Monday Morning Backlash: TNA’s Eric Bischoff Slams Fans, WWE Raw Nexus with CM Punk or WWE Smackdown Nexus with Wade Barrett?

Eric Bischoff tweeted the following: “FYI: I have enough money, enough success OUTSIDE OF WRESTLING that I dont give 2 sh*ts if I offend “wrestling fans”.

I know that Eric is a heel and, well, something of an antagonist on the internet, but this is just ass-backward and stupid. TNA needs more fans. They are a relatively young company that is still trying to grow. While many fans disagree with their direction and how they are attempting to improve, simply pissing off their fanbase or their potential fanbase is a terrible idea.

I’ve been as critical of TNA as anyone, but I still badly want their company to succeed. There’s a dearth of wrestling around that I want to see and I’m not a fan the way I was even two-three years back. I’d love if TNA gave me a product to enjoy. That’s why at every new change of direction and reset, from until the Jeff Hardy turn, I defended them until they proved otherwise. I even defended the re-hiring of Vince Russo as a wait and see proposition, and gave Hogan and Bischoff the benefit of the doubt. I was not pleased with the result, but do not with the company real harm as they are a major employer and alternative company that some do enjoy.

This kind of comment changes that. It’s holier than thou b.s. that is unnecessary, especially in a company that size. WWE, for all their bluster, never publicly does anything but praise their fans. They offer minor bits of fan-service to keep the fans happy, attending and, even if they complain, watching. Not caring if you piss fans off just means you lose the people who are watching and new folks, once they get a good view of the attitude, just walk away in disbelief.

TNA, hopefully, truly believe they put on a great product. They should, therefore, be trying to get as many as possible to view said product to hook fans and increase profits. Insulting and talking down to fans is counter-productive and not only stops people from liking TNA, it stops people from wanting to give them the benefit of the doubt. Their attitude, that they know everything, is a large part of why I and many others I know will not watch the company. Mr. Bischoff not caring about that is a disservice to a company that is paying him to do better.

And now, Mike Gojira takes on the Nexus split on Raw and Smackdown:

Greetings everyone! I’m Gojira64, Glazer’s savior for this Monday’s Backlash. Clearly he’s exhausted all his options if he’s asking me of all people for input, but that’s nether here nor there.

A little bit of background info before we get started: I’ve been watching wrestling on a full-time basis since 1996. Before that, I would catch a few Saturday morning episodes of Superstars or a PPV here and there so I was always familiar with the personalities and the product; it wasn’t until ’96 that I became devoted to the world of “Sports Entertainment.” Over 12 years ago I had written a couple of guest columns for The People’s Wrestling Website (come to think of it, I wonder if that’s still around). Other than that, my wrestling column experience is pretty sparse, but that shouldn’t deter you from reading my thoughts. Hell, lesser people have gotten full-time gigs doing this, right? (eyes Glazer coolly)

With the SPOILER ALERT debut of the tentatively titled “Smackdown Nexus,” I thought I’d give my thoughts and impressions on both Barrett’s and Punk’s versions of the group. Feel free to agree, disagree, or proclaim me as your leader in the comments below.

CM Punk’s New Nexus (Raw)

Punk: I’ve always enjoyed Punk, both for his work in the ring and his mic skills. The man is a heat magnet and knows just how to piss off the crowd. I wish the ‘E would let him become more of a submission-based wrestler so that he can give guys like Daniel Bryan and John Cena a run for their money. Nothing says bad ass like an all-around ring technician (see Perry Saturn in WCW for proof). My hope is that Punk holds the gold by Elimination Chamber so that he and Cena can battle for the title at Mania. No offense to The Miz, but he just doesn’t strike me as ready for the big stage (much like what happened with Sheamus last year).

David Otunga: Decent on the mic is all I can say about him. Otunga has a unique look (a little top-heavy, don’t ya think?) but I believe it’s his connection to Jennifer Hudson that explains his prominence in the Nexus. He reminds me of Starscream…except I actually LIKED Starscream, and that’s where they differ. In the ring Otunga wrestles like a Robot in Disguise, and his issues with leadership are intriguing. He needs more practice in the ring or he will fizzle out soon.

Husky Harris: I like Harris but I really think he needs to develop a bit more personality. His dad had a lot of good promos in Money Inc, so I think Harris needs a chance to speak to show what he’s capable of.

Michael McGillicutty: I’m not even sure I spelled that right. In any case, the name is ATROCIOUS. He’s definitely got his dad’s looks though (minus the hair) but the WWE needs to let him WRESTLE. Come to think of it, Punk’s Nexus is weak because none of them have garnered any real experience in the ring. They need to show individual dominance; otherwise they’re the same old Nexus as before, if not worse.

Wade Barret’s Pseudo-Nexus (Smackdown).

Barrett: Wade is great on the mic and he has definitely improved in the last six months. I was a bit leery about his main event matches on PPV but then I realized that Orton had a hand in making him look weak, so it wasn’t all his fault. I am more interested in Barrett on Smackdown because his group has actually proven their abilities in the ring. Look for them to dominate before Taker destroys them at Mania.

Ezekiel Jackson: Ahmed Johnson 2.0 has a very intimidating look and his moveset actually gets a reaction from the crowd. I would have preferred he stay face just to see where it would take him, but being Barrett’s enforcer will give him a better rub in the long run.

Heath Slater: Call me crazy but I never saw much in the Ginger Kid. He’s a generic wrestler whose only highlight is being a part of the Nexus as a Tag Team Champion. However, he does have one thing that Punk’s Nexus lacks: experience wrestling matches on TV.

Justin Gabriel: What a beautiful 450 Splash! This kid has proven he can put on a show, which is why he’s had matches with Cena. Besides Barrett, I think Gabriel can be a breakout star on his own and the fans will definitely get behind him.

Overall, Barrett’s group is the more interesting of the two. Now we just have to sit back and see what happens in the next couple of months.

Well, this was fun while it lasted. Maybe I’ll pop in every now and then to share my thoughts on the world of wrestling again. For now, this is Gojira64 signing off.

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