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Vandy! (September 1996)


Beer!  (February 2006)

Issue # 264

Date:  Sunday July 4th, 1999  9:01 am

The Wrestling Booking Sheet

ECW will join TNN's lineup on Friday night
Sunday, July 4, 1999
Of The Post and Courier staff

World Championship Wrestling may have someone knocking on its door.

The hard-core, Philadelphia-based Extreme Championship Wrestling is
going country and national, and that could spell trouble for the
rapidly sinking Atlanta-based WCW, whose freefall has put the
organization a distant second to the World Wrestling Federation.

The Nashville Network announced last week that ECW will join its Friday
night block of programming this fall. The agreement between CBS Cable's
TNN and HHG Corp., producers of ECW, grants TNN the rights to release
the one-hour wrestling series beginning Aug. 27. The show, which will
air from
8-9 p.m., will be one of the key programs in TNN's Friday
night lineup targeted to teens and young men. TNN's Friday night roster
also includes RollerJam, Championship Rodeo and Motor Madness.

ECW managing director Steve Karel, who helped cut the deal, sees ECW as
a major threat to the Big Two in the not-so-distant future.

"I'm sure all the talent managers in
America are enjoying us stepping
up to the plate," Karel said Thursday. "Obviously we intend to increase
our revenue stream significantly with the support of CBS Cable and TNN.
I'm not going to tell you we're going to be able to compete
dollar-for-dollar with the two big guys tomorrow. I will tell you that
Paul Heyman is the No. 1 character developer and storyline writer in
America. I don't think either of the two big guys will deny that."

Karel said Heyman, who is owner of HHG Corp. and the executive producer
of ECW, is the reason behind the creative success of ECW. Heyman,
however, could not keep pace with the increasing business demands of
the company. Thus Karel, who has an extensive sports marketing
background, came on board to run the business end.

TNN president David Hall told The Post and Courier that he's very
excited about the addition of pro wrestling to his network.

"I think anytime you look at something that on Monday nights is pulling
10 ratings points out of the television audience, there's a great
opportunity there. ECW has a bunch of great athletic-type wrestling. I
think they can be very successful in the one-hour format on TNN without
doing all that kind of stuff."

The "stuff" Hall is referring to, of course, is the brand of hard-core,
cutting-edge wrestling that put ECW on the map. Hall, though,
emphasized that the product would be toned down.

The ECW telecasts, which will be taped every other week, will be rated
PG-TV-14. ECW will air at least six two-hour pay-per-views per year in
addition to a series of one-hour retros.

According to terms of the three-year agreement, TNN will share in the
revenue of all ECW activities, including its TNN telecasts,
pay-per-view events, arena events, home video, magazines, CD
compilations and merchandising. ECW action figures, produced by
Original San Francisco Toy Makers, will be delivered to stores such as
Toys 'R Us this month.

TNN has the option to have ownership interest, Hall said. No major
sponsors have signed on as yet, but Hall said the ECW deal has created
great interest and excitement.

Mike Mooneyham can be reached by phone at (843) 937-5517 or by e-mail
at mooneyham. More wrestling news with Mike
Mooneyham is available every Monday on The Wrestling Observer Hotline.
The number is
1-900-903-9030. Calls are 99 cents per minute, and children under 18
must get parental permission before dialing.
The terrific website run by Rishi Jain & Rich Verde. definitely one to
keep an eye on:

The very best matches from Ultimo Dragon's TORYUMON promotion's most
recent tour of
Japan was captured on video, and recent shown on T.V. in
Japan. This 2 hour video "Dragon Fever" is now available. Also, the
combined Michinoku Pro/Toryumon "Spring Tour" 4 hour video tape is also
now ready. Get your
5/2/99 All Japan Dome Show & Very Best Of Hayabusa
C.O.O.P. videos here. Contact me at gmayfield for details.

Check out Dunny's Wed Page at:

To join the EWA, a great RP fed, send an email to IKondasFCW
Or, you can go to the EWA website at
A good website, and right now the webmaster Justin, is working on the
page with all the wrestlers themes, It has News, Rumours, results,
links, music lyrics, message boards and a whole lot more...

