May 1, 2005
note - I decide to try to post this like a BLOG...
with all the previous posts on the same page, below the most recent.
- I still believe in AWE's potential, potential.... or their
potential upside, as it were. Even though I may have a few harsh
words for brainchild geniuses and the like, I still would like to
see the project meet it's initial expectations (translation - make
it to air)
Now to start
& honestly… the “rib” thing is fucking
childish. I don’t give a flying fuck if it was Hank Ross,
Ross from "Friends", or David “I fuck
the Spice Girl that you’d like to” Beckham.
Just for clarification,
being a fucking drunken idiot, then saying it was a rib makes you
look like more of a fucking idiot. A rib is something that even
the mark, with time, will find humorous or at least say “you
got me”. I don’t give a shit who it is or how funny
your friends think you are. Instead of saying “you can’t
take a rib” take a step into the real world, admit you made
a mistake and apologize.
The last couple of weeks
were pathetic and had a lot to say about the people who think they’re
in charge of the local wrestling business.
PCW has what
I consider a hot opportunity coming up. Other than Andrew posting
updates and hype there is virtually no mention or open discussion
of it. I honestly think this is the style of show that on a consistent
basis could rebuild the “territory” without
blowing huge amounts of other people’s money. Unfortunately
if Andrew gets anything building people will be destructive and
try to sabotage it.
this is saying “I don’t want the Winnipeg scene
to succeed unless it is me being the savior, because unless it's
me, it is not successful”. I don’t think there
are a lot of people who don’t subscribe to this train of thought
in Winnipeg and it is probably why the business gasps for air most
of the time.
Look at Wayne.
Biting his lip. Selling off RCW to the Prez. Selling his soul, yet
being a part of the CWF during it's
most only successful
period. I'm sure, stripped down and barebones, Wayne realizes that
he played a part in that success (he did) and he's proud of it.
Biding his time? Sure. But it was a helluva run for a short period
of time where there was "cooperation" for the
betterment of the busienss.... well in a sense I guess. Maybe an
Utopian outlook, but for the sake of argument.... Wayne seems to
be able to put personal shit aside for the betterment of the business.
He has done it a few times. He might come out swinging late and
it is usually for a short period and he is always scheming and thinking
of his next move, but he seems like a really good guy for those
few days...And the really cool part is that if he pisses yo off
you can always bring up the hot tub shit and think you have a one-up
Bratt had HTM
doing the rounds – I love this but there
wasn't much of a discussion when there should've been. Good spot
show, good opportunity to follow up and build if it were looked
at as anything other than a spot show/tour. I personally think he
should’ve stuck with the Wayne/AWA/RCW link but it illustrates
the fundamental problem with the local scene.
If it doesn't kill me it will make me stronger. If you
don't get it in this petty little scene, step back for awhile, get
past your gripes and take a long look at how the real world functions
outside you little bubble.
being fucked up the ass a few years ago by people he gave an opportunity
to, without the aid of a personal lubricant, Bob was willing to
help out with a loan for a few dollars and a spot on the show. In
the aftermath, it is apparent he was essentially used and unappreciated
all the while being essential to the show even taking place.
What Bob did
in this situation and what Wayne did with Ernie is what is missing
from the local scene. Unfortunately the aftermath of both situations
is basically a manual on why you shouldn't bother trying to help
will air a PPV at some point in this new century but the original
air dates have come and gone and nothing concrete has been secured.
Even with all the shit flying around I’m still hoping they
pull their grand plan off but it is getting to the point where I'm
not holding my breath for another show or airdate.
a bit for a shitty little Prairie town. More than most places minus
D'Amore and the PPV from Weiss.
When you consider
the population of Winnipeg is about 650,000, Toronto is about 2.5
million, 5 mill if you count the Greater Metropolitan Area, &
Calgary is around 1 million… Van, Montreal, Halifax, etc –
The Peg has quite a bit going on that could be deemed positive on
a per capita basis. Many before have burned the hell out of the
potential crowds with their dick-waving contests over the years.
AWE recently got over 1000 so it’s not all doom & gloom.
