The Weekend Hotline Column Version: 3.30.03


Sorry about the lateness of this, for anyone who will see it down here in the column section. I’m still having issues with my ‘Net connection at home so I had to wait to get back to work on Sunday to post it. Anyone reading, please enjoy.

So, I think I finally accepted that the girl and I are completely finished. A stuff swap has been declared. Conveniently, I didn’t burn any of it. So, after 2.5 years a chapter of my life has drawn to a close. Sorry to see it go, actually. I blame you yes, you.

So, to spite her, I’ve decided to re-double my efforts at becoming jacked. Well, becoming thin(ner) and THEN becoming jacked. Six-pack? Oh jessssssss, my friends ‘twill be a reality. Leave me sittin by myself on the day I close my first mortgage? Watch what happens next, sucka.

Speaking of that, I’ve been stuck at 227 for exactly a month now. My unconscious tribute to one of the greatest shows in history &lt/sarcasm%gt. Or very possibly it’s just because between the move, the closing, the lawyering, and whatnot I’ve been slacking like a prison guard in the morgue. Over the last 21 days, I’ve only gone to the gym 8 days. Luckily, I havne’t put any weight on, and I attribute that to good eating habits during the week. Of course, now I have a roommate that’s BIG into snacks which means Fudge Rounds, chips, cookies, and Ice Cream in every damn cupboard. The Good Lord is testing my resolve, I think.

And as for my cable company, they need to be pimp-smacked. No offense to my roommate, who works for said cable company, who has done everything in his power short of selling his soul to Satan to get our broadband going but a week without an Internet connection is SIX DAYS TOO FUGGIN LONG.

A shout out to the best Weekend Hotline reader in the world, Ron who’s getting me the CD asked for last week. Thanks dude, as soon as I unpack my checkbook, it’s on the way. Also, thanks to everyone else who gave me tracks to look for on Kazaa. As soon as I get some fuggin broadband, I will make use of those suggestions.

And, since it worked so well last week, lets try again. This time, I’m looking for Fuel’s first release. Apparently, they had an Indy release pre-Sunburn, and I can’t even find that on Ebay. I tried twice and BOTH times it was some sort of terrible techno Cd from England. Drop me a line with any info.

Yeah, so since NOTHING is happening this week with the exception of Wrestlemania, it’s a good thing a lot of you took the time to e-mail me last week.


This could be either Amy or Bret: There were 2 smackdown house shows in Maine this summer, one in portland and in Bangor, RAW and Smackdown have both been at the verizon wireless arena in Manchester, NH in the past year…. try doing a little research.

Newsflash folks, House shows don’t count. A Bingo Hall can get a house show these days, and if it ain’t MSG, it don’t get pyro. And follows up with the dreaded “do a little research” line. Oh, and if you’re going to point out errors, you should have pointed out Mohegan Sun Casino in Connecticut as well. Next time, do a little research before mailing me.

Some Dude with no name: I do have a bit of a problem with your IC/US Title idea. I was actually rather pleased when they lost those titles. I felt that they were passed around too much, not made important but mostly they were just pointless. Let me put it this way, to be the world champion means that you are the champion of your company, or brand. To be the tag champion means that you are in a tag team that is the best in your company or brand. The same goes for the Women’s title and the Crusierweights. What the hell does it mean to be the Intercontinental Champion. Think about it, you are the champion of
Intercontinental. What the f*ck does that mean? Why the hell should I
care that that particular wrestler is the champion of America, when there is a World champion on in 10 minutes?

Again, this just goes to the fact that the belts, in reality are shiny pieces of tin that don’t mean anything in the grand scheme of the world. But, belts have value based on what the company gives them. Hell, if you’re wrestling over a cup of coffee, the coffee has meaning. Having the IC title is just a convenient story prop for the midcarders to use and it would give a decent reason for some of the mid-card feuds.

I also dont agree with you that extra titles can never be a bad thing. I got so irritated during the Invasion with literally everyone having a title. It’s like what the great man himself Mick Foley said, “seems like your not anybody if you dont have a title right now”.

And when Foley said this, he was right there were approximately 143 titles at that point and they were being exchanged around as an afterthought. But the US title and the IC title, in their days, were a stepping stone for the mid-card talent a test with a belt, if you will, to see if they were ready for the top. If the belts are treated with respect and dignity in the storylines, and shown to mean something, they will mean as much in their role as a world title means in a sport where the winners are fixed.

Joe (not my college roommate, I don’t think): Great news post today, as well as the debate with Grut (BTW you won; it’s WrestleMania, Grut doesn’t stand a chance).

Praise is always welcome, and Grut has accepted his place as my bitch.

