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Option A or Option B

Hi Scott

This seemed to work quite well last time we tried it, so why don't we have another go at it?

Basic premise, I give Scott two options (A or B) and he picks one. Nice and simple. Let's get at em!

Number One: What would have a better chance of getting over?

Option A - Stan Hansen comes in to the WWF in the early 90's to work as a top level heel and has feuds with Bret Hart, Razor Ramon and Undertaker

or

Option B - Jerry Lawler comes into JCP/NWA/WCW in the late 80's to work as a top level face and has feuds with Ric Flair, Terry Funk and Lex Luger

The Lawler one was supposed to happen and very nearly did, although it was going to be as a heel.  Hansen in the WWF?  They tried with Justin Hawk Bradshaw and it only got to a certain level.  So we’ll say Lawler, because he can get over ANYWHERE. 

Number Two: Which scenario would most improve the show it happened on?

Option A - The 1995 King of the Ring Tournament is booked exactly as it was but you replace Savio Vega with the 1-2-3 Kid

or

Option B - You have Ricky Steamboat beat Greg Valentine at Wrestlemania IV and go with Savage Vs Steamboat II in the next round

If it got a decent amount of time and Savage got his win back, Option B for sure.  Kid getting squashed by Mabel holds no appeal. 

Number Three: As a Horsemen Member in 1993 instead of Paul Roma

Option A - Bobby Eaton

or

Option B - Paul Orndorff

Eaton as a Horseman is intriguing, plus it would reunite the Anderson/Eaton team, but Orndorff fits the mold better.  I’m going with B here. 

Number Four: Which Reversed Title Change would have had the most positive effect on business if it had been allowed to stand?

Option A - Jericho beating HHH back in 2000

or

Option B - One of the numerous Steiner Tag Title wins during WCW in 97

I don’t think the Jericho win would have affected business much, given that 2000 was the biggest year in the history of the company for profit and has never been touched since.  So obviously what they did was right.  So we’ll say Steiners. 

Number Five: Which of these do you think is the better show?

Option A - No Way Out 2001 (HHH Vs Austin, Rock Vs Angle, Jericho Vs Eddie, Vs X-Pac Vs Benoit)

or

Option B - Vengeance 2003 (Brock Vs Angle Vs Big Show, TWGTT Vs Kidman/Mysterio, Benoit Vs Eddie)

Oh, I love No Way Out 2001.  No contest there at all. 

Number Six: As a direction for Wrestlemania 13

Option A: Austin beats Bret at Survivor Series 96, wins Title at the Rumble, Bret wins Rumble, Bret beats Austin for Title at Mania, no double turn

or

Option B: Vader wins the title at Survivor Series 96, Shawn wins the Rumble, Shawn beats Vader at Mania, Bret Vs Austin goes as it did. Sid Vs Taker is an under card attraction

I like B better out of those two, because the Rumble was way too soon for Austin to be winning that title. 

Number Seven: What is a better explanation as to why Sting didn't work as a top level face in the early 90's?

Option A: He wasn't booked the right way and just wasn't given the right opponents

or

Option B: Sting just didn't have the star power required to carry a company as the top face

He was booked as a secondary attraction under Hogan, so A. 

Number Eight: Back during WCW in 2000, what do you think had a better chance of getting a buy rate around 0.5?

Option A: You book Hogan Vs Flair but you promote it as the final meeting between two legends and you have them cut serious promo's about how important the match is to them and how they need to win this final meeting. Add Roddy Piper as the Special Referee and have him cut promo's about it too. Let them have as good a match as they can muster and have them shake hands afterward.

or

Option B: After Goldberg and Steiner have their great match at Fall Brawl, you don't have them touch again until Starrcade, where Goldberg gets his win back and becomes the new World Champion

I’m gonna go with B, because they were building something with Steiner and just never got there. 

Number Nine: What do you think had more chance of succeeding?

Option A : WCW dedicating a show to the Cruiserweights during their hot period and doing a "J-Cup" style tournament with the likes of Eddie, Malenko, Rey Mysterio, Jushin Liger etc

or

Option B: WWF dedicating a show to the Hardcore Division back in 2000 and doing a hardcore tournament with the likes of Crash Holly, Steve Blackman, Taz, Raven etc

The Cruiserweight show, because I believe it was discussed quite a few times. 

and finally

Number Ten: What character do you think would have made more of an impact?