It can be a helluva lot better than 20 people at a CC. The potential
is there and could grow with the right plan and vision.
for those involved a simple understanding of the wrestling business
(on their own personal terms of importance) does not suffice and
does not equal a successful business model. It always seems to be
one scam to the next with a pretend long term plan that never comes
to fruition, mainly because nobody seems to have a follow-thru even
though they talk a good game.
about trying to draw thousands, or bringing in a bigger name to
consider yourself successful. It’s like believing that Kroc
started serving a billion burgers 50 years ago from the first McDonalds
restaurant. It is a grand plan but it shows that people involved
in Winnipeg wrestling, generally, are good with their mouths but
lack the business acumen to really make anything fly. It is essentially
“I know the wrestling business better than anyone else
so anything I do is automatically and inheritably better, actually
the best, and it makes better booking sense because I’m a
genius and people who don’t buy into it are stupid mark idiots
who will never work for me because other people won't let them.”
I love when Red on “That 70’s Show” calls
someone a “Dumbass”. It is always so well deserved.
By the way,
no knock meant but comparing AWE to ECW is a fucking joke. Sorry,
I didn't drink the Kool-Aid that day. If the locker room really
buys all that shit, get a compound, get a few wives and start breeding.
Seriously, stop concentrating the effort on working the workers
and get the fucking product out there already.
Two days prior to the big “eat off” at Boogies I was
driving up north Main and spotted the sign with “AWE Star
Rikishi” or whatever on it. The FIRST thing I wondered
was whether there was clearance to use that name. I thought maybe
there was because I remember reading a few guys were being released
and granted permission to use their gimmick name. I then wondered
what they would call him on commentary. I also wondered if “Fatu”
had clearance to use the name “Rikishi” and
even if he did would he have the clearance to use it for a nationally
televised PPV, whether for AWE, TNA or at a car show?
This was all
within a minute or so while stopped at Redwood heading north at
the red light. Why didn’t anyone in the AWE power structure,
immersed in this beyond a red light, not think of this and investigate/get
releases, etc to ensure their interests were looked after? Funny
how bragging rites over potential WWE lawsuits are being used as
a badge of honour. OOO....OOOO... Vince noticed. Now I'm important.
I love when Red on “That 70’s Show” calls
someone a “Dumbass”. It is always so well deserved...
oh yeah, and Mila Kunis is a hot little bitch.
A guy like Foley would draw big. Foley would cost too much at this
point without a human ATM on the roster. Foley is 6’-4”
and will dwarf 99% of the roster of “Peg superstars”
you’d be trying to build. What good is a ref (Foley won't
work) that makes the wrestlers look tres petite? It's the
teacher supervising the playground and make the workers look bush
league. Why don't geniuses book guys who will enhance their roster
AND draw... or push guys who might at the very least fit the role
when standing beside someone of that stature.?
My point to
all this is this:
The most pathetic
thing about the local scene is that with all the positives that
are on the horizon or occurring as you read this, why has all the
focus in the Winnipeg wrestling scene been on childish ribs, bounced
cheques and the same general crap everyone fixates on?
Grande Finale Sidebar du jour: Royal Fork should be a yearly
thing, or at the very least a quarterly event whereby the champ
defends the title. It was the most positive thing to happen to the
local scene in years. Congrats Fairlane. Personally I think it would
be a good idea to do it again if AWE brings in Rikishi "next
time" and have an eat-off between Fairlane & Fatu - purely
for the boys entertainment.
April 17, 2005
about a few things and disenchanted by others. I may be blunt about
stuff today but everything really slides into the shit quick around
I think it
is great that HTM is coming back. Repeat offenders to the local
scene is a good way to build. I also think it’s hilarious
that HTM will be hosting karaoke in Portage. Rikishi----oops I mean
Fatu, in an eating contest – HTM in karaoke….good stuff
guys. It is that type of cross promotion that’s needed to
as to why the initial Doubles show would be run under Wayne’s
banner of AWA/RCW, yet the new poster has “IWM Wrestling”
listed as the promotion. Unless “IMW” is going to be
running regularly, why not use a “brand” that is somewhat
recognized, especially the “AWA” part?
the tourney and I honestly think it could be the bright spot of
the local scene if he can follow up and create a buzz for PCW.
