Wrestling Fact Or Fiction: February 27, 2014

Wrestling Fact Or Fiction
February 27, 2014
Doug Maynard

It’s Thursday so it must be time for that “Wrestling Fact Or Fiction” thing that I like to do. As per usual, eight of the statements come from my friends over at 411mania.com/wrestling. The other four come from dep inside my slightly-demented little mind. And the answers, do I agree or not agree, that comes from me… period. But before I tackle the various topics, I wrote a little piece yesterday about how to “save” Wrestlemania XXX, and I think I’d like to share it here. So if you’d like, go check it out at https://tossingsalt.wordpress.com/2014/02/26/how-to-save-wrestlemania-xxx-february-26-2014/. Thank you.

And now, time to jump on to the project at hand. It’s pretty simple. If I agree with the statement, it’s fact. If I don’t, it’s fiction. And I still want to see Disco Inferno and Alex Wright crash Wrestlemania XXX, get the mics, look into the camera and loudly proclaim that the only reason that anyone is buying Wrestlemania XXX is just so they can watch Disco and Alex, aka “The Boogie Knights”, dance. Make it happen Vince! Let’s do this…

1. Hulk Hogan serving as the host of WrestleMania 30 is the perfect way to use him at the event.

FACT: Hogan can’t wrestle a match and as TNA proved, he’s not much of an “Authority Figure”, so have him work as the “Host”. We get the Hogan promos and nostalgic moments to keep the fans happy and it doesn’t have any real effect on any of the matches or current WWE storylines. It’s a win-win deal for both Hogan and the WWE. I would like to see Hogan take part in a special “Piper’s Pit” if possible. That would be cool, but regardless if that happens or not, being the “Host” is the best role for Hogan at this point and time.

2. Roman Reigns is the favorite to either be champion or win the WWE World Title at WrestleMania 31.

FICTION: I think Reigns might be a possible WWE Champion at some point and time in the future, but it won’t be as soon as Wrestlemania 31. Reigns (and Cesaro for that matter) are still roughly unproven as singles stars and with only one major title available, it will take a while for these guys to climb that ladder and earn that spot. If there were still two titles (WWE and World), it would be more likely to see Reigns with a title run in the near future, but with only one title now, he has a long ways to go before he gets to that spot.

3. WWE running NXT and Superstars on the WWE Network against TNA Impact on Thursday nights will have no effect on TNA’s ratings.

FACT: TNA fans (all five of them) are nothing but loyal to the TNA product and brand and they’re not going to give up watching “The DIxie Carter Show” in order to watch something they can go back and watch later on the WWE Network replays. TNA will be watched live and the other programs (NXT, Superstars) will be watched when time permits.

4. You are excited for Season Two of Total Divas.

FICTION: Didn’t watch the first season and have no plans to watch the second. If they throw a wild card, like one or two former WWE Divas, like Ivory (hint hint) or Maria or Victoria (she’s available) into the mix, I’ll start watching, but as it is now, I don’t think so.

5. Judging by his performances thus far, you are concerned that Batista cannot deliver in the ring for a WrestleMania main event.

FACT: The match against Del Rio on RAW this past Monday was terrible and Batista has never been a great in-ring perfomer anyhow. He has five weeks to get ready, but it’s going to take a lot of hard work and effort by Randy Orton (and / or Daniel Bryan) to make the match at Wrestlemania XXX anything special. Batista, thus far, just hasn’t shown that he can still cut it in that ring and I will be surprised if he is able to pull it off and deliver come Wrestlemania XXX.

6. CM Punk would choose to go and work in Japan before working for TNA.

FACT: I just can’t see Punk ever going to TNA. Japan is a place that respects wrestling and he would thrive in such an enviroment, so that’s always a possibility, but I actually think that if and when he returns to the ring, it’ll be back in the WWE. Anything else would be too much of a step down for “the best in the world”.

7. You are personally excited for the Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar WrestleMania feud.

FACT: It’s probably not the match I would have booked, but it should be a good match and deliver. And with the history these two men have with each other, it has a great backstory that can be built upon, so it makes sense. I’d much rather be seeing Taker face John Cena or Sting, but if it’s going to be Brock, no complaints. I’m just ready to sit back and enjoy the action.

8. The announcement that some of the stars of New Japan Pro Wrestling (Hiroshi Tanahashi, Shinsuke Nakamura, Kazuchika Okada, Jushin Liger, Gedo, Jado and Kushida) will be coming to Ring of Honor in May makes you more likely to check out those show.

FICTION: I like what I’ve seen of ROH so far and the addition of the stars of New Japan can’t hurt and will add excitement and intrigue to the ROH product, but my time is limited and it’s just not possible for me to watch ROH in addition to the few shows I already watch and my crazy schedule and they haven’t had that breakthrough moment that makes me want to adjust my schedule and tune it. It’s good stuff and I don’t have any problems with ROH, but I just can’t do it.

9. You’re excited for a potential John Cena versus Bray Wyatt match at Wrestlemania XXX.

FACT: I hate it that they felt a need to cheapen the angle before it even gets started with the injury angle on Cena. Now, when and if Cena loses (and I hope he does), they have an excuse why Superman fell to the power of he who follows the Buzzards. This should be a good match and it’s a chance for Bray, to do as Cesaro did last week on RAW in his match with Cena, to prove that he belongs among those at the top of the pecking order. It’s a great opportunity for Wyatt to strut his stuff and earn his spot and I think that’s exactly what he will do.

10. WWE needs to attempt to get CM Punk back before Wrestlemania.

FICTION: I was going to say “Fact”, but if the WWE plays their cards right, they can work around his absence and put on a great and memorable show. (See the link to my piece about how to “Save Wrestlemania” above for ideas on how to do that.) CM Punk is missed and they’re having a rough time working around his non-presence and getting things back on track, but it can be done and it really wouldn’t be in anyone’s interest to have Punk come back before he’s ready. So let him skip Wrestlemania XXX and get his mojo back. He can take time off and recharge and then come back at SummerSlam or maybe even The Royal Rumble next year and be bigger than ever. I’d love to see him return this coming Monday night on RAW in Chicago and lay out some pipebombs on everyone, but he shouldn’t come back until he’s ready and if we have to wait a while, so be it.

11. Daniel Bryan versus HHH is the best way to use Bryan at Wrestlemania XXX.

FICTION: Bryan belongs in the main event match working against Orton and Batista for the WWE World Championship. Any other match,even against HHH, is a letdown and definitely not “best for business”.

12. You will be purchasing the WWE Network.

FACT: I just have to scrape up a few extra dollars and make that move, but it most definitely will happen. And if you think I write a lot about wrestling now, wait until I have the Network to watch and talk about. You haven’t seen anything yet!

And with that, I’m through for the day. If you have any questions about wrestling, be it old school, new school, WWE, TNA, the Indy’s, etc., as well as any comments or thoughts about this column or my other one, “Tossing Salt – Worldwide News”, please contact me at Doug28352@yahoo.com. Visit me on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/saltpalace. I’ll see you back on Tuesday with my “Tossing Salt” column and back next Thursday with the “Fact or Fiction” thing. Thank you for reading. I’m Doug and “dat is all de people need to know!”

Ubuntu!

How To Save Wrestlemania XXX – February 26, 2014

How To Save Wrestlemania XXX
February 26, 2014

Okay, so we are roughly five and 1/2 weeks away from the WWE’s biggest show ever, Wrestlemania XXX. And so far, we have two matches that are pretty much done deals with Randy Orton defending the WWE World Championship against Batista and The Undertaker defending the “streak” against Brock Lesnar. And based on this past Monday night, I’m pretty sure that we can presume that John Cena will be facing Bray Wyatt and that Daniel Bryan will be matched against Triple H. Am I the only one that is totally under-whelmed so far by all of this? With the exception of Taker versus Brock, which is a year or so too late, there is nothing here that I really find exciting that makes me want to give the WWE my money.

