touch him. I Quit matches aren't used as feud enders anymore so I think it would be a great way to build to something like Last Man Standing, which is.

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  25. That wasn't the I Quit match though. They had one at Wrestlemania.

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  26. That's right -- wasn't it actually a submission match with the towel thing added?

    That's another thing about I Quit Matches and Strap matches, they both have like 1000 variations that are the same idea. YAPPAPI!

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  27. I think what happened there is that Backlund just forgot about the stips and never actually said "I quit". Piper asked him if he quit, Backlund nodded, Piper called for the bell. So basically it wasn't really a screwy finish, the match just ended up being a submission match with a guest ref that happened to have a mic the whole time.

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  28. I really don't like the whole microphone thing either when they use it -- it really seems to break up the intensity and pacing of the match, plus it usually results in some unintentional comedy with the silliness of the guy selling the pain. They pulled it off in the Magnum TA / Tully Blanchard match because both guys weren't overselling the pain and they tried to get the mic over itself as a weapon.

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  29. While not exactly a strap match, there's been some dog collar matches that have been pretty decent.

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  30. TheRealCitizenSnipsJanuary 19, 2013 at 1:56 PM

    I miss tag programs too and as weird as it feels to defend WWE booking, I can kind of see a possible reason they might have to deemphasize it.
    A tag program requires (obviously...) twice as many guys as a singles program. And compared to previous years, it seems an individual wrestler is a lot more likely to either take time off due to injury or get suspended for something. I mean, if you compare to the 80's where you could stay up all night snorting blow off a hookers ass or if you blew out your ACL and just swallowed whatever pills you needed to because the show had to go on and damn the future consequences, someone nowadays could suddenly be off TV for 3 months for any number of reasons. You lose one guy out of four, and suddenly your program is shot to shit.

    So maybe the bookers are just kind of recognizing the realities of today's wrestling world and booking from a more "safety" standpoint.
    Eh, that's just a half-formed thought I had right now, make what you will of it.

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  31. Yeah the Valentine vs Piper one comes to mind, but it still gets on my nerves. The whipping spots get old and I hate how limited the mobility of the guys are in those kind of matches. To me it's an almost instant guarantee of getting a match that will be of less quality than if they just did a straight up one on one match or a cage match.

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  32. It's been back. I'm not even totally sure it left. I suppose it wasn't used very often for a while because I had to explain it to my brother who's been a pretty big fan for the last 4-5 years.

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  33. Which eventually led to the Rock leaving so the Corporation really screwed up on that one

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  34. Ugh, Vince Russo booking is so cheap.

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  35. Yeah, but even with Kane/Bryan vs the Rhodes Scholars, you could still have the classic tag situation: The Scholars go all Tully and Arn on Bryan for a while, Kane gets the hot tag and chokeslams the shit out of the heels, and either Hell No wins, or the Scholars cheat and win. It's been around for so long because it WORKS, and the WWE "universe" will still pop for it, if done correctly.

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  36. They did during the period of the..what did they call the group that put on a clinic every Smackdown, regardless of the combination? I don't remember who teamed with who, but it was Angle, Edge, Benoit, Eddit, Chavo and...someone else, I think?


    Anyway, yeah, they had the tag ropes back then.

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  37. I was thinking of the wild brawl style ones, like that match that was the only ECW match to get ***** from Scott. The Nasty Boys/PE match from BATB 96 is pretty fun too, even though the camerawork is some of the worst I've ever seen.

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  38. Just checked. You're right. Survivor Series 94 was a submission match. Should have checked ma facts first.

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  39. Yeah oddly enough. Melina was a heel as well. And the next night she turned heel on Mick Foley getting him fired turning him face! AHH!

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  40. NOBODY has mentioned Legacy vs DX??


    Doesn't get much cleaner than that finish...

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  41. Smackdown Six with Mysterio

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  42. The Smackdown 6, and the last one was Rey Mysterio. Then Benoit and Angle went back to feuding instead of feuding and teaming at the same time, which helped pave the way for Team Angle. That was the last great era of tag wrestling in the WWE, with *** to **** tag matches on just about every Smackdown for about 6 months (the only bad side was that the PPV matches were often anti-climactic, but that's been a problem of Heyman's booking for a long time).

