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Vandy! (September 1996)


Beer!  (February 2006)

Issue # 346

Date:  Sunday October 10th, 1999  11:41 am

The Wrestling Booking Sheet

Major change coming in the WCW product
Sunday, October 10, 1999
By Mike Mooneyham

The times they are a changing. And nowhere are they changing any faster
than the world of professional wrestling.

WCW personnel, still feeling the aftershocks from the Eric Bischoff
ouster, got another jolt last week when the company announced that WWF
scriptwriter Vince Russo was taking his crash style of television down
South and bringing writing partner Ed Ferrara with him.

The rumblings are being felt all the way from
Stamford to Atlanta.
While no one's quite sure what this will mean for the beleagured
company, one thing is certain - there will be a major change in the WCW
product as we know it. Conversely, with Russo and
Ferrara out of the
picture, the future WWF may also look very different.

The wrestling business increasingly has become a breeding ground for
distrust and paranoia, and this latest move has only accelerated the
process. Very few, however, are willing to make definitive predictions
at this point.

The change comes at a period in which WCW is adapting to its role as a
company in transition, with Bill Busch being elevated to vice president
in an attempt to get the company's finances back in order. With many of
WCW's performers already jockeying for position and "in the ear" of the
new boss, the traffic is expected to quickly take another route with
the arrival of Russo, who has been credited with being one of the main
reasons behind the WWF's resurgence and also has been one of the
driving forces behind the de-emphasis of the in-ring product in the
current-day WWF.

Russo's booking philosophy is clear. His focus is entertainment over
wrestling. He has stated in the past that he doesn't watch Mexican or
Japanese wrestling, and that a Mexican or Japanese wrestler could never
get over in the
United States, updating that belief with the warning
that the Luchadores in WCW better be able to speak English and cut an
effective promo or they will be history.

Russo, who isn't fond of "the over-40 bunch," also has predicted that
the next big star in WCW will be Buff Bagwell, and the natural
assumption is that he will work toward making that prediction come
true. Also likely to get major pushes under the Russo-Ferrara booking
regime are current mid-carders Billy Kidman and Vampiro.

Former WCW booker Terry Taylor, who recently was named the head of New
Talent Acquisitions in the WWF, told The Post and Courier that the
change would benefit WCW.

Atlanta's going to compete, they're going to have to update," said
Taylor. "its obvious that what they're doing is not working. If he
(Russo) is going to push younger guys, that should make the older guys
have a reason to try and get in shape or push harder to keep their
jobs. Complacency has killed that place - people saying I'm not going
to do it (the job). Who ever told Vince Lombardi or Bill Walsh that
they weren't getting into the game? That's what's wrong with the

The duo's first real assignment will be tweaking the WCW's Halloween
Havoc pay-per-view on Oct. 24. From there, they'll take over writing
the WCW telecasts. Russo and
Ferrara most definitely will test the
Turner censors as they push the envelope with more hard-core angles and
matches. Goldust and Val Venis were among Russo's favorite creations in
the WWF, and he likely will push for characters with similar traits in

Not everyone in WCW, however, is welcoming the change with open arms,
nor is everyone saddened to see Russo leave the WWF.

Jim Cornette, whose old-style, Southern-based approach often clashed
with his New York-bred colleague's harder-edged, "less wrestling"
creative direction, was one of Russo's most vocal detractors during his
WWF tenure and predicted last week that Russo "will fall flat on his
face" in WCW.

"He has no respect for the wrestling business or anybody in it," said
Cornette, "and that's going to be more obvious there where they won't
have anyone to control him. I think The Ultimate Warrior deserved the
money he made more than Russo. I have always in the past thought The
Ultimate Warrior was the epitome of a guy making money with no talent.
Sable deserved her money more than Russo. At least she didn't try to
make the entire business a joke, just her part of it, because of her
lack of talent."

"He is a great self-promoter who has made all the Internet people
believe he is a genius responsible for the WWF turnaround," added
Cornette. "He went crazy with all the pressure and decided to stab in
the back the guy who brought him into the business (WWF owner Vince
McMahon) and take a big-money deal, which I'm sure they offered because
they're grasping at straws. He'll be out of the business in two years
because without the WWF organization behind him, he'll fall flat on his
face. They'll pay him until the end of his contract, and then he'll be
done. He burned the bridge behind him and he won't be back."