Option A: When Shane Douglas comes to the WWF in 95, he keeps his "Franchise" gimmick and is booked as a serious threat.

or

Option B: When Taz comes to the WWF in 2000, he's allowed to retain his tough guy gimmick and doesn't become a cowardly heel feuding with Jerry Lawler and Jim Ross

Taz by far.  He was bigtime when he debuted in 2000 and just died off. 

Hope this gives you much to mull. Just remember though, thinkin' ain't drinkin'!

Sounds like you’re not doing it right.

Comments

  1. Pretty sure #7 was intended to be pre-hogan.

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  2. cabspaintedyellowMay 21, 2013 at 9:52 PM

    The thing about the Jericho title win being allowed to stand only makes a difference if they don't book his run like they did the Undisputed Title reign. Sure, Jericho having his title win over HHH in 2000 would have been great, but what difference would it have made if he'd just lost it at the Smackdown taping a night later? Or he got a 1-2 month Big Show '99 reign with it, where he's defending against scrubs in the midcard while the real main eventers closed the show?


    It's never about winning the title, but about how they book the follow-up. With that said, I don't think the Steiners winning the title would have done much for business either, since it still would have been NWO Monday Nitro (in all but name...you know, except for that one episode where it was). However, I do think a title win for the Steiners would have given WCW fans SOME glimmer of hope in the endless tide of DQ run-in finishes in the main event, capped off with their heroes getting laid out and spray-painted every week.


    For as much money as it drew, it really did get exhausting watching the good guys never really get a leg up, from the uncomfortable business with Randy Anderson, to Ric Flair having a cage door slammed on his head. NWA/WCW was always great at hot angles involving heel stables, particularly when it involves a hot babyface chasing a heel champion, but they just never knew how to book a damn payoff. And in the rare instances in which they did book a satisfying payoff, they snatched it away not long after in furtherance of re-establishing the status quo.

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  3. Enough of only having A and B.

    We need to have it like in the movie Summer School:

    C....C...C...C...C...

    (I looked for a clip but couldn't find one :( )

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  4. On #10:Taz(z) had such a great build up with the ominous "13" graphics that would interrupt at random times. Then when before he came out at the Rumble, all of MSG was chanting "WE WANT TAZ! WE WANT TAZ!"

    And when his music hit, the 13 showed, and then they show his eyes under the towel in the entrance video, the crowd went nuts. And then Taz got in the ring, looked like a badass, threw Angle around and gave him his 1st loss.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkZ6JauK8m0&t=2m5s

    Then Tazz got injured, came back as a heel, and got hit with a spurious candy jar that Jim Ross had never before had at ringside nor ever had again.

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  5. If Sting succeeded as a face, then there would have been no need to mortgage the farm on Hogan to begin with.

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  6. Vince actually had plans for Douglas in 96 before the clique thumb's him down. So I disagree with the taz question. You know who signed taz in fall 99? Russo. Vince Mc would never have interest in taz as a major player due to size and his origins. Also, 2000 was a successful year thanks to an amazing 98 and 99 period. If 2000 was really the reason why they were so popular then 2001 wouldnt have been such a drop off year. People were not as happy with WWF in fall 2000 as they were in fall 99. Creative stopped listening to the fans and thinking outside the box around that time. Also, I was in college in spring 2000 and all the bars still showed raw Monday nights. After jericho won the title, it was like a Superbowl celebration. Once HHH reversed the decision, something never done to a babyface title win during 98 or 99, the bar actually turned the TV off. They weren't heated, they were done. Done

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  7. I will agree, to a certain point. The whole "it's never about winning a title" is the argument that makes my hair gray faster (figuratively, of course). I'm probably in the minority on this one, but I think Money in the Bank is one of the absolute worst ideas the promotion uses these days, because it completely devalues the prestige of being the true 'best in the world'. There's no focus on the chase anymore, which is historically how stars are built. Instead, there's an asinine focus on jobbing people out with the briefcase to somehow artificially create challengers for them after they take the title (so and so beat them before, they can beat them again!), but all it does is further devalue titles at a time when they're virtually worthless to begin with.