Big shows aside
(because really they are one-offs the way everyone structures them)
- if you look, really look, at who the most successful promotions
were locally (in no particular order) over the last 5 years it would
For a short run at Le Rendezvous.
IWA – TV tapings with high-end production, names, big budgets
and radio show to keep the buzz.
TRCW - Big run at The Palladium
PCW – Big run at The Strat.
Wayne has had
draws of 200+, free or not, but I’m looking at shows in the
350-400+ range and with some degree of longevity.
The point is
that the most successful periods were when a promotion did not have
a hard time outdoing themselves (booking a huge venue and promising
the world) and had an easy time keeping the fans coming back because
the next show was within planning distance for the fans agenda….
a weekly/semi-weekly venue. Thus building the venue, not the product/brand.
What PCW has
with this show is an opportunity to bring some extra people to a
show and possibly interest them enough to bring them back by presenting
a helluva product. The venue holds what could be considered a reasonable
expectation for a string of back-to-back “sell-outs”.
If he can draw 400-500 then maintain a crowd of 300-400 for a few
months, that would be more impressive than any 1000-1500 one shot
draw to me. Who gives a fuck if it’s in a bar?
The key is
to capitalize on the situation and keep all or a portion of those
new patrons. That is something that nobody has seemed to be able
to do locally. I don't think it's a market problem either.
- Bounced cheques
and broken promises will sink you and kill your credibility. Pay
- Lockdown –Six Sides of Steel – Did TNA "steel"
Ernie’s idea of having every match in a cage??? Is the Prez
wielding influence? Will the Main Event see a Kahuna run-in?? Hope
not, but stay tuned.
- Speaking of “The Prez”, I feel bad that Ernie was
being left alone until I brought the CWF up in my first post. Now
he even broke his silence and posted on Manson. There are Ernie
stories being told. Shit is starting to fly….. OH THE GUILT.
- When the hell is the AWE PPV going to air??? This is starting
to look like Ernie’s big TV announcement that we are still
waiting for (37 years later). At least the CWF got to air a pilot...
- Dalton – tell the fucking garage sale story already. It’s
classic and you have that knack that makes it even funnier.
- Congrats to Saxon & Stardom on the upcoming nuptials. I forgot
how classic Brother Midnight was. Someone give this guy a spot!!!
I would love to hear Bro Midnight do the CJOB news some time...
- Saw the AWE puff piece on Shaw... finally. (I'm late bloomer)
What exactly did it do to sell the product? I appreciate the effort
but if you’re gonna have that kind of spot, do something with
it. Stay up late, watch a few infomercials. Learn how to hard sell
things. THEN make your puff piece. Quick reminder – insider
shit does not draw the casual fan because it is not an aspect they
will experience at a live show. It pops the boys and that's about
it. It’s been done in the big time and failed to enhance their
product…. and any “insider crap” at our level
exposes us as incredibly bush.
March 24, 2005
that PCW did not have a show tonight. I understand the mentality
regarding the long weekend but not having to work or go to school
the next day is a great party atmosphere.
motivation is this: I love wrestling and I love to intelligently
discuss all aspects of it. Whether it is laying out a storyline,
laying out a match or discussing how pathetic the big time is due
to the nepotism that spawns triple initials like JJJ or HHH.
never been crazy about Puro but I have the utmost respect for guys
like CyberTranz who seemingly live by it. The one thing I’ve
noticed is that more fans seem to be educated on Japan than most
of the boys. Maybe it’s where we are and the Prairie style
that we’ll probably never escape. I’ve always had a
bone of contention for Meltzer for yapping endlessly about the superiority
of Puroresu. It has taken an extremely stale North American product
for me to truly appreciate that most of what happens here happens
there about ten years before.
I think it
is important to first take an unbiased stance on any view when initially
analyzing it. That is always important in deciding whether your
opinion is based in fact or emotion/opinion. An important part of
debate is to always anticipate your opponents’ response and
be ready with a strong and infallible counter.