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  43. They could build in the classic "You injured my partner, I'm going to take you both on by myself" angle, which would build sympathy for a lone face, heat for the double-teaming heels, and a big pop once the partner returns (provided he's only gone for a short time). I think a well utilized and booked tag division could benefit everyone, especially by getting guys on TV we never see anymore.

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  44. I think it could work if the E adopted the classic All Japan model, where some teams are established veterans paired with rookies (kinda like Bob Holly and Cody Rhodes from a few years ago). That way, they can build stories around the fact that the new guy is green and still building up his skills in the ring. Eventually, both partners are booked to be at about the same skill level, which could go in several directions - the team is now a prominent and dominant team, the veteran begins to get jealous and paranoid about his partner, or the rookie begins to feel held back by the vet.


    The key to all this, however, is to not rush things. The team has to stay together for a long time and fight other long-established teams. If done right, they could copy the Misawa vs. Kawada feud and draw some money.

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  45. Why should WWE, or any other wrestling promotion, care about tag team wrestling? Tag team wrestling is just paying four (or more) guys to do the work of two.

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  46. Raw the night after Royal Rumble 1999

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  47. A towel match is not a submission match, because the wrestlers themselves are not allowed to submit. Backlund actually gave up during the match, but he didn't lose because Owen did not throw in the towel.


    Of course, that one DID have a screwy finish, because Bulldog never threw in the towel for Bret either.

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  48. I'm not sure that math adds up. Guys have a base salary regardless of whether they're used or not. They also get a cut of the gate and that number is percentage allocated, so you're not technically paying for more. Also, history has proven that a well built tag division can draw. I think you're wrong on all accounts here. :-)

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  49. Yeah, it's sort of odd that the WWF promoted it as that in the first place I suppose.

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  50. Base salary is a very recent occurrence. R&R, ME, and the like were not getting base salaries in the 80's. But tags might have made a little sense in the 80's, in that those matches could end up going on twice as long a singles match.


    On RAW, most tag matches end up going on just as long, if not shorter, than the average singles match. if you're trying to fill time on RAW, two singles matches with the same guys will do that better than one tag match.


    Give me proof of one situation where a tag division drew whereas a singles feud could not have done the same thing.

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  51. Whenever the MX or the R&R or the Road Warriors or the Freebirds hit a territory, gates went up. That's reality. I read an article about this and I have to find it so I can link it. I use the 80s as my main example because that's when tag-teams were a big part of the show and treated almost equal to the world champion. Vince had a very strong division, but i"ll concede that they probably weren't really draws in the WWF since the main focus was on Hogan in a disparate way.



    As for today, contracts do exist so we can't escape the fact that you're paying everyone whether they're used or not. So, there's no extra monetary cost to having tag teams wrestle on any of the shows. Thus, it makes sense to have a healthy tag division rather than simply not use guys and still pay them. You never know who your next big star will be.

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  52. Because tag wrestling even up until the early '00s was a way to develop young talent without overexposing them your audience, as in the case today. The Hardyz, Edge & Christian, and even Bradshaw weren't ready to carry singles feuds in the late '90s/early '00s and would have floundered if they were forced to, much like most of WWE's developmental system does today; or, they would've ended up like a Dolph Ziggler, or worse a Jack Swagger, guys the company clearly wants to push but has no idea what to do with them. Tag wrestling protects their stock as a singles guy because they don't get tarnished as a complete loser (unless the consistently lose handicap matches to someone like Cena) and can reinvent themselves when the team breaks up.


    It also helps round out the midcard and give guys who are never going to be a top star something to do. I think we can all agree at this point Zach Ryder isn't going anywhere now, tomorrow, or five years from now. Whatever momentum as a singles wrestler he had is gone. But he's still over. Tie him to another misfit toy like Brodus, or bring in a guy from NXT, and you're at least giving them a purpose.



    And look what it did for Daniel Bryan and Kane. They were both destined to end up in what would most likely be awful midcard feuds for the rest of 2012, but they got stuck together and became one of the most over acts on the roster. It can act as a great stop-gap for directionless guys regardless of their place on the card.