    In the last few years, the best Championship matches have almost inevitably been based around a challenger building up to a title match, not a stupid briefcase cash in. The build-up and the title victory itself are the "moments" that determine if the crowd will even give the champion a chance to succeed. Sort of like Alberto Del Rio, only without the briefcase: he turned face then won the WHC so quickly that he never really had a chance to succeed from the start.

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  8. cabspaintedyellowMay 21, 2013 at 10:23 PM

    I agree on MITB.

    In the old days, they used to build a guy by having him gain steam in the autumn, win the Rumble in January, and then win the title in the main event of WM after a solid two-month build.

    As an addendum to my "it's never about winning the title, but how you're booked after" point, it's also about how you're booked before winning it. Look at Jack Swagger's MITB cash-in. He was a joke before winning the briefcase, and they didn't even bother taking even a month to build him as legit before giving him the title. Hell, they didn't even give him a DAY. They jobbed him out to Orton in a tag match the night after Mania, for crying out loud.

    Just winning the title isn't enough. Yet it's not only about how you're booked after, but how you're booked prior to winning. And that's why MITB, though it's produced some awesome moments, has been one of the biggest albatrosses the busi--THIS BUSINESS has had to deal with, from a booking standpoint. It's a total crutch, and far more often than not, it's used as a "Get Out of Booking Free" card.

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  9. I missed out on the We Didn't Start the Fire thread, so I'll use this one here to present my magnum opus:


    Mankind gets a gift from "Pop"
    Bossman with some help from Rock
    Road Dogg takes the gold
    Holly wins it in the cold
    Russo next says Mr. Ass,
    But Holly wins it back real fast
    Al Snow was the next to reign
    He was just a bit insane
    Snow and Bossman, quickly beaten
    Somewhere here a dog was eaten
    Davey Boy won't stand for that
    He returns Al Snow his strap
    Bossman wins it one more time
    But he can't pass the Test this time
    Crash Holly's next on deck
    Then things really went to heck


    FunTime USA!
    Hotel rooms, baggage claim
    Everybody wants the title
    Crash is getting suicidal
    Belt's as slick as motor oil
    Mania brings a Battle Royal
    Brisco! Patterson!
    British Bulldog back again
    Lethal Weapon calms things down
    No I won't say "Evening Gown"
    Brief repeal of 24/7
    Shane O Mac climbs to the heavens
    Raven, more Al Snows
    Now we're trading on house shows
    If they can't stick to Raw is War
    I can't do this anymore!

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  10. Sucks for Taz but Angle, the Radicals, and Jericho made him redundant.

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  11. TIL WWE's boom period ended because some random shitty bar turned off Raw once.

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  12. Ha. No but I was simply trying to make a point. One place can represent the masses. Boom period ended from shitty booking that didn't listen to the fans, my point. And $2 miller Monday bottles while raw and nitro is on is not shitty.

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  13. You're referring to JR hitting Tazz with his candy jar at Summerslam 2000, right? It was used at least one other time, as the candy jar played into the confusing, possibly botched, finish of the Hardcore Battle Royal at Wrestlemania 2000, which also happened to involve Tazz.

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  14. I agree 2000 isn't the great thing we all remember it to be, mostly because of poor booking decisions throughout the year, but 1998 and 1999 weren't amazing. In fact, it was the main event that carried the company during that period, period. The midcard was just so fucking awful, especially when you compare it to 2000. You have Val Venis, Goldust, Godfather, Steve Blackman, Ken Shamrock, Al Snow, and Hardcore fucking Holly as the featured players vs. Jericho, Angle, Benoit, Edge, Christian, and the Hardys as the featured players.

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  15. cabspaintedyellowMay 21, 2013 at 10:56 PM

    You'll never stop the Vinces
    Have no fear
    We've got stories for years, like
    Brock becomes a robot!
    Maybe Show gets a cellphone
    And Rosa gets sent home, or
    How bout a crazy wedding?
    Doot-doot-doo

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  16. Good call. But 98 had the storylines and charactrrs while 2000 had the in ring product. Unfortunetly, and I hope I don't get yelled at, but in ring doesn't always move the needle.