I am not interested
in painting someone into a corner. I would like to throw out ideas,
and have people respond. It seems that there is a lot of fire in
discussing things locally but the forums seem to degenerate into
bash fests with the majority of slanderous opinions coming from
anonymous posters. In doing this, I guess I am essentially no better
but I will maintain my anonymity. I am sure that the most of those
locally will eventually figure out who I am. I’m sure there
are some who already have me figured out but I haven’t let
on that I was planning to do this. It’s not an invitation
to play a guessing game. I would prefer you think about what I write
as opposed to being obsessed with who the writer is. I don’t
think I have a superior opinion or a deeper knowledge – I
just care enough to take the time to write it down. I have a life.
I don’t live in my Mom’s basement with a jar of Vaseline
and I just wanted to try this blog thing and this seemed like a
good subject. I got somebody to show me how to update one of these
free sites and away we go ~ ~ ~ ~
If you want
me to stop, ignore me and I’ll go away and start discussing
horticulture and piss off the geeks and old ladies.
I got a few
emails after my inaugural effort and I also followed the threads
on the boards which discussed what I had to say, albeit briefly.
There are a few things I’d like to address as follow-up/clarification.
The first thing
involves a passionate email that came from the only person I guess
I wasn’t fair to. I said at the top of this that I wanted
to present an unbiased opinion and I did not give Ernie Todd a fair
shake. I am publicly apologizing but will take this opportunity
to write what I should have the first time, minus the generalizations.
I made claims
that Ernie’s tours were not what he claims them to be and
questioned his integrity due to what I stated was “empty hype”
or “broken promises”.
To stand back
and look at this subject in an “unbiased” way can be
difficult. Being part of the local picture inevitably means you
at some point get rubbed wrong by Ernie. In fairness, it is his
promotion and his money that is putting you in the ring and whenever
you work at a job you do as the boss asks or you leave. When you
agree to work one of Ernie’s shows, or tours, by now everyone
knows that you are agreeing to do things Ernie’s way. Barebones
- there is nothing wrong with that. If you accept a job at Domo,
you’ll have to wear that ugly fucking jumpsuit. You know it
going in. If you don’t wanna wear it, you don’t work
As a fan, and
we all are or we wouldn’t care, you always want to believe
when a promoter promises a “big/huge announcement”.
Andrew is announcing it for his next show. Bobby said there would
be one at Doubles this Saturday. Ernie has had a string of promises,
hype, or whatever you want to call it that hasn’t panned out.
His TV, Internet TV, Jeff Jarrett, Sabu, Ring Warriors, etc, etc.
With Sabu, I definitely cannot fault Ernie. I know it was in good
faith. When it happened I think it was a pretty big thing all across
North America and gained quite a bit of attention, and not just
from Ernie raising a stink.
think Ernie’s main problem in the past has been that whenever
he had something on the go that could be a “big thing”
he just had a hard time keeping it quiet until all the pieces were
in place. I think Ernie gets excited. I think people get under his
skin. Then he lets the cat out of the bag as an “in-your-face”
type thing and it blows up when it doesn’t pan out.
One thing I
have noticed is that since he has seemingly dropped out of the Internet
bullshit slinging, he seems to be doing well. In his email he corrected
my written blunder. According to Ernie he has been quite busy this
year and the dates listed as “private functions” and
“TBAs” have either happened or are being booked. I am
assuming it to be fact therefore quoting the number of paid shows
at 16 so far should not anger him. I’m not copy/pasting an
If I were to
do some quick math, totally lowballing numbers:
1 show @ $2500
Minus 6 guys@ $100
leave a total of $1900 x 16 = $30,400. Let us not forget that any
and all expenses count toward tax deductions. You can legally deduct
pretty much everything if you have a good accountant. I am also
assuming my numbers are low but this would place the CWF in a pretty
good profit situation. It would also lend a lot of support as to
why Ernie doesn’t bother bringing in names at thousands per
shot. It would also make him, based on revenue, the most successful
The other thing
is that listing things as “private function” might not
be a bad thing. Ernie said it is his client’s wishes but if
it were me, and knowing how everyone locally likes to fuck with
yer stuff, I wouldn’t mind keeping my clientele list private
either. The only thing that sucks about that is I wonder if wrestling
historian extraordinaire Vern May is getting these shows for his
lists? It could end up being a chunk of history that we will forever
be in search of like the Holy Grail. Dan Brown’s offspring
will write a novel about it. Steve Yohe’s great-grandson will
take a trip to Winnipeg and discover a dusty old record book under
an 80’s LJN Hulkster doll in the basement of a rundown bi-level
crackhouse in Central Winnipeg (formerly known as Amber Trails).