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  53. Re the Tully/Magnum match: Tully didn't say "I Quit.". You watch the match, Magnum spikes him in the eye, the ref asks if he gives up, he screams "YEEEEEEEEES!" but he never says the words.


    One of the great post match scenes happens after the bell, though: Magnum still has the spike, he has Tully by the hair, it looks like he's going to continue putting his foot in Tully's ass.....then he just lets Tully go, tosses the spike, gets the US belt from the ref, then gives Tully one final look of disgust over his shoulder as he leaves the cage.


    Damn that car accident. Magnum TA would've had, at a minimum, Luger's career if not for that accident.

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  54. I would add Lesnar/Cena as another example...

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  55. Austin/Vega was good. And wasn't there an ECW tag match involving Public Enemy that was pretty? I'm not an ECW do I don't remember the details.

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  56. I miss guys using the tag rope to choke opponents. I'm guessing we'll never see taht in the WWE again...


    Also, I tend to like tag matches but I get tired of standard RnR Express formula really quickly. Not every match should need to do "face in peril" to be successful.

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  57. I'd have to think long and hard to think of a match with a finish as emotionally deflating as Cena/Lesnar.

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  58. Easily Savio's best match. Only Savio match I can think of that was any good, come to think of it.

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  59. Yeah, and as I recall, the Rhodes/Holly team set up the debut of Ted Dibiase Jr., and the heel turn for Cody, so yes, the veteran/ rookie team is a great way to introduce wrestlers, and allow rookies to learn a bit before getting thrown out there on their own. Personally, I think they should bring Ricky Steamboat Jr, on TV like that: have him team with Mysterio or somebody.

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  60. A simple change WWE needs to do emphasize the SPORTS in sports entertainment instead of the latter. All wrestlers goals should be winning titles and making money. Eliminate half the titles (championships) and make the titles mean something. If they did that the bad entertainment thats provided would be something fans (universe) could deal with

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  61. I agree. Or another example I've always felt was Batista. If they had tried a Ryback push, he would have floundered. Instead they stuck him with Devon, let him just go to the ring and watch. Say what you want about Devon but he'd be a hell of a teacher.


    Then He teamed up with two veterans and really learned how to act like a star from arguably two of the best stars in wrestling. He could also team with Orton and grow with someone on his own level.


    Then shockingly, when they gave him the ball he was more than ready, and became a huge, huge star.

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  62. Do all this, and then make the belts left over look like something you'd actually want to have around your waist again, instead of some cheap knock-off plastic pieces of shit.

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  63. That's the one, thanks. I barely watch wrestling anymore, so all that knowledge I knew like the back of my hand is gone.

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  64. How did bob backlund quit at wrestlemania 11? I blocked that wrestlemania out my mind?

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  65. Oh wait. That was a submission match??

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  66. Using the tag rope to choke an opponent would result in being fired immediately.

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  67. yup and it wasn't nearly as good as the SS

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  68. Magnum would have been incredibly huge for NWA at the time. The biggest what if ever.

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  69. You watched it... you immediately did a Wolverine in "Origin" and healed over the mental wounds...

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  70. totally forgot abt that feud.

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  71. i dont believe it. I think the main eventers at the time Flair/Dusty just say it because its the right thing to say.


    I believe they would have fucked Magnum. He would have a couple cups of coffee with the title, but he would have never changed JCP business.


    If Magnum wins the title, think about how many people by proxy move up into the main event scene:


    Nikita
    Tully


    Tully was a Horsemen, Flair is a Horsemen. And I believe given the stories about Tully at the time, if Magnum would have gotten the belt, he would have politicked to splinter from the Horsemen to get some world title matches, because had he stayed a Horsemen, Flair is getting those shots.


    Nikita would have been a more believeable contender as well.


    Then you have Luger/Windham/Sting/Vicious in a year or two.


    And already Dusty's final run
    Flair


    and possibly anyone who could have been brought into the promotion.


    You are sharing main event money with at the most 5-6 people. Flair wasnt having that. And plus these guys are younger stronger and ready to give Vince a run for his money. And marketable... JCP would have fucked it up but they would have tried.


