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acid_bukkake
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Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2015 10:45 am
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 8:04 am 
 

I seem to be the biggest (or at least most vocal) fan on the boards, but I know some others (Festivus, Subrick) watch it as well. Seems like there's a few who used to and dropped off.

Lately I've been getting back into CZW (Combat Zone Wrestling). It started as an American version of BJW (Big Japan Pro Wrestling), a deathmatch-focused company where barbed wire, glass, thumbtacks, and copious bloodshed is the norm. It evolved into something resembling latter-day ECW with less emphasis on the ultraviolence and more on the athleticism of the undercard, doubled down on the gore for a brief period, and has found a pretty good balance of both under the booking of DJ Hyde. Lucky 13 is a favorite, as are OI4K (when Dave Crist isn't being a lazy fuck), but the big selling point on their last 5 years or so has to be Sami Callihan. He had a very brief run in NXT as Solomon Crowe before recently being granted his release, so it's likely he'll return, but there's something about how he treats his matches that make them stand out. There's a sense of urgency to his movement that makes it feel like he's legitimately trying to win a fight for his life that is sorely missing from too much modern wrestling.

Here's one of the better CZW matches of the last few years, Sami Callihan vs. Danny Havoc in the Cage of Death (a modified cage featuring various implements of bloodletting).
Youtube: show


I'll probably be adding some talk of Dragon Gate, Progress, ICW, PWG, and (of course) WWE to this sooner rather than later. There's way more wrestling out there than WWE if you have any interest in the pseudo-sport, and most of it's better.
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nestee8
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Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2014 7:05 pm
Posts: 181
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 8:45 am 
 

I remember the Attitude era and WCW days very well.

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metroplex
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Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2006 1:28 am
Posts: 734
Location: Peru
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 1:03 pm 
 

I was a big fan back in the attitude era, then i grew up.

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aaronmb666
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Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 3:37 am
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 1:54 pm 
 

I was really into it in the late 90's, but nowadays, I just read about it a little. I will say though, that NXT is really good and is what TNA shouldve been(quit watching that years ago).

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quickbeam
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2012 10:09 am
Posts: 86
Location: Netherlands
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 4:00 pm 
 

I got back into wrestling after many years away. Was addicted as a kid but gave up when I moved out of my parents' house (no cable tv anymore!) So much has changed in the last few years, though, with being able to watch anything online; so I'm more addicted than ever now. I listen to so many podcasts on it too (I'm a hopeless case).

NJPW is my favourite. The match style, the whole presentation, it just ticks all the right boxes for me.

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Festivus
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Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2014 4:26 pm
Posts: 586
Location: Portugal
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 5:06 pm 
 

Well, I've always knew there was something called "wrestling", thinking for years it was called "Luta Livre" as we did it here in the 80s/90s, but I never really watched it a lot until 2004 when WWE programming became available in a local cable channel. It had a brief stint on public TV in the early 90s, but being born in 1990 myself no way could I remember watching something on tv back in 1992. As for foreign channels, we got the UK version of Cartoon Network for years. On Fridays it would air WCW Monday Nitro after 8PM. For a long time I assumed it to be Boxing for some reason. And was pissed the CN emission ended an hour sooner because I wanted to watch my cartoons. I remember watching some good cruiserweight matches and the like on it but vaguely. Also no subtitles, so I had no idea wtf was going on. I also watched UK CN without subtitles but cartoons had easier plots and more basic vocabulary to follow. No way could I understand what Schiavonne and Tenay were going on about constantly when my level at English was only good enough to say "good morning" and "yes" as a 1st-4th grade student at the time. I really don't remember anyone in school watching WCW. As for WWF... you could watch it late at night if you happened to zap through several channels and land on DSF or RTL(not sure, a German channel either way) at like midnight. But tv ads of fat women saying "ruf mir an" at the time scared kids like me away. I think I vaguely recall seeing Austin and The Rock cutting promos... with German announcers translating it almost at the same time... yeah no way I'd become a fan.

Anyway, fast forward to 2004 and I see wrestling on tv. I just assumed it'd be guys being paid to "fake fight" each other. But then I see that it's more like an action movie/soap opera... from the 3rd Raw episode on I was hooked. I think my 3rd Raw episode was when Evolution turned on Randy Orton. 2004-2007 was when wrestling was at its height of popularity in my country. I was in 9th grade back in 2004-2005 and every teenage guy who watched wrestling loved Batista. Some liked Cena too but many disliked him as well. Me and many thought it was a slap in the face for Batista to go to SmackDown and Cena to Raw. We wanted to see Batista as the face of the company after kicking Triple H's ass, not Cena. Then Cena goes over guys we liked such as Jericho, Angle, HBK... and yeah. The crowds turned on Cena quite quickly.

Been watching it on and off since about 2008. Followed for a while in late 2010/early 2011 with the whole Nexus thing. Then watched during Rock's return and Summer of Punk's storyline. Checked out for a bit after Lesnar returned and decided t owatch the last couple of Raws and the MITB PPV. Was happy Ambrose won. HE was my favorite from The Shield. Let's see if WWE don't fuck up this.
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aaronmb666
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Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 3:37 am
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 6:18 pm 
 

I recently watched some of Jim Cornettes interviews on youtube and I think it's so hilarious, particularly when he talks about Vince Russo and Dixie Carter. The one where he asks Dixie why she still employs Russo is so hilarious as it made her look like an idiot:
https://youtu.be/xsbtIOD0mYM

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Festivus
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 6:46 pm 
 

Wrestling outside of WWE... I watched a few early ROH episodes back in 2010-2011. How's the company these days?

