The Week In Wrestling 12.8.02


You heard it here first. Daniels is taking over the Tuesday news.

I’m very impressed that Widro has enough faith in me to properly replace someone who draws in as many readers as my predecessor and, regardless of the things he might say, he is always an entertaining read. I can only hope to be as good as he was someday. But remember, you can still tune in to read him on Friday.

Yeah, Friday. I’m talking about Cankaya… I’m taking over the Music news.

Who did YOU think I was talking about.

Be on the lookout for me Tuesday in 411’s Music Zone.

The other, funnier, thing is that the WWE hired a Hollywood continuity checker to monitor the storylines and point out errors in them while keeping track of champions and histories and stuff. After a few weeks on the job, he pointed out too many errors and was fired.Scott Keith Smark Raw Rant for 12/2.

I’d love to know where Sly Scottie heard that, because I’d love to see the confirmation. If true, it’s possibly the saddest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. This leads to one of three conclusions.

  1. They REALLY don’t realize how disturbingly out of sync their storylines are, and figure ignorance is bliss.
  2. They know and don’t care, because they assume people will watch this crap anyway
  3. From Widro: Vince probably thought about it, hired the guy, then found a new pet project. Once Vince’s backing was gone, the dropped him.

The WWE: One World… and if you question the World… Get The F Out.

To Eric’s Ethics Writer. How about this… Sammy Walton and the Wal-Mart Fam pull down more than 1 BILLION dollars in one day (that being black Friday) and STILL don’t pay their workers enough to live above the welfare line or give some of them health insurance. Chew on that before you help the local ma and pa store shut down to save twenty bucks.

Next, re: Proposition 187 and Immigration. I think a big part of the problem with immigrants Americanizing these days is the simple fact that NOT doing it is made far too easy by current society. New York, for example, printed it’s State High School exams in seven different languages in 1996. The cable system I had at college had two Spanish, a French, and a Japanese channel. Not for a moment saying we should be intolerant of other people’s cultures, but there’s no reason for America to try to cater to EVERYONE. People’s ancestors (for the most part) came here because they WANTED to be here… they wanted to be “Americans.” And now to go back on that, and to have people identify themselves as hyphenated Americans (Asian-American, African-American, Mexican-American, for example) does a great disservice to the people who founded this country, and who moved here for whatever reason.

And, as for the folks whose ancestors were brought here against their free will. Well, no one living today is responsible for it and, if the hatred for the people who WERE responsible runs so deep, no one is keeping you here now.

And, nothing actually bothers me more than supporting people who aren’t even supposed to be here through taxes. How an illegal immigrant can even APPLY for government benefits and be accepted is beyond my comprehension. I can live in Mexico and be really poor… or I can sneak across the border and make working Americans support me. Certainly an easy choice.

The funny thing is, Eric’s Wednesday rant probably pissed off a whole OTHER group of people who usually don’t get pissed off by the stuff he says.

Also, Eric: Texas has a law to expand into five states? Can you expound?

Grut returns to what brought him to the dance with a new Wrestling Tale. If you don’t like his news (and God knows who does?) read this. It’s a solid, tremendous VSF piece.

Also, a quick shoutout to the new crop of columnists Widro and Ash picked up over the weekend. They have very good first columns. The challenge is the second, third, and fourth column. The first column is thought about, written, read, tweaked, reread, tweaked, reread again and submitted. The second column is the toughy.

Hell, look at me. I’ve sucked since I started doing this column and some would argue I’ve sucked since my fifth Cheap Heat. Widro just keeps me around because I help code the site.


The reunited Dudley Boyz polished off the Three Minute Warning in short order. Good thing they had the established tag team solidly beat the new tag team that they’re trying to make useful. So far, if 3MW isn’t beating up old ladies, midgets, or referees, they’re pretty useless. Somehow or other, these guys have become immediate jobbers… and it really makes no sense, because the tag division isn’t exactly overcrowded with quality teams right now. The Fat Samoans have good chemistry and great moves for big guys. Give them a freakin chance… and for f*ck’s sake, have Rico shave his sideburns and give them a single’s push. Those sideburns could be holding HeMan down in three months… easy.

