The v2 Brainbuster - August edition

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The v2 Brainbuster - August edition

Post by Adam D on Mon 10 Aug 2015, 1:29 pm

Welcome back to another slice of the v2wrestling communities brain! Each month, we ask contributors to our sites and partner sites to answer several questions about what is going on in the wacky world of wrestling at the moment. 

This month, we have asked 6 people their thoughts on Hogan, WWE, TNA, GWF and the indies.

JSO (JS) - Editor of TNAsylum.net
Chris Lapping (CL) - Head of football on v2journal
Liverbnz (Liver) - Long time poster on 606v2.com wrestling section
Richard Hudson (RH) - Lover of all things ginger and team member of the v2 wrestling podcast
Chris Wilkerson (CW) - v2 wrestling podcast contributor and highly volatile temperament 
Paul Hinton - v2 wrestling podcaster and ice hockey fan
Raven Effect - contributor to TNAsylum.net

You can read the answers below:

Was WWE right to erase the memory of Hulk Hogan?

(CW) I understand why they have done it and think it was the correct move for themselves as a business. I know our venerable old pal Gavin has basically just laughed at the big, bad wolf WWE reacting to someone else's racism given their history, but with the social problems and the social media reaction to them in America you cannot be seen to even give an inch against what we all know is the right view. 

Personally, I feel that a man in the depths of addiction and depression can be considered to be acting completely out of character in a lot of moments, and they should be given some slack if they show sorrow and understanding of their mistakes. I don't think he's a racist, so I would hope this isn't a permanent solution by WWE. But with #blacklivesmatter etc WWE cannot be standing with a man who has just had such views exposed.

(PH) I agree with not using his image on shows and their website. Especially in the short term, he has been shown up as a racist and I doubt any company would want to be associated with that. However, I think to 'Benoit' him would be too far and probably unmanageable, he is still the biggest star in wrestling history, erasing him would either be impossible or mean ignoring a lot of Wrestlemanias!

(RH) No. The guy's a douchebag certainly, but in the cold light of day his crime is that of having a personal opinion. A personal opinion rightly outdated in modern society but a private conversation airing his views should not hold him in the same light with the higher powers of WWE as someone who murdered his own family. Stone Cold Steve Austin was convicted of domestic abuse, Lez Luger battered Miss Elizabeth only a couple of week before she was found dead of an overdose in their

home, Tazz has been convicted of exposing himself to underage girls, MVP spent time in jail for kidnapping, Booker T was in jail for 2 sets of aggravated robberies. None of these wrestlers though are banished from WWE, they did their time for their crime in most cases, Hogan should be allowed to make a public apology on WWE tv, explain he's let his fans and himself down and then move on.

(JS) That’s hard to say. We can argue whether it’s right or wrong, but at the end of the day WWE made their choice and it is what it is. Personally, I think it’s a little extreme. Did Hogan deserve to get fired? Yes. But that doesn’t mean they should erase his memory like they did with Chris Benoit. No matter how tarnished his reputation is, Hogan will always be synonymous with the rise and popularity of mainstream wrestling. All I can say is that time heals wounds, so we’ll see what happens.

(Liver) “I am a Real American, intolerant of different men”. Just an idea for his new theme. TNA will probably run with it. Kidding! 

Seriously, I think they were right to sack him yes. You can argue the toss about whether it was a private conversation or not, but the fact is he said those things and now he has to pay the consequences. He has lost the right to earn money from his public image now. And the WWE has every right to protect themselves. I think his images will reappear on WWE TV eventually (how can the Andre slam ever be erased?) but him, in person, I’m not so sure. What would have been interesting is how WWE would have reacted if you replaced Hulk Hogan with John Cena in this scenario...

(CL) Hulkamania died in 1994 when he joined WCW for me as I was on team WWF and felt almost betray as a kid that he joined the enemy. It’s tragic how he gets wheeled out when rating are low and he can’t remember his lines. Also his private life has been a mess for the last 10 years, I think it was only a matter of time before he said or done something stupid. You can’t make comments like that these days and WWE has its share price to think about now as well. So yes, The E has every right to distance themselves from Hogan.
(Raven) Absolutely not; We live in an unbelievably sensitive society where literally anyone can and will get offended by anything in 2015. That said, what Hulk Hogan said was very wrong and legitimately offensive to a lot of people and not just black people. As far as firing the guy or not promoting him then WWE is completely justified. But, they're erasing him from memory like Chris Benoit.

 Chris Benoit lost his mind due to personal choices mixed with the stress and lifestyle of the wrestling business, and murdered his wife and child then killed himself. The Benoit tragedy exposed many of the shady business practices, the liefstyle of pro-wrestlers for so many years and just overall Frak up things that Vince and WWE have done (and that's only just a small handful of WWE's dastardly deeds that were exposed) and brought a huge backlash on WWE. On the other hand, Hulk Hogan said some offensive words about a race of people, and one homophobic slur. Words from one man are being treated the same way as murder from the WWE.

Hogan's comments were also from ten years ago. While the 'n-word' was never tolerated coming from a white person's mouth, ten years ago there were multiple homophobic slurs that were honestly accepted at that time that are not today. Now, I don't believe that Hogan was just having a bad day, week, etc. and just took it out on people not thinking clearly, the phone call with his son and the ignorant Poopie he was saying over the phone ruled that out for me. The thing is, and I may be wrong, but one of the politically correct movement's primary goals is to persuade those who are racist, bigoted, homophobic, intolerant, etc. to become tolerant, and accepting of everyone, and to end the hate. While it doesn't help his cause that Hogan just doesn't seem to understand what he did wrong; it's funny and predictable that no one wants to ask or see if he has changed as a person over the past ten years, but just want to crucify the guy.