Wrestlemania generally has anywhere between nine or ten matches, but all of the folks with any kind of credibility or drawing power, with the exception of The Sheild, are now already booked, it seems and not in the matches that anyone seems to want. So what I’m going to do here is make a few slight changes, explain how it could work and do some fantasy booking as I try to come up with a strong card, using the current WWE talent, and save Wrestlemania XXX.

We’ll keep Undertaker versus Brock Lesnar as it is and also keep John Cena versus Bray Wyatt as it is. As for the WWE World Title Match and main event, it needs to have Daniel Bryan in it. That’s obvious to everyone. So how do we get Daniel Bryan from a match with HHH to the main event? Pretty simple actually. We look back and take a page from Wrestlemania X and Bret Hart. Have HHH accept Bryan’s challenge. And that match is locked in. But here comes Vince McMahon and in a move that “best for business”, he adds a stipulation to the match. Daniel Bryan versus HHH will open Wrestlemania XXX. And if Bryan wins, he gets inserted into the WWE Championship match at the end of the night, turning it into a triple-threat match. And if Bryan loses, he had to go walk Stephanie’s dog or something of that nature. Who cares what the stipulation really is because this is simple, makes sense and gives Daniel Bryan two great matches to showcase his skills and be able to be where he needs to be at the end of the night with that great “Wrestlemania moment” in the main event.

As for the rest of the card, how do you make a must-see event when the majority of the WWE superstars have been buried by the company so badly that no one really comes across as must-see or bigger than life anymore. With some creative booking, highlighting of the strongest workers, and lots of smoke and mirrors. Based on my little work with the Bryan – HHH match, we now have five matches booked. Let’s find at least five more “must see” matches to round out the event.

Big. E is the Intercontinental Champion and I think that it’s important that we have both of the secondary titles defended at Wrestlemania XXX, so one of the matches would be Big E. versus someone. Who would be good to go after the IC title and be able to give Big E. a strong match. How about The Miz. Yeah, that works. It just takes one good sneak attack and ambush and would be easy to set up a reason for the match. Miz wants to be back in the title hunt and the IC title is a good place to start.

As for the U.S. title and Dean Ambrose, I’m not sure if I want to use him as part of The Shield in a multi-person match or have him defend the U.S. title. I think a title defense is more important and since they’re teasing that he and the other members of The Shield are having issues, it would work better to place him in a singles event. But who would be a good opponent? How about one half of the “Real Americans”, Cesaro. Ambrose versus Cesaro would be an awesome match and I’d love to see it happen.

Next up are the WWE Tag Team Championship titles and the currrent champs, The New Age Outlaws. The top contenders are The Usos and while having the Outlaws defend against the Usos would be good, we’ve seen it too many times already. So what we do is pretty simple and make it a multi-team event with four teams intead of two. The WWE Tag Team Champions defend their belts against the Usos, Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara and Los Matadores. With the two masked teams, maybe the WWE can get that world record that they want about most masked persons at one event, plus with thse eight men, we’d get one helluva fantastic match.

And now, I know some folks might be wondering where are Goldust and Cody Rhodes in the tag match? They’re the former champions, right? Well, another match that has been talked about and I’d like to see is Goldust versus Cody Rhodes. Brothers always fight, right? I fought with my brothers growing up and I’m sure that everyone else has at some point too. So make it a match for Wrestlemania XXX. Why the heck not.

I’d schedule a defense of the NXT Championship to give that brand some exposure and let the fans see what all the fuss is really about. Bo Dallas could defend that title against Sami Zayn and put on a NXT wrestling exhibition for the fans. This would be easy to do as well since JBL is the “NXT Commissioner” and could just announce and add the match.

And I said ten matches, but we’re going to do twelve. With four hours to fill, it would work out well. Especially since this one would hopefully be short and sweet. The Divas Champion AJ Lee w/ Tamina of course, taking on Natayla in a quick title defense. Just give them a quick match and get it over with.

And finally, how about a “Money In The Bank Match” with the winner getting that contract for the WWE World Championship opportunity. I’d make it a ten man match and my participants would be Christian, Mark Henry, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, Roman Reigns, Kofi Kingston, Kane, Fandango, R-Truth and the returning RVD.

Then in the middle of all of this, throw in a special “Piper’s Pit” where he brings out the “Host of Wrestlemania”, Hulk Hogan and 16-time World Champion Ric Flair. They all do their back and forth thing stuff and get in their promo-time. An interruption by Rybackand Curtis Axel who come out to stir up trouble. Piper, Flair and Hogan clear the ring and the fans go nuts. Here’s the rundown for the event as I’ve written it.

Triple H versus Daniel Bryan – If Bryan wins, he gets inserted into the WWE World Championship Match main event.
WWE World Championship: Randy Orton (c) versus Batista (versus Daniel Bryan if he beats HHH)
The Undertaker versus Brock Lesnar w/ Paul Heyman
John Cena versus Bray Wyatt
Intercontinental Championship: Big E (c) versus The Miz
United States Championship: Dean Ambrose (c) w/ Seth Rollins versus Cesaro w/ Zeb Colter
WWE Tag Team Championship: The New Age Outlaws (c) versus The Usos versus Rey Mysterio / Sin Cara versus Los Matadores
Goldust versus Cody Rhodes
NXT Championship: Bo Dallas versus Sami Zayn
Divas Championship: AJ Lee (c) w/ Natayla
Money In The Bank Match: Christian vs Mark Henry vs Dolph Ziggler vs Kane vs Jack Swagger vs Roman Reigns vs Kofi Kingston vs R-Truth vs Fandango vs RVD
Piper’s Pit with guests Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair

Pre-Show Match: Santino, Great Khali and Zack Ryder versus The 3MB

And there you go – what I would build on for the next five weeks and how I’d book Wrestlemania XXX at this point. So what do you think? Would it work and give the fans matches worth seeing? Would you buy this show? Inquiring minds want to know.

Ubuntu!

 

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Tossing Salt – Worldwide News: February 25, 2014

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News
February 25, 2014
Doug Maynard

Have you subscribed to “The Network” yet? How you doing, my peeps? My name is Doug and this is pro wrestling’s most eclectic column, going strong since 2002, “Tossing Salt – Worldwide News!”. For those of you that don’t know who I am, here’s the deal. I’ve been a wrestling fan for over thirty-five years. I’ve been writing about the world’s greatest sport for almost twelve years, ever since the day I answered an ad seeking someone to recap RAW for the now defunt “Wrestling Informer” website. And I’ve never looked back since.

What I do each week here in the dark and dingy basement of “Tossing Salt Media, Inc”, is take a brief look at what has caught my interest in the world of pro wrestling over the past week. I answer questions that I’ve found over at Facebook or that are sent to me by readers. I do some fantasy match-making setting the stars of yesterday versus the stars of today in a little thing called “One On One”. I sprinkle little quotes from different superstars all throughout the column. I ask a “Who Am I?” question and encourage reader participation. And I pretty much rant and ramble about whatever crosses my mind. Word of warning here: It’s not always just wrestling. What “Tossing Salt – Worldwide News” truly means is that we’re taking a trip inside this slightly warped mind and putting it out there for all the world to see. Welcome to my nightmare. I think you’re going to like it. I think you’re going to feel that you belong.

Okay, before I get carried away spouting out Alice Cooper lyrics (never a bad thing), let’s just can the chit-chat and get to work. You’ll learn more about me in the weeks and months to come. Where shall we start? How about last night and a quick recap of all things Monday Night RAW.