After the match, during the commercial, 3MW does the beat down on the Dudz. Why they did it during the commercial is beyond me. I guess to promote the new “unpredictability” of Raw.

I give them credit for trying to make the talented women going for more than 2 minute matches… but I don’t know that Trish can maintain a 4 minute match. I very often find myself flipping channels now during Trish matches… because she just doesn’t have enough shit she does well to fill four minutes. Of course, I don’t have enough shit I do well to fill thirty seconds… but I don’t get paid to wrestle.

Come to think of it, I don’t get paid to write about wrestling either.

Or music, on Daniels’s New Music News Report, available exclusively on 411music starting Tuesday!

But then, Trish/Ivory was a masterpiece opposed to the Jackie/Victoria match to follow. They were in Texas, so they’re contractually obligated to stick Jackie in a match.

Storm and Regal continue their not-quite-that-exciting, winning ways. Like I said earlier, it’s not like the tag division is so crowded that it’s not a good idea to make some new teams. The thing is, Storm and Regal will take a while to build, which is fine… but the 3MW were ready to go. People were hot for them… and then they killed them. Go figure.

Batista squashed Hurricane. I’m waiting on the Brock chants.

Booker T and Chris Jericho started in a match… which was becoming good in and of itself. Christian came out to interfere, which brought out Golddust, which brought out Chief Morely to restart the match as a tag team title match. Very good tag team match followed which looked very good for the challengers for the last few minutes. Booker hit a Bookend to rile the crowd up, but Christian pulled the ref out at two and a half. Jericho then used a belt to kill Booker, and the Texas crowd, dead for the rest of the night. In some senses, with the hometowns, the WWE has lost their sense of timing. Back in the day, they held off on Tazz’s debut for months until they rolled through Philly where he’d make the biggest splash. Now, they’ve managed to kill the Texas crowd dead in the water TWICE by jobbing Booker to opponents to who shouldn’t beat him. Fool them once, shame on us… Fool them twice, shame on you… or something.

In the next match, they tried to heat the crowd back up by putting Jackie over Victoria in non-title fashion. Unfortunately, the Texas crowd doesn’t give half-a-damn about Jackie. I’m convinced Booker refused to date Stephanie, or something.

Or maybe Vince just hates the Blacks.

Post match, Steiner came out to beat up Victoria and Stevie. Once again, Steiner treats a chick like a piece of trash, someone defends her honor, and gets beat for it… this is wrestling morality. And, apparently Steph won Steiner, which almost guarantees an Austin return to his show… and sooner rather than later.

But, most importantly, an RNN newsbreak. But then, we break the RNN newsbreak for a developing story backstage at Raw. Confrontation between HeMan and HBK was the breaking news. Guess RNN was getting too over so, since H can’t have Randy jobbed, he had to interrupt the newsbreak.

It’s HeMan’s world… the rest of us just rent space.

And, in the foregone conclusion of the night, HeMan went over RVD with a chairshot. High points of the match include our World Champion taking a ref bump on a high crossbody and a spinkick and getting knocked da’fook out… well, just long enough for Robby to hit the Five-Star and not get the pin. We get HeMan vs Shawn in the big rematch at Armageddon… to no one’s surprise. They redid the Bret Hart vs Undertaker with Shawn as ref finish, almost in it’s entirety… minus the spit. Since, NO ONE can hock a loogie like the Hitman.


Rey and Albert opened the show in a match that served nothing but to give Rey an excuse to be out for a couple months. Jeezus, the guy’s knee is hamburger. It might be time for him to throw in the mask.

Steph is wearing the low-cut business suits again. They’re going for the cheap pops. Steiner will be on Smackdown! Next week to sign his big contract. I smell a swerve.

Crash wrestled Jamie Noble to extend Jamie’s losing streak. Crash is using the Styles Clash now… which is AJ Style’s move from NWA:TMJ… apparently, this Nunzio fella… which is a really, REALLY odd name for a southerner’s cousin, is going to be on Smackdown next week! Rumor has it that it’s the Gobbeldy Gooker.