I see that Lashley and Maria Kanellis are in TNA these days... are Bischoff and Dixie Carter still there?

And I see everyone raving about NJPW and Lucha Udnerground. As far as Japan goes, what makes NJPW particularly stand out above NOAH and other Puroresu feds?
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quickbeam
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2012 10:09 am
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Location: Netherlands
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 7:50 pm 
 

RoH is doing well business-wise; the company continues to grow slowly and securely. Long-time fans tend to think the booking's getting a bit stale these days, but I'm a new fan so I don't mind that. I think it's great.

NJPW is the only Japanese wrestling I watch so can't really comment, although I do recall hearing that it tended to be the most 'western' of the Japanese feds. They always include a bunch of foreigners on the roster to expand their appeal (and it seems to work pretty well).

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Festivus
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Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2014 4:26 pm
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Location: Portugal
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 8:26 pm 
 

quickbeam wrote:
RoH is doing well business-wise; the company continues to grow slowly and securely. Long-time fans tend to think the booking's getting a bit stale these days, but I'm a new fan so I don't mind that. I think it's great.

NJPW is the only Japanese wrestling I watch so can't really comment, although I do recall hearing that it tended to be the most 'western' of the Japanese feds. They always include a bunch of foreigners on the roster to expand their appeal (and it seems to work pretty well).

The thing with Puroresu is that it's mostly about the ring action and not not so much about the drama and promos, right? I like a good match but what really draws me to wrestling are cool characters and storylines. Unlike a big portion of the IWC, I don't go apeshit for guys who are great in the ring but can't really talk such as Charlie Haas or Lance Storm.

Btw, how popular is wrestling as a whole nowadays? It's hard to give a worldwide perception of its popularity,so talk about your social circles/regions/countries/etc. How many wrestling fans do you know nowadays and how often do you see it get some media attention or see people wearing wrestling merch, etc? Here in Portugal wrestling pretty much died in 2009 or so. WWE still airs on TV but don't have 2-3 house shows here every year like they did in 2006, 2007 and 2008. The last house show they did here was like in 2012? And the attendance was pretty lousy. I think TNA came here a couple of times back in 2007-2008 as well. Doubt they still do since I never met anyone personally who was into TNA in my whole life.

In the last 6 years or so I think I've only met two people around my age(I'm 25) who still watch wrestling. One of them has been a long time fan since the old WCW Nitro days. The other stopped when WWE went PG, I think. None of my friends on facebook "like" WWE's page. And I never hear people discuss wrestling unless it's a reference to the past such as "that dude's hair... reminds me of Carlito's!" or "that girl looked like Triple H with that big nose of hers!". If you admit watching wrestling at my age here, I bet you'll get the usual "you realize it's fake, right?!" remarks. I think a lot of people who watched it when they were kids back in 2004-2007 look back and wonder "How did I ever like this crap?!". So yeah, not socially acceptable...

No idea if little kids care about wrestling here these days or not. I don't know any kids since I'm not a father and I don't have any young siblings or cousins. The few anecdotes I have is from going to places where toys are sold such as Toys R Us because I sorta collect Ninja Turtles action figures, and once in a while checking out the WWE action figures shelves. Never notice kids paying any attention to them. And back in 2006-2007, I used to see more wrestling action figures on sale at such places. And if I came back a few days later, several would be gone. Usually of older unfamiliar wrestlers to the younger generations such as George the Animal Steel and Dusty Rhodes. Also, I have not seen a TNA action figure in a LONG TIME. I remember buying Sting and Jeff Jarrett in a pack with a Lockdown sticker and poster back in like 2007-2008.

I still have plenty of wrestlign action figures. Including a big ass wrestlemania ring that set my parents back a bit. Hard to believe I convinced them to waste over 100 euros on that back in 2006 :lol:
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acid_bukkake
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 10:33 pm 
 

Festivus wrote:
Wrestling outside of WWE... I watched a few early ROH episodes back in 2010-2011. How's the company these days?

quickbeam is spot-on. I've been watching since the second show (Round Robin Challenge, featuring an insanely great match between Bryan Danielson, AKA Daniel Bryan, and LowKi, AKA Kaval/Senshi) and it reached its peak for me in 2006 with the feud between them and CZW. 2007-2010 offered plenty to appreciate, particularly anything involving the Briscoes and Kevin Steen (Kevin Owens)/El Generico (Sami Zayn), but the product took a nosedive in quality when Jim Cornette (legendary manager) became part of the creative team in 2011. Cornette's problems with putting together a compelling show mainly come from his inability to understand that the 201x audience doesn't want to see what worked in 1984 Memphis, and Delirious (former ROH wrestler, current head of creative) is only capable of producing vanilla. It's not terrible, but it's not great.
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I see that Lashley and Maria Kanellis are in TNA these days... are Bischoff and Dixie Carter still there?

No to Bischoff, yes to Dixie. Dixie's the president of the company thanks to her father's company, Panda Energy, being the principal investor, and Bischoff's run as head producer only dug the eventual grave even deeper.
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And I see everyone raving about NJPW and Lucha Udnerground. As far as Japan goes, what makes NJPW particularly stand out above NOAH and other Puroresu feds?

Lucha Underground is a television show about a wrestling company and not a wrestling show, if that makes sense. It's a love it or hate it kind of deal, and I lean more toward the latter.