RAW: Cliffnote Style

Hogan is back… brutha! Looks like a night full of plugs for the WWE Network. Rematch from last night as Batista fights Alberto Del Rio. Del Rio wins when Bootista is distracted by Randy Orton. Batista is getting booed. Orton and Batista call each other names. Batista knows the people don’t like him, but doesn’t care. Big E. beats Cesaro by DQ when Swagger gets involved. Cesaro isn’t happy. WE THE PEOPLE! John Cena calls out The Wyatt Family. If you’re the future, go through him. Bray and family – they’re here. Great promo and then attack. Looks like Cena might be hurt. Sheamus beats Christian. The Peeps are NOT happy. Well, I’m not happy, but good match anyhow. Daniel Bryan confronts Authority. He gets match with Kane. The Shield are having issues. The Wyatts are in their face and we get a match for later with Roman versus Bray. Ric Flair and Booker T are here. Flair does the “Yes chant!” Wooooo! Daniel Bryan beats Kane. Daniel challenges Triple H for a match at Wrestlemania XXX. Emma and Summer Rae have a match. Santino and Fandango are there too. Emma wins and dances. The fans seem less than Emmathusiastic. The Usos get sneaky and pin the New Age Outlaws. Oh you didn’t know? Non-title of course. Roman Reigns versus Bray Wyatt in a great singles match. Eventually, The Family and The Wolves of Justice all get involved. Bray wins by DQ. I want to see more. Brock is here. Brock wants to make history. Brock gets The Undertaker (and a pen jabbed in his hand!) Looks like another match for Wrestlemania XXX as Brock eats a chokeslam through a table. The End!

And that, my friends, is how to do a recap for RAW. Moving on…

Random Thoughts…

It looks as if John Cena may be legit injured as of last night. The pictures posted of his knee were nasty. If I was HHH and Vince, I’d be getting worried right now. The crowd is crapping all over the potential Batista versus Orton main event. Daniel Bryan looks headed towards match against HHH, but with potentially no John Cena and no major “star-power” like The Rock, things backstage have to be very tense. I think someone needs to travel to Chicago and do some major sweet talking. They need CM Punk now more than ever.

Watching Summer Rae “wrestle” Emma last night made me miss Ivory, Lita, Trish, Molly, Jazz and Victoria more than ever. Maybe we can get AJ Lee versus Lita at Wrestlemania XXX. It’s not too late. I think Victoria might be available too.

If Cena is out, how about Bray Wyatt taking on the man they call Sting? He’s available too.

Batista? Still here and still sucks!

Still no word if Disco Inferno and Alex Wright will be crashing Wrestlemania XXX, but I’m still hoping.

Word is that Roddy Piper wants to wrestle a match at Wrestlemania XXX. I hope that they’re not that crazy. Nobody wants to see Piper (or Hogan or Flair or Bret Hart or Warrior) attempt to wrestle. However, a special edition of “Piper’s Pit” would be extremely welcome. Piper interviews Hogan and others get involved. Pier Six Brawl time as chaos erupts. And we see Hogan and Piper clear the ring as the fans go crazy. Works for me.

Where is 3MB? It’s not the “Road To Wrestlemania” unless Heath, Drew and Jinder are there to get officially ran over.

I don’t care what the WWE Creative and “Powers That Be” think. Miz deserves to be in the mix for the titles and big matches.

Woo Woo Woo – You Know It! – Zack Ryder spotted at Miz’s wedding. That man is getting jakked! He was huge!

The “Stone Cold Steve Austin” podcast – it’s great. Go listen to it! You won’t regret it at all.

I haven’t got the WWE Network yet and it’s been on for almost 24 hours. Someone loan me $10.

What’s up next? I sense some Q&A in our immediate future so it must be…

Question Time…

Jason Marsden: If you were starting your own wrestling promotion who would be your top guy? Past or present, Alive or Deceased but you can only pick one.

Any person, past or present, living or dead, to build around. There’s only one answer for me and that would be the “in his prime” Nature Boy Ric Flair. After all, diamonds are forever and so is Ric Flair. Woooooooo!

Juan Orlando Pabon: If you can pick 3 WWE TNA or other promotion superstar and put them in the top of WCW back in the 90’s who you choose?…..

Three of the stars of today and send them back in time to headline WCW in the 90’s? The ones that I would pick are John Cena, CM Punk and Cesaro.

Curtis Chordologist Tompkins: Single or Tag Teaming, Ivan Koloff just had “it”. Your opinion was he a better singles wrestler or Tag Teaming?

In his early days, Ivan was a good singles guy, as he proved by defeating Bruno Sammartino in Madison Square Garden to capture the then-WWWF Championship. But as time and age took their toll, he moved mainly to the tag team ranks and inmy opinion, I think that’s where he really shined and prospered the most. Whether it was teaming with Nikita or Krusher Kruschev, Paul Jones, Baron Von Raschke, Ole Anderson or whoever, he just seemed to really fit in and look strong. I think Ivan was a talented guy no matter what role he played in the ring, but overall, the tag team division was where he shined the most.

Timothy Decaturboi Banks: Who can book an entire FANTASY card from the referee, to the announcer and color commentator and at least 6 matches with titles on the line also WITH ALL JCP TALENT!?

An entire fantasy card, using nothing but talent from the Jim Crockett Promotions territory, with at least six title matches. Here goes…

Jim Crockett Promotions Presents: Showdown In Charlotte. Announcers are Bob Caudle and Tony Schiavone. Interviews by Johnny Weaver. Referees are Tommy Young and Sonny Fargo.

NWA World Championship: Ric Flair (c) versus Magnum TA
NWA Television Championship: Tully Blanchard versus Wahoo McDaniel
United States Championship: Roddy Piper versus Rick Steamboat
NWA World Tag Team Championship: The Rock & Roll Express versus Manny Fernandez & Rick Rude w/ Paul Jones
“The American Dream” Dusty Rhodes versus Larry Zbyszko w/ Baby Doll
National Tag Team Championship Match: Ole and Arn Anderson versus The Midnight Express w/ Jim Cornette
Mid-Atlantic Championship: Black Bart versus Jimmy “The Boogie Woogie Man” Valiant
Blackjack Mulligan & The Masked Superstar versus John Studd & Baron Von Raschke
Sgt. Slaughter & Don Kernodle versus Jimmy Snuka & Ray “The Crippler” Stevens w/ Gene Anderson

Liam Marshall: Favorite finisher in wrestling ?

I’m definitely an old-school type of guy so I’ve always enjoyed moves like “The Claw” or “The Sleeper”. An old favorite that I only ever saw one man perform correctly was the “Kiwi Leg Roll” by Abe Jacobs and that was pretty awesome. Two of my other favorites were the “Swinging Neckbreaker” as performed by Ken Patera or the “Cobra”, as performed by the Masked Superstar. None of these are used as finishers anymore, but I would love to see them brought back and used more often by the current stars, because they looked effective, were great moves and made the guys look awesome!

Michael Wilson: JCP Mt. Rushmore?

I guess this would have to be in Charlotte to mean anything to anyone. For Jim Crockett Promotions, if there was a Mt. Rushmore type of tribute and I was the one picking the faces, it would be Johnny Weaver, Ole Anderson, Ric Flair and Blackjack Mulligan.

And now…

Quotable Quotes Part 1…

“I’m the man that made wrestling famous.” – Hulk Hogan

“And you know what – and I don’t mean this in tongue in cheek way – but it’s like deja vu. When I walked in to WCW they were producing wrestling on a little teeny sound stage at Disney, okay? I’m walking into TNA and they’re producing wrestling in a little teeny sound stage at Universal.” – Hulk Hogan

“There’s no drama like wrestling.” – Andy Kaufman

One On One…

“One On One” is where I take a wrestler from days gone by and match them up against one of the stars of today. It’s fantasy wrestling at it’s best as I analyze and ponder who would win a match if these people, in their primes, were to face each other “One On One”. Let’s do this…

Ken Patera versus Cesaro

Ken Patera was known for using the “swinging full nelson” as a finisher. Cesaro uses the “Cesaro swing” in his matches. Both are freakishly strong, but Patera shoud have the slight edge due to his years of weightlifting competitions and Olympic background. Cesaro is taller and, I think in better condition for the longer matches. Patera wrestled more of a slow, methodical style that was power-based. Cesaro is the better mat wrestler and has much more speed to his credit. If this match was short, I think Patera might have the edge, but the longer that it goes, the edge would switch over to Cesaro. And if they were to meet, with both in their primes, I really don’t think there is any doubt to the outcome.

