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Issue # 275

Date:  Sunday August 8th, 1999  9:22 am

The Wrestling Booking Sheet

Buy a piece of pro wrestling
By Mike Mooneyham
Sunday, August 8, 1999

Forget Jabroni Drive and Know Your
Role Boulevard. Pro wrestling is
taking up residence on Wall Street.

The World Wrestling Federation, in an attempt to cash in on the
public's fervor for initial public offerings and the extremely
lucrative business that wrestling has become, is planning to raise
$172.5 million by selling a minority stake in the company. The terms of
the IPO have not yet been determined.

The corporation, which has changed its name from Titan Sports to World
Wrestling Federation Entertainment Inc., last week said it will apply
to have the shares listed on the Nasdaq Stock Market under the proposed
ticker symbol
WWFE. Analysts said they expect investors, particularly
wrestling fans, initially will snap up shares.

The WWF, based in
Stamford, Conn., has become a media and entertainment
juggernaut, posting revenue of $251.5 million for the fiscal year that
ended April 30, doubling the previous year. Pretax profits grew even
more quickly, to $56 million in the most recent period from $8.5
million the previous year and a loss of $6.5 million two years earlier.

The WWF said it plans to use proceeds from the offering for working
capital and other business purposes. The offering is being managed by
Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc., Credit Suisse First Boston, Merrill Lynch &
Co. and Wit Capital Corporation.

The company's flagship television program, Raw is War, was the
top-rated cable show for the first six months of this year, according
to the Nielsen ratings. And its two Monday-night hours on the
Network earned 26 of the top 30 rankings on the Nielsen list of
most-watched shows among all basic cable networks in the second
quarter. In addition to nine hours of television a week, WWF produces
200 live events a year, licenses its brand to 85 companies, publishes
two monthly magazines and puts on a dozen pay-per-view matches. The
company said 5 million households purchased its pay-per-view programs
in the past fiscal year, bringing in revenues of $150 million.

The company also owns a hotel in
Las Vegas, which it intends to sell,
and recently signed a deal to create a $25 million theme restaurant,
seating more than 600 patrons, in the old Paramount Theater site in
Times Square.

A sizable portion of company earnings went to WWF chairman Vince
McMahon, who was paid $25.5 million of accumulated profits, or nearly
two-thirds of the company's total cache of retained earnings, in June.
The company also lent McMahon $32 million to pay taxes. McMahon's wife,
Linda, who serves as president and chief executive, also owns a travel
agency that provides services for most of the performers and employees
of the WWF. And Shane McMahon, son of the company's chief officers, is
president of the WWF's new media business.

The McMahons will surrender little if any control by selling a stake in
the business. The company plans to offer an as yet unspecified number
of class A shares, leaving the McMahons with voting control of the
company through their ownership of all of the class B stock, which has
10 votes for every one vote of the class A shares. The company plans to
use the proceeds of the offering to upgrade its television facilities
and expand its Internet operation.

The company's 110 wrestlers, many of whom are under lower-paying
developmental contracts, do not now own stock, but the company said it
planned to use shares of stock "to assist us in attracting and
retaining key employees, directors, consultants and performers."

The WWF said in the document that its creative team employs the same
techniques used by many successful dramatic television series: "Each
week we advance our story lines, develop our characters and create the
drama and excitement that drive our business and attract customers,"
the filing said.

The company acknowledged its recent legal battles and noted in its
securities filing that it will fight the lawsuit filed by the Hart
family following the death of Owen Hart, but added that an unfavorable
outcome could have "a material adverse effect" on its financial

• Rena Mero, whose latest Playboy cover recently hit the newsstands,
will become the first woman in that magazine's history to be featured
on the cover three times in one year when "Ultimate Sable," a 96-page
compilation, debuts in October.

