VS. #11 – Guy Desmarais vs. PK

Welcome to VS. where the most talented writing staff on the ‘net battle it out to see who is the supreme debater using wrestling as the great equalizer.

PK is one of the most respected members of the Pulse Wrestling community and will get the time to shine in this week’s VS. expressing his opinion where he usually takes the high road and provides play by play coverage for various wrestling shows. He also provides the Pulse Wrestling TNA rankings and Pulse Wrestling WWE rankings so he is quite prolific. His opponent for VS. is Guy Desmarais a regular contributor to both games zones on the Pulse and likewise a wrestling fan.

The next question you must have is who am I and why was a trusted with this edition of VS. Well, I’m Big Andy Mac and I write Moments Ago which usually deals with the goings on in my personal favorite indy fed: Ring of Honor. As to why I am doing this, I don’t know but I plan to be fair, impartial and call things straight down the middle, and since the competitors did not know the judge beforehand they could not suck up to me and thus no sycophantic points will be awarded. Anyways on with the contest.

1. John Cena is clearly the franchise player of RAW, and possibly the entire WWE. Should Cena be in this spot? If not Cena, then who? When it’s finally time for Cena to drop the belt, who’s going to be the next top guy on RAW?

Guy Desmarais: I don’t see anybody else on Raw right now who could fill that spot. Therefore, Cena wins because of a lack of competition. As for the rest of WWE, I see Edge as a better choice for a “franchise player”, as I find him more entertaining on the mic, in the ring and overall. He has a better personality and doesn’t spend ten minutes rehashing the same promo on every show. Finally, when Cena will drop the belt, I see it going to Lashley, who seems to be groomed for that spot. Should he be the next top Raw guy? I don’t think so, because his charisma is abysmal at best, but it will still be him.

PK: Cena deserves to be in this spot 100%. Sure we are all getting tired of him, and know he can wrestle a lick, but he does one thing more then everyone else in the WWE, sell merch! Selling merch is the #1 job for any of these guys, and he has sold more shitty shirts to more 12 year old ‘Chain Gang Soldiers’ then any even DX. However, when it is time for him to drop the WWE belt, easily the next in line is HHH. He has been a total trooper about the whole Cena thing, and, while he has had his fair share of title reigns, he is the next biggest star (or the bigger star, depending on who you ask).

Big Andy Mac’s Big Andy Score: Both of the contestants appeal to my innate cynicism with the product and thus I agree with points made by both men.

Guy points out that there may be better choices for “Franchise Player” and takes the logical conclusion of who will be next in line for Cena, which seems especially prophetic in light of this Monday’s draft.
PK explains precisely why Cena is at the top and makes the safe assumption that Cena is keeping the belt warm for Triple H, just like most champions have.

The first point goes to PK because he demonstrates a better understanding of why Cena has that spot but it was close.

Score PK-1, Guy – 0

2. Morishima is clearly the franchise player of Ring of Honor right now. Should he be in this spot? The company is promoting itself with a foreign champion at the helm. Is this a good idea? Has putting the belt on a foreign wrestler worked out for Ring of honor so far?

Guy Desmarais: I don’t watch RoH since I live in Quebec and unless I start importing tapes and downloading shows, there’s no way I’ll get to see them. Unfortunately, I’m a lazy bastard when it comes to downloading stuff, so I have to rely on internet reports. Morishima looks like a good champion who does deserve this spot. I don’t see why promoting a foreign champion is a bad idea as long as they can secure a good booking schedule with him, since I don’t see him being a foreigner being an issue with RoH fans. These guys are there for the wrestling and not for the sports-entertainment, so even if he can’t connect with the fans as well as some bigger stars, I don’t see it being a problem. It looks like it has worked fine for them so far.

PK: Morishima is awful. If I wanted to watch that sort of wrestling, Im sure Gordi could hook me up with a nice series of Puro. Him having the belt, especially with the push to PPV, is a horrible idea. He is, and will continue to be difficult to market, being Japanese. This is the big reason why I am not completely sold on ROH. I was live at the PPV taping in the Mahatten Center, and he botched 3 or 4 moves, and did his missile dropkick multiple times. Aside from finishing moves, multiple signature moves in one match is a sign of not enough preparation for the match. This spot should easily go to Bryan Danielson or Nigel McGuinness.

Big Andy Mac’s Big Andy Score: I respect both men’s honesty, but I must state that I fundamentally disagree with the question. It is my belief that while Morishima is the champion, RoH has no true “Franchise Player” nor does it need one. They have a different “Franchise” every night and that is one of the many things that make RoH great. But on to my scoring of their opinions:

Guy makes an honest statement that he has not seen enough to make a full opinion, but continues with his response based on his knowledge and internet research that’s good. With his limited research he hits on the main points behind Morishima’s push and title reign, so he also gets points for insight.

PK immediately put me out by claiming Morishima is “awful.” This is a strong point of contention for me, but he goes to make the point that Danielson or Nigel are more viable options as “Franchise Player” which may be true especially from a marketability standpoint.

The point on this one by a slim margin goes to Guy to tie things up at one apiece.
Score: PK – 1, Guy – 1

3. Bobby Lashley is clearly the franchise player of ECW. Should he be in this spot? What does keeping Lashley on top of ECW say about the brand?