Benoit gave a pretaped segment saying his dream is to become the WWF champion. This ensures he will not win tonight.

The drama continues as Dawn Marie reveals to Torrie that the only reason she is leading on and is engaged to Al is because of Torrie and… oh yes, it gets better… if Torrie really loves her dad and wants Dawn Marie out of his life, then Torrie will meet Dawn in Dawn’s hotel room this evening. I won’t keep you in suspense… Torrie went and the show ended with Dawn stroking Torrie’s cheek.

You know, soapy angles are all well and good when there can actually be a, you know, WRESTLING payoff to it… but a two month long storyline that can only end in a Torrie v Dawn Marie match isn’t the most appealing thing in the world. Wasn’t the Lesbian experminet attempted and aborted on Raw already?

Hugh Morrus is Bill DeMott now, and he squashed Funaki. He wants some respect, dammit, and Tough Enough ain’t it.

Raw Retro moment of the night: Shane shows up on Nitro. *sniff*… I long for that awful, awful show.

Oh wait… RAW is on. It’s pretty much Nitro.

Chavo vs Kidman for the cruiserweight title was also a very, very good match. They finally gave the cruisers more than a minute or two to build a match, and the result was yet another in the line of the Smackdown Classics.

John Cena vs Rikishi in a rap contest. That’s all you get… your imaginations can fill in the rest. Tazz was involved by choking out B2 though… which would make me wonder if Tazz might actually be WRESTLING next week…? One can only hope.

Pre-main event, Edge gets attacked by Albert and has his knee taken out with a chair… because Edge is superman and it isn’t believable he could lose on his own… because, obviously. EDGE IS YOUR GOD!

Back from break, the fatal four way elimination main event is Edge, Angle, Guererro, and Benoit. Winner is the Number One contender for Armageddon. Benoit puts Eddy out first with Crossface. Crippled Edge puts out Benoit with a spear because, even crippled, Edge is better than you. But then again, Edge is your God and mine, therefore, he very likely laid hands on himself and healed all injuries. After it was down to Angle v Edge, it turned out to be a classic in and of itself with Angle coming out on top and big show coming out to kill him dead with a choke slam.


Roddy Piper was on you care? I don’t. Moving on.

Tough Enough

Last week they cut the only guy I cared for, even though I know he had no chance of winning. This week, they went to Iceland and and one of the guys picked up some Icelandish Yak and did the nasty. The next day, he was all upset and scared they were going to cut him because he had a rat. I can’t understand how these guys don’t come home with a different chick every night. This is a very simple conversation.

Tough Enough Guy: Hi, I’m on MTV, wanna f*ck me?

Any Yak: Uh-huh.

Sure, maybe you’d get cut but it’d be a fun few weeks wouldn’t it?

But, it was not to be the only other semi-hot chick on the show got cut. The other girl may be better, but she’s foul. I smell two guys winning this time out. Jonah and the Blonde Guy the rest of them just don’t have the look. They’re interchangable spiky-haired guys.

The Week In Wrestling

So, Kurt Angle is YOUR new Smackdown Number One Contender. Folks are saying it’s a foregone conclusion he’s going to lose before setting up the Brock/Angle Mania match. Personally, I think it would be much better to put Angle over show at Armageddon. Let Brock and Show’s feud be put off by the Rumble where Brock puts Show out of the Rumble. Brock wrestles Show in February and then gets Angle at Mania. That’s the way I would do it anyway, and we already knows Vince cares not about what he does.

One of 411’s loyal readers asked the WWFund why they are legally punking out the ex-WWFederation. He got a response which wasn’t your typical “Thanks for mailing our organization and we’ll get back to you when we have the time” form letter. What he did get was a well thought out letter stating the position of the WWFund, and let’s take a look at it here:

The initials “WWF” are incredibly important to us because these are the

letters by which we have been known since we were first established in

1961, long before the Federation started calling itself by the same

initials. They represent our identity and we rely on the public’s

recognition of these initials to provide us with the support we need for

our work around the world to protect endangered animals and slow the

destruction of the earth’s environment.