The thing that bothers me the most is the extreme hypocrisy from the WWE in this situation. Not on TV, there's the recent story from Jim Ross about convincing Vince to hire Gail Kim which was racist on Vince's end; there is a documented story about Vince using a duragatory term with Carlito when discussing what he expected of him as a character. Then, there has been plenty of racism on-screen from the WWE. I watched WWF/E since the late 80's and watched until September of 2012, and saw tons of it. For one, there has never been one single black WWE champion (no The Rock does not count), Virgil, Saba Simba, Head Shrinkers (and basically every samoan tag team until the late 200's), Cryme Tyme, Mexicools, Camacho, and I could continue to go on. 

The Ultimate Warrior is immortalized and mentioned plenty all over WWE, but he had said multiple anti-homosexual (and I believe racist, but I'm not being quoted for it) comments and that was less than ten years ago.

The fact is Hulk Hogan is the biggest name in the history of pro-wrestling/sports entertainment. He basically made pro-wrestling popular and a household name itself as an industry, not once but twice for two different organizations. Hulk Hogan made the WWF every bit as much as Vince McMahon and the WWF made Hulk Hogan. To attempt to erase they guy from their history entirely is ludicrous.

How do you see the relationship between GFW and TNA playing out?

(CW)I'd hope TNA is coming to an end. I don't think its a healthy environment for its employees, and I don't think it does the industry any benefit. As has been said, careers have generally been far improved in quick fashion for anyone with talent. 

GFW may have tainted itself irreversibly by buddying up with TNA. The stain remains.

(PH) I think it will be an ongoing thing, where there is talent shared and the occasional cross over story, but no different to the plans GFW have with other promotions. I am hoping that the resolution of the storyline at the recent tapings is the end of that particular angle though as it is unlikely to benefit either company. 

(RH) Hopefully in the death of both companies tbh. Yes I'm sure I'll get replies of 'waah waah waah, how selfish, these poor wrestlers jobs etc', frankly TNA and JJ have been given countless chances, far too many that they should have and they just fail to learn from their mistakes. As shown by those that have decided to walk away from the company that bled TNA such as AJ and Joe it's actually been a blessing in disguise for them as it's revitalised what were careers going nowhere.

(JS) So far, we do know that TNA and GFW have a working relationship. We’ve seen Jeff Jarrett return to Impact, we’ve seen Bobby Roode and Eric Young appear on GFW shows, and I’m sure we’ll see a lot more cross promotion between both companies very soon. Honestly, I think this is nothing more than a simple talent exchange. Everybody seems to speculate that GFW will merge with TNA, but I don’t think that’s the mindset for Jeff Jarrett and Dixie Carter. The bottom line: GFW needs exposure and star power, while TNA needs new talent and fresh matchups. It’s the smart thing to do, and I think both sides will get what they want (at least for the duration of their partnership).

(Liver) I think it’s a great idea as it gives both companies an opportunity to introduce new feuds as their rosters are immediately expanded. I’m not sure of the logistics of it and it seems from the outside quite a difficult thing to manage but if it works fair play to them. TNA really do need to do something different (and sort out their TV scheduling) and not just be WWE-lite because right now WWE are WWE-lite so it would be nice to have the full fat something for a change. Hopefully they make a better fist of the inter-promotional arrangement than WWE ever did with WCW/ECW and RAW/Smackdown. 

(CL) I think TNA is a dead brand, I don’t follow to close anymore. Think GFW is an interesting concept from what I’ve heard from Jeff Jarrett in various interviews. If I was Jarrett, I’d tried and merge the shows and get the X-division back to its former glories.

(Raven) Well, after reading the spoilers I think the question is answered. I'm not going to write what happens for fear that someone reading this answer may get something ruined for them that they are trying to avoid finding out about. 

As a loyal and die-hard TNA guy (and it's really hard to be right now, and seems to be getting harder to be), it's sad to say and admit that I think that TNA needs GFW more than GFW needs them due to the lack of talent TNA now has on their depleted roster, and how much the leadership and management of Jarrett and D'Amore seems needed in TNA. So,  I can tell you what I wish for and hope happens. 

I wish that they would merge the two companies or have them be sibling promotions. I think a real legitimate invasion angle with two actual companies working together (or even more of a rivalry opposed to an invasion) could be great compelling TV for at minimum one year and possibly maxing out at two. I think that talent sharing and both companies using talents from the other company on their shows would be incredibly beneficial and keeps talents and shows fresh. I think there is potential to do multiple TNA vs GFW shows and events relevant to storylines. I think the talent exchange and continuous cross-promotional shows can create a real buzz, some positive vibes for both companies, and establish GFW while re-establishing TNA. If this partnership only lasts for a few weeks I think it's a huge letdown and a lost opportunity that is inexcusable to lose.

Who is the most entertaining character in WWE at the moment?

(CW)The New Day or Kevin Owens. Cesaro has nearly got it, or at least WWE has got closer to understanding how to showcase him, but the other two are perfect characters in current mood. Lesnar and Undertaker almost don't count for me as they are such legends, two of the best of all time, but not full-time. 

(PH) Paul Heyman - he has consistently been the best thing in wrestling for a long time and doesn't show any signs of stopping!