Winner: Cesaro

Barry Windham versus Jack Swagger

Both are roughly the same size and weight. This would be a classic match for the ages. Swagger has a great background in amateur wrestling and would probably have a very slight edge. Windham has been involved in pro wrestling since he was a child, being the son of the legendary Blackjack Mulligan, and is probably the better in-ring performer and wrestler. I think the strength edge would (slightly) go to Swagger, but it wouldn’t be enough to make a difference. When that final bell rings, it would be Barry Windham who has his arm raised in victory.

Winner: Barry Windham

Bruiser Brody versus Brock Lesnar

Talk about fantasy dream matches. It doesn’t get any better than this right here. Brody has the height advantage, but I think Brock is the stronger of the two. Brody was known as a brawler, but was also quite a good mat wrestler as well. Brock is a great mat wrestler with an amazing amateur background, not to mention the UFC experience to his credit. Working in Brody’s favor is the international experience working in Japan and Puerto Rico against some of the best in history. If these guys were to be pitted against each other, I don’t think there could or would ever be a clean winner. It would always be a count-out or DQ finish because both are just too strong as performers to take a clean loss. BUT, if there had to be a winner and it came down to a shoot, I hate to say this but I think Brock Lesnar would come out on top. Just my gut feeling here.

Winner: Brock Lesnar

And now…

Quotable Quotes Part 2…

“If Shakespeare was alive today, he’d be writing wrestling shows.” – Chris Jericho

“The grass is always greener on the other side, unless Vince Russo has been there in which case the grass is most likely dead.” – Jim Cornette

“Paul Heyman could shit a better wrestling format in his sleep than Vince Russo and Ed Ferrara could do if they worked on it for twenty years.” – Jim Cornette

And finally…

Who Am I?

Every week, I give a few clues about someone and it’s up to you, the readers (both of you) to try and guess who I’m speaking about. That’s why I call this “Who Am I?”. Last week, the answer was none other than the former WWE Superstar and stylist Rico Constantino. Correctly answering my inquiry were my Canadian wrestling brother Harold Schwan, my former “Fact or Fiction” tag team partner Russell Jackson, Jeff Hawkinson, Chad Burttram, Ken McDonald and Leslie Duran. Great job by all and thank you very much for your participation. And now, for the newbie…

I’m probably best known for my Goth-like appearance and screaming, but that didn’t stop me from becoming “The Governor”. I’m a former Cruiserweight Champion and have worked for WCW, WWE and TNA. I can wrestle and have had some wild matches against some of the top stars, but primarily work more in an outside-the-ring role. I broke up David and Stacy and was once married to a member of the band “Fozzy”. My in-ring career ended in 2011 due to injuries and I made headlines again no long afterwards due to having to file a lawsuit to get the medical bills paid. Who Am I?

Think you know the answer? Then let me know at my e-mail address which is Doug28352@yahoo.com. Or contact me at Facebook at facebook.com/saltpalace and inbox me your answer. Answer and the persons who correctly guessed are next week.

And that’s all for today. Thanks for reading. And a big thanks and shout out to Mr. Bob McGee, who has graciously offered me a place and home for my “Tossing Salt” column on his site, http://www.PWBTS.com. It’s a great site and I’m honored and proud to be associated with it. Thank you sir.

Go check out all my writings and stuff at https://tossingsalt.wordpress.com/.

I’m Doug and “dat is all de’ people need to know!”. Have a great day and I’ll catch you on the flip side. Ubuntu!

 

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Monday Night RAW – 2/24/14: Thoughts and Observations

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News Presents:  WWE Monday Night RAW – 2/24/14: Thoughts and Observations

Starting off RAW with Hogan. And I admit that I’m marking out big time. Never been a fan of Hogan, but glad to see him home. I hope we get the Wyatt’s coming out to interfere. Hogan plugs the WWE Network. Yeah, whatever! He’s taking credit for the launch of the network. That Hogan ego is alive and well… brutha! He’s “the host” of Wrestlemania XXX. He kept it short and to the point. As long as they keep using Hogan like this, I can deal with it. Still wish we had seen The Wyatt’s though.

Already tired of the WWE Network plugs. This is going to be a long night. Please shut up Michael Cole. Hey JBL, clothesline his ass! Daniel Bryan fights Kane tonight. Good. And Brock Lesnar might be here. That means he’s here. Bootista fights Del Rio in a rematch from last night. Let the jeers and boos begin. I wish we’d see Juventud Guerrera and Disco Inferno crash the match and have a dance-off. Please!

It’s time for Del Rio versus Batista. Loud boos for Batista as the music hit. Batista has a pointy head like a smurf. This match is sucking ass! The crowd isn’t into it at all and neither am I. Glad I have a Facebook account (facebook.com/saltpalace) to check out while this match goes on. Del Rio has taken control and the fans still don’t seem to care. Does anyone want to buy a Cabbage Patch doll? I have six of them (the originals) from 1983. They’re cool… and a little creepy. This match is really blowing chunks. Listen to the boos. Orton comes out and we have a distraction. Del Rio wins and then vanishes from site into off-camera limbo. I hate it when they do that, but I guess we can’t let the man celebrate his victory when the Boring Brothers need to speak. Randy rubs it in that the fans don’t much care for Batista. CM Punk chants fill the air. Batista says that he loves the business and he loves that the fans have a voice. He doesn’t care what the fans do. It’s called being real (in wrestling?). Batista says all that matters is Wrestlemania XXX and calls Randy names. I’m so bored now. Batista talked and I could feel my eyelids getting heavy. I forgot to take my nap today.

Big E versus Cesaro is next. This should be a pretty good match. I need something to wake me up and make things interesting. WE THE PEOPLE!

Why does Big E. have chalk on his hands? Wouldn’t that be a foreign object, kind of like the salt that the Japanese wrestlers once used? If you get a chance, listen to the Steve Austin podcast with Dutch Mantell (Zeb Colter). It’s really good. Cesaro and Swagger are damn good. Big E. has the look, but just doesn’t do it for me. Nice “We The People” chant to start. I’m ready to see Big E. take that swing. Maybe it’s just me, but the matches so far seem to be a bit off as if no one can get that chemistry and in-ring magic going. This is way better than the first match though. Of course, I watched my cat chase her tail and that was better than the first match too. Big E. is a stong dude. Impressive backbreakers, but slow to follow up. Michael Cole just called Eeyore “Igor” (but with an “E”)… someone doesn’t know their “Winnie The Pooh. We’ll start calling Hornswoggle “Piglet”. I wonder if we’ll have a William Regal sighting tonight? These guys are both good and the spots are impressive, but they really don’t seem to have any chemistry together. It seems as if they’re moving in slow motion and over-thinking their match instead of actually wrestling. Vince and HHH can NOT be happy backstage. I love those uppercuts that Cesaro uses. Best ones since the days of William Regal to be honest about it. I think we’re going to see Swagger interfere and cause a DQ. Okay, I take back what I was saying. This match is picking up and getting better. Swagger tried and he fall down and go BOOM! Swagger came in and caused the DQ. I called it. Cesaro isn’t happy. Time to tease that break-up. WE THE PEOPLE! The ending was cool! Winner by DQ is Big E.

John Cena is up next and he’s talking about The Wyatt’s. Now I think it’s time for thinks to slip into second gear and pick up a bit. I wish there was some way for Mae Young to show up and show her puppies. Wait, no I don’t. That’s kind of twisted, even too much for me. Where is Queen Kong when you need her? Or Sable. Same difference. By the way, if you ever get a chance to see the documentary for “G.L.O.W.”, be sure to watch it. Very good and available right now on Netflix.

It’s time for some Thuganomics. John Cena is here. Mixed reaction from the crowd. I hope he’s serious and we don’t get any “poopy” jokes tonight. Cena’s kissing Hogan’s ass. Big surprise, right? More plugs for the Network. The future is now. Yada yada yada! To be the future, go through him and prove it. Cena is calling out Bray and the family. Snap! Bray is a creepy dude, but I like him. And I love that song. Another great promo by Wyatt. John Cena is a liar! And we get a Wyatt Family beatdown on Cena. The fans chant “Yes Yes Yes”. Will we see The Shield save Cena? CM Punk chant. Wyatt’s play hit and run tactics and lay Cena out. FOLLOW THE BUZZARDS! A decent segment, but it just seemed a little off to me, as almost everything else has so far tonight. Bray and his “family” are probably the best thing in the WWE right now not named Bryan, Punk or Ryder. Love the promos and love the music. Just didn’t care for the in-ring confrontation. I wonder how often Bray calls up Kevin Sullivan for inspiration and ideas?