NJPW stands out over NOAH (which they now own, actually) and AJPW/Dragon Gate/etc. due to both its historical impact (Antonio Inoki, who started NJPW, is famous for booking shoots and worked shoots against legitimate fighters like Renzo Gracie and Muhammad Ali, among others) and the quality of the product. Former FMW (sort of defunct promotion from the 90s/early 00s) tag team wrestlers Gedo and Jado took over in 2008 or so (not 100% sure on the year) and introduced Western elements to the show, helping to revive the dying wrestling scene in Japan after the rise (and crash) of MMA. It's the most willing to work partnership deals with foreign companies, as well, having steady deals with ROH and Mexico's CMLL for years and also willing to do business with local competitors and even WWE. NJPW has shown a willingness to adapt with the times that the other oldest puro company, AJPW (All Japan), hasn't.

If you're digging around for puroresu, I suggest either starting with NJPW from when Kazuchika Okada began his epic run in 2010 (also featuring standouts Hiroshi Tanahashi, Minoru Suzuki, and several current WWE stars, namely AJ Styles and Finn Balor), FMW from 1997 until its demise, or even Dragon Gate if you're a bigger fan of the high-flying stuff. FMW became very Americanized and shifted from a "blood and guts" approach to a more story-driven show around 1996/1997, and Dragon Gate is basically a live action "rival schools"-style anime.
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The thing with Puroresu is that it's mostly about the ring action and not not so much about the drama and promos, right? I like a good match but what really draws me to wrestling are cool characters and storylines. Unlike a big portion of the IWC, I don't go apeshit for guys who are great in the ring but can't really talk such as Charlie Haas or Lance Storm.

Yes. Pro wrestling was popularized in Japan following WWII when American promoters ran USO shows featuring it. Mitsuhiro Momota, best known as Rikidozan, popularized it, drawing on featuring local talents defeating gaijin (foreigners, typically Americans/Canadians/Brits). Puroresu was much more protected in terms of its presentation from the get-go, and grew even more so in the 1970s as Antonio Inoki formed NJPW, commonly engaging in both actual shoots and worked shoots with legitimate fighters. This is actually where the term "strong style" (now a catch-all term to refer to puroresu that isn't based on hardcore violence or high flying) originated, as Inoki referred to his style of fighting as "strong style."

This eventually morphed into MMA. Funny how things work.
Quote:
Btw, how popular is wrestling as a whole nowadays? It's hard to give a worldwide perception of its popularity,so talk about your social circles/regions/countries/etc. How many wrestling fans do you know nowadays and how often do you see it get some media attention or see people wearing wrestling merch, etc? Here in Portugal wrestling pretty much died in 2009 or so. WWE still airs on TV but don't have 2-3 house shows here every year like they did in 2006, 2007 and 2008. The last house show they did here was like in 2012? And the attendance was pretty lousy. I think TNA came here a couple of times back in 2007-2008 as well. Doubt they still do since I never met anyone personally who was into TNA in my whole life.

Ehhh...hard to say. The common misconception is that pro wrestling is most popular in the southern US, but it's actually very popular anywhere with particularly urban/diverse cultures. The Northeast (Maine to Pennsylvania) has produced three of the biggest/most important wrestling companies in the world (WWE, ECW, and ROH), for instance, and there's a thriving independent circuit in SoCal (PWG and Hoodslam, especially).

Mainstream attention has been in a steady decline since the end of the Monday Night Wars, when the (then) WWF and WCW had their primary shows go head-to-head on Monday nights. Part of it is due to the lack of competition, part of it is due to increasingly poor booking ("writing," as it were), and part of it is due to the economic decline. It's at an awkward place right now where its mainstream acceptance seems to be at an all-time high in the post-Hogan era, with WWE getting mentions on ESPN and major real sports stars openly admitting their fandom, but its popularity might be at its overall lowest since the mid-90s.
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In the last 6 years or so I think I've only met two people around my age(I'm 25) who still watch wrestling. One of them has been a long time fan since the old WCW Nitro days. The other stopped when WWE went PG, I think. None of my friends on facebook "like" WWE's page. And I never hear people discuss wrestling unless it's a reference to the past such as "that dude's hair... reminds me of Carlito's!" or "that girl looked like Triple H with that big nose of hers!". If you admit watching wrestling at my age here, I bet you'll get the usual "you realize it's fake, right?!" remarks. I think a lot of people who watched it when they were kids back in 2004-2007 look back and wonder "How did I ever like this crap?!". So yeah, not socially acceptable...

It's all in how you present it. I remember getting the usual "it sucks because it's fake" shit in middle school/high school (which was the Attitude Era and just after), but it was usually from people who then turned around and talked about Buffy or Dawson's Creek or whatever. Everybody enjoys things that are fake, but wrestling gets the bad stigma because it spent most of its existence trying to convince people it was real.
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dragons_secrets
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Joined: Wed Oct 23, 2002 1:55 am
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2016 1:00 am 
 

I've been a fan for most of my life, mostly watch WWE these days even though I tend to watch online and skip through half of Raw. There was a time period between 2012-2015 where I watched TNA religiously but I don't watch it much anymore. Something's just missing with them. If they refocused on the X Division, they'd probably regain my interest but I doubt that'll ever happen. I might catch ROH now and then but it's never really been my thing. Poor production value. I also liked Lucha Underground at first, but it's gotten even more hokey after season 1 and thus my interest has faded.

Honestly, I listen to shoot interviews more than I watch actual wrestling shows. Also a regular listener of Jim Cornette's podcast. It's highly entertaining to hear him go on long rants about the state of the business.
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aaronmb666
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2016 1:56 am 
 

dragons_secrets wrote:
I've been a fan for most of my life, mostly watch WWE these days even though I tend to watch online and skip through half of Raw. There was a time period between 2012-2015 where I watched TNA religiously but I don't watch it much anymore. Something's just missing with them. If they refocused on the X Division, they'd probably regain my interest but I doubt that'll ever happen. I might catch ROH now and then but it's never really been my thing. Poor production value. I also liked Lucha Underground at first, but it's gotten even more hokey after season 1 and thus my interest has faded.