Cornette said he wasn't surprised that Russo, who didn't have a
contract with the WWF, jumped ship to sign a lucrative two-year deal
with WCW.

"He knows he doesn't know what he's doing. He knew WCW was desperate
and finally realized it was time to cash in. He doesn't care about
being in the wrestling business. He hates wrestling. He likes
entertainment. He thinks he's a TV writer now, and its gone to his
head. He's got a head the size of

Cornette said that Russo pushed his own interests by controlling the
WWF magazines, for whom he was hired to write (under the pen name Vic
Venom) and also the WWF's Internet division.

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.
Written by reader: MNR1118

I really enjoyed Straight Shooting with Fritz Capp. I want to comment
on practically everything he wrote about in his column, But I'll stick
to to one subject, which is the Mark Henry angle. You'd think that
after Mark was involved in that simulated sex with a transvestite angle
a few months back, he would have told whoever came up with this incest
idea to kiss his @$$.

I don't know whether or not Mark has any sisters in real life, but if
he does, I can only imagine the embarrassment they are going through
right now. One last thing, since racial stereotyping in wrestling has
been a hot topic in recent WBS issues, a young black man who can't
control his sexual urges is another one you can add to the list.
-Mike. MNR1118
Written by reader: Jamie (JKASMULDER)

As of late, I would have to agree with anyone who said that the UT is
something of a shadow of what he once was. But, your assertion that
Austin is a major WRESTLING talent just isn't supported by the facts.
To be honest, if you are going to say that the UT has been carried in
his matches by other great workers, then you MUST SAY THAT ABOUT AUSTIN

The man has three moves, and he only does 2 of them with any real
success. He can't even sell a punch. Further, I haven't seen the man
take a bump nearly as well as the UT, let alone HBK, or any number of
other wrestlers in wrestling today, yet he gets top dollar.

Please don't take my words to mean that I don't like the "Rattlesnake".
He is a great in-ring personality. But let's be honest, he really
isn't a very good wrestler. Even compared to an injured UT who still
delivers flying DDT's, can sell a punch, still takes good bumps, AND
jobs to other wrestlers on a fairly regular basis, and if not that,
wins his matches in such a way so that both the UT and his opponent
look good doing it, Austin comes up way short of that.

To correct you in one other area, the ONLY reason
Austin can claim any
noteable matches in his career in the WWF is their perpetuation of a
good storyline. None of them are notable because of
Austin's in-ring
ability, for which there is practically none to speak of.
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ECW Hardcore Television Report - September 27 - October 3, 1999
Hosted by Joey Styles and Joel Gertner
Taped from Philadephia, Pennsylvania
By Jerry Savage at:

• The program began with clips of Mike Awesome fighting against earlier
foes Masato Tanaka and The Dudley Boyz. It also included how he won the
title at Anarchy Rulz.

•After the introduction, we saw "Mr. PPV" Rob Van Dam talking to Bill
Alfonso (aka Fonzie) in the back. RVD only wanted to talk about
himself, but Fonzie said that they should talk a little about Sabu too.

• We were then taken to the ring where RoadKill and Dastardly Danny
Doring, with Miss Congeniality, were supposed to take on Nova and Chris
Chetti. Nova came out by himself due to the injury of Chetti at Anarchy
Rulz. Doring then told Nova to go into the back, find someone who
actually liked him to take his beating, otherwise they were going to
whip his ass. So Nova went into the back and brought out Jazz to be his
partner. Nova and Jazz went to work on Doring by Nova giving him an
atomic drop and Jazz giving him a bulldog. When Doring and Roadkill
went to the outside and Nova hit a top rope plancha onto them. Back in
the ring, Doring hit a bareback on Jazz. Tag to Road Kill. He hit a
sideslam on Jazz. Tag to Doring, who hit a suplex, went for a cover,
but pulled Jazz up. Doring went into a pumphandle and hammered Jazz. As
he got her up, she slipped out and give Doring a ball shot. Tag to Road
Kill and a tag to Nova. Nova hit some sort of DDT on Road Kill. Nova
whipped Doring off the ropes and hitsa Veg-O-Matic Powerbomb with
customary shot to the groin. Congeniality jumped in and jumped on the
back of Nova. He hit her with a sideslam. Jazz hit a JazzStinger on
Doring, sending him to the outside. Nova hit a pescado on Doring on the
outside. Congeniality nailed Jazz and Road Kill, hit a running
powerslam on Jazz for the win.