Mero, coming off the settlement of her lawsuit against the WWF, lately
has been one of the more visible figures in the media. She made a
return appearance on the Howard Stern show last week, plugging her
current Playboy spread. She remarked that she was "ecstatic" over the
settlement, although a confidentiality clause has prevented both sides
from discussing terms. It has been reported that as part of the
settlement, Mero agreed to stay out of wrestling under her contract
expires in Augsut 2001 and relinquish her claims to the Sable name.

Mero, who is currently doing an ab roller commercial, also said that
she is considering a number of scripts that have been sent to her.
Among her upcoming TV roles will be "Red Sonya" and "Walker Texas

She told Michael Landsberg on Canada's "Off the Record" show last week
that husband Marc has retired from wrestling, that she wouldn't go back
to the WWF unless things change although she did add the "never say
never" clause, and that her immediate goal is to pursue an acting
career. She also dismissed reports that she would join WCW to manage
Hulk Hogan (it had been considered at one point).

• A prosecutor has decided not to file any criminal charges in the
death of Owen Hart. Hart died May 23 when he fell from a cable as he
was being lowered into the ring at a WWF pay-per-view.

Hart, 34, fell 78 feet when the quick release on his harness opened

Jackson County (Mo.) Prosecutor Robert Beaird said his review of Kansas
police investigation files showed there was no basis for a
criminal charge of involuntary manslaughter against the rigging

Hart's widow and children filed a wrongful death lawsuit in June
against the WWF, the city and 11 others they believe are responsible
for Hart's death.

Martha Hart said she was "outraged and repulsed" that the WWF continued
the show after her husband's dead body was removed from the ring before
17,000 spectators. The lawsuit contends that the device that Hart wore
the night of the accident was grossly inadequate for the stunt.

• "Millennium Man" Chris Jericho is expected to make his WWF debut
this week on Raw, but is not expected to wrestle until after Summer

WCW admittedly blew a big opportunity with
Jericho, and the WWF hopes
to capitalize.

The WWF has high hopes of
Jericho becoming an immediate impact player
and also hopes to send a message to other frustrated WCW talent mired
in midcard programs.

Jericho recently said on his Web site that he made the decision to sign
with the WWF "after months of prayer and serious deliberation."

"At this point in my career, I feel that the WWF is the best place for
Chris Jericho to be," said

"When I first began having problems with the powers that be in WCW, I
prayed to the Lord to lead me where he wanted me to be. For whatever
reason, the WWF is where he led me and I am very, very excited to be a
part of this company."

• Tony Schiavone will rejoin the Nitro broadcast team this week.
Atlanta's Scott Hudson, who did a stellar job filling in for Schiavone,
will return to doing voice-overs for the Saturday night show.

You can safely assume that
Hudson was sweating bullets prior to being
manhandled by Rick Steiner last week on Nitro. Steiner, who has a
longstanding reputation of being one of the stiffest workers in the
company, earlier in the show had left a golfball-size bump on the back
of Goldberg's head after ramming him into a table.

Mike Mooneyham can be reached by phone at 937-5517. Beginning Aug. 24,
he can be heard every Tuesday from
6-7 p.m. on "Ringside Wrestling
Talk" on WQNT 1450-AM. For wrestling updates during the week, call The
Post and Courier Info Line at 937-6000, ext. 3090.

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.
By Jim Ross
(For the week of August 6, 1999)
Reported at:

Monday’s RAW in
Chicago should be one of the more exciting and
unpredictable broadcasts in quite some time. The fans in
Chicago are
usually very vocal and enthusiastic, and when you add Jesse Ventura to
the mix, anything could happen. Shawn Michaels is expected to be at RAW
as well. Snoop Dogg will be in
Chicago to see RAW in person but is not
performing. Plus, the countdown to the Millennium ends Monday night.
Should be a helluva night of TV on RAW this Monday!

The WWF has major plans on launching its own record label very soon and
the Road Dogg will be one of the artists featured in the early stages
of this exciting new project. WWF The Music: Volume 4 will be in stores
in January and advance orders are strong … so strong that the new
offering may ship gold!