The other point that I had wanted to make was in response to your
discussion of secondary belts. Something has come to my attention recently, when I was thinking about the lack of secondary belts. And it goes like this: When they decided to kill off those belts, especially the IC Title, they also managed to kill off 1-on-1 ladder matches. Yeah, they had one with HHH and Shawn Michaels, but the greatest ladder matches in WWE/F history were fought over the Intercontinental Title, not the World or WWE Title. Remember… Shawn and Razor at WrestleMania X, a match that Scott Keith calls the greatest match of the nineties… Shawn and Razor again at SummerSlam 1995, in another show-stealing (and show-saving) ****+ classic… HHH and the Rock at SummerSlam 1998 in another classic… Chris Benoit and Chris Jericho at the Royal Rumble in what was personally my favorite ladder match ever… Rob Van Dam and Eddie Guerrero in that awesome contest on RAW
this year… All those matches were for the Intercontinental Title, pretty much the only title they have used for ladder matches. RVD and Jeff Hardy had a great match for the Hardcore Title at SummerSlam 2001, but 1) that was one of the only Hardcore Title ladder matches (I believe it was the only one) and 2) it wasn’t as great as the rest that I mentioned above. Ladder matches are probably my favorite gimmick matches (hell, even the Undertaker turned out a good match in his ladder bout against Jeff Hardy this past summer), and are a great way to settle a feud and get two superstars over with the fans. And
without a title to wrestle for, they don’t really have a need for the
ladder match. I can’t see anyone on the RAW roster turning out a good ladder match for the World Title (if it was 2000, I’d say HHH, DUH) except maybe the Rock, and over on SmackDown! there are a few guys that could work some magic in a match (Benoit is proven to, both with Jericho and Jarrett in 1999; so are Eddie and Edge), but I can’t see Brock Lesnar doing anything short of killing whomever his opponent would be, if he was to get into such a match. So I have come to the realization that, as I said, when they killed the IC Title, they killed the (good) 1-on-1 ladder match. So long ladder, we hardly knew ye.

And for my last thought, if they were to go through with your plan to
revive the IC Title in a sixteen-man tournament, would you rather see the Final Four in one Fatal Four-way match, or in singles matches all the way through? Or would it have to depend on who makes up that Final Four?

Yes, this is another problem I haven’t even thought of, but when you ditch the midcard feuds over belts, you ditch the REALLY good matches of all time. Some of the best matches ever in the WWF have been contested over the IC, dating back to Savage/Steamboat at WM3. Without it, some of the best possible matches of all time go to the wayside or at least are treated as an afterthought because no belt is involved.

As for a four way, as a general rule I hate 4-way or 3-way matches so I’d be much more accepting of a final four bracket being held at the PPV.

Just so you know, the WWE come to the verizon center in new hampshire at least 3 to 4 times a year for raw and smackdown tapings. I know, i went. Just for an fyi.



I just print this because it came from the town that terrifies me more than any in the universe. Stephen King did his job writing this one.

Austin Powers took a moment to drop a line: Hey no offense at all … but I don’t think insulting other Americans even though they are against the war a cunt is helping. It is just tearing our country apart even further. and that’s what scares me more than saddam. I am for this war if it is to free the iraqi people. But I am not for pro-war Americans bashing anti-war Americans. The only way to combat the anti-war movement is, which sounds lamn, to IGNORE THEM. so do the professional thing to do…do it for your country.

I agree, but for some reason the press finds it necessary to cover the <1% of the American culture who is out protesting the war. I consider it liberal media bias, but most wouldn't and say that I'm a conspiracy nut. But then, I ask them this: NY just passed the most restrictive Smoking ban in the nation which bars smoking from ANY places of business that have employees who aren't volunteers (ruling out American Legions, Elks, etc). So, if I decided to arrange a "smoke-in” protest and got 100 people to civilly disobey the new law by lighting up in the state capital, how much press do YOU think it would get? I'm willing to bet money (or smokes) that it wouldn't get any because it's not a protest the media would like to cover, and it wouldn't make any Republicans look bad. Well, it would make Pataki look bad, but they don't necessarily want that, because King George is just as bad as Cuomo ever hoped to be. The funny thing is: I don’t even smoke and this thing bothers me to the point where I’m ready to fire up (pun intended) Can’t even smoke in a bar? Give me a break. Important to remember with things like this is the loss of rights go by incremental steps. Radicals learned with Prohibition that you just can’t ban something and expect to get away with it instead, you have to gradually take rights away let people get used to it, and then take a little more, and a little more. Smoking is a beautiful example of this. First, we take it out of malls, then we take it out of the work place, then we take it out of buildings, then we kill smoking breakrooms, then we take it out of dorms, alllll in incremental steps. What’s next? Well, now that you can’t smoke IN bars, there will be a collection of smokers right OUTSIDE of bars. Obviously, the anti-smoking hippies won’t want to be forced to walk THROUGH your smoke outside, so they’ll call for a ban on public streets. And then maybe, if you’re smoking on your own property and it bother’s your neighbor, maybe THEY can get an injunction from keeping you from smoking outside your house. Crazy? Maybe, but 10 years ago I would have said it was crazy to even think people would want to ban smoking in bars. Now, lets roll into the only news item for the weekend. Top Story