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  17. Scream09_HartKillerMay 21, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    I don't think the Steiner Brothers winning the tag team titles would have been significantly good for business in 1997. WCW in 1997 and WWF in 2000 are both successful so they didn't miss out on anything financially but I would've liked to see how it would've worked out for Jericho there.

    The thing that hurt Tazz most was coming off his hot debut and feuding with Bossman and Albert. I think the idea was to prove how tough he was by having them beat the snot out of him every week. I thought they had a shot to reboot him as a heel, and I assumed killing Lawler at Summerslam was part of that, but apparently not.

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  18. I think Sting's first title reign is one of pro-wrestling's great "what if" questions. The obvious problem is that when Sting took the title off Flair he didn't have a ready made opponent waiting for him. He needed to get away from Flair and the Horsemen immediately to begin establishing a new direction, but the only other major heel in the company had just turned face to fill in for Sting during his injury (Luger). Sid might have been a great option if he hadn't been a Horsemen at the time. We all knew that sub-Horsemen didn't get the big prize. Plus they booked the Sting/Sid finish with a ridiculous feud killing finish. The Black Scorpion was an intriguing concept, but they couldn't fill the roll without taking us right back to where we started and putting Flair under the hood. Without a new and compelling foil, it was pretty tough to maintain enthusiasm for Sting's reign and putting the belt back on Flair seemed like the most logical move.

    Just imagine if they hadn't turned Luger face. Steamboat and Pillman had just gotten Luger over as a monster. Having solidly established himself as the #2 champ with his eyes on the #1 spot, Luger was a fresh and exciting feud that could have drawn against Sting (a former friend, now turned rival) for quite some time. I think Luger would have needed to take the title, but they could have dragged the battle out for close to a year (in the pre-12 month ppv cycle days). Of course Sting's injury messed up everything, but I think the company had other choices besides turning Luger face.

    My favorite alternate booking would have been using Pillman as an unlikely fill-in. Luger had gotten Pillman's underdog act over big time. They could have had Pillman win a fluke #1 contendership match against Luger (no US title on the line) to give him some credibility, then had Flair do a 1/2 hour draw against him at the next PPV (with about a dozen very near falls) to get the fans behind the idea that Pilllman might actually have a chance. Next PPV they do a 2/3 falls match and Flair gets help from the Horsemen and screws Pillman over in the final fall. Huge heat for Flair and the fans are dying to see the returning Sting finally give the dirtiest player in the game his comeuppance. As a bonus, when Sting and Flair are having their title match and the Horsemen try to interfere, guess who can take out the lot of them by running in from the crowd and nailing a spring-board clothesline to the outside of the ring while Sting cinches in the Scorpion. Follow that with Luger destroying Pillman on the next episode of Saturday night and reminding everyone that the US Champ is the true #1 contender. Sting wants to avenge his friend and Luger wants the gold, both guys have a reason to fight.

    Seems like a better idea to me than 'Sting beats Flair and then feuds with a magician (albeit a fairly competent one) who flies a spaceship to the ring and ends up being Flair.'

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  19. Paul Orndorff fit the Horsemen mold and probably would have been perfect for a run at Flair in a babyface turn. I've been watching old episodes of Championship Wrestling, and this episode from 6/1/85 occurred not long after Orndorff turned face following Wrestlemania. He had publicly fired Bobby Heenan, and Heenan had placed a bounty on Mr. Wonderful as revenge. So here is the feature match: Hulk Hogan vs. Ken Patera with Heenan and John Studd backing up Patera. It's a 5 and a half minute clip, but the ending is truly a hot save. Orndorff's babyface turn was gold, and this proves it. This probably made his heel turn a year later even more shocking.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbGx9AffRhI

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  20. Scream09_HartKillerMay 21, 2013 at 11:25 PM

    I'm with you on Money in the Bank. I think the concept works now and then, and it can be a great way for a cheating heel to sneak himself into a title he doesn't deserve - but it they've done it so often, and basically the same way every time, that it's not really a sneaky heel move anymore, it's just how it goes.


    The other problem is that by having two of them set for the annual pay per view they end up giving it to someone that have no idea what to do with but who could conceivably hold a title sometime in the next year. It leads to guys just floating around doing nothing with the briefcase and then just getting the title because they have the briefcase.