Honestly, I listen to shoot interviews more than I watch actual wrestling shows. Also a regular listener of Jim Cornette's podcast. It's highly entertaining to hear him go on long rants about the state of the business.


The problem with TNA to me, is Dixie Carter and when Jeff Jarrett(when he was there wrestling). They were so close in 2009, but then they signed Hulk Hogan and Bischoff, instead of say, some young new guys for a better product. The show where they went against Raw was horrible. As for Jarrett, he's never had any business being anything past a mid carder, yet he made himself the world champion and never put anyone over. I think Bash at the Beach 2000 is hilarious now, as it was a work, but there was miscommunication, to where Hogan ended up suing them. I wouldnt blame Hogan at all for not wanting to drop a title to Jarrett.

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acid_bukkake
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Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2015 10:45 am
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2016 8:09 am 
 

TNA's woes are what happens when you start a company using the people that caused WCW to fail. It's only ever had brief periods of legitimate quality (early 2003, 2005 when they didn't have a TV deal, most of 2006, the end of 2009, and the second BFG Series), but the big problem always comes back to two points:

1) They're trying to be like WWE. The shows were at their highest in quality when they were presenting something different than what WWE was, either by doing things they couldn't do (featuring bloodshed, adult language, and the X-Division) or by presenting a more back-to-basics approach to the booking with modern in-ring action (that fabled 2005/2006 period), but they always end up trying to follow McMahon's lead.

2) Dixie Carter is fucking incompetent. In a perfect world she'd have lost her job after a few months, if even, but she's so woefully inept at how to run a wrestling company that it's actively tarnishing the value of everybody who works there.

dragons_secrets wrote:
I've been a fan for most of my life, mostly watch WWE these days even though I tend to watch online and skip through half of Raw. There was a time period between 2012-2015 where I watched TNA religiously but I don't watch it much anymore. Something's just missing with them. If they refocused on the X Division, they'd probably regain my interest but I doubt that'll ever happen. I might catch ROH now and then but it's never really been my thing. Poor production value. I also liked Lucha Underground at first, but it's gotten even more hokey after season 1 and thus my interest has faded.

You would greatly enjoy PWG. The X-Division in 2012-2015 has been primarily composed of indy talent that works PWG regularly (Frankie Kazarian even got his start there, ditto Manik/TJ Perkins), the booking makes sense in terms of logical matchmaking, and it's the only company I've seen that can balance that fine line between earnest storytelling and tongue-in-cheek prodding. Excalibur is probably the best commentator in the entire business right now, too.
Quote:
Honestly, I listen to shoot interviews more than I watch actual wrestling shows. Also a regular listener of Jim Cornette's podcast. It's highly entertaining to hear him go on long rants about the state of the business.

Except for Bolin. Oh man, fuck Bolin.
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Festivus
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Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2014 4:26 pm
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Location: Portugal
PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2016 4:04 pm 
 

Thanks for the very informative post, acid_bukkake.

As for TNA, neve really watched it. Not even back in 2003-2007 when most of the IWC praised it and said it was better than WWE. It seems to me that people began losing patience with TNA once Kurt Angle joined it.

Bischoff and Hogan... they seem like they haven't learned much from WCW.
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Ancient_Sorrow
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2016 6:57 pm 
 

Wrestling was never one of the things I expected to get into, but one day a friend of mine was watching Monday Night Raw in 2012, I ended up watching it, and the rest is history - I think it was Raw 1000, so my introduction was a above-average show. Perhaps having - at the time - no grounding whatsoever in old-school wrestling, I did most of my initial "learning" watching the contemporary product, which perhaps gives me a skewed view; I had to go back and watch various Attitude and Hulkamania era shows when my enthusiasm for wrestling became sufficient to go beyond being a casual fan - watching a load of OSW Review podcasts really helped with that.

I still watch WWE on a weekly basis - the extent varies a lot with how much free time I've got, but I invariably catch Raw. For the most part I enjoy the product, perhaps more so than most, although I have plenty of the worries that the IWC in general has. I'm usually very enthusiastic about NXT.

I started watching TNA earlier this year, knowing nothing of their highs or lows. When taken at face value, their product is actually very solid at the moment. I expect that the company is on a shoe-string budget and constantly only just dodges bankruptcy, but the week-to-week show makes, what I'm told, is the most sense it's made in years; the storylines are surprisingly good.

Huge fan of Lucha Underground; the match quality is excellent, and the show has superb production values - it's very different, but extremely enjoyable; I love the dark, moody cinematic segments and well woven, gritty long-term storylines - it's the sort of thing I'd recommend to even a non-wrestling fan.

I also watch the occasional indie; ICW is pretty much local to me, and always puts on a fun show with a raucous crowd, so I've gone to the occasional show. I'll also catch up with whatever free stuff other indie promotions are putting out there when I'm in the mood for it, everything from Progress Wrestling to Jun Kasai throwing himself through sheets of glass in whatever hardcore fed that was for.
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Festivus
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2016 7:31 pm 
 

What about favorite wrestlers, guys?

I can't really make a top 10, but the wrestlers whose work I've enjoyed the most are Stone Cold, Jericho, Undertaker, pre-TNA Kurt Angle and Edge. I also like Mick Foley and JBL, but JBL was mostly for his promos. His in ring work wasn't that great. Also, I don't care for his work as Bradshaw.