For some reason the page listing the Todd-Severn match results is
Ernie has found
his niche. Ernie is the President of the oldest governing body in
wrestling history. I’d like that position even if it doesn’t
mean as much as it once did. I’m honestly a mark for that.
Even if the NWA is nothing close to what it once was there are still
a lot of people who respect its heritage and even many who respect
where it is at now. Ernie has dropped off the radar and seems to
want it that way. I am only assuming this but I will respect it
and I will not discuss the CWF or Ernie Todd unless he re-enters
the local landscape. One thing I will add is that I think when Ernie
throws his 10th anniversary show it would be interesting to see
it be a big deal whether you personally hate Ernie or not.
The other thing
I discussed that got a response was the positioning of Shane Madison
as the “base” of AWE.
The one thing
I will say is that it is too bad that Madison does not want to work
full time. I think he is the perfect guy that once established could
have a good run as a top guy against all sorts of independent talent.
Andrew stated on the PCW website (rib) “Madison is a capable
guy to have as the centre piece of AWE”. I fully agree. My
point was that if they were going to go with Madison, bringing guys
like Mr. Ass to oppose him was not wise due to the size difference.
They should protect him by placing him with guys who make him look
big and guys who can carry him (not meant as a negative) to incredible
matches. I think Madison should be the guy. There are intelligent
ways to establish him as the top guy without facing a “name”.
Since Madison is seemingly not in it for the long haul as an on-air
personality, my point is moot. I wish it wasn't.
Feel free to
email or discuss. Also send me your links if they are not listed.
March 21, 2005 - General Observations and Opinions to start.
Action Wrestling Entertainment PPV taping on 3/11 in Winnipeg drew
1200 fans. The major names on the show were Billy Gunn, Jim Duggan,
Rikishi and Jamie Noble.”
Wrestling Observer Newsletter - March 21, 2005
That was pretty
much the extent of the coverage in the major industry trade. Big
wave in Winnipeg, not much notice given anywhere else. It isn’t
a knock, just an observation and it isn’t surprising as at
this point AWE is pretty low on the food chain of the big picture.
AWE held the
“big show” just over a week ago. I’m taking a
wait and see approach to most of it and wonder how long it will
last and/or what success they will generate. I anticipate at least
two PPVs, maybe four but I think it will end there. I’ll be
pleasantly surprised if I’m wrong. I think it’s great
what they’ve done to this point but little cash flow has a
way of putting an end to this type of venture.
good attendance, name wrestlers and another taping slated for PPV.
The upside would be a local company with national (international?)
exposure. The downside would be a crash and burn with Jeff Dyck
becoming the next “mark” turned promoter while Davidson
putters around looking for his next big idea. That might not be
a bad thing either considering he (Dyck) seemed to have draw more
corporate support than any other wrestling a show in recent memory.
The one thing
missing from local wrestling was someone who understood “business”
not understood “the business”. I think the one thing
that holds wrestling as an industry back is that the people in it
often think they know it all and there is no reason to bring outsiders
in unless they payroll the strokefest. I think “Johnny Millions”
had the right idea. He was seemingly being a dickhead in many ways
but he knew how to pull in the reigns. I think he likely just realized
that at that time the industry was dying. Recently there has been
a slight resurgence (in North America) but nothing that could be
considered a pre-boom.
They seem to
have a good production team in place. Scott has been floating around
for awhile. On the Media Circus website there is a TRCW clip which
looks average, nothing special and I’m not sure where that
was ever used. I don’t recall Bobby being in the running for
TV at anytime unless maybe it was in Brandon. There were shots of
the Bulldog in there so maybe it was Brandon cable? When I first
went to their website there was also a clip for “Warpath Wrestling”.
