Ultimate Wrestling Q&A: Italian Stallion, Matt Riddle, FTR & More…

Tossing Salt Presents:
Ultimate Wrestling Q&A
Italian Stallion, Matt Riddle, FTR & More
September 1, 2021
DougMaynard.com

Let’s talk wrestling.

I’ve heard that former AWA Champion Nick Bockwinkel was offered the role of the Million Dollar Man before Vince McMahon gave it to Ted DiBiase. How do you think he would have done in that role?

Ted DiBiase became the Million Dollar Man in 1987, and at that point in his career, Nick Bockwinkel was 53 years old and still working for Verne Gagne’s AWA as that promotion died down in its final days. While Nick was an excellent wrestler, I can’t see Vince offering a man of that age such a prime spot on the WWF roster. I think Nick would have done a great job in that role, but if DiBiase’s recounting of the story is correct, he was Vince’s first choice for that role. Maybe he was and maybe he wasn’t, but I have a hard time believing that Bockwinkel would be on Vince’s lists of possible choices.

Thoughts on the Italian Stallion?

In the ring as an enhancement talent, Stallion was good. As a person, if the stories I’ve heard repeatedly from a variety of people who would know are true, he’s a piece of crap. Stallion would allegedly book young talents for matches with WWE and WCW and then take the majority of their pay as a “booking fee”. Yeah, I can see the justification to get a percentage due to the help in getting these kids booked, but from what I’ve been told by many people, just a percentage wasn’t enough and he often made far more on these bookings than the guys who actually wrestled and performed. I’ve also heard a story about Bobby Eaton one time calling him out on this in the locker room and laying Stallion out when he told Bobby to piss off. I respect what the man was capable of in the ring, but as a person, if even a fraction of these stories are true, not so much.

Dax Harwood recently dropped hints about FTR possibly leaving AEW. Thoughts?

Their careers since joining AEW, while starting off well, have not really been all that to be honest and now they’re in a super-group faction, but when is the last time that the Pinnacle was even mentioned on AEW television? The bud is off the rose, it seems. I hope that things rebound and we see more FTR in the weeks and months to come on AEW programming and perhaps in a major angle or two, but if they’re not happy or satisfied, maybe it is time to go somewhere else. I know that Impact and New Japan would both love to have this team as part of their roster and while it might involve a little eating crow, WWE would take them back in an instant as well. FTR has to do what’s best for FTR and if that means leaving AEW, so be it.

Matt Riddle apparently has heat with WWE management due to his recent comments about Roman Reigns? Would you like to see a Riddle versus Roman feud?

A Roman versus Riddle feud would be fun to see. It’d also be cool to see Riddle up against some of the other names he’s managed to piss off over the past year such as Seth Rollins, Goldberg, and Brock Lesnar. Riddle is the real deal, both in wrestling and in a shoot situation, and with the proper build, could be a main event talent for WWE. Teaming with Orton now as part of Team RK-Bro is a good way to build his character and status on the WWE roster and who knows what the future holds? Maybe a few fights with Roman? Only time will tell, but I’d like to see it.

You’ve just joined AEW. Dream Singles Match. Dream Tag Team Partner Dream Team for Blood and Guts.

For me, my dream singles match against a star currently in AEW would be myself versus -1 of the Dark Order. An eight-year-old kid? I’d kick his ass. As for a tag partner, how about myself and Jericho? I could be his new Ralphus. And my dream team for a Blood & Guts match, I’d want FTR, Sammy Guevera and CM Punk as my partners.

I know a lot of people didn’t like the triple cell from WCW, but I think if AEW brought it back.. with today’s talent.. that triple cell would be game-changing. Your thoughts?

With the right booking for the match and the right people involved in the match itself, the Triple Tier cage could be a fun and effective tool in having a classic specialty match. WCW could screw up almost anything with their crash-TV booking, but the concept isn’t a bad one. It just needs to be used correctly. I wouldn’t mind seeing the powers-that=be at AEW give it a shot.

After Fighting With My Family, what other wrestling stories do you think are ideally suited for a movie adaptation?

A movie adaption of Ric Flair’s life and career would be interesting, but so much would be lost in the process, it might be too big a task for anyone to try to do. George Steele’s story about being a football coach and teacher while also being a main event wrestling villain in the ’70s and trying to keep those two worlds apart would be cool. How about Jesse Ventura’s rise from soldier to wrestler to Governor of Minnesota? That could be interesting to see. Wrestling is full of colorful characters and great stories. I don’t think it’d be too hard to find one that would make a great movie if only one just opens their eyes to look.

How can Raw and Smackdown be such polar opposites in terms of quality?

One person – Vince McMahon. Vince considers RAW to be the A-show and his baby and he micromanages every aspect of the show and it shows. With Smackdown, he’s not quite so hands-on and others such as Michael Hayes, Bruce Pritchard, and the many writers have a little bit more of a free hand to try different things. And that shows as well.

And there you go. My thanks for reading. Any comments, thoughts, or questions you’d like to ask, feel free to drop me a line and we’ll chat. Until the next time, take care and stay safe. Don’t forget to support your local Independent wrestling companies and wrestlers. I’ll see you at the matches. See ya!

Ubuntu!

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