I have not checked out much of WCW yet, so don't ask me why guys like Sting and such are not in my list. As for older WWF stuff I have not seen much of Bret Hart, macho Man or Piper, I'm afraid. But Macho and Piper definitely were good mic workers as was Jake the Snake.
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acid_bukkake
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2016 10:41 pm 
 

TNA has actually been a roller coaster in quality since the very first tapings. The first show was mostly schlocky crap (Google "Johnsons TNA" for proof), but opened with a solid 6-man that officially kicked off off the X-Division. The second episode (technically PPV since it was initially a weekly PPV) was taped the same night as the first and has a killer X-Division 4-way (AJ Styles, Jerry Lynn, LowKi, and Psicosis) for the first X-Division championship and nothing else of worth. The shows were regularly bad until 2005ish, but the X and Tag divisions fluctuated between good and incredible so, at the time, it was forgiven. The timeline of Angle joining and the quality slipping is accurate, but it's a "correlation =/= causation" issue as Angle was often the best parts of the shows.

Bischoff/Hogan did a little bit of good. Their involvement did bring new viewers and opened the SpikeTV deal a bit, and they originally went with Hogan "atoning" for the nWo, but things hit a nose dive quickly when they started bringing in old friends and focusing the show on them. TNA fans and ROH fans were a massive overlap at the time, ROH fans didn't care for Hogan and HATED Bischoff (ROH's fanbase was the ECW fanbase but more refined), and the shows felt like the terrible runs of a Nitro that helped kill WCW instead of the epic ones that made it almost put the WWF out of business. The best thing Bischoff brought was a new show called Reaction that was a more subdued, almost documentary style take on the backstage segments and story advancement.

Sorrow, you have no idea how jealous I am that you can see ICW. Easily my favorite promotion today.
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JohnTheDrummer
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 12:19 am 
 

Oh shit waddup! Guess I can start posting more on here! :lol:

I love wrestling. Have a huge DVD collection, pretty much all I wear now a days are wrestling shirts, even to metal shows, and yeah, it has consumed my life.

Favorites: PWG, ROH, NXT, Lucha Underground. I still watch WWE regularly, but not much of it really captures my attention like the other companies do.
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dragons_secrets
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 12:22 am 
 

Ancient_Sorrow wrote:
I started watching TNA earlier this year, knowing nothing of their highs or lows. When taken at face value, their product is actually very solid at the moment. I expect that the company is on a shoe-string budget and constantly only just dodges bankruptcy, but the week-to-week show makes, what I'm told, is the most sense it's made in years; the storylines are surprisingly good.


The current TNA storylines are solid and basic and make more sense than a lot of what WWE does. It's just at this point what with their budget, they don't have a lot of roster depth anymore and have lost most of their originals. Abyss and James Storm are the last two remaining. Also, the commentary is terrible. Josh Matthews is awful and that hurts the show a lot. The last time TNA was on fire was 2012 with the Aces & Eights storyline, and of course they had to screw it up.

My favorite era of anything was 1996-1997 WCW. They had such a huge roster and the b shows such as Saturday Night were even better than Nitro because it focused more on the in ring action than it did interviews and promos. And the cruiserweights division back then was phenomenal. To this day I will go on youtube and watch old Eddy Guerrero and Rey Mysterio Jr. matches.

acid_bukkake wrote:
Quote:
You would greatly enjoy PWG. The X-Division in 2012-2015 has been primarily composed of indy talent that works PWG regularly (Frankie Kazarian even got his start there, ditto Manik/TJ Perkins), the booking makes sense in terms of logical matchmaking, and it's the only company I've seen that can balance that fine line between earnest storytelling and tongue-in-cheek prodding. Excalibur is probably the best commentator in the entire business right now, too.


I'll have to check PWG out, sounds like my cup of tea.
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JohnTheDrummer
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 12:43 am 
 

PWG is pure entertainment. Amazing wrestling, hilarious comedy, and just all around awesome. I had a friend on another forum CONSTANTLY talking about it so I finally checked it out, and 50+ DVDs later.... lol

If you want some recommended shows...
All Star Weekend 9: Night 1
Battle of Los Angeles 2014 (all three nights)
Battle of Los Angeles 2015 (all three nights)
Don't Sweat the Technique
From Outta Nowhere
Steen Wolf
All Star Weekend 12: Night 2

But honestly, if you watch any of their shows you will be thoroughly entertained, especially 2013 and more current. I was never a big fan of "technical" or mat-based wrestling until I watched PWG, now it's one of my favorites. Guys like Zack Sabre Jr., Timothy Thatcher, the better known Chris Hero, they are all so amazing at what they do. BOLA 2015 had Zack Sabre Jr vs Pentagon Jr from Lucha Underground/AAA, one of the best matches I saw all last year.
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acid_bukkake
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 7:44 am 
 

re: favorites
All-time or current? All-time would be Mick Foley, Raven, Roddy Piper, Bryan Danielson, Ric Flair, Dean Malenko, Hayabusa, Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, and Steve Austin. Current would be Sami Callihan, Kevin Steen (Owens), Zack Sabre Jr., Akira Tozawa, Will Ospreay, Ricochet, Tommy End, Samoa Joe (he's having an amazing resurgence), Lucky 13, and Homicide (a guy whose older work I'm becoming more fond of).

The best PWG show I've seen is Threemendous III. The only "eh" match is the opener (Joey Ryan vs. Famous B), but even that has some fun moments in it. Roderick Strong vs. TJ Perkins is one of my favorite matches of the past few years because it feels like one of the Dean Malenko/Rey Mysterio Jr. matches that would get better reactions on Nitro than a Hogan main event, Kevin Steen vs. Willie Mack is a great sprint that has Steen (who was World champ at the time) making Mack seem like a bigger threat than he actually was, and the main event (3-way tag ladder match) is fucking insane. Each match has its own flavor and even the weaker ones were still very entertaining.