Okay, it looks as if Superman may have a messed up knee. Work or shoot? Cena was carried out on the stretcher so who knows? It’s action time as we get to see Christian (Captian Charisma) versus Sheamus. Brad Maddox made the match earlier today. Now we (should) see some good action and a good match. I love it when Christian is a heel. He’s got a rat-face, but he’s awesome and I will always and forever be a “Peep!”. Sheamus is covered with bruises from last night. Who says that wrestling is “fake” had better think again. This match is good, but the crowd seems restless and uninterested. Things are picking up though and it seems that the crowd is starting to take notice. The power of the peeps. This match is okay, but not as good as the one they had last week on Smackdown. Fans are into it now at least. When did Sheamus start using the Texas Cloverleaf? Dean Malenko must be proud right now. Sheamus with the kick and the win. Good match that went a little long, but ended up satisfying.

More plugs for the Network and the RAW pre-show. We get to see a pre-show confrontation between The Authority and Daniel Bryan. Bryan wants a fight. And we get the tease for Bryan versus HHH at Wrestlemania XXX. I hope not. How about in the WWE World Title Match instead? Stephanie shouldn’t be the one going face to face with Daniel though. She’s about three inches taller than he is and that just doesn’t look good. How about Daniel Bryan versus Steph? Nah, maybe not.

Black History Month and we get a promo for “The Soul Patrol”, Rocky Johnson and Tony Atlas. What about Rufus R. Jones? What about Porkchop Cash? What about Viscera, who just passed away a few days ago? That would be more appropiate. Have we even seen any mention of Nelson Frazier’s passing yet? I don’t think so. WWE needs to step it up. And what about Rocky King? Can’t forget Rocky King.

We see The Shield bickering and arguing among themselves. Looks like Ambrose is butt-hurt. It’s the Wyatt’s and they’re in the face. Later tonight, we get Roman Reigns versus Bray Wyatt one on one. We go to Josh Matthews who is with Booker T and Ric Flair and they’re plugging the pre-game show. Booker is looking forward to seeing Roman versus Bray. Flair wants to see what happens with Cena and when Daniel Bryan fights Kane. Flair does the “Yes Yes Yes” chant. That just doesn’t look right. I wonder how much they paid him to do that. Woooooo! And it’s time for action again.

Daniel Bryan versus Kane. The fans are into it and doing the “Yes Yes Yes” chant. If Daniel Bryan and Zack Ryder were to form a team, we’d be hearing “Yes Woo Yes Woo Yes Woo… You Know It!” chants. I don’t want to hear that. I thought we would be seeing Undertaker and maybe Brock Lesnar tonight? I guess they’re saving that towards the end of the show. Why the heck not. You know who I’d like to see come back tonight? Stevie Richards and Victoria. The crowd would go nuts!

Corporate Kane versus “Duck Dynasty Mummy Man” Daniel Bryan. I was hoping Kane would break out the red tights, but instead, we get slacks and a t-shirt. Oh well. This should be a good match. Good match psychology as Kane goes after the arm while Bryan goes after the leg. Take the big man down and take out a wheel. Works for me. For an “older superstar”, Kane can still go with the best of them. Daniel Bryan is probably the best “take a beating and come back” babyface since the days of Ricky Morton. I wonder how a tag team of Daniel Bryan and Drew McIntyre would work out? The crowd is really into D. Bryan and this match. They’re alive! They’re alive! A hurracuranna by Bryan. What the hell! A new move and it looked good. If Daniel Bryan had his own clique, it would be a “Goat Dynasty”. Bryan kicks out of the chokeslam. Very nice! And Daniel Bryan wins with the flying knee. Damn straight! Good match and good win for the Bearded One.

And now Daniel Bryan talks. He calls out HHH and calls him a coward. Bryan wants HHH at Wrestlemania XXX. Bryan could make a good motivational speaker. Looks like Daniel is in the CM Punk spot and won’t be going after the title. I think that might mean we’ll see Brock go after Batista and Orton? Guess we’ll know before the end of the night. They just confirmed that Brock is here and that we’ll be seeing Bray versus Roman in the main event. I like it. Summer Rae will be wrestling next. And Fandango is with her. All right everyone. Time to get up and dance!

We get a Batista speech this Friday on Smackdown. I have to remember to miss that. I love to watch Summer and Fandango dance. And here comes Santino and Emma. I think I need to go get a drink or a sammich! This girl is… odd! It’s Summer versus Emma. I’ve got to say it! CATFIGHT! CATFIGHT! CATFIGHT! They’re making a “Marine 4”. Okay, I wonder who’s career this one will destroy? Watching these women wrestle, I miss Ivory, Lita and Molly. Hell, I even miss Nidia. She was so “white-trash hot!”. I’d even rather be watching a Steve “Mongo” McMichael match. Emma-lock and Emma wins. Last year, everyone was “Fandango”-ing. Now they’re all Emma”-ing.

Hulkamania is running wild! We get a replay of Hogan saying that he’s the hostest with the mostest. I wish I had a twinkie. Coming up is another rematch from last night as The Uso’s take on The New Age Outlaws. Is this for the title? They didn’t say, but if it is, I smell title change. Or maybe that’s just the cat’s litter box? Nah, it’s definitely a title change in the air tonight. Am I right? Guess we’ll find out next.

Nobody got an entrance. Must be short on time. Road Dogg has the mic and has to do that whole DX intro thing. Two words that never get said as The Usos attack and get the quick pin in record time. The Usos win. Damn skippy. More plugs for the Network. Somebody loan me $10.

And now, we’ve got The Shield! Well, one of them anyhow. Roman Reigns is all alone and ready for action. It’s Roman versus Bray next. This should be great and I’m actually tingling with anticipation. At least I hope that’s what it is. No commentary during this match because I just want to watch Bray and Roman beat the holy hell out of each other. I think we’ll see Ambrose get involved and further widen the rift between the members of The Shield. Did JBL just say that Bray looks like an “ugly possum”? I think JBL owes possums an apology. Yeah, I decided to do commentary after all. Husky Harris chants by a few idiots in the crowd. Someone needs to introduce those assclowns to Sister Abigail. These guys are working stiff and I like it. There’s a great “old school” feel to this match, but then again, both Roman and Bray would fit in very well in the old school “territory days” anyhow. But they’re both from wrestling families so I guess that’s to be expected. The family is here. The Shield is here. OINGO BOINGO on the outside and we’ve got everyone in the ring. Ambose went after Bray and I think he got Roman DQ’ed. A face-off and they cut to the back. That was pretty cool and I think… I know I want to see more. How about all six men… in the cage on RAW next week? One can only hope.

It’s Brock and Paul Heyman. They’re in the back and they’re coming to the ring. Next week, they’re in Chicago. Time for make or break with the CM Punk stuff. Time for Brock to either challenge Orton and Batista or else challenge the Undertaker. Given how much time is left, it’s probably Taker. But maybe we’ll luck out and get him in the title match. If not, there is still hope for Bryan. Heyman is and has always been gold on the mic. Brock doesn’t need to talk. Just stand there and look like a bad-ass. Brock looks like he needs to get some sleep. Brock has an open contract for Wrestlemania XXX and can fight any opponent. Brock doesn’t want the consolation prize – he wants to conquer history. I guess that means Undertaker. Paul talks about history and say no thanks about the open contract. And here comes The Taker. The fans go nuts! How long does it take him to get to the ring. Hurry man, hurry. Brock looks intrigued. Taker looks… like Taker. Nose to nose and this is a great moment. Taker looks at the Wrestlemania XXX sign and Brock nods yes. I think we’ve got a match. Brock signs the contract and gives Taker the pen. Heyman talks trash and Taker stabs Brock with the pen before choke-slamming Lesnar through the table. And the lights go out, the gong plays and we’ve got a match as Taker leaves the ring and leaves Brock laying.