-Get the latest news and rumors in the world of professional wrestling
BEFORE you hear about them on TV! Get your hands on cool wrestling
merchandise. Find links to all important wrestling sites on the
Internet, including: your favorite wrestler's official home page and
wrestler's theme songs! All this and much, much more! COME FOR THE

Are you looking for an RP Fed with great management, a choice of real
and fake wrestlers, and loads of fun? Well, then the EWF2 is just the
place for you. You can have 2 wrestlers, 1 wrestler, 2 managers, 1
manager,with any combo of real or fake wrestlers and/or managers. If
you want 1 real wrestler and 1 fake, you can. E-mail JC769 with
your top 15 wrestler choices, in the order you want them. Do the same
if you want a manager. If you want fake, just give me some stats on the
wrestler and/or manager when you send me your choices. Hope to be
working with ya soon! ~~EWF2 Prez, Joey Clark~
For the past eight years, the WWF's harshest critic has been
New York
Post columnist Phil Muchnick. Incensed by the content of the product
(in particular the rampant drug abuse), Muchnick's editorials were a
factor in forcing the WWF to adopt their short lived drug testing
program. While he is reviled by many in the industry because of his
admitted dislike for the business, his persistance has helped shed
light on a company that is content in the dark. In a 1993 interview
with The Pro Wrestling Torch's Wade Keller, Muchnick shared his
thoughts on the WWF:

Keller: "How does the WWF's overall handling of media criticism
compare to other
organizations you criticize?"

Mushnick: "its a matter of degrees with the WWF's bend on these
things clearly being the worst I've ever encountered.
Wade, let me make something clear to you, I've covered some bad guys.
I've covered George Steinbrenner. I'm not a big fan of Donald Trump.
I've covered some guys who are tough to deal with like Reggie Jackson.
But Vince McMahon and the World Wrestling Federation are off the
charts. They are beyond anything I've ever encountered, anything I
could have in my worst nightmare imagined would be out there. They're

Torch Talk, conducted on June 6th, 1993
To subscribe to The Pro Wrestling Torch, send $36 for 20 issues to:
The Pro Wrestling Torch
P.O. Box 201844
Minneapolis, MN 55420
Visit my Home Page:

With 1999 at its midpoint, it seems like a good time to step back and
look at the way things are going for the three major federations.

The WWF is in the midst of its most popular period ever. They have won
the Monday Night Ratings every week for more then six months and doing
so by significant margins. They are selling out an unprecedented number
of House Shows, and in some cases, within hours after tickets go on
sale. An example of this is the more than 10,000 tickets sold the first
day for the first ever RAW to be held in The Georgia Dome. What makes
this so much more impressive is that
Atlanta is the home of WCW, and
The Georgia Dome considered WCW's "home court." At the same time
tickets for the next NITRO at the Georgia Dome are languishing. They
are also scoring well with their PPV buy rates. It appears that their
"Sports Entertainment" style is working.

However all is not rosy. The WWF is currently involved in three high
profile lawsuits: one involving the death of Owen Hart, one involving
Sable and the other a TV personality from
Kuwait. The one involving
Hart has the potential to be the most damaging to the WWF. Another
problem is the continued criticism of their "adult" style programming.
While this writer thinks most of this criticism is without foundation,
it is a concern that the WWF must face. Yet another area of concern to
some is the lack of talent, especially Main Event / WWF Champion
competitors. The Title scene has revolved around Stone Cold Steve
Austin (SCSA), The Undertaker, The Rock and Mick Foley (Mankind) for
much of the past two years. While there are others on the horizon
(i.e., The Big Show and Triple H), their progression leaves a hole in the
Intercontinental Title field.

One of the WWF's strongest areas is their abundance of young talent.
Along with The Rock and Triple H, there are others like Edge, Gangrel,
Christian, Mr. @$$, X-Pac, The Hardy Boyz, Val Venis, D-Lo Brown, Ken
Shamrock and Meat. It is conceivable that most of them will progress to
Main Event status over the next few years. The strong possibility of
signing Chris Jericho adds to this solid base.

Add to this repeated reports of a happy locker room and you have the
ingredients of a successful company.

The WWF must guard against things like allowing their story lines to
grow old and to continue others that may not be that popular. There are
rumbling that the McMahon / SCSA feud is starting to bore some,
although others report they enjoy seeing it progress. There are many
who think The Corporate Ministry angle is a waste of time and of The
Undertaker's talents.

They must also be careful of over saturation with the addition of
SmackDown on UPN this fall. WCW ran into this with the advent of
Thunder which has come to be viewed as a showcase for the second and
third tiers of talent. Above all, the WWF must remember what goes up
must come down.

