Raw Rewind: 21 July 1997

Craig Wilson

Raw Is War Logo (1998)

Last week on #Rawrewind we saw Stone Cold Steve Austin and Dude Love crowned the new WWF tag team champions.

This week The Hart Foundation will face Stone Cold, Shawn Michaels and The Undertaker in a flag match. Elsewhere, The New Blacjacks will face both The Headbangers and The Godwinns in a triple threat tag match and Vader will face Ken Shamrock.

All the previous Raw Rewinds can be located here.

Champion Roll Call:

WWF Champion: The Undertaker
WWF Intercontinental Champion: Owen Hart
WWF Tag Team Champions: Stone Cold Steve Austin & Dude Love
WWF European Champion: The British Bulldog
Continue reading

Sunday Sermon: WCW Biggest Mistakes

Jamie Lithgow, James Giles, Ashlee Figiel, Craig Wilson & Brian Damage

David Arquette wins the WCW title (Image courtesy of WWE.com)

David Arquette wins the WCW title (Image courtesy of WWE.com)

With the recent release of the War Games DVD we are in a bit of a WCW mood this week. Most of the old War Games matches are fondly remembered, and it’s fair to say that a good portion of wrestling fans that have seen one would be eager to see WWE revive the two ring spectacular. However, this is one of WCW’s success stories, and we’re not interested in those today. WCW had a couple of fantastic years with some genuine success stories, but they also made some monumental mistakes. Today Jamie Lithgow, James Giles, Ashlee Figiel, Craig Wilson and Brian Damage discuss what they feel were WCW’s biggest blunders… Continue reading

This Week In Wrestling

Craig Wilson and Jamie Lithgow

Cody Rhodes has the makings of a star but the 'tache needs to go (Image courtesy of allwrestlingnews.com)

Cody Rhodes has the makings of a star but the ‘tache needs to go (Image courtesy of allwrestlingnews.com)

I have to say that Money in the Bank was a pretty solid PPV. The outcome of both ladder matches surprised me. I’d though Cesaro or Swagger was the likely winner of the World Heavyweight Championship contact with Bryan an almost certainty to win the WWE title contact. Instead it was Damien Sandow and Randy Orton respectively.

Sandow is a very entertaining character that I hope can transition into an upper mid card/main event performer. The split from Cody Rhodes is long overdue and be interesting to see how he does with a more prominent role on TV. As for Orton, with two wellness violations to his name I’d be surprised if he had another run at the top. However, he seems a rejuvenated man after his run with Daniel Bryan and that can only be a good thing. Continue reading

The “F” Word: Pro Wrestling’s Nasty Misconception

Brian Damage

David Schultz, I wouldn't tell him wrestling's fake (image courtesy of profightdb.com)

David Schultz, I wouldn’t tell him wrestling’s fake (image courtesy of profightdb.com)

First off, let me start by saying, I am not, nor have I ever labeled myself an “insider.”  I am just a fan who knows a thing or two about a thing or two. Are there others who like the credo of being called one? Sure. Don’t care…not my thing. I have been blessed with knowing several people in the business both past and present. Many have shared with me stories of things that may or may not have occurred in the sport. If they asked me not to repeat it, I never have, nor will I ever. That still doesn’t make me an insider. An insider to me at least, is someone who is actually in the inside….hence the name. I use to hang out at Gleason’s Gym to watch friends train and wrestle, even took a few bumps, so I can’t call myself a wrestler either. No. I’m just a fan, always have been, always will…nothing more, nothing less. Have a made some money doing this? Yes, still not an insider, just blessed. Continue reading

Top Five Managers in Wrestling

Craig Wilson & Jamie Lithgow

Bobby Heenan leads Andre the Giant to the ring (Image courtesy of wrestlingnewsworld.com)

Bobby Heenan leads Andre the Giant to the ring (Image courtesy of wrestlingnewsworld.com)

For decades managers have been a staple of wrestling. Sometimes covering for a superstar’s inadequacies or drawing heat from the crowd. In the old territories, heel managers would bring various stars into their territory to challenge – ultimately unsuccessfully – the company’s champion. In the 80s we saw J J Dillon and Jim Cornette being the prominent managers in the NWA whilst over in the WWF Bobby Heenan and Jimmy Hart managed various heel superstars with Miss Elizabeth and later on Sensational Sherri accompanying their men to ringside.