(RH) Heyman. He sits aloft a pedestal with no pretenders to his throne. After that then it's the usual collective of Ambrose, Rollins, Owens etc though want to give shout outs to Prime Time Players, Rusev, Enzo Amore & Tyler Breeze.

(JS) I really don’t know. There’s nothing entertaining about WWE besides a few Network specials and NXT every now and then. That being said, one of my favorites is Finn Balor. I’ve been a fan of his work since his time in New Japan, and his “Demon” character in NXT is very awe-inspiring in my opinion. As if the body paint isn’t cool, his wrestling ability speaks for itself.  Also, I love the larger-than-life atmosphere when he does his entrance. At a time when WWE puts out a lame product, I could watch Balor wrestle against anyone on that roster and not be bored.

(Liver) I’m not including Brock Lesnar in this as he’s part-time. So...despite the fact he is being woefully booked, it’s probably Seth Rollins. He’s the only real heel on the roster. He doesn’t do things for cheers or cheap pops. Any time there’s a hint of a crowd cheering them he cuts them off. He cheats, he’s cowardly, he’s whiney, he’s weasely looking. What’s to like? Exactly. Now give him some clean wins and show the audience this guy is the real deal. 

(CL) I’ll try and still away from the obvious Paul Heyman, Kevin Owens and Brock road and I go down the tag team route, was really enjoyed the New Mega Powers but obviously that’s over now (Thanx Hogan) – Think the New Day are a lot more entertaining since turning heel 

(Raven) I have not watched WWE since September 2012, and am proud of that fact; however, it does prevent me from providing a legitimate answer. I have watched one show since which was the RAW the night after Elimination Chamber heading in to WrestleMania 30. My friend became a wrestling fan again after WrestleMania 28 and had been telling me how great it was. I suffered through the first hour and a half before stopping it and deleting it from my DVR. JBL's blatant lying about Lesnar's success in the UFC that night had me disgusted from the start.  I still know most of the talents on the roster though, and my first answer would be Christian (WWE has ruined many careers, and misused so many talents, but I think Christian and Raven are the two they probably screwed up the most) but I believe that he is retired, then I'd say Jericho but he is apparently part-time. So, my answer would be Samoa Joe. If Samoa Joe is motivated and doing what he does best then I will take him over anyone on that roster that I know of.

Who is the most entertaining character outside of WWE at the moment?

(CW)The Young Bucks have the most charisma outside WWE. Nakamura has shown a lot, and Pentagon Jr interests. EC3 has a lot of charisma too but feels slightly samey. 

(PH) I only watch TNA occasionally so have a limited pool to choose from. I do find the word entertaining to be at odds with a lot of my experiences when watching TNA, there are so many flaws with the product that I struggle to objectively judge characters. I guess I would have to say EC3, he has managed to not be completely awful against the charisma vacuums of Matt and Jeff Hardy in recent weeks. So that has to give him some points!

(RH) I've not seen a lot of him but what I have seen I love. Shinsuke Nakamura.

(JS) Without question, EC3 is the most entertaining character in all of wrestling. Just watch any of his promos over the past two years. This guy has the charisma to pull off some genuinely funny moments. The Hunt for Willow, Ham Slam, The Wedding Singer, the Barbershop Quartet…. I could go on and on. Even his stuff on Twitter is priceless. He knows how to entertain in any situation, and that’s what I admire about guys like him. EC3 is the man. Did I mention he’s the current, undefeated TNA World Heavyweight Champion?

(liver) Probably AJ Styles run in NJPW champion. Portrayed as a killer given the legitimate injury given to Yoshitatsu following a Styles Clash, he was booked as a heel should be. The run is over now, but he played the role of heel as if it were the 1980s. This is a complete rarity these days, especially in America, so it’s refreshing to see it when it happens. This is without mentioning the quality of his matches which almost go without saying. A near 30 minute match with Kota Ibushi at Invasion Attack in April being the highlight for me. As best paced I’ve seen a wrestling match for some time. HAving said all that, I don't watch NJPW on a regular basis so maybe my more casual viewing has hid the fact that maybe Styles wasn't booked like I've interpreted? If so, apologies.

(CL) I only watch WWE at the moment – does Patrick Lennon count?

(Raven) In my opinion, outside of the WWE, doesn't mean that any talent is not the most entertaining in wrestling at this time. Right now, I think it's hands down EC3. I hate using this term because it is so cliche, but the guy just gets it. He's excelled and exceeded at everything he has been given. He can wrestle, although he's not the best at it by any means, but has still put on some very good matches in his TNA career so far. He has nailed this character, and really evolved himself, and continues to improve. If TNA actually marketed and advertised their brand, and they were on a better network, I think this guy could become a household name. 

Hypothetically, had TNA not flopped during the past five years and knew how to advertise their product they would have a larger audience. If this were the case in reality, and then if history could be changed, and TNA never ruined the rise and momentum of The Pope and let that guy run with all the momentum he was gaining in 2010...by Bound For Glory 2015, EC3 vs The Pope could have been a huge match for this company. Unfortunately, coulda would shoulda but didn't and likely never will.

What is your biggest annoyance in wrestling currently?

(CW)Fear of putting anyone over. Smarks refusing to accept people can lose. The fact internet wrestling fans don't seem to be actual fans. One of those.