Mick Foley’s knee is doing better but is still not at 100 percent. Mick
will probably be back on television after SummerSlam. Next week from
Aug. 10-12, Mick will be in Los Angeles taping ABC’s "Boy Meets World,"
which is slated to air in September. I’ll be writing the forward to
Mick’s autobiography which comes out in October.

The Big Boss Man will be appearing on
FOX television promoting
America’s Most Wanted. The Boss Man recorded the promos a week ago.

A&E’s "Biography" will be doing features soon of Stone Cold Steve
Austin and Mick Foley. This is a great accomplishment for both athletes.

October’s edition of Talk magazine will feature a story on the McMahon
family. I was interviewed for the piece and I feel the author will do a
super job as he was well prepared and seemed to understand the business
better than most.

Expect to hear Howard Stern promoting SummerSlam on his radio program
in the upcoming weeks.

UPN’s "Star Trek: Voyager" is interested in featuring several WWF
Superstars in upcoming episodes this season. Apparently, producers
already have a solid concept that would feature the Big Boss Man.

Former ECW competitor Stevie Richards has signed a multiyear contract
with the WWF and could debut very soon.

I expect to attend several Oklahoma Sooner football games this fall.
Just thought I would throw that in.

The WWF has agreed verbally with the Dudley Boys and contracts are
expected to be fully executed in the next week to ten days. This young
duo has been a mainstay in ECW and should really add to the tag team
division here. Both Dudleys are in their 20s and will hopefully start
after SummerSlam.

Brian Christopher’s knee is healing ahead of schedule. "Too Sexy" could
be back as early as mid-September. Just think … Brian could be the
"First Son" in Memphis if "The King" is elected mayor this October!

I had a great visit with Chris Jericho at WWF headquarters on Thursday.
Chris is in awesome shape at 225 pounds and seems to be ready to begin
his WWF journey. Contrary to reports, Jericho’s wrestling debut has yet
to be finalized.

Mark Henry is seriously addressing his weight issues and has lost
approximately 15 pounds of the 60 he has been asked to lose.

Incorrect Internet reports have Billy Gunn’s contract expiring in the
next few months, which is false. Billy’s new contract does not expire
until 2001.

No new Doinks are being planned in the WWF at this time.

"American Pie" is hilarious!

The "JR’s BBQ Sauce" project is moving forward and could actually be in
stores very soon. Our recipe is being manufactured currently and we
should have some samples in the next couple of weeks. I’m anxious to
taste the sauce after it has been mass-produced, but we will not
finalize the project if the taste has been significantly altered.

Why, all of a sudden, do people who do not live in Minnesota care so
much about that state’s governor? Ventura’s approval rating within his
state is excellent so why don’t the rest of us loosen up a little?

Expect a lot of WWF content on MTV over the next few days.

The Big Show will probably appear on the UPN program "Shasta McNasty"
this fall. Taping is set for Aug. 18.

X-Pac is doing promotional work for Hansen’s Energy Drink, and several
WWF Superstars use the product.

Chaz and Glen Ruth (Thrasher) have been training hard in Stamford this
week, with both attempting to eliminate ring rust and improve their

Expect the WWF to sign several more talents to contracts in the near
future, especially women.

RAW will be going live every Monday in the United States beginning
Monday, Aug. 23.

Test has really impressed WWF officials in the last few weeks and seems
to be coming into his own. The young Canadian has lots of potential and
could become a player if he continues to progress. He is another
athlete in his 20s who the WWF is counting on for a larger role in the

Take care, and see you next week!

"CruiserWeight Division"
Written by reader: Auggie1316

About 4 or 5 months ago, for the longest time I was hearing stuff about
how WCW's
Cruiserweight Division is so much better, they have much more talented
athletes in WCW and that is what is holding WWF back. Well now, we come
to the present.