With that name I assume that is Nelson Mayer, but the clip is gone
for some reason. They also list “Canadian Wrestling Federation-
Live Event Production” so I guess they had some involvement
with the CWF pilot which was pretty good production –wise.
In short, these guys obviously bring the mix of wrestling knowledge
and business knowledge to the table so it should be a good combination.
When it comes
to the actual AWE product, I don’t think Madison is who they
should build around if the first show can be an indication of where
they’re going. It’s not professional jealously. Let
me explain. He is too short to be pushed as a heavyweight if they
are going to bring in names like Billy Gunn to oppose him. Billy
is huge. If Madison is the one, Mike should be thinking about names
that don’t make Madison look like a “white midget”
who happens to have a tan. Mike should pay more attention to the
size of the guys in the ring with Madison. The ref, the ring announcer,
his partners in tags, etc. When they first appeared on A-Channel
back in January Mike looked bigger than Madison.
If AWE is going
to bet the bank on Madison they need to protect him. If he had faced
Noble it would have done more to build him. Noble is probably too
small for the role but Madison would need someone slightly smaller
with the ability to bring a great match out of him. Noble could
likely make him look incredible in the ring, as well as make him
look big. Sure he pulled a great match out of Woody but that match
should’ve opened the card and the night should’ve been
built around Madison vs Gibson. It would’ve done more than
a throw away tag that was disjointed in the whole lead-up &
the tag, I think Spyder’s showing at the AWE show really exposed
him as being all hype. I remember watching him during his hardcore
stage and thinking he was great at what he was doing. Then he started
to become a “serious wrestler” when everyone left for
TRCW and it was pretty obvious then that he had a way to go. But
it was indy and everyone is like that, right? He traveled, got the
big top push from Ernie, lotsa NWA stuff, and was really starting
to look good. This time out he seemed awkward in the ring and you
can tell he hasn’t worked much in the last year or two. Don’t
get me wrong. Spyder is a great guy and seems to (at times) have
a real heart for the business but he needs to take a step back and
maybe get in front of a crowd more often. Given his size & presence
he could be a good nemesis for Madison and wouldn’t break
the bank ifd promoted properly. Spyder would probably be best suited
to have a manager to do the promos and believe it or not I think
Ernie should do that. He’s annoying as hell but he can talk
pretty good. I assume he’d be better if given direction and
a storyline to bite into.
Is Ernie even
promoting anymore? His site always lists shows but it is always
“private functions” or “TBA”. We all know
his ten listed dates on a tour usually turns out to be 2-3 tops.
His site says
he is planning a big 10th anniversary show. I can’t believe
he’s lasted this long but when you consider his top success
period (2000-2001) and where he is now I guess the level he is at
is no surprise. The King of Empty Hype and Broken Promises. Whatever
happened to his TV, or Internet TV? Where are all the TNA stars
he promised? Kind of shows how much the NWA has been diminished
when you think that as President of the NWA he is in the same position
previously held by Geigel, Crockett, Tunney, Muchnick, Von Erich,
& Eddie Graham. Can you imagine Ernie sitting at a table with
these guys and Vince Sr.?
really sure what to think of Wayne. His crew usually consists of
the bottom feeders and under-trained. Add under-aged to that list
and it should round out most of the crew. Right? He gets a good
deal of press which some argue could cause more harm than good to
the business as a whole. If casuals go to see an RCW show they get
treated to a hokey, but usually entertaining show. They must think
that is all there is to wrestling in Winnipeg, right? The quality
of the matches, gear, and just about everything screams bush league
and Wayne excuses these shortcomings by admitting them and not claiming
to be anything other than that. It is really a hard call. RCW shows
are generally fun. The crowd, even when there is press and a couple
hundred people seem to be mostly regulars and kids who wouldn’t
know the difference.
Then vets like
Jewel, Mike Stone, Bobby, etc have no problem throwing themselves
in the mix.
think if Wayne had the resources and crew that PCW or AWE had/have,
he could out-do everyone.
all for now. I haven’t touched on PCW, RME, or a few others
but I will next time.