(PH) The ability of fans to change storylines. Whilst it is important that WWE listens to

what the fans want, the rise of social media has seen a lot of knee jerk reactions in booking when an attempted angle is not well received. Fans often do not give a wrestler or angle a chance and their initial reaction often results in hastily written changes that don't fit so well. Giving some of these angles a bit more time to grow could see them become a success, or in the worst case give the writers a chance to end or alter it in a more logical manner. 

(RH) Fans that don't invest in storylines for the long-term, that think after 1 week of a plot in which their favourite hasn't won that they're being buried etc. It's a disposable culture, where everyone wants everything immediately. Sure, sometimes they don't get the rub they deserve but not everyone can be in the main event at the same time. I'd love Ambrose to be The Guy in WWE, I'd prefer a

slow burn rise in which he remains there though over a forced push that then fails.

(JS) Honestly, I hate that there is a lack of buzz right now. Gone are the days of the Attitude Era and even the prime years of TNA and ROH. We now live at a time where wrestling is no longer cool or exciting as it once was. That’s not to say all wrestling shows are boring, but there’s nothing that appeals to a broader audience in terms of must-see TV. Of course you have to consider that wrestling is more complicated due to backstage politics, talent contracts and production issues. However, I just wish that we had something amazing going on instead of watching a show for 2-3 hours and forgetting about it the next day.

(Liver) I was gonna say the incongruent booking but I’ve made my points on that elsewhere and at the moment something else is annoying me far more. Stephanie McMahon Lesvesque. The heat sucking vacuum herself. Her latest stunt being to interject herself into the ‘divas revolution’. Name dropped twice on RAW last week and despite being the most powerful woman in wrestling in the last 15 years she has done nothing to enhance the woman’s division. Every wrestler she comes in contact with she emasculates (Rollins and Orton being the most recent). She talks down to every diva (was she on a podium the other week at Battleground?). Good ol’ JR will tell ye she’s the best heel in the business but she never ever puts over her opponent in any way! A heel is there to put the face over JR! She is essentially poison. 

(CL) Boring answer – this pandering to the kids era we are in at the moment, think they could keep RAW for kids then make Smackdown a bit more edgier for the older fan.

(Raven) Any and all things WWE---I will hide my hatred of the WWE out of respect, even though that is actually my most honest answer but here is this:

Off-screen: Dixie Carter and John Gaburick remaining in the positions of power they have in TNA while they continue to tarnish and damage the company; the dominance that WWE has over the entire industry; the hypocrisies of the majority of the IWC.

On-screen: Another trifecta, but these are mainly pertaining to the WWE and these are the main reasons that I stopped watching WWE in 2012 which I felt was one year too late. So, these three annoyances are tied for me:

1. Michael Cole- This guy sucks, and is the worst main commentator in history. He was the main commentator on all WWE programs when I stopped watching, and he just made and makes every match unbearable to listen to. He has dropped JBL and Jerry Lawler down to his level of suck too and that's unfortunate. I will admit to still paying attention to and purchasing WWE's DVD/Blu-Ray releases. So, this past weekend on "The Kliq Rules" I watched the Sting vs Triple H match for the first time, and the commentary on that match had me repulsed before the match even started; this commentary was somehow worse than the corny intro and walkout for Triple H in that match.

2. The frequency of rematches- TNA is pretty damn guilty of this but WWE is the king. There are no more big matches anymore, and it's mainly due to so many rematches. It seems like PPV's can't really have fresh matches because all wrestlers have wrestled each other plenty of times before, especially in WWE. From what I've read and heard from unbiased fans it is the same way it was in 2011 and 2012. Last time I watched it was basically they would have two guys wrestle, have a couple of rematches the next week or two, and then do close to every gimmick match possible before ending the feud. Every feud would have the same guys wrestle each other every week on free TV in some form between PPV's and a bunch of gimmick matches on PPV. The feuds were pointless, and why should anyone care about match # 57 between two people? 

CM Punk got in trouble for Tweeting about the NHL playoffs and not about his PPV match with Kane before he left. I remember getting ridiculed online for typing "why should Punk put over an importance of a match that he's had so many times that it's impossible for it to feel important anymore?" Fast forward and CM Punk is on Colt Cabana's podcast saying the exact same thing. It was at the point where if I had to watch Dolph Ziggler vs Kofi Kingston, John Cena vs Randy Orton or John Cena vs Big Show one more time than I was going to...well I can't think of anything significant enough to say as an analogy but I think my point is made. TNA does this too but nowhere near as much but that will likely change. However, ROH doesn't seem to do this at all but they also have much less TV time to work with.

3. How quickly storylines and angles go through. Storylines in wrestling seem to have no patience anymore. A lot of the times there is no payoff. Two examples with TNA being The Rising splitting up (which why did one of two factions need to break up in the first place?). The only relevant persona was Galloway. I think Drake had maybe one match, and no established character, and the same with Micah but he was in a couple more matches. I was struggling as to why anyone should care about this. Another one was Magnus and Bram splitting up. Now, these guys are both so damn good that this feud ended up great, but it was too soon, and the two of them literally had no success together at all. I don't even know if they even had more than one or two tag team matches together, if any tag team matches at all.

Who would you book to be the person to take the belt from Seth Rollins and EC3?

(CW)One person? Your grammar! Cesaro or Owens in WWE. Redundancy from EC3? If not, it needs to be a face who is built up over a very long time. No one currently fits the bill. Grado will be my pick for the hell of it. 

