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Wrestling-Online Newsletter #1518

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  • Colin Vassallo
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    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 8, 2003
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      Exclusive wrestling news being broken around the clock at

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      / _ \| \| | | |_ _| \| | __| Issue #1518
      | (_) | .` | |__ | || .` | _| Saturday February 8th 2003
      \___/|_|\_|____|___|_|\_|___| http://www.wrestling-online.com
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      By Colin Vassallo, [Editor@...]

      Not much going on today. It seems like it will be a slow weekend. See

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      > RATINGS
      - Smackdown! did a 3.3 rating with a 5.0 share, up from last week's 3.2.
      (Ratings compiled by Nielsen Media Research and put online by

      - Earlier this week several industry insiders reported that World
      Wrestling Entertainment were in the race to buy the assets of Extreme
      Championship Wrestling. The ECW case is now in the hands of bankruptcy
      court and sources say the case is nearing its end. Among those assets
      are the very important video library and the ECW name and logo. If the
      McMahon's end up buying those assets they would have in their possession
      the largest wrestling video library in the history of this sport with
      NWA/WCW, ECW and WWF/E footage. Sources are saying the deal would be in
      the range of around $1.5 million plus other fees to ECW creditors.

      - W-O Newsletter readers Mike Kemp, Jessica S, and 'nick316' attended
      Smackdown! on Tuesday in Philadelphia, PA., and sent in these notes.
      During the second Rock interview with Hogan, Rock messed up part of his
      dialogue and paused for a second realizing the mistake! After cameras
      went off the air, Brock Lesnar started posing to the crowd and later
      Edge joined him for the pose down. Both flexed and danced and the crowd
      seemed to love it.

      - The following tickets went on sale earlier today. Live event at the
      Sovereign Center in Reading, PA., on Saturday March 1st; Live event on
      Sunday March 2nd at the Blue Cross Arena in Rochester, NY.; RAW live in
      Uniondale, NY., on Monday March 3rd at the Nassau Coliseum; Smackdown!
      tapings at the Arena at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, CT., on Tuesday March
      4th; Live event on Saturday March 8th at the Breslin Student Event
      Center in East Lansing, MI.; Smackdown! tapings in Louisville, KY., on
      Tuesday March 18th at the Freedom Hall. For more information call the
      arena box office.

      - W-O Newsletter reader Erik Roth sent in word that this year's
      Unforgiven pay-per-view will be taking place in Philadelphia, PA., at
      the First Union Center, the site of this week's Smackdown! The event is
      on the 21st of September. Tickets on sale in August.


      >> KNIVES OUT
      By Ian Hamilton, [ian.hamilton@...]

      Welcome to the thirtieth issue of Knives Out. Man, I can't believe how
      quickly these last seven months have flown over. Still, there'll be no
      time to reminisce until I reach the big 5-0, sometime in June. Hey,
      probably line up with WWE Insurrextion, when they finally get around to
      sorting it out!

      I'll start off with the Jerry Lawler book review (read: summary).
      Compared to the Hulk Hogan book, Lawler comes across as a more honest
      person than the Hulkster in his book. Starting off with his earlier
      memories of wrestling, when his artwork were shown on TV, Lawler tells
      us about how he worked through the wrestling business, eventually
      getting on TV next to Lance Wright as a wrestler, not as an artist.

      Going through Lawler's career in Memphis, we get the usual stories about
      the pranks that Lawler pulled (including a good one when he baited
      truckers on CB radios; unfortunately that ended up with a tragic ending
      with the death of one of Lawler's best friends).

      Jerry also goes a bit more in-depth about his firing from the WWF, and
      his split from "The Kat". Interestingly, Lawler never did name the man
      that Stacy left him for (although I'm 99% sure it was one of the two
      Dupp "twins").

      Anyway, without going into too much spoilerific detail, I'd say that
      this was one of the WWE's better books - up there with Foley's two
      efforts. If you're interested in the King, get the book; you'll not
      regret it.

      A bonus this week. the Best of Confidential DVD landed through my door
      last weekend, and I managed to get my first look at the WWE's "behind
      the scenes" show.

      Sticking the DVD into my DVD player, I was greeted by a bunch of
      annoying WWE trailers, which seem to have crept into their latest DVD
      releases (the Survivor Series 2002 disc has them as well). You can't
      skip them, and if the trailers weren't for the Divas Undressed DVD, I'd
      be complaining a lot more than I am now!

      Once you get past the four minute trailers, we are taken to the WWE
      studios for the show. Fronted by Gene Okerlund, the DVD contains 18 of
      Confidential's best segments in it's early history. We start off with
      the return of Eric Bischoff to wrestling; or to be more precise, Eric
      Bischoff joining the WWE. Opening with a potted history of the WWE/WCW
      Monday Night wars - we cut to Raw on July 15th, 2002, when Eric Bischoff
      walked out as the new Raw GM (strange, how they didn't show Bischoff
      walking onto a Booker T promo moments earlier.)

      After that, we're greeted with THAT Stone Cold article. You know, the
      one where Jim Ross and Vince McMahon p*ss on Austin after he walked out?
      Man, that's bad timing - re-releasing the Austin burial just when he's

      Then we're taken to Kurt Angle's Olympic training - including his first
      free-style work out since his gold medal winning performance back in
      1996. After a pointless hoops competition, we have a series of "tribute"
      segments - with the British Bulldog, "Superfly" Jimmy Snuka and Bobby
      Heenan being captured. Sadly, it looks like only Snuka's segment escaped
      without any cuts - as the Bulldog and Heenan footage looks clipped (and
      that's from someone who's never seen Confidential before!)