That was awesome. This was a pretty damn good edition of RAW. It started off slowly, but the matches ended up being pretty decent and the show at Wrestlemania XXX is starting to take shape. We didn’t get to see Miz or Dolph or Kevin Nash and they forgot to announce the next name for the WWE Hall of Fame (Paul Bearer and / or Scott Hall) which sucked, but still. On a scale of 1-10, I’d give RAW a solid “8” for the night.

And “dat is all de’ people need to know!” I’m gone!

Ubuntu!

WWE Elimination Chamber 2014 Predictions

WWE Elimination Chamber 2014 Predictions
February 20, 2014

Coming up in just a few days is the WWE’s pay-per-view offering, The Elimination Chamber. It’s the WWE’s last traditional pay-per-view offering before switching things over to the WWE Network. It’s also the last pay-per-view event before we hit that highway to hell and travel to the biggest show of all, Wrestlemania XXX. Yeppers, it’s a biggie to be sure. And of course, I’ve gone digging deep my closet here at Tossing Salt Media, Inc and pulled out the old “Sister Cleo” outfit. “Why?”, you ask. Because it’s prediction time. Let’s do this…

Cody Rhodes and Goldust vs. Curtis Axel and Ryback

The former tag team champions and the products of Dusty Rhodes’s loins taking on the “Better Than Perfect” former IC Champion and the man who eats too much, both former “Paul Heyman Guys”. So does this mean that they came from Paul Heyman’s loins? Uuugggh! I just got a cold chill at the thought. This should be a damn good match though because Ryback and Axe have become a solid team and if they still had that managerial influence, would probably be the tag team champs. And what can we say about Cody and Dustin? Cody has always been damn good and Dustin is working better now than he did in his prime, in the “Attitude Era”. I guess this match is all about will we be seeing the long-awaited Dustin versus Cody match at Wrestlemania XXX? If they win, then probably not. If they lose, I’d say it’s going to happen. And I think, when that final bell tolls, we’ll be seeing the former Heyman guys, Ryback and Axel, celebrating the big win. Yeah, that sounds good to me.

Winners: Curtis Axel and Ryback

Elimination Chamber Match – WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Randy Orton (c) vs. John Cena vs. Sheamus vs. Daniel Bryan vs. Cesaro vs. Christian

This should be one helluva match. All the guys, except one, would fit right into that main event slot at Wrestlemania XXX very easily. (And all of them are better than the “other guy” in that title match main event.) So let’s play elimination time. Christian, who’s one of my favorites, and who I would love to see in that Wrestlemania main event, isn’t going to win. That’s pretty obvious. And I think Sheamus can also safely be eliminated from the match as one who will NOT win. Cesaro will, based on his momentum from the past few weeks, will be the next to last person in the match and will be the “Iron Man” of the match in my opinion. Of course, he won’t win either.

And that leaves the “Big Three” of WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton, John Cena and Daniel Bryan. I don’t think John Cena will be winning. I keep hearing plans about Cena and the Wyatt family and if that’s the case, he can’t be winning this match. And that leaves Bryan and Orton. I want Bryan to win. I’m so damn sick of Orton as the “face of the WWE” and Orton’s face for that matter. But I just have a feeling that if WWE plays this right, Bryan will get his big moment (and the WWE World Championship) at Wrestlemania. And that means that through some sort of shenanigans, we’ll see the “Face Of The WWE” and former Legacy leader keep his title. Yeah, I said it. He’ll cheat to do it and it’ll definitely be a tainted win, but Randy Orton wins and retains.

Winner and STILL WWE World Heavyweight Champion: Randy Orton

The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper, and Erick Rowan) vs. The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, and Roman Reigns)

The build for this match has been great. I think that this match itself will be great. We’ve got six strong performers in that ring fighting for domination. I guess in the WWE, only one weird super-group is allowed. A loss, so long as it’s not Bray Wyatt being pinned, would not hurt the Wyatt Family in the slightest, especially against The Shield. And a loss by The Shield, so long as it’s not Roman Reigns being pinned, wouldn’t hurt The Shield at all either. This match could go either way and I don’t really think we’re going to get a conclusive finish on Sunday. It doesn’t matter who wins or who loses. This match-up is money on the table and I think the WWE will stretch it out for a few more weeks at least.

Double DQ – No Contest / No Winner

Batista vs. Alberto Del Rio

The golden child turned actor turned HHH’s best friend, aka Drax the Destroyer wins and wins easily. And I hate it cause he doesn’t deserve it. ‘Nuff said!

Winner: Batista

WWE Intercontinental Championship
Big E (c) vs. Jack Swagger

Swagger has been looking really good as of late and really strong in that ring. And Big E? He’s got that great look and he’s not bad in the ring, but he just doesn’t do it for me. He just seems to me like the flavor of the month that someone in power got excited by, but he just doesn’t seem to fit that spot he’s currently holding as the Intercontinental Champion. I’d love to see Swagger win the IC title and I think he’s very deserving, but I don’t think that this is going to be his time.

Winner and STILL Intercontintental Champion: Big E

WWE Tag Team Championship Match
The New Age Outlaws (Road Dogg and Billy Gunn) (c) vs. The Usos (Jimmy and Jey Uso)

As much as I like the New Age Outlaws, I have a hard time seeing Road Dogg and Billy Gunn as the tag team champions going into Wrestlemania XXX. It’s been a happy and nostalgic time, but it’s time to get back to 2014. I think that we’re going to see a title change here and probably a multi-team match at Wrestlemania XXX to give everyone a brief time in the big show.

Winners and NEW WWE Tag Team Champions: Jimmy & Jey Uso

Darren Young vs. Titus O’Neil

And here we have the former tag team partners kick each others ass match of the night. So far, it seems as if Titus is the man they’re interested in pushing the most since breaking up the team. And thus, since he (Titus) looks more like a potential big star and main event guy, by WWE logic, that means we’re going to see John Cena’s walking x-ray, the twin brother from a different mother, get the pin. Yep, I’m calling it now. Darren Young on top as Titus goes down.

Winner: Darren Young

And there you go. Those are my predictions for the WWE Elimination Chamber 2014 pay-per-view event. Am I right? Am I wrong? I guess we’ll all find out on Sunday. What do you think? Who’s going to win and who’s going to lose? Let me know. And thank you for reading.

Ubuntu!

Wrestling Fact Or Fiction: February 20, 2014

Wrestling Fact or Fiction
February 20, 2014

It must be Thursday again because it’s time to do that infamous “Fact Or Fiction” thing that I like to do. As per the usual, the questions came from 411mania.com/wrestling. And the answers come from me. ‘Nuff said! Now let’s get this party started. Word to your mother… lol.

1. The WWE has done enough to make you want to buy the Elimination Chamber PPV.

FACT: Given my current financial state of affairs, I couldn’t buy the pay-per-view even if it was Ric Flair versus Harley Race versus The Disco Inferno headlining with Ivory as the guest host. That being said, if I had the money to spare, I would actually like to see this event. The Wyatts versus The Shield is definitely something I want to see, plus we have Christian and Cesaro both in the Elimination Chamber. It’s a loaded card and I wish I could see it on Sunday, but alas, that’s not to be. But the build has been okay and the card is stacked. I would like to see it if I could.

2. You like that TNA has re-invested in Samoa Joe as a main event talent.

FACT: I’m happy for Joe because he deserves the chance to be one of the top guys and he’s a helluva talent. That being said, I almost put “Fiction” for this because it’s TNA and they’re going to drop the ball and screw up Joe’s push before it’s all over. After all, that’s what they do.

3. Now that WWE has made it official, you are excited to watch the entire WWE Hall of Fame ceremony in the WWE Network.

FACT: I love things like this and I’m sure that getting to see Jake Roberts, Lita and some of the others live and uncensored is something that I’m looking forward to. Of course, that also means we get The Warrior live and uncensored, but you have to take the bad with the good so that’s okay too. I doubt that I’ll watch the ceremony as it happens live, but I’m pretty damn sure I’ll be playing the replay over and over for sure.