OK, this I can see. I actually didn’t even know there was another WWF until I was in college which means sometime between 1996 and 2000. In fact, the only reason I even have any idea they exist is because, back in the day, when I was first looking for wrestling news on the internet, I typed WWF. I got a website that had a panda on the splash page and I was like “What the hell is this.”

I would also like to clarify that the Federation has not been using the

initials as long as the Fund. In fact the Federation claims that their

use of ‘WWF’ had been in place since 1979, some 18 years after we

started using the initals.

True, they were the WWWF before this. Too many letters for Vince Jr, I guess.

In 1994, after negotiations between the parties, the Federation agreed

not to use the initials except in very limited circumstances.

I would Love to know the terms of this agreement, if anyone knows, or if anyone has easy access to the public records that have them.

At the Federation’s request, the Agreement was made subject to English law.

From the mid 1990s, the Federation adopted a deliberate policy of

breaching the agreement. After fruitless attempts to persuade the

Federation to abide by its agreement, the Fund had no option but to

instigate legal proceedings to protect the interests of its network

against the numerous and massive breaches.

Again, I’d love to see this agreement. Although, I have no problem believing Vince would wipe his ass with any agreement he made, so long as it would suit him. The rumors I’d heard is that the WWFederation agreed to only use the letters in the United States, and gave the WWFund the use of them everywhere else. Well, with the pesky Internet and that dratted International sales he went way beyond the call of the agreement.

In August 2001, the English court gave judgement in our favour and,

subsequently, ordered the Federation to cease its use of the initials,

including such use through its licensees. After unsuccessful appeals by

the Federation, the court order became effective on 10th November 2002.

Which they’ve done their damndest to do. Nothing new is coming out with WWFederation letters or anything of the like although they still could use “World Wrestling Federation” so long as they didn’t use the initials.

The Federation has had fifteen months, from the time of the court’s

judgement, to prepare for the implementation of the court order,

including ensuring that all its licensees were aware of it and that

their merchandise was compliant.

Which has been being done again.

Then, at the last minute, immediately

before the court order was due to come into effect, one of the

Federation’s licensees in respect of video games made an application to

the English court seeking exemption from the effects of the order. The

court has held that the licensee, and all other licensees, must comply

with the original court order against WWE.

This I don’t understand. Although I know a lot goes into game programming I would assume that this logo is saved somewhere as a simple image. On all the backgrounds, it could simply be replaced and overwritten. Any shirts or clothing the characters are wearing could just be pallette swapped. Why EA had such a big problem, I don’t understand.

In the course of privileged (supposedly off the record) discussions

between the Fund and the Federation, certain figures, not only for

damages, but also for costs, expenses and other claims, have been

tabled. It is worth pointing out that the judge in the recent case

specifically ordered an enquiry into the amount of damage suffered by us

as a result of the Federation’s breach of its agreement with us, so this

is not in any way a new legal action but merely the anticipated

follow-on from the recent decision.

This, again, is also successive. I don’t see where a wrestling federation using the same initials could possibly cause them harm. I mean, no one is going to write a contribution check to Vinnie Mac thinking he’s out to save the Pandas. Also, the Pandas aren’t making video games. Unless people were wagering on Panda fights and wondering if they were fixed I can’t see the logic here.

Separately, the Fund’s legal advisor, Michael Rogers, is taking legal

advice in relation to bringing defamation proceedings against WWE, its

lawyers and any others who repeat the scandalous allegations which have

been made against him.

Now, this is where they are just trying to rub salt in the wounds. Defamation proceedings? Jeez, George why all the sudden are they interested in taking the WWFederation for all their worth.

I would also like to explain that WWF believes that our conservation

work has been hampered by the use of the initials WWF by the WWE. Many

people have commented that surely there can be little confusion between

two such different organisations. Confusion was not the basis of our

legal action and certainly we don’t think the public are silly enough

to confuse a wrestling organisation with a conservation/environmental

one. But in the media, internet and public usage of the initials “WWF”

and in non english speaking countries, it is often unclear immediately

which organisation is being referred to. This has led to many instances

of difficulty for us in our different spheres of work and has affected

our ability to get on and do our work effectively.