      Onto the fun stuff - remember DX invading Nitro in Norfolk, VA? The
      DVD's got that segment. and interviews with Billy Gunn, HHH and (what
      should read, former WWE superstar) X-Pac.

      That's followed up with the "demise of WCW", and a brief history of the
      WCW title - including some positive words towards the likes of Sting and
      Goldberg. When business is bad, I guess you won't want to burn any
      bridges to those who could be your saviour, huh?

      We then dip into some personal lives. Starting off with William Regal's
      reptiles, including a good parody of the Raw title sequences, promoting
      a "fight" between two of his lizards. Now comes the "cover feature" -
      the tour of Trish Stratus' house. I thought this was kinda disappointing
      - bear in mind what the WWE could have done with this, and I reckon it
      was nothing more than a hyped up filler segment. (which is probably what
      the WWE think too - given that we've not seen many other features like
      this since the Trish one debuted)

      Back from the homes, we get the family history of Randy Orton, and
      Rikishi (so that's why he wanted all those tickets for the San Francisco
      house show!) Stopping off at the world's oldest wrestling fan and Booker
      meeting with Levon Kirkland (an American football player who used the
      Spinaroonie as a celebration - hey, why doesn't Booker go and see Trevor
      Benjamin? He got fined for using the Spinaroonie to celebrate a goal
      this season!), we finally get to Montreal.

      This was the first time I'd seen this segment, and it was an eye opener.
      I'd heard the reports about it, but to me, it only makes the WWE come
      off worse in all of it. I know hindsight is a good thing, but given that
      WCW went down the drain at the end, would it really have shattered the
      WWF to have let Bischoff announce that Bret was going to WCW? If
      anything, Vince should have done something like a double-pin draw to end
      the PPV, so Bischoff couldn't announce anything for sure.

      Still, a good DVD - especially for those of us who've not seen
      Confidential before!

      From the file marked "we've got some famous people over here".
      t.A.T.u.'s album, "200km/h in the Wrong Lane" was written by Trevor
      Horn. who comes from a small town called Hetton, near Sunderland. Heck,
      I live a matter of miles from there - maybe I'll be the next famous guy
      to come from this area!

      Now onto what you really wanted to see (!). Raw and SmackDown thoughts.

      Man, the Raw rating really suffered with last week's tease of Stone
      Cold. Losing a whopping 0.7, the failure to deliver Austin last week
      produced a big dent in this week's rating - thank God there's only a
      week of TV left until No Way Out.

      Was this week's WWE TV angle rehash central? We had Eric Bischoff
      walking through bars in Texas (instead of Vince McMahon). Spanky
      streaking on TV (instead of Mideon). next week, Spanky screws a roast
      chicken live on

      So the new Horsemen will be called "Evolution". Can you smell the
      indifference there? Just use the Horsemen name goddamnit - you've go the
      rights to do it (when you bought WCW). It's sad to see that the best
      of the group never even got a chance to speak. Now that Gene Okerlund's
      signed a new deal (which will see him return to PROPER WWE TV), we may
      finally see the returns of "Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeean! WHOO!

      What sort of angle is Jeff Hardy playing? A heel who screws up? Now
      THAT'S punishment for showing up late. Forget the meaningless jobs to
      the Big Show - having a character that's doomed from the start is the
      punishment for the lesser Hardy Boy.

      Speaking of doomed - stop putting D'Lo in the semi-final segment of the
      show. As much as I'm "Down With The Brown", D'Lo isn't nearly as over as
      you need to be to hold the semi-final slot, and ramming him down our
      throats in that segment will only serve to hinder D'Lo's progress. No
      matter how many managers or old taunts you give him.

      Note to WWE: Stop using the "this isn't a part of the show" tone of
      voice. I watched Over The Edge 1999 earlier this week, and the whole
      thing seemed real because we'd never heard JR (or Jerry Lawler for that
      matter) look as solemn as they did on air that night. Keep repeating
      that (Chyna, Stacy Keibler, Goldust.) and we'll not believe you next
      time it happens for real. Maybe someone should give Gewirtz a copy of
      "The Boy Who Cried Wolf"?

      The less said about SmackDown, the better. I haven't caught all of the
      show yet, but the sight of Spanky streaking is more than enough to put
      me watching SmackDown this week!

      For those of you wondering - the No Way Out PPV theme is called "Bring
      Me To Life" by Evanescence. It's from the soundtrack to the DareDevil
      film (cheers to our editor for giving me the sample and the shortlist of
      songs - after he heard it on the Tough Enough 3 final show a few weeks

      Right, that's me nearly done for another week. I should be back next
      week, with a whole new format to this column. Gone are the random
      thoughts, in are clear, organised arguments (in theory). In the
      meantime, if you want to find out more about the only team to score four
      goals and lose a match (losing 3-1, with three own goals and a penalty
      kick), visit www.onesunderland.com

      Last week's lyric was Default's "Wasting My Time" (from their "The
      Fallout" album). This week's lyric is a little harder, if only because I
      needed a few plays to decipher the words. Don't e-mail me the answers,
      again, I'll print it in next week's column: "sing a song about myself,
      keep singing a song about myself"


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