(PH) Whilst I wouldn't like to see it, I think Cena is the only person in a position to take the belt in the short term. Ideally I would like to see them re-build Rollins and him hold the belt for another six months, before dropping the belt ideally to Dean Ambrose.  I've no idea with TNA, I assume that the titles will be decided on a Last Man Under Contract match stipulation!

(RH) I'd like it to be Ambrose but being that they've had rivalries twice now in the past year then it's probably not for the best that they go down that route. I suspect Cena will take it off him who'll then lose it to Sheamus. Sheamus v Cena for the title, we all want to see that don't we. EC3's title will probably end up sold at ComicCon.

(JS) I want to say somebody new will take the belt from Seth Rollins, but given their track record I would not be surprised if WWE goes with John Cena or Randy Orton. I couldn’t care less about WWE’s main event scene, so let’s just leave it at that. On the flip side, I think Drew Galloway will become the next TNA World Champion. Call it a hunch, but I have a feeling that TNA wants to push Drew as their top babyface.  He’s only 30 years old and he always talks about how much he loves wrestling.  On top of that, he’s a well-known international star from his exposure with WWE. I think EC3 needs to have a long reign first (until next year possibly) but after that, I can see Drew being the guy to carry the company into the future.

(Liver) I would start letting Dean Ambrose be himself more rather than this weird parody and build him up to be in a position to take the title from Rollins. How they do that from here I don’t know, but it probably involves Ambrose taking a few months off and Rollins being booked as a bit more than a lucky champ. Then have Ambrose return and take the win after months of Rollins domination – akin to Cena beating JBL for his first title.

As for EC3, this is really difficult for me to answer as I don’t really watch TNA. But, from a business standpoint, the need a champion that draws, or would help to get them a proper TV deal. Someone with a name that people will tune in to watch. Preferably a heel and have him seem unbeatable which people then tune in to see them get beat. Then once that’s in place have one of their own make a name for themselves and beat him. Maybe that’s EC3 again, or Austin Aries or Magnus. 

(CL) Don’t watch TNA are Spud and EC3 still fueding? If so Stud or a proper than Dixie. I keep the title on Seth till Daniel Bryan returns and have DB win the rumble and have DB win Wrestlemania only for Seamus to cash on orders with HHH


(Raven) As I stated, I haven't watched WWE in three years so I cannot give an honest or creible answer, and truthfully, I don't care who does either.

As for EC3, I would have said Austin Aries with absolutely no hesitation but he is no longer with the company. Knowing what I know right now about what the main event at Bound For Glory is, I pray that TNA doesn't have EC3's streak and title reign end at BFG. 

Sadly, there is only two guys on TNA's current roster that have any business dethroning EC3, and that is Bobby Roode and Jeff Hardy. They are the only two established enough remaining on the roster with a few good years left in them. Angle is likely wrestling in his final year, or one following. Plus, the guy keeps putting over WWE and mentioning how much he wants to go back to them, so he should not get that accomplishment as all.

However, here are the names of guys on the roster I feel are worthy in the future IF they are booked properly:

1. The Pope- Clearly there's a lot to this. TNA would need to convince him to come out of retirment and out of the booth. They'd have to give him plenty of talk time and promo's as well. I've been very vocal about this guy being the biggest ball that TNA ever dropped. If this guy still has the fire he did back in 2010, then I feel if TNA used him the way that were supposed to back in 2010 until his title match with AJ Styles at LockDown, that he would be one of the top stars of the company without a doubt. 

2. Davey Richards- With Aries gone, I think Davey is without a doubt the most talented in-ring wrestler in the company right now. I'd love for TNA to keep The Wolves together but also establish them as singles stars. I would love it if TNA pushed this guy and at Bound For Glory 2016 he ends up beating EC3 and winning the TNA world championship.

3. Bram- Nothing about this guy screams for a babyface push, but I think EC3 will eventually become a face in the future despite me hating the thought of it. Bram is awesome, and a great character but doesn't have a whole lot of depth. I think EC3, The Wolves and Bram are clearly the future of TNA more than anyone right now, and Bram needs to continue to be pushed very strong. I believe Bram has gold in his future if TNA doesn't screw it up for him.

4. Drew Galloway- I want to stress how much this would be for the future, like a year away. I like Galloway a lot but right now he is not someone who shoud be world champion nor end this streak. Galloway is clearly a lot better than the jobber that WWE made him out to be, but he needs a strong showing and the proper amount of time to wash away that jobber reputation. Galloway has been good in TNA but certainly hasn't been outstanding, nor does he have much depth to his character for him to breakout and become champion. For a jobber in WWE for a couple of years to become TNA champion in less than a year just completely degrades the TNA roster and brand.

5. Tomasso Ciampa- Here's the wild card. If TNA is actually able to sign this guy (thankfully WWE is too dumb to want him) than they're luckier than they have been in years. This guy is great in the ring, and plays the loose cannon role very well. He can take the mentally unstable face persona that EY did last year but actually make it work properly and come off as a psycho who can intimidate the hell out of EC3.


Last edited by Adam D on Tue 11 Aug 2015, 8:57 am; edited 2 times in total

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Re: The v2 Brainbuster - August edition

Post by Prometheus on Mon 10 Aug 2015, 2:36 pm

That's a great set of questions and answers.

Hogan
I think what is most interesting to me is that I've heard several commentators say that it was heavily rumoured what was in these 8 year old tapes. So, a question has to be why WWE brought him in, as if the rumours were out they really should have been aware of them too.