I don’t buy this not for a second. I don’t give a damn if it’s non-English speaking or what. There is absolutely no way to confuse these two organizations. And, if people ARE, they’re not smart enough to donate to any organizations.

Finally, can I reiterate that we are not anti-wrestling.

Obviously not.

We are not trying to stop people enjoying the entertainment provided by WWE. The situation WWE now finds itself in has been brought on entirely by its

own actions in ignoring the agreement it entered into with us. The

British courts agree.

Another thing I have problems understanding is why a US Company has to listen to a British Court. Didn’t we kick their asses 300 years ago? Shouldn’t the US Court system be able to say “f*ck you, limey” and have the WWFederation go on about it’s daily business? Of course, I know nothing about the World Court system. Similar to how I don’t understand how a California Court can shut down a company in Amsterdam. Isn’t that a BIT out of jurisdiction? Who enforces these decisions?

We were not motivated by money in bringing this case, we were simply trying to require the Federation to do what it had promised to do.

Please, duker if you weren’t motivated by money, you wouldn’t be trying to hit them up for $90 million after you won the court case. That’s insulting.

My biggest question is this: why all this now? Could it possibly be because their parent company just decided to start financing the only major compition on the market right now? Could it possibly be part of their mission to try and bankrupt the competition?

Had they just won the injunction against the WWFederation to force them to either 1) stop using the initials or 2) force a licensing fee to use the initials on a yearly basis I would say no. Now, with the extenuating circumstances of them owning the competition, I would say they’re trying to reproduce Vince’s problems of the early ninties. Keep him tied up in court, and the quality of the show plummets.

Of course, this is all just speculation and I don’t know anything for a fact. Besides, I’m big into conspiracy theories.

In another move that will baffle everyone in the general populace who’s name isn’t McMahon, it’s being reported that Matt Hardy’s push has been benched in favor of yet another push for Albert. Now, don’t get me wrong Albert’s OK. I can deal with him. He’s a big, intimidating guy who is a very believable wrestler but the Albert experiment has been attempted, and failed miserably, five different times. Without a major overhaul of his look, gimmick, and name, he’s never going to go anywhere. Matt Hardy has a marketble gimmick, look, and logo along with catchphrases, and the fact people enjoy him and they’re benching him? Why? Was he caught double dipping in the cheese dip backstage and this is a violation of locker room etiquette? This would be one of the things that pisses me off about the WWE. They book based on stupid rules rather than what people want to see. The heat Matt Hardy would have got for putting Mysterio out would have been pefect for elevating him. Right now, he’s an amusing jobber injuring Mysterio would have put him up to mid-card jobber and feuding with Edge as a result would have elevated him to mid-card threat. For Albert, it does nothing but put him back to mid-card jobber, and it will leave him at mid-card jobber. No one takes Albert as a serious threat no one takes Matt Hardy as a credible threat either, but that’s simple to change as he has a stable behind him the Mfers.

And all this on the heels of a news report from JR that says Michaels is thinking of increasing his in-ring schedule. Gee, the world champion might wrestle? Go figure. The thing is Michaels is on his way out Hardy is on his way in. At some point, they’re going to have to bite the bullet and let someone look good by beating most of the roster. This is what we call a “push.”

Right now, we have an enormous mid-card who continue to trade jobs back and forth, but never really get anywhere. Smackdown, at least, has Brock and Show wrestling for the belt, with Angle, Edge, and Benoit cooking right toward the top. Any given night, anyone can buy any of these guys walking out the belt. Raw doesn’t have that. RVD and Booker are the only guys who could have a good title run, and they have their nuts cut off week after week. This is why Raw is a boring show.

But, again who cares what I think. I’ll still watch.

Right up till they cancel the show.

Don’t forget to check out my new column on Tuesday over in the music section.

End Transmission.