Ultimate Wrestling Q&A: X-Pac, Nature Boy, Toni Storm, Hook & More…

Tossing Salt Presents:
Ultimate Wrestling Q&A
X-Pac, The Nature Boy, Toni Storm, Hook & More
December 30, 2021
DougMaynard.com

Greetings and welcome to Thursday morning, the final Thursday of the year for 2021. And that means absolutely nothing, does it? Well, it does imply one thing. In just a few hours, the whole new year/new beginning stuff begins and what that means for this site, I’ll let you know later. For now, we’re talking pro wrestling. It’s the Ultimate Wrestling Q&A and it starts right now.

Sean Waltman (X-Pac) announced that he’s been medically cleared to return to the ring and wrestle. Would you like to see X-Pac participating in matches in WWE or AEW?

If X-Pac does wrestle, it won’t be AEW. Pac is loyal to his friend, HHH, and to the WWE. There may be an Indy match here or there, but considering the wording, that he’s medically cleared as opposed to, “I went to the doctor”, makes me think we’re looking at a return to WWE as a surprise in the Royal Rumble and maybe a short program with someone in a WWE ring. If that’s the case, that’s fine and could be entertaining. I can’t really see Waltman making a full-time return, but the occasional match here and there, that would be fun to see.

Superstar Billy Graham recently announced that he’s signed a 5-year “Nostalgia Deal” with WWE. Given Graham’s past criticism of the company, I think it’s kind of odd. Thoughts?

I think someone at WWE, probably named Vince, just feels sorry for Graham, and despite the many times that Graham has trashed WWE and thrown them under the bus, wants to make sure that Graham has a steady paycheck coming in. I can’t picture Graham, given his health problems, making appearances or showing up on TV for any reason. He’ll probably get a t-shirt and maybe an action figure and in return, shut up about the WWE and get a check. That’s the only way this deal makes sense.

Who is the master of the Spine Buster? Arn Anderson or Farooq?

Don’t forget to throw in Triple H’s version into the mix as to who does this move best. And it doesn’t matter who else does the move, but Arn Anderson, aka The Enforcer, does it the best.

If you consider Cesaro the modern-day Rick Steamboat, then who would you say is the modern-day Ray “The Crippler” Stevens?

This one is a harder call because Stevens, when I say him in the Mid-Atlantic region and then later, a last run in the AWA, was in the latter stages of his career, so I missed the best years of The Crippler. Stevens was short, kind of stocky, and yet has the charisma and energy of a man twenty years his junior, and was an absolute legend in that ring, a classic example of an over-achiever that far exceeds the sum of his parts. When I try to think of who, in today’s modern era of wrestling, reminds me the most of Stevens in terms of ability and persona, it’s a tough call. The first name that comes to mind honestly is CM Punk, but I think that Stevens was a better, more well-rounded wrestler. Punk is a better promo, but the attitudes and some aspects of their styles, at least from what I remember, are pretty similiar.

Should Hook have a manager and would you like to see all the AEW managers trying to “recruit him”?

Who else remembers when Randy Savage showed up in the WWF and all of the managers tried to recruit him, only for Savage to introduce an unknown in Miss Elizabeth as his manager. I’d love to see an angle of sorts with Hook, having the managers like Tully, Arn, Vickie, Matt Hardy, Jake Roberts, Dan Lambert, Brandi Rhodes, QT Marshall, and even his father, Taz, all attempting to have Hook give them control of his career, only for Hook to no-sell all of them and walk away, only to eventually show up with either an unknown or someone who is a legend and makes sense but is totally unexpected, as his manager and spokesperson, his Advocate if you will. Some names that come to mind for this role, just off the top of my head, include former AWA/WWE Women’s Champion Madusa, former NWA Champion Dan Severn, Raven, or Kurt Angle. But make it a story as WWE did with Randy and Liz. It would be good TV.

Would you like to see AJ Lee return to the ring and team with husband CM Punk? Just imagine Punk and Lee versus Britt Baker and Adam Cole.

Yes, I would like to see that happen and to see AJ return to the ring if she’s healthy enough and can do so without putting her health at risk. I’d like to see it and maybe we’ll get a cameo or something at some point, but from what I understand, her career as a writer is doing well, not to mention her role with Women of Wrestling as an executive producer, would probably prevent her from returning full time to an in=ring career. It would be nice to see AJ back for one more match, and if it was teaming with her husband against Britt Baker and Adam Cole, so be it. Even better.

So far in wrestling, there have been several “Nature Boys” with Buddy Rogers, Ric Flair, Roger Kirby, and Buddy Landell all sharing the name. Does wrestling need a new Nature Boy and if so, who?

Don’t forget the “Black Nature Boy” Scoot Andrews, not to mention Chick Donavan, used the nickname briefly for a few matches in the latter part of his career. So do we need a new “Nature Boy” in wrestling now? If someone did try to use that nickname, Ric Flair would probably try to sue them. He’s gotten crazy like that in the past few years. Anything for publicity and a buck. Right now, it would probably be better to just leave that name with the past stars and not for anyone new to try to take up the stylin’ and profiling gimmick. I can’t think of anyone off the top of my head currently in pro wrestling that would be able to make it work and make it their own. The comparisons to Flair would hurt more than help any fledgling career. Maybe later on, but for now, no new Nature Boys. Woooo!

Wahoo McDaniel versus Chris Jericho. Who wins?

Talk about a major contrast in styles and eras of pro wrestling. Jericho is the consummate sports entertainer and puts on a great match. Wahoo was just a tough-as-nails pro wrestler who would systematically beat the hell out of his opponent with the chops and it wasn’t pretty, but it worked. For this match, I think Wahoo would dominate most of the match, leave Jericho’s chest blistered and red, and make Jericho’s face a crimson mask, but Jericho would do something sneaky and steal the pin to win the match. And then, after the match, Wahoo would lay Chris out to make the fans happy and get some revenge. Jericho wins the battle, but Wahoo comes back to win the war.

Thoughts on Toni Storm asking for and being released by WWE?

The details as to why Storm asked for a release, just a few nights after wrestling Charlotte on Smackdown, haven’t been released yet, so why she decided to leave is anyone’s guess. It’s surprising, but I think I predicted something like this a few days ago. Actually, I said that Storm would work a program with Flair, lose, get a small push, and then be lost in the shuffle, spending more nights in catering than in the ring working matches that mean anything. If I didn’t actually say that, I was thinking it anyhow. My guess is that she’s looking at the big picture of things and what a future in the WWE as just another face would mean and wants more. She’s been on the main roster for nearly six months and hasn’t been used for anything meaningful until this angle with Flair, one that she’s destined to lose. For the short term, it’s an odd business decision, but I can’t say I blame her at all for wanting more in her career. Best of luck and good wishes to her.

And there you go. My thanks for reading. Comments, thoughts, and any questions you may have, please give me a shout and we’ll chat. Until the next time, take care of yourself and stay safe. I’ll see you at the matches.

Ubuntu!

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