    FLair would have became a bit player and not THE MAN by 90.

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  72. My opinion: the "babyface in peril" gimmick never really got over in the WWF/WWE to the extent it did in the NWA. Fans always seemed to care more about who was being tagged in then giving a damn about who was getting beat up. Just a difference in mentality.

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  73. but brought back in 90 days and kinda pushed.

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  74. But the only way to make credible looking souveniers is to have the originals also look like cheap knock-off plastic pieces of shit.

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  75. That's ridiculous. I know his comments are in hindsight since he's no longer a threat, but I get the sense Flair would have agreed to drop the title to him in the late 80s when he vetoed doing the honour for so many others. (ie: Luger, Steiner, etc.)

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  76. fair to not agree but it aint ridiculous... this is flair we are talking about.

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  77. Piper asked Backlund if he submitted and Bob responded with "nggrreeegehh"


    Piper called for the bell.

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  78. We all need to be fair to Flair.

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  79. And having to blow up Chavo's phone with dog care requests

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  80. The AJ Styles / Christopher Daniels "I Quit" match had Daniels quit to avoid getting a screwdriver in the eye. Does that count?

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  81. But then gets super over.

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  82. Then gets punished for that by being saddled with a permanent midcard gimmick.

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  83. Come on! Goat Face is MONEY! Also, be a star!

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  84. IIRC, Foley came out that night and pulled an '05 HBK, basically saying "Sorry for acting like a douche" and going back to loveable face Foley.

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  85. You're fucking nuts if you don't think Magnum wouldn't have been THE super face of the NWA without his car accident.

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  86. you are fucking nuts if you think the nwa/jcp/wcw was ever built around a super face...


    think about all the uber faces they had...


    steamboat
    sting
    luger
    goldberg.


    the only one who ever had a real dominant run was hogan... and why was that?


    total creative control.
    flair couldnt out-politick hogan... on his best day.


    flair is like hhh... he only did jobs for those in his clique. steamboat... gave ricky a small run while makin flair look good in early 89 after drawing terribly in 88... once that run was done, went funk, who was part time and wasnt gonna around long enough to warrant a run...


    he "made" sting, so sting is happy to job to flair at any time...


    but flair made sure to beat luger every single time or fuck him over. (ala hhh/jericho) cuz luger was always gonna be the NWAs answer to Hogan. flair either had Crocketts ear, or the book and fucked him everytime.


    then in 91, he bolted from the promotion without doing the job, to hurt his future drawing power if in case he would ever come back, which he did...


    So you're nuts if you think flair in 86 was gonna step aside and let this guy with 4 years in the biz become the super face in the company while flair takes a backseat?


    you're a mark.

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  87. Punk/Umaga was a pretty good strap match.

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  88. I want to see an I Quit career vs career match. So someone isn't just quitting a match, he is quitting on his career.

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  89. Pretty much lol. All I remember from 1999 is the Austin-Rock Mania build up, and bits and pieces in the Fall of 1999. It got better in Fall but the first 8 months were just terrible.

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  90. Never been a fan of that kind of turn. Shawn's made a little sense if I remember right, because he basically said "I had to know" which made some sense. Foley was just like I was a dick, sorry guys RIGHT HERE in Milwaukee!

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  91. Even Mysterio/Sin Cara is kind of a variation of that, at least in WWE Universe canon. It's mostly about giving Sin Cara the rub as the new lucha guy and letting Rey work an easier style. Veteran/rookie teams work pretty well - look at Batista/Flair and how much that helped Batista improve. Maybe they could throw Christian and Tyson Kidd together after they both get back.

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  92. Agreed. Strong, well-organized rosters tend to lead to fuller tag divisions, and the only time a company was doing great business with a mediocre roster was Austin's rise. Kind of a radical suggestion, but I honestly think they should make Smackdown all tag teams. Seriously shoot for a return to main event-level tag wrestling, unify the WWE and WH belts and make Smackdown a tag show with the tag titles equivalent to the world title (and seriously, how great would ADR/Ricardo be as a team? You really want a face Del Rio, have him get the hot tag after Ricardo Morton spends ten minutes getting beat on).

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