I fell off the PWG wagon not long after Steen was signed to WWE. There was a big slump around then when every talent booked was doing the exact same "let's flip and flop," so the shows became monotonous with self-conscious "epic" matches, but it seems like the UK/lucha talent coming in a year ago freshened things up. I need to save some cash and pick it back up.
dragons_secrets wrote:
The current TNA storylines are solid and basic and make more sense than a lot of what WWE does. It's just at this point what with their budget, they don't have a lot of roster depth anymore and have lost most of their originals. Abyss and James Storm are the last two remaining. Also, the commentary is terrible. Josh Matthews is awful and that hurts the show a lot. The last time TNA was on fire was 2012 with the Aces & Eights storyline, and of course they had to screw it up.

Aces & 8's was doomed the moment they tried to make D'Lo Brown come off like a tough biker. He's fucking D'Lo Brown, entertaining guy from the WWF midcard whose peak was over a decade before the story. I don't buy him as a shitkicker. Throwing a bunch of recent WWE cast-off's in, like Mike Knox and Luke Gallows, didn't help the matter, especially since the rest of the show was slowly getting better after the Hogan/Bischoff regime left.

Quick TNA comment: Bobby Roode's theme might be one of my favorite themes ever.
Youtube: show

His only flaw is how wooden his delivery is, but he's the kind of guy that you find new things to appreciate the more you watch him. I'm excited to see him in NXT now, especially with even more ex-TNA talent coming in soon. Roode/Nakamura? Roode/Balor? Yes!
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JohnTheDrummer
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 3:57 pm 
 

Ah yes! I forgot about Steen vs Mack from Threemendous III. It's crazy how heavy both guys are, yet how athletic and agile they are! The proof that looks can be deceiving. PWG definitely had a weird "gray area" after Steen left since he was such a corner stone of the company. There's still some shows that I see the card of and think "Meh..." but then actually watch the show and realize it was amazing.

I didn't expect much from reDRagon vs the Young Bucks from the last All Star Weekend since I've seen these guys fight SO MUCH, but it was easily their best outing, and had some good comedy spots too.


I never understood the hype behind Bobby Roode. I watched TNA from around the time it started, stopped for a while, kinda came back around the time Hogan was there, stopped, then again when they brought back the 6 sided ring, but that didn't last long since I just couldn't get into it. BUT ANYWAY, what I'm getting at is I always remembered Roode from being in Team Canada, so that's what I always connected him too. I didn't pay much attention to TNA when Beer Money was a thing either. I got a TNA DVD a few months ago from 2012 where he fought Austin Aries... and that opened my eyes as to what Roode is all about. That dude can go, and go hard. One of the best "TNA guys" they had!
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2016 8:25 am 
 

Roode really came into his own with the Beer Money stuff, and their feud after splitting for the first time was how a blood feud should've been booked. TNA actually uploaded a compilation of the major matches and moments in the Beer Money/MCMG feud to YouTube. I highly recommend it.
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NARAKU666
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2016 7:36 pm 
 

Is any of you excited about the Cruiserwight Classic?
maan, to see Ibushi, Taijiri and Zack Zabre jr in the same place wrestling in a cool set with great production. I hope this means the return of the cruiserweight title to the WWE
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2016 11:02 pm 
 

I am STOKED. I was watching the video they put up when they were introducing everyone and completely forgot that Tozawa was in it too.

Trying to avoid as many spoilers as possible. I hope he goes far in it!
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Ancient_Sorrow
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2016 11:42 pm 
 

Spent some of this evening watching ROH: Best in the World 2016. I'm very much a casual viewer with ROH, only watching the occasional PPV as opposed to the weekly show. Thoroughly enjoyed it; great wrestling and commentary, combined with ROH's ever ascending production values as of late. I enjoyed it somewhat more than Global Wars, which was the next-most-recent PPV I'd tuned into by the company. For me, part of the experience of being a wrestling fan is enjoying watching companies do well - and ROH have quite the aura big-time of legitimacy about them these days.

On the subject of the CWC, I'm certainly excited to see it - a lot of the competitors are relatively unknown to me, but I look forward to discovering and investing in them as the event progresses.
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 5:00 am 
 

I remember thinking Aces and Eights were an NWO ripoff, but got so laughably bad with all the reveals. Almost all of them were mid carders at most.

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Subrick
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 9:01 pm 
 

I am extraordinarily excited for the Cruiserweight Classic. Between Best of Super Juniors, Super J Cup, Battle of Los Angeles, and now CWC, this is an insane year for cruiserweight/junior heavyweight wrestling.

On the subject of junior heavyweights, what does everyone think of the Ricochet vs. Will Ospreay match from BoSJ? I loved it. Thought it was one of the best matches of the year.
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JohnTheDrummer
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 9:37 pm 
 

Subrick wrote:
On the subject of junior heavyweights, what does everyone think of the Ricochet vs. Will Ospreay match from BoSJ? I loved it. Thought it was one of the best matches of the year.