Now for WCW. There are many who feel I am anti-WCW. I live in what was
always traditional NWA / WCW territory and for many years the only
wrestling I saw on TV or at house shows was WCW and Wrestling From
Florida, which was closely allied with WCW in Atlanta. I have strong
feelings for Ric Flair, Dusty Rhodes, Blackjack Mulligan, et al. Of
course there were many I didn't like; The Anderson's immediately come
to mind. I mention this because I would like nothing better than for
WCW to improve and prosper. It is the healthy competition between WCW
and the WWF that has given us the type matches on TV that we once saw
only on PPV's

WCW is in a severe slump at this time. They are selling out a lower
percentage of house shows now then they did a year ago. They have had
to cancel house shows due to slow ticket sales. Their most recent PPV
drew the third lowest buy rate in their history. NITRO went from an 82
week run as the top show on Monday to its current status of losing to
RAW each week for the past six months.

What is wrong and what can be done to turn things around? WCW has a
vast list of stars on its roster and they keep signing more. The recent
signing of Sid and the expected signing of Shane Douglas enhance this
list. While having so much talent to draw upon sounds great, it could
be part of the problem. Trying to keep everyone happy is not easy and
each new ego you add the mix makes it that much harder. A perfect
example is Bret Hart, who went from being one of the top three in the
WWF to being lost in the crowd in WCW. Bam Bam Bigelow came to WCW and
was immediately put into a feud with Goldberg that didn't go anywhere.
After that he slipped into the background until surfacing as a tag team
partner of Dirtbag Doophus Page.

They need to address the problem of poor story lines. There is too much
of an angle starting and then just disappearing without resolution or
explanation. They have many feuds starting at the beginning of NITRO
and leading to a match later that night with no basis for them. They
need to be thought out a little better than that. Having wrestlers
doing some of the booking is akin to allowing the inmates to run the
asylum. While talented people like Chris Benoit struggle for
recognition, other less deserving people enjoy pushes because of their
friendships with the bookers.

They need to get away from bringing in celebrities and giving them Main
Event status (Leno, Rodman, Malone). They should be using them as
window dressing in roles such as Guest Time Keeper and Ring Announcer,
not as wrestlers. Putting them in the ring cheapens the whole match and
card. The current use of Master P is a total failure and yet there are
rumors of bringing in other rap stars.

There is the problem of having many older superstars taking up the top
spots and getting most of the TV time while the younger ones suffer.
Besides Benoit, there are people like Kidman, Booker T, Buff Bagwell
and Raven, who don't seem to have a ghost of a chance of winning the
WCW World Championship. its time to give them their day in the sun.

There are repeated reports of arguments in the locker room over booking
and of some being unhappy with their contracts. Goldberg, one of (if
not the) WCW's brightest stars, is reportedly unhappy with the amount
he makes. While I don't condone employees dictating the salary
structure, he is the future of WCW and should be adequately

As I said earlier, what goes up must come down. WCW has gone full
circle. If they honestly address their problems, there is every reason
to believe they can return to the top. We the fans win when every
Federation is doing well. I saved the best for last. It is my solemn
feeling that Eric Bischoff must be replaced. He took an idea he saw in
Japan and created the NWO. The NWO angle was arguably the most
successful angle in wrestling ever. However, since then it has been
downhill. When the CEO of a major corporation fails to meet goals and
objectives, it is he who takes it in the neck. He is currently
advocating the concept that Sponsors are what count, not Ratings.
Funny, when WCW was No. 1, Ratings weren't everything, they were the
only thing. Besides, the WWF doesn't appear to be having any problem
enlisting sponsors.

Finally we have ECW. ECW is the most action packed of all the major
Federations, with as loyal a fan base as you could ever hope for. Where
else can you hear the fans chant for the organization? They are in the
midst of two major crises: first the erosion of talent as many have
left, mostly for WCW (i.e., Sandman / Hak, Bigelow and Douglas). The
other is financial as they are having cash flow problems. They have
just signed a TV contract and will be appearing weekly on TNN, and are
scheduled to begin in late August. It is expected that they will have
to tone down their violence and language for TNN. Only time will tell
how this will affect them.

