The Marshall Report: Edition 6

TMR.jpg The Marshall Report picture by pamarshall

Welcome to the one column that provides quality entertainment and a little bit of boogie.  While the Hogan’s talk publicly on how to trick the courts, William Regal keeps quiet on his recent Wellness suspension.  All of that just proves that there is no such thing as “a quiet week on the wrestling front”. 

You all know the drill; I try to talk about anything that hasn’t been done to death around the IWC.  So you can rest a bit knowing that I won’t be talking about Nick Hogan’s jailhouse confessions nor will I be talking about William Regal being a naughty boy.  Join me in my sanctuary as I take you on a journey and perhaps you’ll win a million dollars. Not from me, of course.  Vince McMahon might have a check with your name on it, so continue reading!

Last Time on TMR

I admit that I got owned for thinking with bad intentions as I called The Motor City Machine Guns out on something Roxxi Laveaux done unintentionally.  After watching Judgment Day ten days ago, I almost expected Triple H v. Randy Orton’s steel cage match to be a bloodbath, but neither of them juiced.  Maybe the tide has truly turned to where people don’t need to bleed to get over, but we have One Night Stand upon us this weekend and it has a First Blood Match on the card.

Has Vince McMahon Flipped?

Monday night on RAW, Vince McMahon delivered an epic announcement.  He’s wanting to give away $1,000,000 of his own money each week on RAW, if I heard that right.  In any case, whether it is a million dollars for the entire contest or a million each week, you have to admit that Vince is desperate to regain viewership.

While it’s no secret that WWE RAW has been slumping in the ratings department, the same can be said for SmackDown, ECW, and TNA.  With the Hollywood writers back in the fold, the major networks were able to salvage their potential spring disaster, which included the most shocking end to CSI: Miami in their season finale where Horatio Caine got shot, add to that playoffs in the NBA and NHL, you have a partial reason as to why wrestling has suffered.  The other reason can depend on who is actually complaining.  There’s people on one side that don’t watch because in the seven hours of programming weekly for WWE and TNA, less than half of that is actually devoted to wrestling.  The other half is devoted to commercials and storyline progression.  The other side complains because there’s little originality in wrestling anymore.  This easily segues into my next topic.

Same Old Rivalries – Can’t We Mix It Up?

It’s convenient how I can change the topic, yet still talk about the same general thing.  We’ve seen Jeff Hardy take on Umaga about ten times in 2008 already.  We’ve also seen Edge v. Undertaker and Triple H and Randy Orton in some fashion since Wrestlemania 24.  The WWE isn’t doing anything to move somebody else up in the main event scene.  It could be because potential main eventer Jeff Hardy got suspended for drugs just before Wrestlemania and William Regal got suspended just when his King Regal angle was just about to get exciting.  The writers are hesitant on changing the formula because if someone gets suspended, all the work goes down the drain.  All you have to do for each brand, elevate somebody to the title picture and have them win the title.  You open up the doors for new matches.

CM Punk Instead of being a jobber to the stars, have him get involved at the end of the Last Man Standing match at One Night Stand, use Money in the Bank, and let CM Punk have a moment with the championship.  In retrospect, you get instant feuds with Triple H, Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, John Bradshaw Layfield and Jeff Hardy, among other wrestlers.  CM Punk is on the side of the IWC for reasons I need not explain.  He’s solid in the ring and you know that he won’t get caught up in a drug or steroid scandal.  CM Punk could very well be the next poster boy for the WWE alongside John Cena.

Montel Vontanious Porter – Now that he no longer holds the United States Championship, he can be moved up to the World Heavyweight Championship picture.  As it seems, he’s getting on the wrong side of Edge each and every week.  There’s an instant feud right there.  Have MVP cost Edge the TLC Match at One Night Stand and you have yourselves a better reason to watch the blue crew each Friday on SmackDown.

Chuck Palumbo Give Matt Hardy a decent feud with Palumbo over the US Title, and you have money rolling in.  Palumbo has been great in the ring as of late and deserves to be involved in a mid-card feud.

FinlayWhile many can argue that he’s more World Title material and I actually can agree with them too…Finlay would be gold to be added in the above named Palumbo-Hardy feud.  Sure, Hornswoggle gets no love from me, but when you come down to it, the WWE needs to focus on wrestling, not comedy angles that involve a water gun and somebody acting stupid.  Let Finlay be a badass and you will be rewarded with an old fashioned three way brawl.