Well, the big day of the WWE is a little over 24 hours away and the card is well, set. Lets take a quick look with my guaranteed predictions for Wrestlemania.

WWE Smackdown World Title – Kurt Angle Vs Brock Lesnar: The match where Kurt Angle could die! This promises to draw in the NASCAR fans who don’t really want to see anything bad happen to Kurt, but dammit, maybe it will and they don’t want to miss it. I’m more of the line of thought that, while it’s a bad injury, I don’t think Kurt is risking death or permanent paralysis by going out there. I mean, Benoit worked on a similar neck injury for months before he got it fixed, and Kurt has REAL wrestled with a broken neck. I think they’ll take it easy now that they know there’s a problem that has to be fixed, but I think it will all work out ok in the end. Kurt will get a good match to, maybe, go out on and Brock will get a good, solid win over an established Star to give him that one more serious notch on his belt, putting down both the Rock and Angle cleanly. This match has no excuse to suck, even with Angle going gently. Michaels could barely walk for WM14, and he made a show out of it. What I think we’ll have here is a good, solid match that will see Angle turn on Paul Heyman before the end (to go out as a face) and give one of those respect blowjobs to Lesnar post match where he hands him the title and raises his hand.

Winner and New Champeen: Brock Lesnar, with a mid-match face turn by Angle.

WWE Raw World Title – Triple H vs. Booker T: Assuming HHH is willing to sell for Booker during this match, I think Eric produced a very good argument on Tuesday (or Wednesday, I’m too lazy to check) about why TrippaH will be willing to drop the title to Booker come ‘Mania. Ratings are tanking, and H knows it. If he can shunt the title onto Booker, the heat is off him when ratings continue to slide for Raw. And, ratings will continue to slide for Raw, because they still have no idea where they’re going with the show. It doesn’t do anything and there’s nothing interesting on it. However, it could backfire something fierce on H assuming this Goldberg rumor is true but then, the creative staff would also have to find themselves and start booking angles properly which is not a lock by any means. Goldberg, if he shows up, will prompt another two week ratings spike what the WWE STILL doesn’t realize, is they have EXACTLY one week to make people want to tune in next week. One shot, one opportunity, to seize everything they ever wanted, and will they capture it, or let it slip?

Yeah, I apologize for that.

Anyway, if they are done with the Evolution, for the time being, I could totally see this as an opportunity to turn Flair on H, regardless of whether it makes sense or not. I don’t see Booker going over totally clean at the highest profile show of the year but who knows. I’m actually going to go with a unpopular decision here, and pick a non-finish to this match, so the rematch (with the title change) happens on Raw, which coupled with Goldberg might pop a rating for the show. The Clique Trique win at the PPV and then lose the next night to the smaller audience. Now, while I’m not normally a fan of making title matches at PPVs set-ups for further storyline development, something has to be done to rebuild interest in Raw. And, with Angle/Lesnar coming up (I assume) AFTER this, everyone can still end the show on a positive note.

Winner: No one match ends in a no contest or a DQ.

Retirement Match – Hulk Hogan vs Vince McMahon: The stipulation here is that if Hogan loses, he can never wrestle again anywhere in the World. However, the contract could very simply state that Hogan can never wrestle in WWE, The World, and that was why it was closed. This match, as I said last week, will be bowling shoe ugly yet is slated for 20-25 minutes including intros. Expect LOOOOOOOOOOOONG intros and Vince losing to the almighty legdrop.
Winner: Hulk Hogan

WWE Smackdown Tag Titles – Team Angle vs Los Guerreros vs Chris Benoit & Rhyno: The buildup for this match has been somewhat disappointing, I think however the match would have to try really, really hard to suck. This is one of the by products of having only a tag division and no undercard belt, is that you’re stuck throwing all these guys into various tag teams and have them slug it out. Now, how much better of a show would it be if we had Team Angle vs Los Guerreros here and we had Benoit vs Rhyno for the IC title? I would have to say insane amounts of better, myself. Regardless, with Angle on his way out, Team Angle needs these belts the worse to keep them relevant so I say they gotta keep them here. I would also turn either Rhyno or Benoit after this with the quickness and get them out of the tag scene.
Winner and Champeeeeen: Team Angle