4. The match you are looking forward to the most at the Elimination Chamber PPV is the Wyatt Family vs. The Shield.

FICTION: The match that I’m looking forward to the most is the actual Elimination Chamber match. That’s what is selling the tickets and has the biggest aura of excitement about it. But the Wyatts versus The Shield is a very close second that I expect will end in some sort of shenanigans and be continued Monday night on RAW.

5. Judging by his injury history and the way he has been booked since his return, Rey Mysterio will not be with the WWE in 2015.

FACT: From what I read this morning, Rey’s contract is up in two months and the WWE isn’t really pushing hard to sign him back up. He’s a big merchandise mover and that might work in his favor, but the constant injuries and limited mobility definitely does not. If Rey is re-signed, I expect that he’ll be either on a limited deal similar to what Jericho and RVD are doing or else a “Legends” style deal for limited appearances. But so far as being a full-time performer, I think it’s safe to say that Rey’s days in the WWE are pretty much done.

6. TNA is rushing the Dixie Carter vs. MVP battle for control of TNA angle.

FACT: It’s been only what now – three weeks – and I’m already tired of this. TNA is bad (as is WWE) about rushing angles and leaving money laying on the table. If stretched out properly, with partnerships and double-crosses, this storyline could be huge for TNA and draw in fans and make money. But it looks as if the finish line for the MVP versus Dixie feud is just the next pay-per-view, if it even lasts that long. It’s a shame!

7. WWE is making a good choice by having past performers like Mickie James, Scotty 2 Hotty and others make appearances as guest trainers at the Performance Center.

FACT: These past performers have been there and can offer advice and pearls of wisdom to the new guys. They know what it takes to make it in the WWE and life in general and have unique perspectives and skills that the new folks can learn from. It’s definitely a plus for all involved.

8. Jeff Jarrett’s rumored promotion will not debut by the end of 2014.

FICTION: It’s only February and we have ten months to go before the end of 2014. Time is on Jarrett’s side and once the newness of the WWE Network wears off and once TNA drops the ball (again) and falters even more, the time will be right for Jarrett to come in and make his “Impact!”. I’m kind of thinking we’ll see Jarrett and friends make their move, whatever it is, come around July or August at the earliest, striking when the time is right.

And there you go. That’s it for me today. I’ll be back tomorrow with predictions for the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view and again, back on Monday with a new edition of “Tossing Salt – Worldwide News”. Have a great weekend, my friends and I’ll catch you on the flip side.

Ubuntu!

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News – February 17, 2014

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News
February 17, 2014
Doug Maynard

And here we are back again with yet another edition of professional wrestling’s most eclectic column, the one and only “Tossing Salt – Worldwide News!” Can you believe that I’ve been doing this, off and on, since 2002? Me neither, but I have. Seems like just yesterday. Anyhow, let’s do a few random thoughts and then we can really get this party started.

One week to go to the Elimination Chamber. Will we see an upset by one of the five challenging WWE Superstars or will young Randall Orton walk out with his title and go to Wrestlemania XXX? I say… YES! YES! YES!

It looks more and more as if we won’t be seeing CM Punk at the big show? That sucks, but it also looks more and more as if we will be seeing the man they call “Sting”. Maybe we’ll see CM Punk show up wearing face paint and disguised as Sting. That would be cool!

MVP is now the co-owner of TNA. From all reports, Impact! from this last Thursday was a solid show. And you know what? I still don’t care.

Would love to see Zack Ryder show up and cost John Cena the Elimination Chamber match on Sunday night. Cena stole Ryder’s girlfriend and Zack never got the chance to get even. What’s the old saying about “Revenge is dish best served cold”? Works for me.

Batista still sucks!

Wouldn’t you love to see the team of JTG and Curt Hawkins come out of nowhere and win the tag team titles on RAW. Just make a challenge and win the belts from the New Age Outlaws. Everyone would be going “what the… ??”

AJ Lee versus Class of 2014 Hall of Famer Lita at Wrestlemania XXX for the Divas Championship? I’d like to see that.

All together now. Place your left hand over your heart and repeat after me. “We the people!”

If Miz thinks that he’s being ignored and mistreated by the WWE Creative and management, imagine how his former protege Alex Riley must feel. This would be a good time for Miz and Alex to reunite and go after the tag team titles. They could form an alliance with Zack Ryder. Drew McIntyre, and have Christian as their leader and use the “gang warfare” gimmick to get noticed and back into the main event (or at least upper mid-card) picture.

Actually, the more I think of it, this would be a great way to introduce a manager to the WWE Universe – someone like Armando Alejandro Estrada (remember him), maybe Chavo Guerrero, Shawn Daivari (would love to see him back) or even Jinder Mahal. They could even move Christian into a managerial role and let him lead this faction. I’m not talking “Evolution” or “Horseman” level status, but more like “Right To Censor” or Jimmy Hart’s “Family” level at the mid-card and occasional main event level. It’s something that the WWE needs to think about and love him or hate him, if Vince Russo was still working with the WWE in a creative capacity, all of these lower-card stars would have matches and storylines and be part of each show, as they should be. It’s time to bring back the managers and their stables. Dutch Mantell and Paul Heyman have proven that it still works and can be a valuable and productive part of the WWE and their universe. Someone needs to take note.

Let’s move on to the questions and the rest of the column.

Question Time…

The following four questions come from the Facebook group “Jim Crockett Promotions: A Great Era In Pro Wrestling…”

Billy Morris: Did you like Roddy Piper more as a heel or babyface in his Mid Atlantic days? He was there from the Fall 1980 -January 1984. I thought he was best as a heel, and as far as interviews, his heel interviews beat his face interviews most of the time.

During the Mid-Atlantic days, Piper was the personification of everything a heel should be. He was rude, disrespectful, cocky and so full of himself that even the other heels seemed to think he was an ass-clown. When he was a face, he was more polite and it just seemed to take away from the product. Piper is the type of guy that should never have been made into a face. It just didn’t work. Piper was the “cool heel” long before anyone else used that description and at least during his run with Crockett, anything else was less than acceptable.

Jeremy Painter: Is there anyone of significance that Ric Flair never faced that you would have liked to have seen?

The names that came to mind for me immediately were Ernie Ladd and “The Exotic” Adrian Street. Both match-ups would have been extremely interesting contrasts in styles and characters. Flair versus Ladd would be the evil, sneaky heel versus the evil, sneaky heel and it would be interesting to see who the fans picked to cheer or boo. As for Adrian, look at that character. With Flair being the “man’s man” and “chick-magnet” and all of the things he claimed to be, how would he handle facing such a character as Adrian Street? Who would the fans cheer? It would be fascinating to watch and a great match, ring wise as well, just because of how good both of these men were in their primes.

Jason Cresawn: Who is your top ten heels in the Jim Crockett era?

Of the Crockett era, I’d go with Ole Anderson, Gene Anderson, Paul Jones, Ivan Koloff, Sgt. Slaughter, Baron Von Raschke, Tully Blanchard, Greg Valentine, Roddy Piper and Ernie Ladd (in no particular order).

Martin Douglas Banks: Better Booker Dusty Rhodes or Ole Anderson?

This isn’t even a real question to me. It’s Ole all the way. Dusty was a great idea man with the big events and with storylines that involved himself or his friends. I’m not denying that at all, but Ole was the man when it came to running a territory, keeping things moving smoothly and putting butts in the seats and making sure that they would come back the next week. How many men can lay claim to running two major territories (Crockett and Georgia) at the same time and had business that was thriving. Ole gets a raw deal today because of his bitterness towards the current product and especially Vince McMahon, as well as his bluntness and lack of tact, but it worked for him. He didn’t play the politics very well, so if you wanted a spot with JCP or Georgia, you had to bust your ass and work hard and it showed with the matches and the shows, and that was because of Ole. You worked hard, then you had a job and made money and he kept you around. You goofed off and phoned it in and he would show you the door, regardless of who you were. That’s good business sense and that attitude, while not winning him any popularity awards, kept Georgia thriving and JCP (during his time as the booker) doing great as well. No disrespect intended towards Dusty, but if I had a territory and wanted to find the best man I could to run it, Ole would be among the first that I’d try to call in. Dusty would be among the very last.