Everyone is just itching for Kidman, Jericho, Mysterio, etc. to break
out of that Cruiserweight Division and to get World Title Shots. WWF
saw it coming the whole time. Now WCW holds them back and at best they
get TV Title shots. Mysterio had his bags packed on his way to WWF when
WCW convinced him to stay with alot of money, and the only thing people
could say was there isn't a talented enough Cruiserweight division in
WWF for Mysterio to compete.

I think the whole concept of the Cruiserweight Division is holding
stars back. If Mysterio was in WWF right now he would be theWWF
European or IC champ and on his way to the next and final level but
instead he is hanging around w/ the going
nowhere fast Konnan and the NL Soldierz.

Steve Appy responds:
Actually, I have a different vision of the Cruiserweight Division in
mind. At the moment it would be focused on Mysterio, Juvi & Psychosis,
and there would be no interaction between the Heavyweights and
Cruiserweights. Savage & Sid wouldn't be allowed to storm the ring and
make the elite Cruiserweights look like undersized jobbers; instead,
the Cruiserweights would face off against each other, wrestling a style
that showed off their awesome aerial abilities.

Guys like Kidman & Eddie Guerrerowould compete in the Heavyweight
Division (Kidman has an appeal that could make him a franchise
keystone). Groom Lash Leroux, Kaz Hayashi & Blitzkrieg into the top
echelon of the division, and use the New Japan Light Heavyweight
division for all its worth (Otani & Kanemoto are the obvious top
picks). For that matter, Jushin Liger's amazing mat skills continue to
make him one of the top workers in the world.

As badly as WCW may misuse Mysterio & Dean Malenko, the WWF would bury
them. I understand Jericho's decision to jump, and it will probably
turn out to be a wise one (Benoit should have made the same move). The
same can't be said for Malenko & Mysterio...
The Wildest, Most Unpredictable, yet informative Newsletter on the Net!
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The Icon newsletter is back and better than ever!!!!!! To subscribe

Virginia Championship Wrestling returns to Yorktown Middle School
Aug.14,1999 with a 7:30pm belltime On the card will be.......
VCW Title match: Cueball Carmicheal (Champion) vs. The Nature Boy Buddy
VCW Tag Title Match: Genocide (champs) vs. Gusto & Harrison vs. a
Mystery Team
#1 contenders match:Simply Perfect Preston Quinn vs. German Beef Otto
VCW Lightweight title: Flex Phenom (champion) vs. Jacey North
Lumberjack match: Break the Barrier's Scab and Natrone Steele will go
at it once again! All this and much more....e-mail ukaking for
more info on this event!

-Are you tired of looking at sites that have the same ol' wrestling
tapes. No match lists, no quality listings, etc??? Well e-mail me at
THEROCK420RVD cuz I've got one of the biggest collections of
wrestling tapes available. I trade/buy/sell, and got WWF, WCW, ECW,
JAPAN, BEST OF/COMPLITION, WRESTLING T.V. (nitro, raw, etc...) The
quality, and match listings are available, so e-mail me at:

ATTENTION Elite role-players: National Fantasy Wrestling needs
talented and
dedicated role-players to fill out the roster. If your a veteran of
role-playing; or even if you've never been in e-mail wrestling before,
we urge you to come check us out. You've tried the rest, now come join
the best. For those without web capabilities, contact
BladeAIWL, AcidViruz, or Mizeryzway for an
application. Check out our website at:

Own A Piece Of Professional Wrestling History...It All Starts
Here...Uncensored Massacre Wrestling® is releasing officially
autographed photos of The Savage Predator™. The Savage Predator™ is an
up and coming star, and once you see him, you'll never forget him. We
begin shipping August 13th, 1999. For now, you may take a peak at what
The Savage Predator™ looks like by going here:
Cost is only $4.00 + $2.00 shipping...Due to limited ad space, please
me at UMWChris for more details. Thanks. You may also visit the
official UMW® website at
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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