I enjoyed the match, and not taking anything away from it, I was actually expecting it to be a whole lot more "flippy" than it was after hearing all the crap it got. I've seen both guys do matches that were WAAAAAY "worse" (not to me, to the people bitching about it) that went under everyone's nose :lol: . I don't get all the heat it got from the old school guys. Yeah it had it's flippy spots, but not the whole thing was like that. What does everyone expect from a match with OSPREAY and RICOCHET in it???? :lol:

Apparently Ospreay and Vader will be having a match in RPW this August... that'll be... interesting.... since Vader is the one who started all the bashing on it.
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Subrick
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 10:03 pm 
 

It's because it was on such a large scale as New Japan and Best of Super Juniors is. Vader going off on Twitter about it probably actually gave the match a bit more attention in terms of "How flippy is too flippy?". The thing to remember is that the story of the match wasn't just guys doing flips to do them; Ospreay and Ricochet were both trying to one up each other in kayfabe and as the match went on, each move got more impactful. When it comes to a lot of the no-selling, if you look at it from an in-universe perspective, the guys got a brief adrenaline rush after each hit or impact which allowed them to do a response move. Think of it like how Finn Balor gets hit and responds with a pele kick, only turned up to 11.
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acid_bukkake
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 7:53 am 
 

I thought Ospreay/Ricochet from BoSJ '16 was somewhere between "mediocre" and "above average." It was plagued by a lot of the problems that are persistent in virtually all wrestling these days (no long-term selling, spots meant to go viral instead of add to the match), but it wasn't the albatross that some made it out to be. Like you said, Subrick, everything done made sense in the context of the match and the modern junior heavyweight/cruiserweight style (but that damn apron DVD took me way out of it), and every single fan would've been pissing their pants in joy if this was on a 1998 Nitro. If we're going with the star rating system, I'd give it ***, but it's far from the best work either man has done. Both guys work better with somebody who works a more grounded style to base their stuff on (Ospreay/Scurll has been great everywhere they've ran it and Ricochet seems like the modern Rey Mysterio that Amazing Red was supposed to be), though.

I'll put it like this: when Jim Cornette says he enjoyed it and you didn't, then you're being way too fucking grumpy about it.

As for the CWC, I'm hoping they let Ibushi, Tozawa, and ZSJ cut loose. I can see Gargano, Ciampa (it's hilarious to me that he's a cruiser), and the Chinese talents they've added (Ho Ho Lun and Jason Lee) make it to the second round, but I see the winner being either Ibushi or ZSJ. Hopefully Ibushi signs so we can get another Ibushi/Nakamura match out of it, and I think ZSJ being around guys like Joe, Aries, and with some backstage tutelage from Bryan could become even greater than he is right now.

Anybody have thoughts on Tommy End allegedly reporting to Orlando in September?
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Subrick
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 11:31 am 
 

Wouldn't surprise me. WWE's campaign of snatching up every notable indy name under the sun is only increasing due to the upcoming brand extension and how it will both spread the current main roster thin (remember that they've contacted Kurt Angle, MVP, and, of all people, Stevie Richards to return in the late summer or fall to thicken Raw and Smackdown) and deplete NXT due to the upcoming call ups (anywhere between 12 and 15 call ups according to the sheets). I guarantee you they'll sign at least 5 or 6 names from the CWC as well.

In terms of cruiserweight/junior heavyweight/light heavyweight wrestling, I remember watching Wrestlemania 14 a while back and getting to the Mr. Aguila vs. Taka Michinoku match and just thinking about how shitty it must have been to do cruiserweight bumps in the old WWF rings. Those rings were as stiff as a ring could be, and doing high impact bumping in them could not have been fun at all. Remember that it was Mick Foley accidentally falling through the Hell in a Cell roof a few months later that springboarded the effort by the WWF to make their rings safer to bump in and less stiff.

Lastly, as an aside to the CWC, I watched the competitor introductions on WWE's Youtube channel last night, and I immediately, absolutely loved the presentation they went for. I adored the real sports-esq feel of the whole thing, and the choice of Mauro Ranallo and Daniel Bryan as commentators was the absolute perfect choice. As much as I would have loved Corey Graves being a part of the commentary team for this, I think it's better that they aren't doing the normal wrestling commentary thing of a face play-by-play and heel color. Having Ranallo and Bryan as two neutral parties calling the action like any normal NFL or NBA or MLB or NHL commentary team would was the completely correct decision here. I really, really want this to become a yearly thing, or even its own separate show on the Network, like what Los Super Astros was back in the Attitude Era, only taken way more seriously.
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acid_bukkake
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 2:52 pm 
 

Subrick wrote:
In terms of cruiserweight/junior heavyweight/light heavyweight wrestling, I remember watching Wrestlemania 14 a while back and getting to the Mr. Aguila vs. Taka Michinoku match and just thinking about how shitty it must have been to do cruiserweight bumps in the old WWF rings. Those rings were as stiff as a ring could be, and doing high impact bumping in them could not have been fun at all. Remember that it was Mick Foley accidentally falling through the Hell in a Cell roof a few months later that springboarded the effort by the WWF to make their rings safer to bump in and less stiff.

The Light Heavyweight division was doomed for a few reasons, the NBC mandate from the 80s (boiled down to "the ring looks too spring-y" leading to a much harder boxing-style ring, adding to injuries over the years) aside. Vince McMahon doesn't like smaller talents overall, especially foreign-born ones, and there was no way that Taka Michinoku was going to get the kind of booking and presentation to keep him as a relevant force once Vince Russo really took hold (and, lo and behold, look what happened). Add to this that the WWF style of working was almost always "punch/kick," even going back to the Bruno Sammartino days, with a few rare technicians sprinkled throughout (Bob Backlund and Bret Hart, most notably). Granted the LHW division was primarily American and Japanese talent, more familiar with traditional wrestling psychology than WCW's luchadores by comparison, but why would anybody stick around to watch the little guys who weren't allowed to (or just outright couldn't) go like their counterparts in the other company were? The WWF turned the tide with great promos and characters, not great matches, and smaller talents prone to flying were likely less about words and more about the actual matches.
Quote:
Lastly, as an aside to the CWC, I watched the competitor introductions on WWE's Youtube channel last night, and I immediately, absolutely loved the presentation they went for. I adored the real sports-esq feel of the whole thing, and the choice of Mauro Ranallo and Daniel Bryan as commentators was the absolute perfect choice. As much as I would have loved Corey Graves being a part of the commentary team for this, I think it's better that they aren't doing the normal wrestling commentary thing of a face play-by-play and heel color. Having Ranallo and Bryan as two neutral parties calling the action like any normal NFL or NBA or MLB or NHL commentary team would was the completely correct decision here. I really, really want this to become a yearly thing, or even its own separate show on the Network, like what Los Super Astros was back in the Attitude Era, only taken way more seriously.