Joseph Bowden at the Kult of Kayfabe Facebook group:
I have a question for you all,. if you could book your own ppv with any wrestlers who would it be, 7 matches max.

Joseph didn’t put any limitations or restrictions on this event about who we could or couldn’t use, but I will. I’ll just imagine that the card is present day (2014) and that wrestlers who are currently under contract to the WWE or TNA are NOT available. That also rules out the old-timers and legends that I would generally use to stack a fantasy wrestling card. Now, let’s do this. Matt Striker and Scott Hudson would be my announce team with Lisa “Ivory” Moretti and “The Living Legend” Larry Zbyszko handling interviews.

Matt Hardy w/ Reby Sky versus AJ Styles – Ladder Match for Championship

Carlito and Chris Masters versus Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas w/ Jackie Haas

Hardcore Rumble Match: The Sandman, Sabu and Raven versus D-Von Dudley, Big Daddy V (Viscera) and Mike Knox

Triple Threat Women’s Match: Victoria versus Eve Torres versus Kharma

Rob Conway & Trevor Murdoch versus Petey Williams & Alex Shelley w/ Shawn Daivari

Street Fight: Scott Steiner versus Matt Morgan

Juventud Guerrera versus Stevie Richards w/ the bWo (Blue Meanie, Super Nova)

From J.J. over at 411mania.com: How would you repackage Zack Ryder, or at least get him any (forward) momentum?

This actually wouldn’t be hard to do. It just takes time and consistency and oh yeah, a heel turn for Zack. Start off with Zack in a match on RAW against a top or mid-card favorite. Let’s say Rey Mysterio. Good match going back and forth and then suddenly, when it looks like Zack is going to lose, he just kicks Rey low. End of match and Zack is DQ’d and just stands there glaring at the fallen Mysterio. Backstage after the match, the interviewer tries to talk to him, but he just glares and walks away.

Next week, Zack comes out on RAW and pours his heart out in a promo. He gave everything to fans and the WWE and they crapped on him. Cena and Punk talked for him and then Cena stole his woman and ignored him like a joke. Punk stood up for him and then ignored him and walked away. Everytime he tries to talk to someone in authority, they blow him off and ignore him. And he’s through with it. Let someone come out to try and talk with him and Zack either walks away or lays them out. Either would work, but let this lead to a match and (surprise) Ryder wins with some sneaky shenanigans. Next week, Ryder wrestles and wins again. Let Ryder keep winning and being an ass til this leads to match against Cena, Bryan or some other top face at a pay-per-view. Ryder wins the match and there you go. Top (or at least mid-card) level heel with some momentum.

Obviously, it wouldn’t be quite that simple, but the fans still like Zack and he’s got legitimate gripes against the way the company has treated him over the past couple of years, so build on it, cut promos talking about these gripes and just make it as real as possible with the final results being a bitter Zack Ryder and the fans would jump aboard pretty quickly. I’m sure of it.

Quotable Quotes Part 1...

My high school wrestling coach taught me right off the bat that rules aren’t to be broken, they are to be taken advantage of – Larry Zbyszko

Lotta changes are going on in the world and lotta people are changing their ways, you talk about changing, you talk about people, and you talk about something that’s owed to somebody that’s a little late in coming, and that’s what I’m talking about, a little respect, a little pride, that I lost a while back but I’m fixing to get back – Manny Fernandez

He’s got more stitches in that face than a saddle – Lord Alfred Hayes

There’s three kinds of people, those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who wonder what happen when it’s all over – Austin Idol

It’s not that I hide, it’s that I’m smart. I’m like a snake baby, I move and I groove. I can get behind Mr. Saito, I can get behind Mr. Fuji, and I can be the guiding light. I can feel them, I can watch, I can look for weaknesses. I can turn Mr. Saito into a maniac killer. I say Mr. Saito heeya gahtan yaaaaaaaaah noy ya in one second baby, you know what that means ? Hahahaha – Captain Lou Albano

One On One

“One On One” is where I take a wrestler from days gone by and match them up against one of the stars of today. It’s fantasy wrestling at it’s best as I analyze and ponder who would win a match if these people, in their primes, were to face each other “One On One”. Let’s do this…

The New Age Outlaws (Road Dogg & Billy Gunn) versus Ricky Steamboat & Jay Youngblood

Road Dog and Billy have the size advantage to be sure. Steamboat has the wrestling science edge and Jay could chop like few others. Teamwork advantage would, I think go to RIcky and Jay. Speed would go to Ricky and Jay as well. It’d be a great match to watch with lots of back and forth action and plenty of two-counts to be sure for both teams. But in the end, I think the edge and win would go to RIcky and Jay. They’re just the more fluid and better team in my eyes.

Winners: Ricky Steamboat & Jay Youngblood

Bob Backlund versus William Regal

Talk about a clinic of wrestling science, moves and counter-moves. This would be a match that any fan of pure wrestling would love to watch again and again. Backlund was a former NCAA Champion and is one of the best in-ring workers ever. Regal started wrestling in the carnivals in England at the age of 15 and has forgotten more moves than most people ever learn. I have to admit that in this match, I would be cheering for Regal because he is and has always been one of my favorites. But my gut says that when push comes to shove, I think Bob Backlund would be the man to have his arm raised in the end.

Winner: Bob Backlund

Victoria versus Beth Phoenix

Two of the most talented and awesome women to ever step foot inside that squared circle. Both are amazingly strong and both have that rare quality that can’t be found with the majority of today’s “Divas”… They know how to wrestle. I think Beth might be a little stronger, but I think Victoria might have a slight edge in actual ability in the ring, based on the quality of opposition she faced compared to what Beth had to regularly wrestle against. It’d be one helluva match and could easily go either way, but what my gut says is that in the end, the one taking that trip to the pay window would be Victoria.

Winner: Victoria

Quotable Quotes Part II...

I may not be able to give you everything you want, but I’ll give you everything you need – Kevin Sullivan

Ya know there’s been a lot of pain and blues & agony being dished out here. Thunderbolt Patterson talking bout family, family’s an important part of this country baybay. Ya gotta understand that you can’t have babies unless you have husbands and wives, ya understand. Ya can’t have blood unless you’re kin, and Dusty Rhodes, the American Dream knows that we’re gettin ready for some real bonafide electrified funk – Dusty Rhodes

When I come after you I’m gonna be like a chicken on a junebug – Dutch Mantell

I’d rather be dead than be an also-ran, cause that means you are not a champion – Arn Anderson

Who Am I?

The answer to last week’s “Who Am I?” was none other than former WWE Superstar Rico. Correctly answering were: Jeff Hawkinson, Russell Jackson, Harold Schwan and Chad Burttram. Great job guys and thanks for answering. And now on to the new one.

I started wrestling in 1956 and had a solid, yet mostly uneventful career until 1972 when I was asked to put on a mask and travel to the Georgia territory to be the partner of a popular masked man. From then on, my career took off and I became one of the most popular wrestlers in Georgia history. I’m known for using the running knee lift as my finisher. I worked mainly in Georgia, but also did some shows in Florida and in the Mid-South where I worked a great “teacher versus student” angle with a young man named Terry Allen. Former President Jimmy Carter and his mother, Lillian Carter counted themselves as two of my biggest fans and I was even invited to Carter’s inauguration, but declined because the Secret Service would have required me to remove my mask. Who am I?

Know the answer? Let me know either via my inbox at Facebook or else with an e-mail to Doug28352@yahoo.com. The names of all who answered correctly will be posted in next weeks “Tossing Salt” column.

And I guess that’s all for today. I’ll be back on Thursday with the “Wrestling Fact Or Fiction” column. Thoughts and comments are welcome and appreciated. I’m Doug and as the great Baron Von Raschke would say, “dat is all de’ people need to know!” I’ll see you in a few days. Thanks for reading.

Ubuntu!