Their roster is small, but they have some of the most talented
performers there are (i.e., Rob Van Dam, Sabu, Taz, Lance Storm, The
Dudley Boyz). If allowed to present their unique Hardcore style of
wrestling, there is every reason to believe we will have three major
Federations on TV.

From the standpoint of a fan, the first half of 1999 as been
Fan-F'N-tastic. the second half can only be better.
Written by reader: madspector
Have some of you gotten confused between the words "news" and "lies"?
It would appear not and a good portion of these alleged online
reporters are blurring the lines between actual news and groundless
reports that aren't usually supported by very much evidence.

Example number one, "Scott Steiner may be headed to the WWF!"...when I
this one a couple of weeks ago I thought to myself "what idiot posted
this garbage and were did his info come from?" Had this so called
reporter done any research at all he would have come to the realization
that Steiner is out with a career threatening back injury and even if
he wasn't, he is under contract until 2001, but because alot of these
"reporters" have a friend who either owns the newsletter or newsboard
they figure they aren't required to tell the truth...just what sounds

Example number two "Raven demands his release from WCW". How much
research was done on this one?....almost none, every employee that was
contacted about this one knew nothing about it. Kevin Nash came on-air
and said it was bull!@#% and WCW Live confirmed that is was bull!@#$.
Once again, if the person who had started this had done his homework he
would have found out that Scott Levy, aka. Raven, is out with a severe
shoulder injury and that is why you haven't seen him on TV or PPVs.

These are just a couple of examples of some of the BS I see on a daily
basis. I spend alot of time on my computer and believe it not, while I
do value the online newsboards, what does it do to the credibility of
online reporting if some are required to report the truth and some

Another thing...wrestling fans when you see some of this stuff do some
research of your own and if you find that one of these reporters is a
"mark" and not calling down the middle than don't be afraid to email
him or her and tell them they are full of $#!+ because all they are
doing is taking away from the online reporters who do take their time
to put out a good story.
Written by reader: Muttley97
First off, welcome back and its good to see you back in action...

Now onto the PPV. I have to believe that the WWF spent the last couple
of weeks scouring the net, looking at the boards trying to get a read
on how the PPV was going to go. Why else would there be a posting about
Paul Wright "going through 8 men to be King of the Ring"? It was more
likely a plant by the minds at the WWF in order to throw everyone off,
since the net had been speculating that Mr. Ass would win.

The day the ad for the Big Show was found on the net, message boards
were burning up that the WWF had given away the ending. Also, the
speculation the they were going public with their stock had fueled the
notion that SCSA would beat the Macs. There was even a reference made
on the PPV by JR about how the internet was alive with messages about
who would win. So, I think that the message here to everyone
is to take what you read with a grain of salt, and if you take it as
gospel you're on your own.
NWA East Presents Friday, July 2, 7:30 Belltime, North Versailles Pa.
Summer Series Round 2
The matches are starting to come in so far
NWA East/
PWX Heavyweight Champion Shane Douglas
vs NWA East
PWX TV Champion Bubba The Bulldog
Former WWF Tag Team Champion Samu
vs NWA East/
PWX Number 1 Manager Dylan Dean
Their is more coming in keep checking
The staff of The Wrestling Booking Sheet
Editor: Steve Appy
Columnist: Mark George
Columnist: SamJerry
Columnist: Fritz Capp
Columnist: Rick Phelps
Columnist: Cindy Barnes
Columnist: Josh Hewitt
Columnist: Swami
Columnist: Tom Misnik
Columnist: Nate Pelley
Columnist: Robert Troy (Osiris)
Tom Kirkbride
Columnist: Ryan S. Oaks
Columnist: Darren Kramer

Any submissions sent in by readers or columnists become the property of The Wrestling Booking Sheet, and are subject to editing due to grammar, spelling, or content. Any information taken from The Wrestling Booking Sheet must be credited properly, with our E-Mail address listed. We have no problem if you want to use our stuff; just credit it properly.

Copyright- Steve Appy of The Wrestling Booking Sheet ©1998, 1999, 2000


"When you're young and you pick up a guitar, it feels so powerful. It feels like you pulled the sword from the stone. I used to believe that it could save the world. But I don't really believe that anymore." - Bruce Springsteen

"The greatest challenge of adulthood is holding on to your idealism
after you lose your innocence and believing in the power of the human
spirit after you come crashing into the limits of the real adult
world." - Bruce Springsteen


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All Rights Reserved.

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