I've said for a few years that a show presented like Nitro was at its peak in 1996, where it was a well-produced sports show with a colorful array of characters but the focus on a sports feel to it, would do extremely well today after 18 years of Raw having the same structure. The positives of a HHH-led WWE outweigh whatever criticisms you can throw at him for what he's done over the course of his career considering he seems both more open to newer ideas and more willing to double-down on what actually works.
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Subrick
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 11:42 pm 
 

Triple H gets that he's going to be running a wrestling promotion, not a "sports entertainment worldwide media conglomerate". He's getting back to the basics of what makes wrestling work and so good with NXT's weekly programming, while simultaneously bringing the company into the future by acknowledging that other promotions exist and they are loaded with world class talent that can be extremely beneficial to WWE in the long term. Just look at how much WWE's hiring policies have changed in the last 10 years; a decade ago, they actively discouraged hiring independent stars, wanting primarily muscleheaded beefcakes that couldn't lace a pair of boots up and swimsuit models. It's a combination of Triple H getting more power plus the successes of CM Punk and Daniel Bryan at the main event level that has led to guys like Rollins, Ambrose, Styles, Owens, Cesaro, and Sami Zayn being upper midcard and main event level talents in the current WWE. That's not even mentioning NXT, which is pretty much "The Battle of the Independent Wrestling Stars".
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JohnTheDrummer
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2016 11:53 pm 
 

First list of names annouced for this year's "Battle of Los Angeles" show from PWG...

Cody Rhodes
Kamaitachi
Jeff Cobb (Lucha Underground’s Matanza)
Mark Haskins
Dalton Castle
Pete Dunne
Sami Callihan
Tommy End
Trevor Lee
Adam Cole
John Hennigan (Johnny Mundo / John Morrison)
Jack Gallagher

I like how there's a good handful of guys that aren't regulars! This'll be fun!
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ratedgdr
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2016 3:01 pm 
 

Ancient_Sorrow wrote:
Spent some of this evening watching ROH: Best in the World 2016. I'm very much a casual viewer with ROH, only watching the occasional PPV as opposed to the weekly show. Thoroughly enjoyed it; great wrestling and commentary, combined with ROH's ever ascending production values as of late. I enjoyed it somewhat more than Global Wars, which was the next-most-recent PPV I'd tuned into by the company. For me, part of the experience of being a wrestling fan is enjoying watching companies do well - and ROH have quite the aura big-time of legitimacy about them these days.

On the subject of the CWC, I'm certainly excited to see it - a lot of the competitors are relatively unknown to me, but I look forward to discovering and investing in them as the event progresses.


Oh man, I'm a huge RoH fan but I fucking HATED BITW this year. I'm one of the few people out there who likes Delirious as a booker but he did more than just drop the ball. He lost it into the bottomless pit. Fucking KEVIN SULLIVAN interfering in the Whitmer/Corino match so that the feud could drag on longer than it now needs to? The rotten cherry on top of a rotten yogurt sundae.

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Subrick
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2016 3:35 pm 
 

But did you hate BitW more than everyone else hated the ending of Global Wars?
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ratedgdr
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2016 4:10 pm 
 

Subrick wrote:
But did you hate BitW more than everyone else hated the ending of Global Wars?


GW left me with mixed feelings. On the one hand, Adam Cole joining the Bullet Club was a development that I honestly was surprised by, and in a good way. Other hand, I tend to like my big matches to have a clear winner/ending and Lethal vs. Cabana didn't get that.

I don't think, however, that it was so bad that it deserved the vitriol towards it. Besides, with RoH, it's something relatively fresh that is leading to something else, likely constructive.

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Subrick
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2016 4:27 pm 
 

People were definitely more angry towards the PPV ending without a finish in the main event than anything else, aside from maybe how most of the RoH guys looked like 2nd rate geeks next to the New Japan stars (minus regulars for both companies like the Bucks, Michael Elgin, and Moose). Remember when Battleground 2013 ended with fucking Big Show standing tall over Bryan and Randy Orton and the match result was a no contest despite WWE promising everyone that the title match would end with a new champion? That's the closest approximation I can think of to the reaction to the ending of Global Wars, even if Global Wars was the infinitely better show overall than Battleground that year was.

I think a big reason for the backlash too was that people were starting to get really, really sick of Bullet Club at that point. I don't even know why they're still a group when not only do they have almost no original members left, but at Dominion they lost most of their matches. Even though Los Ingobernables lost ALL their matches, including the at-the-time fucking annoying but now less so considering G1's coming up decision to have Okada win the belt again, but LIdJ is the hottest stable in wrestling right now, much like Bullet Club was a year ago, and they can take the losses better than Bullet Club can. I just hope Naito wins G1 so he can then get the belt off Okada and start being a perfect cockface again, belt tossing and all.
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