• When we came back, we saw a montage of Rhino destroying people in the
ring. Rhino with Steve Corino and Jack Victory vs. The Fallen Angel,
Chris Daniels. The match began with Rhino pounding down on Daniels.
Daniels then got back body dropped onto the apron, but landed on his
feet. He slammed Rhino's head into the mat and then hit a pescado into
the ring onto Rhino. Rhino bounced off the ropes and got tossed outside
by Daniels. Daniels then hit a springboard off the top rope onto the
outside onto Rhino. Back in the ring again, Daniels went for a
tilt-a-whirl flying head scissors, but got dumped on his head. Rhino
picked him up and dropped him on his face. Rhino hit a spinebuster. A
fight almost broke out in the crowd at this point. Rhino then hit a
face-first type Jackhammer on Daniels. Cover, but Daniels kicked out.
Rhino then sent Daniels to the outside and hit a pescado. Back in the
ring, Rhino went up top but got knocked down onto the turnbuckle.
Daniels sets him up into a top rope sideslam. Daniels then hit a flying
neckbreaker, went for cover, but Rhino kicked out. Rhino went for the
diving headbutt, but Daniels moved. Daniels then hit a sitdown driving
facebuster. The referee, however, got distracted, as Steve Corino
jumped in and nailed Daniels with a superkick. Rhino then gave Daniels
a powerbomb for the win. After the match, Spike Dudley came into the
ring and another match started. Spike just gave Rhino an Acid Drop for
the win.

• After a commercial, Joey told us that Tammy Lynn Sytch was returning
on Friday to TNN.

• Paul E. Heyman gave us the history on the ECW Heavyweight Title and
all of the hands it had been in. Some of the wrestlers who were
Heavyweight Champion included Shane Douglas, The Sandman, Raven, and
Taz. It also showed how Mike Awesome got the belt at Anarchy Rulz.

• The Insane Luchadore, Super Crazy vs. The New F'N Show, Jerry Lynn
was our final match of the show. The match started out with Crazy
Lynn in a grapevine. They exchanged ground moves. Lynn hit a
titl-a-whirl flying head scissors and then a tilt-a-whirl into a
powerslam on Crazy.
Lynn got Crazy into a Gory Guerrero Special. Crazy
got out, got whipped off the ropes, into a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker
Lynn. We got a cover but no fall. Crazy slingshotted Lynn onto his
ribs. Springboard drop-kick from
Lynn on Crazy, sending him to the
Lynn then hit a pescado onto Crazy on the outside. Back in the
ring, Crazy hit a back body drop. Crazy then went on the apron and hit
Lynn with a springboard dropkick, sending Lynn to the outside. Crazy
was on the apron, and hit a second rope Asai moonsault onto
Lynn on the
outside. Crazy tossed
Lynn in. Crazy vaulted himself into a moonsault
Lynn. Crazy then got Lynn into an inverted surfboard. Crazy set Lynn
up for ten punches to the head. The fans counted them in Spanish. As
Crazy was celebrating up there,
Lynn hit a sit-down powerbomb. Cover,
but no fall.
Lynn hit a German Suplex with a bridge, but couldn't get
the fall. Crazy hit a second rope sunset flip into a powerbomb but
couldn't get the fall.
Lynn, favoring his ribs, got an inside cradle,
but Crazy kicks out. Crazy went for the Trifecta (First rope, second
rope, top rope Moonsault), but as he tried to hit moonsault numero dos,
Lynn put his knees up and then hit the Cradle Pile Driver for the
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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