I think WWE are lucky that this is wrestling and the media really isn't that interested in it, as they have been able to do their PR almost overnight on this.

Also, very lucky that the leak was done to target Hogan, rather than Hogan and WWE. As this coming out on the eve of Mania would have really hit them.

As a public company they didn't have any choice to do what they did when this news was coming out. But they had a choice not to hire Hogan when they must have had an idea what was out there and keep paying him to be an ambassador for the organization until they had to sever links. I think that says a lot about WWE.

GFW / TNA
I don't care about what either organization is doing individually or together until I know its worth investing time in, i.e. each has a solid TV deal.

Most entertaining WWE character
If we are not including Brock because he's part time, I don't think there is anyone who matches Owens. And a lot now depends on how WWE handle that comprehensive loss to Cena.

Most entertaining character outside WWE
I think the contributors are right to go for New Japan stars. I totally get what Liverbnz says about the Styles / Ibushi match. I don't think anyone is telling better stories in the ring whether they have a 12 or 32 minute match than AJ Styles this year.

I'm really surprised that Ricochet isn't mentioned. He's so at the top of his game right now.

Pentagon Jr is a brilliant call. I've only seen his LU work where we can mostly say he's not been handed great stuff, e.g. squash matches, a feud he had to lose against a female and a feud with a retired wrestler of really limited mobility. The fact that he comes out of that looking a million dollars shows what he could do.

Biggest wrestling annoyance
Too many gimmick matches IMO across almost all promotions. Ladders, tables, cages, last man standing, etc. In WWE they struggle to work in the PG presentation. And in all promotions I think they are over-used so they lose their feeling of being special and therefore more intriguing.

Take the belt from Rollins and EC3
I find the TNA one easier to answer and think the same as JSO that Drew Galloway is the best choice.

WWE I really feel has weakened their belt with this Rollins run. I don't know if I care so much who holds it next. I guess its going to be Cena, which I can live with if Rusev and Owens come hard at him after that.
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Re: The v2 Brainbuster - August edition

Post by Samo on Mon 10 Aug 2015, 6:44 pm

Hogan

I dont think he deserved to be Benoit'd. Probably deserved to lose his job and have his contract terminated, but what they've done is said that calling someone a derogatory term is as bad as killing two family members. Also need to bring up the Alberto Del Rio situation - who was fired for standing up against a racist. The whole situation is mental and I think the WWE over-reacted.

GFW/TNA

I think if they go the invasion route then its a lose/lose. Either TNA win and they beat a new promotion - big deal, or they lose and become even more of a joke. Honestly? I think its just a long term plan to rebrand TNA and try and wipe the slate clean.

Most entertaining character

Im not counting Paul Heyman because its difficult to seperate Character from Person. Stardust has delivered two excellent promos since the passing of his father, but he was very stale before then. For fear of sounding like a Mark, I need to give it to KO. The guy is gold, both in the ring and on the mic. Its tough to put it in words without sounding cliche. He has the X factor. I hope him and Cesaro tear the house down when they eventually go at it.

Most entertaining Outside WWE

The Young Bucks have been excellent heels recently, definitely worth a watch. And Grado. Everyone needs more Grado in their life.

Biggest Wrestling Annoyance.

Not too much gimmick matches, but misuse of them. WWE is guilty of throwing stipulations at matches that dont need/deserve it, and its watered down incredible gimmicks like Hell in a Cell and the Elimination Chamber. At the same time, they've also missed golden opportunities to take a feud to 11 by giving it two guys who hate each other the chance to just go mental against one another, but when they do that they can go OTT like with Ambrose vs Wyatt. A good example of proper use would be NXT. By my recollection its only had one No DQ match and the upcoming Ladder match will only be the 2nd in its history, which is impressive for a promotion thats over 5 years old.

Take the belts from Rollins/EC3

If TNA last long enough then Drew Galloway is probably the guy to do it, but I believe EC3 will be the last TNA champion.

I dont know what to make of the Winner Take All stipulation between Rollins and Cena. Cena has been an excellent US title and I dont want it to just fold into the WWE title. The only way out of this is a non-finish, which they could probably afford to do with Lesnar vs Taker being the defacto main event. Screw it, Reigns will take the title.

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Re: The v2 Brainbuster - August edition

Post by Adam D on Tue 11 Aug 2015, 9:01 am

Thanks for all the answers so far - I had a late contributor from TNAsylum who sent me his answers last night which I have added to the OP but here is a summary of his (lengthy!) answers:

Was WWE right to erase the memory of Hulk Hogan?

 Absolutely not; We live in an unbelievably sensitive society where literally anyone can and will get offended by anything in 2015. That said, what Hulk Hogan said was very wrong and legitimately offensive to a lot of people and not just black people. As far as firing the guy or not promoting him then WWE is completely justified. But, they're erasing him from memory like Chris Benoit.
 Chris Benoit lost his mind due to personal choices mixed with the stress and lifestyle of the wrestling business, and murdered his wife and child then killed himself. The Benoit tragedy exposed many of the shady business practices, the liefstyle of pro-wrestlers for so many years and just overall Frak up things that Vince and WWE have done (and that's only just a small handful of WWE's dastardly deeds that were exposed) and brought a huge backlash on WWE. On the other hand, Hulk Hogan said some offensive words about a race of people, and one homophobic slur. Words from one man are being treated the same way as murder from the WWE.