Women’s Championship Ideally, one thing I would like to see is the Women’s Title defended on all brands.  You have divas on SmackDown that are more talented than the divas on RAW and it would open up the door for interesting matches.   

TMR Wants Your Draft Picks!

With the WWE Draft looming, for the next edition of TMR, I want your input readers.  You get 10 picks – Who would you want to have drafted to RAW, SmackDown, or ECW?  Simply respond by commenting below and I’ll include as many responses from viewers and any staff members I talk to through instant messenger.  Let’s have some fun with this.

Is it considered a One Night Stand if it’s done yearly?

Here’s how the card for One Night Stand is shaping up with 72 hours before the show!

WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
Tables, Ladders & Chairs Match
The Undertaker vs. Edge

WWE CHAMPIONSHIP
Last Man Standing Match
Champ HHH vs. Randy Orton

FIRST BLOOD MATCH
JBL vs. John Cena

STRETCHER MATCH
Shawn Michaels vs. Batista

FALLS COUNT ANYWHERE MATCH
Jeff Hardy vs. Umaga

SINGAPORE CANE MATCH
Winner is #1 contender for ECW Championship
CM Punk vs. John Morrison vs. Chavo Guerrero vs. Tommy Dreamer vs. Big Show

I QUIT MATCH
Beth Phoenix vs. Melina Perez

With only two weeks to build to this show, it’s no secret that three matches are rematches from Judgment Day and one match is a rematch from Backlash.  It doesn’t necessarily mean that the card isn’t looking good because the card is as good as you can get with so little time to build.  There is one match that I am very interested in and that’s the I Quit Match between Beth Phoenix and Melina.

For months, the IWC has criticized the WWE for not building up the Women’s Division.  This is the only field that TNA is currently beating the WWE at.  The TNA Knockouts get higher ratings than the WWE Divas and it’s mainly because you rarely see WWE Divas wrestle in matches that aren’t a standard match, bra & panties match, pudding match, or anything of the like.  You get the odd cage match once or twice a year, but to see these two fight in an I Quit Match, it does make your mind ponder.  There’s legitimate hate between these two divas so the match on paper has the chance to deliver.

There may only be two title matches as of this writing, but with Night of Champions coming up four weeks later, you don’t want to be giving the fans a good reason to not want to order Night of Champions.

Keep it tuned to the Pulse as we’ll have our predictions for the event up this weekend and you will get double the Live Coverage from Steve Murray and Scott Keith.  I’ll be in the clean-up spot this upcoming Monday on RAW.

What’s on the “YouTube”?

As something new, I’m going to take a YouTube video and either comment on it, or let the video speak for itself.  It may be a special match that isn’t on mainstream wrestling (ROH, FIP, Puro, anything), it may be a moment that you can only get when the cameras are not rolling, or it may be a moment where stupidity ensues.

Now this is what I’ve always enjoyed from seeing the WWE perform live.  I’ve caught 4 WWE shows in a two year time span and I’ve seen cool things like JBL coming out in a hummer limo, I’ve seen the production equipment from the cheap seats, and seen how they are quick to edit graphics onto live television.  I’ve seen Donald v. Rosie in St. Louis last January in the second row ringside and had my “Vince Fears V.K.M.” sign blurred out from view, but I did get Vince himself acknowledging my sign by just staring it.  I’ve also saw last year’s Judgment Day from the floor.  It’s what the superstars do when the camera is not rolling that makes the price of admission worth it and a whole lot more.  The above video is Jim Ross showing Teddy Long how do boogie.  The clip says it for itself, so enjoy it.

While you’re at it, enjoy the current edition of “The Dirt Sheet” because Mike Adamle trying to be hip rocks.

This Week on the Pulse

Vinny T. comes through with another dose of Alternate Reality, this week he discusses the Ultimate Warrior.
Mark Allen talks about Regal’s suspension and the upcoming end of Heat.
Blatt goes Extreme in a show that doesn’t feature a Colin Delaney squash and more of Mike Adamle’s goof ups.
David Brashear revisits the angle between Undertaker and Diamond Dallas Page, one of which I actually enjoyed during the months of the Invasion.
Pulse Glazer responds to Ivan Rushfield’s column, Breaking Holds, in this week’s edition of A Modest Response. 

Closing

This does it for another edition of The Marshall Report.  Until next time, Uno, Dos, Adios!