Guy Desmarais: If he stays on ECW, yes, he should be in the spot until CM Punk finishes his curent feud. Sure, I don’t like Lashley, but it’s not like they could position Dreamer, Sandman, Striker, Balls, Snitsky or anybody else as a franchise player. Punk and Burke could be in that spot eventually, but they’re both busy doing something else and might end up on bigger show before that spot opens. Lashley being on top just shows how seriously WWE has taken the brand up to now. They didn’t even bother giving him opponents, he has to go to Raw for now.

PK: As expected, Lashley went to Raw in the Draft this week. However, Pre-Draft, I wouldn’t say he was the ECW franchise player, as he was barely on TV! He had his Elimination Chamber win, and the few weeks leading to that. His matches with Test and RVD in January & February, but as soon as Trump selected him for the WrestleMania match, he has primarily been on Raw. CM Punk takes this spot, as he is pretty much the only guy that ECW has built from the ground up, Elijah Burke is on his heels though.

Lashley being the champ for so long was a very bad sign of things to come in ECW. Lashley says nothing about being extreme. Not once did I see an over-muscled meat head at the top of the original ECW, and that is always something we all enjoyed about it. But then again, that is nothing none of us don’t already know.

Big Andy Mac’s Big Andy Score: Lashley’s move to RAW just made official what had been going on during the build towards Wrestlemania. Both men make the point that Lashley was more of a RAW competitor than ECW the difference in their responses comes from PK as he goes for the more complete answer. Punk is the guy who comes the closest to the old ECW ethos and will most likely step up. PK also clings to the essence of ECW explaining what Lashley as champion means to the brand, but the events of the week make it a moot point as well. Regardless, PK gets the point to take a commanding 2 to 1 lead.

Score: PK – 2, Guy – 1

4. Who was the best franchise player of the last 25 years? Why is your choice any better than other possible choices?

Guy Desmarais: Without a doubt Ric Flair. I was gonna say Bret Hart at first, but Flair has done it for far longer and far more regularly. Hart was a franchise player because he could instantly make everybody else in the company look good while still being a believable champion. However, Flair has consistently carried a company for about two decades, and he did the same for a little while with WWF. Even now in WWE, he manages to receive bigger pops than a lot of people and he is more reliable than younger stars. I’m willing to bet that with a proper build, people would even buy him as a champ right now. That says a lot about the guy.

PK: Stone Cold, hands down. His feud with Vince brought the wrestling fans back to WWE from WCW. This angle brought the attitude era to its peaks. Over course, we all know what happened from there.

Big Andy Mac’s Big Andy Score: So 25 years puts us at 1982 as a starting point. Men like Harley Race, Ric Flair, Hulk Hogan, Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, Stone Cold, the Rock, Shane Douglas, Taz, Sting, Goldberg, Jeff Jarrett, AJ Styles, and Samoa Joe are just some of the people who could be recognized for this honor from North America. Guy almost stuck to his Canadian roots and picked the Hitman while PK went for the bigger star of the past ten years and chose Stone Cold. Guy hit the nail on the head as to just why Flair was a franchise player in the NWA and WCW, PK only scratches the surface of why Stone Cold was the greatest. Guy gets the point on this one tying things up before the last inning, the fourth quarter, the third period, the other sports cliché

Score: PK – 2, Guy – 2

5. You could say that the franchise of the IWC has always been the live show coverage. How much opinion do you want in your show coverage? Is play by play dieing or will it always have a welcomed spot in the IWC?

Guy Desmarais: Play by play will never die. For guys like me who often miss shows and don’t get access to a lot of material like RoH and other feds (or can’t support Pierre Carl Ouellet as TNA’s French Announcer), the reports are a vital source of information. However, having done both PBP and opinion columns about wrestling, I know that the show coverage is a tedious job and much less fun to do. This is why I don’t mind when the reviewer goes on a tangent and starts messing around, as long as the basic info is still there (see: Monday Night Rabble). Play by play will never die, however, the challenge will always be to find guys that are willing to take the time and do it. If they will only do it if they’re allowed to voice their opinion in the reports, so be it. We can all skip the opinions if we don’t want them and read the rest of the coverage.

PK: Well, this is a pretty unfair question to be given to me, Pulse’s current RAW recapper and PPV recapper (I feel so much like Foley, it makes me feel the need to take a shower). I think that either a good play-by-play or an opinion based, humor recap can both work, as long as they are written correctly. I decided long ago that I am not very funny in writing, and I stopped trying. Others, like SK, Grut and even *gulp* Hyatte, had the correct formula. While I am in the IWC, play-by-play will never die.

Big Andy Mac’s Big Andy Score: Their answers this time read like a nice little set of bookends. Guy begins his with “Play by play will never die” and PK ends his with the same. My personal opinion is that I prefer the Reader’s Digest version of events rather than a blow by blow account and find myself skimming towards the opinion, quite the opposite of Guy’s suggestion for reports containing both a play by play account and a few of the author’s opinions. PK who provides excellent play by play coverage says he will be a one man army extending the life of play by play coverage on the IWC. Neither writer does anything to stand out from the other on this one, both do a very good job, though. So I have to cop out and call it a draw. Bring on the pitch forks and torches.

Score: PK- 2, Guy – 2

Well, these guys tied it up with equally well thought out answers and making the overall competition a draw. Make sure you keep following VS., A Modest Response, and Moments Ago

I’ll see you next time

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