Hogan's comments were also from ten years ago. While the 'n-word' was never tolerated coming from a white person's mouth, ten years ago there were multiple homophobic slurs that were honestly accepted at that time that are not today. Now, I don't believe that Hogan was just having a bad day, week, etc. and just took it out on people not thinking clearly, the phone call with his son and the ignorant Poopie he was saying over the phone ruled that out for me. The thing is, and I may be wrong, but one of the politically correct movement's primary goals is to persuade those who are racist, bigoted, homophobic, intolerant, etc. to become tolerant, and accepting of everyone, and to end the hate. While it doesn't help his cause that Hogan just doesn't seem to understand what he did wrong; it's funny and predictable that no one wants to ask or see if he has changed as a person over the past ten years, but just want to crucify the guy.

The thing that bothers me the most is the extreme hypocrisy from the WWE in this situation. Not on TV, there's the recent story from Jim Ross about convincing Vince to hire Gail Kim which was racist on Vince's end; there is a documented story about Vince using a duragatory term with Carlito when discussing what he expected of him as a character. Then, there has been plenty of racism on-screen from the WWE. I watched WWF/E since the late 80's and watched until September of 2012, and saw tons of it. For one, there has never been one single black WWE champion (no The Rock does not count), Virgil, Saba Simba, Head Shrinkers (and basically every samoan tag team until the late 200's), Cryme Tyme, Mexicools, Camacho, and I could continue to go on.

The Ultimate Warrior is immortalized and mentioned plenty all over WWE, but he had said multiple anti-homosexual (and I believe racist, but I'm not being quoted for it) comments and that was less than ten years ago.

The fact is Hulk Hogan is the biggest name in the history of pro-wrestling/sports entertainment. He basically made pro-wrestling popular and a household name itself as an industry, not once but twice for two different organizations. Hulk Hogan made the WWF every bit as much as Vince McMahon and the WWF made Hulk Hogan. To attempt to erase they guy from their history entirely is ludicrous.

 How do you see the relationship between GFW and TNA playing out?

Well, after reading the spoilers I think the question is answered. I'm not going to write what happens for fear that someone reading this answer may get something ruined for them that they are trying to avoid finding out about.

As a loyal and die-hard TNA guy (and it's really hard to be right now, and seems to be getting harder to be), it's sad to say and admit that I think that TNA needs GFW more than GFW needs them due to the lack of talent TNA now has on their depleted roster, and how much the leadership and management of Jarrett and D'Amore seems needed in TNA. So,  I can tell you what I wish for and hope happens.
I wish that they would merge the two companies or have them be sibling promotions. I think a real legitimate invasion angle with two actual companies working together (or even more of a rivalry opposed to an invasion) could be great compelling TV for at minimum one year and possibly maxing out at two. I think that talent sharing and both companies using talents from the other company on their shows would be incredibly beneficial and keeps talents and shows fresh. I think there is potential to do multiple TNA vs GFW shows and events relevant to storylines. I think the talent exchange and continuous cross-promotional shows can create a real buzz, some positive vibes for both companies, and establish GFW while re-establishing TNA. If this partnership only lasts for a few weeks I think it's a huge letdown and a lost opportunity that is inexcusable to lose.

 Who is the most entertaining character in WWE at the moment?

I have not watched WWE since September 2012, and am proud of that fact; however, it does prevent me from providing a legitimate answer. I have watched one show since which was the RAW the night after Elimination Chamber heading in to WrestleMania 30. My friend became a wrestling fan again after WrestleMania 28 and had been telling me how great it was. I suffered through the first hour and a half before stopping it and deleting it from my DVR. JBL's blatant lying about Lesnar's success in the UFC that night had me disgusted from the start.

I still know most of the talents on the roster though, and my first answer would be Christian (WWE has ruined many careers, and misused so many talents, but I think Christian and Raven are the two they probably screwed up the most) but I believe that he is retired, then I'd say Jericho but he is apparently part-time. So, my answer would be Samoa Joe. If Samoa Joe is motivated and doing what he does best then I will take him over anyone on that roster that I know of.

 Who is the most entertaining character outside of WWE at the moment?

In my opinion, outside of the WWE, doesn't mean that any talent is not the most entertaining in wrestling at this time. Right now, I think it's hands down EC3. I hate using this term because it is so cliche, but the guy just gets it. He's excelled and exceeded at everything he has been given. He can wrestle, although he's not the best at it by any means, but has still put on some very good matches in his TNA career so far. He has nailed this character, and really evolved himself, and continues to improve. If TNA actually marketed and advertised their brand, and they were on a better network, I think this guy could become a household name.
Hypothetically, had TNA not flopped during the past five years and knew how to advertise their product they would have a larger audience. If this were the case in reality, and then if history could be changed, and TNA never ruined the rise and momentum of The Pope and let that guy run with all the momentum he was gaining in 2010...by Bound For Glory 2015, EC3 vs The Pope could have been a huge match for this company. Unfortunately, coulda would shoulda but didn't and likely never will.
 
 What is your biggest annoyance in wrestling currently?

Any and all things WWE---I will hide my hatred of the WWE out of respect, even though that is actually my most honest answer but here is this:
Off-screen: Dixie Carter and John Gaburick remaining in the positions of power they have in TNA while they continue to tarnish and damage the company; the dominance that WWE has over the entire industry; the hypocrisies of the majority of the IWC.