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  21. Problem with shawn winning the rumble is that he already won it the last 2 years. Have Vader or Sid win the rumble and look like monsters and then face shawn at wrestlemania.

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  22. Ten cool points for mentioning that scene.

    Chainsaw: "You passed and I failed? You asshole!"

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  23. No rebooking of KOTR 1995 is worth a damn unless it involves a different winner than Mabel.


    Savage/Steamboat II would've been awesome. Story would've worked as well with both men as faces since I suspect the hook might've been "can the match be decided in 15 minutes?" The fans would've doubly worried since, with a draw, two of their favourites would've been gone at once and Dibiase would've had a clear path to the championship.


    I wonder, given Savage's penchant for going over match details meticulously beforehand, how did he get through WM4? Did he work out every detail of all four matches, or was that one night where he just winged it?

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  24. Tazz was kind of buried when he had that title vs. title match on Smackdown with Triple H and they booked the old nose to nose stare down, except Tazz was about eye level to Triple H's nipples

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  25. I always wondered what would have happened if Douglas was bought in as a the Franchise in 1995. I think it would have been a really fitting character, and much needed for WWF at the time. Would have started kicking off some early 'attitude'.


    Then, you ask yourself, how would Triple H have evolved now his character had already been taken?


    But, realistically, like fuck would Douglas have ever lasted that long in WWF.. So it's all null and void, really.

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  26. This is a movie I don't hear much about. Glad others have seen it.

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  27. That's still not what the question was.

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  28. Shane didn't hate the Kliq right off the bat, IIRC... maybe he ends up joining them instead?

    (Yeah, that ain't happening, even in Bizarro Earth... but that would have been quite interesting...)

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  29. You know.....I thought as talented as Shane Douglas was, the Franchise would have only gotten over in ECW. Especially with the kid-friendly state the WWF was in in 1995 (can you imagine The Franchise cutting G-rated promos??? Me either lol). Also, the WWF fanbase would get tired of his Ric Flair whining quick, fast, and in a hurry.

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  30. Great point....I never even thought of that. Especially with a technician like Dibiase

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  31. Sad thought: With a lack of a strong 2nd (or even 3rd) federation we will never see a debut like this again.

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  32. 2001 was a drop off because there was no competition, and the WWF TOTALLY BOMBED the Invasion. Lazy booking just killed it. Add to it Triple H's injury (at the time, he was a hell of a worker...though in fairness, Austin missed most of 2000) and its a recipe for disaster

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  33. 2000 was pretty awesome all around i think....storylines and in-ring. Foley as GM was pretty awesome as well

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  34. But you know he would have had a little more in the way of structure and guidelines in his WWF promos.


    He couldn't have gone on a 20 minute rant like he did in ECW.


    You're right - it'd be interesting to see how he adjusted.

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  35. maybe not exactly like this. but CM Punks WWECW debut was still pretty cool. first time in the ring and the first thing happening is a huge "CM Punk" chant (of course I am aware that this wouldn't have happened in most other cities).

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  36. I just e-mailed Scott a couple Sting questions over the weekend. I was young as hell, but I thought Sting was AWESOME in the early 1990s. Apparently, he wasn't? Please don't tell me Sting is my fucking John Cena :*(

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  37. Fear not, Sting was great. Unlike Cena, he always had an underdog quality about him, which made him enduring but also hindered his ability to remain on top. He was at his best when he was chasing a despised heel (like Flair or Vader) than when he was warding off challengers. Unfortunately he was also never positioned against compelling challengers so it's hard to tell if this was his shortcoming or booking's.

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  38. Vince claimed on the ECW dvd that he liked Taz's gimmick but didn't know how to use him right, but that could just be blowing smoke.

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  39. Ok we need a musically inclined BoDer to actually record some of these.

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  40. Tazz could've been a big deal. I think the injury would have messed him up regardless of booking though.

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  41. Early nineties Stan Hanson vs. mid-oughts Undertaker would be pretty epic. Hard to say what he would with Hart, but I'd rather have seen that than Hart/Yokozuna.

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  42. Orndorf would have been a great addition to the Horsemen around the time that Roma joined, especially if they'd turned heel soon afterward. Then Pretty Wonderful could have played the team role, while Arn enforced and Ric styled and profiled. That would have been much better than the lopsided three man face unit that we got instead.

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