WWE Raw Tag Title Match – Lance Storm & Chief Morley vs. Kane & Rob Van Dam: Last Year, Rob wrestled Regal in the opening match to win the Intercontinental Title. Six months later he headlines Unforgiven with HHH. Six months after that, he’s not even on Mania, but wrestling pre-game on Heat. Same goes for Kane, who seems to be the only one who got shit for the Katie Vick angle. It’s HHH’s world, sucka, the rest of just live here. Don’t go getting over with out his permission. This match is an afterthought and I will treat it as such. Give it Grassfire with help from the Dudleys.
Winner: The most unorthodox partners ever in the WWE: Grassfire.

WWE Cruiserweight Title Match – Matt Hardy vs Rey Mysterio: The transition champion transitions it to Rey here, although Rey is better than the entire cruiserweight division and barely fits in anymore. He’s almost too big for the division o jobbers that no one takes seriously, because no one has ever been given a reason to take them seriously.
Winner: Rey Jr.

WWE Women’s Title Match – Victoria vs Trish Stratus vs Jazz: I would guess, once again, the match gets second from the top billing as a breath catcher between the two men’s title matches. If history holds true, Jazz will win the match here, but I see it as the two heels can’t work together and thus the underdog babyface pulls it out. Trish could use a little more time with the belt and they really, REALLY need Lita to get back to put a new contender into this mix.
Winner and New Champion, much to CFB’s Chagrin because she doesn’t use TATU as her entrance music: Trish Stratus

The Rock vs. Steve Austin 3: I don’t really care about this match either way. I mean, yeah, it’s nice to see Austin back, but he screams for a GOOD heel turn about as much as the Rock did. The problem with Austin is that a heel turn wouldn’t constitute him acting any differently than he does as a face even now, the Rock needs to remind people every week that they’re supposed to be booing him, and he’s GOOD at it. Austin’s joke of a heel turn last year didn’t do anything but curse us with WHAT for the rest of our natural lives. There will be people doing it at wrestling events when we are all long dead and having no idea WHY they’re doing it. However, if Rock/Goldberg is the planned match for Backlash, then I assume Goldberg will make his debut here. Having Goldberg just pop up on Raw is stupid, especially when they can probably entice a few more people into shelling cash into Mania by just mentioning his name and then, after a quick something, entice those same people into watching Raw.

However, I think they better be ready with an emergency heel backup plan for the Heva, because I just have this creeping suspicion that the WWE fanbase is going to violently turn on him so much so, that they may be forced to do a double turn before Backlash and, if Rock/Goldberg is Rock’s last match, send Rock out in a stretcher job to make him a MONSTER heel.

But that’s for later, here and now we have just Austin vs Rocky and I have to say that Austin is going to keep it a perfect 3-0 vs the Rock at Wrestlemania.

Winner: Austin

Chris Jericho vs. Shawn Michaels: Probably the show stealer of the night. It should be obvious here that Jericho goes over Michaels strong with a clean win or a “Shawn Passes out in the Lion Tamer” win but nothing is sure when it comes to Shawn.

Winner: Jericho

The Undertaker & Nathan Jones vs. The Big Show & A-Train: And if McMahon/Hogan is going to be bowling shoe ugly this is going to be Yoko Ono ugly. That being, take all the ugliness in the world, square it, and multiply it by Mae Young, that might approach how ugly this is going to be. The only reason ~THIS~ isn’t the Heat opener is because Undertaker’s involved . And this will probably expose Nathan Jones as a bad, bad wrestler but then again, it might not, because he’s in the ring with three other bad, bad wrestlers. It’s Jones’s debut and the Taker at Mania hands down.

Winner: Nathan Jones and Taker.

Limp Bizkit Live performance: Wahoo, another song that will suck like Rollin.

John Cena vs Fabolous in a Rap-off. Didn’t I hear Fabolous was in jail on a gun charge? As recently as last week? Great person to stick your stock in for anything when Fred would have been just as good for it.

Actually, as of this original writing, this has been cancelled. No word on whether or not anyone has been rescheduled for the Rap off.

Ashanti will be singing American the Beautiful.

The Miller Cat-Fight Girls: Boobies = good thing.

In closing

Since I didn’t make this as the news, I have no reason to do plugs Bower should take care of that. Also, thanks to any folks who found me down here to read me.

Enjoy Wrestlemania and be safe getting home from it.

Oh yeah, and go ‘Cuse.

>Insert Snazzy Tagline<