On-screen: Another trifecta, but these are mainly pertaining to the WWE and these are the main reasons that I stopped watching WWE in 2012 which I felt was one year too late. So, these three annoyances are tied for me:
1. Michael Cole- This guy sucks, and is the worst main commentator in history. He was the main commentator on all WWE programs when I stopped watching, and he just made and makes every match unbearable to listen to. He has dropped JBL and Jerry Lawler down to his level of suck too and that's unfortunate. I will admit to still paying attention to and purchasing WWE's DVD/Blu-Ray releases. So, this past weekend on "The Kliq Rules" I watched the Sting vs Triple H match for the first time, and the commentary on that match had me repulsed before the match even started; this commentary was somehow worse than the corny intro and walkout for Triple H in that match.
2. The frequency of rematches- TNA is pretty damn guilty of this but WWE is the king. There are no more big matches anymore, and it's mainly due to so many rematches. It seems like PPV's can't really have fresh matches because all wrestlers have wrestled each other plenty of times before, especially in WWE. From what I've read and heard from unbiased fans it is the same way it was in 2011 and 2012. Last time I watched it was basically they would have two guys wrestle, have a couple of rematches the next week or two, and then do close to every gimmick match possible before ending the feud. Every feud would have the same guys wrestle each other every week on free TV in some form between PPV's and a bunch of gimmick matches on PPV. The feuds were pointless, and why should anyone care about match # 57 between two people?
CM Punk got in trouble for Tweeting about the NHL playoffs and not about his PPV match with Kane before he left. I remember getting ridiculed online for typing "why should Punk put over an importance of a match that he's had so many times that it's impossible for it to feel important anymore?" Fast forward and CM Punk is on Colt Cabana's podcast saying the exact same thing. It was at the point where if I had to watch Dolph Ziggler vs Kofi Kingston, John Cena vs Randy Orton or John Cena vs Big Show one more time than I was going to...well I can't think of anything significant enough to say as an analogy but I think my point is made. TNA does this too but nowhere near as much but that will likely change. However, ROH doesn't seem to do this at all but they also have much less TV time to work with.
3. How quickly storylines and angles go through. Storylines in wrestling seem to have no patience anymore. A lot of the times there is no payoff. Two examples with TNA being The Rising splitting up (which why did one of two factions need to break up in the first place?). The only relevant persona was Galloway. I think Drake had maybe one match, and no established character, and the same with Micah but he was in a couple more matches. I was struggling as to why anyone should care about this. Another one was Magnus and Bram splitting up. Now, these guys are both so damn good that this feud ended up great, but it was too soon, and the two of them literally had no success together at all. I don't even know if they even had more than one or two tag team matches together, if any tag team matches at all.
 
 Who would you book to be the person to take the belt from Seth Rollins and
 EC3?

As I stated, I haven't watched WWE in three years so I cannot give an honest or creible answer, and truthfully, I don't care who does either.

As for EC3, I would have said Austin Aries with absolutely no hesitation but he is no longer with the company. Knowing what I know right now about what the main event at Bound For Glory is, I pray that TNA doesn't have EC3's streak and title reign end at BFG.

Sadly, there is only two guys on TNA's current roster that have any business dethroning EC3, and that is Bobby Roode and Jeff Hardy. They are the only two established enough remaining on the roster with a few good years left in them. Angle is likely wrestling in his final year, or one following. Plus, the guy keeps putting over WWE and mentioning how much he wants to go back to them, so he should not get that accomplishment as all.
However, here are the names of guys on the roster I feel are worthy in the future IF they are booked properly:
1. The Pope- Clearly there's a lot to this. TNA would need to convince him to come out of retirment and out of the booth. They'd have to give him plenty of talk time and promo's as well. I've been very vocal about this guy being the biggest ball that TNA ever dropped. If this guy still has the fire he did back in 2010, then I feel if TNA used him the way that were supposed to back in 2010 until his title match with AJ Styles at LockDown, that he would be one of the top stars of the company without a doubt.
2. Davey Richards- With Aries gone, I think Davey is without a doubt the most talented in-ring wrestler in the company right now. I'd love for TNA to keep The Wolves together but also establish them as singles stars. I would love it if TNA pushed this guy and at Bound For Glory 2016 he ends up beating EC3 and winning the TNA world championship.
3. Bram- Nothing about this guy screams for a babyface push, but I think EC3 will eventually become a face in the future despite me hating the thought of it. Bram is awesome, and a great character but doesn't have a whole lot of depth. I think EC3, The Wolves and Bram are clearly the future of TNA more than anyone right now, and Bram needs to continue to be pushed very strong. I believe Bram has gold in his future if TNA doesn't screw it up for him.
4. Drew Galloway- I want to stress how much this would be for the future, like a year away. I like Galloway a lot but right now he is not someone who shoud be world champion nor end this streak. Galloway is clearly a lot better than the jobber that WWE made him out to be, but he needs a strong showing and the proper amount of time to wash away that jobber reputation. Galloway has been good in TNA but certainly hasn't been outstanding, nor does he have much depth to his character for him to breakout and become champion. For a jobber in WWE for a couple of years to become TNA champion in less than a year just completely degrades the TNA roster and brand.

5. Tomasso Ciampa- Here's the wild card. If TNA is actually able to sign this guy (thankfully WWE is too dumb to want him) than they're luckier than they have been in years. This guy is great in the ring, and plays the loose cannon role very well. He can take the mentally unstable face persona that EY did last year but actually make it work properly and come off as a psycho who can intimidate the hell out of EC3.

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Re: The v2 Brainbuster - August edition

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