While managers may feature less prominently now, they were a memorably part of the boom period of wrestling. In this ‘Top Five’ Craig and Jamie list their top five favourite managers. Continue reading

It’s Not Solie About The Voice

Brian Damage

(Image courtesy of http://pwa.wrestlingx.net)

(Image courtesy of http://pwa.wrestlingx.net)

I don’t expect everybody to agree with everything I say. This may be one of those times. As much as I respect and embrace the rich history of Pro wrestling, at times I do not feel that some of the legends and pioneers were as great as others have made them out to be. Does it mean they are any less important? No. Any less talented? No. It just means that I have seen better, for my own personal taste. That brings me to the man often lauded as the Golden voice of Professional wrestling…Gordon Solie.

I never really understood why he was considered by many, as the greatest announcer in wrestling history. I still don’t. Solie had a knack for being extremely descriptive in calling matches. Some of his quotes are in fact…legendary. When a wrestler would bleed, he’s say, “That man’s face is becoming a crimson mask.” He’d refer to a suplex as a su-play. “It’s turning into a Pier 6 brawl!” “He’s not fast, he’s sudden!”…etc. Many announcers molded their style after Solie. He was a true pioneer, but the best? I disagree. The reason I say this was the lack of inflection in his voice. Gordon’s voice was deep and mellow. For the most part however, always stayed the same monotone way. Continue reading

A Jobber Grows In Brooklyn: Steve Lombardi’s Brawl To Relevancy

Brian Damage

(image courtesy of centpourcentcatch.free.fr)

(image courtesy of centpourcentcatch.free.fr)

Getting into the pro wrestling business is hard enough, what’s harder is sustaining a career and making a mark in it. Especially for the world’s biggest wrestling company, the WWE. What makes Steve Lombardi’s story even more impressive, he did it while wrestling a large chunk as a jobber. Sure, there were other jobbers in the business that had a better skill set like Barry Horowitz. Barry had his semi push in the WWE and for whatever reason, couldn’t completely capitalize on it. In some ways, Steve Lombardi was like a cockroach in a nuclear war, he survived.

Not only did Lombardi survive, he made a nice solid career for himself. So much so, he is still employed by the WWE nearly 30 years later! How did he do it? How has he been able to survive various talent cuts and so forth? In one word, he’s “versatile.” If Jim Hellwig was the WWE’s version of The Ultimate Warrior, Steve Lombardi has been the WWE’s version of The Ultimate Utility man. Continue reading

Raw Rewind 14 July 1997

Craig Wilson

Raw Is War Logo (1998)

This #Rawrewind takes in the Raw is War from July 14 1997. The show is headlined Stone Cold and a mystery partner taking on the winners of the WWF Tag Team Title Tournament, Owen Hart & The British Bulldog, with the tag titles on the line.

Elsewhere, Vader locks up with Flash Funk, Ken Shamrock takes on Jim ‘The Anvil’ Neidhart and LOD are scheduled to face The New Blackjacks as the WWF continue the countdown to Summerslam.

All the previous Raw Rewinds can be located here.

Champion Roll Call:

WWF Champion: The Undertaker
WWF Intercontinental Champion: Owen Hart
WWF Tag Team Champions: Stone Cold Steve Austin & Shawn Michaels
WWF European Champion: The British Bulldog
Continue reading

Money in the Bank 2013 Predictions

Craig Wilson & Jamie Lithgow

(image courtesy of bleacherreport.com)

(image courtesy of bleacherreport.com)

Two guaranteed title shots will be on the line tonight as WWE presents Money in the Bank 2013. Arguably the fifth most important PPV on the WWE calendar takes place tonight with a briefcase containing a WWE title shot and another containing a World Heavyweight Title opportunity will be raised high above the ring with the respective winners being able to cash in those title opportunities at any time.

Elsewhere, The Shield defend their tag titles on the pre-show, Ryback has the chance to end his PPV losing streak against Chris Jericho, The Miz challenges Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel, Divas champion AJ Lee and Kaitlyn continue their feud, World Heavyweight Champion faces Dolph Ziggler and John Cena puts his WWE title on the line against Mark Henry. Here, Craig and Jamie share their predictions and thoughts ahead of the event. Continue reading