Well hello there. I hope you?ve all enjoyed the past week and watched plenty of Michael Hayes tapes like I advised you during your last visit to the Casa. ?PS? must have kept hair spray and bleach companies business roaring throughout the 80’s to maintain that mane.
Anyway, onto this week’s column, this time not being typed with the bitterness of last week when I was yearning to be outside enjoying the sunshine. Instead, the Manchester weather reverted back to old form today, allowing me to write my column in absolute comfort.
As I sit here and type away, my mind tends to wander. I think about what’s likely to happen at the next PPV or episode of Raw. I dream up matches I would love to see and feuds which I believe could be the next Austin/Mcmahon. Then I think, why think about the immediate future? Why not go more long term? Don?t just dwell on the here and now, go five or 10 or maybe even 20 years down the line and think about where the professional wrestling business will be then.
When I phased out of wrestling around mid 2002, I would never have guessed that within three years, Jeff Jarrett would be running the second biggest wrestling company in America, which utilized a hexagon shaped ring and started out by running weekly PPV’s. Hell, it was shocking to me that the company was called TNA. I thought (and still think) that it was an atrocious name for a company, even if it did have the NWA prefix.
But this change on the wrestling landscape shouldn?t come as much of a surprise. I mean, only 18 months before I tuned out from wrestling had Vince Mcmahon bought WCW. Then, certain wrestlers were only competing on certain shows within a year of that. Not to mention that the NWO entered the WWE and Hulk Hogan won the World Title again! You think this column’s weird at times? Try dreaming any of that up before it happened!
Wrestling moves at an almost lightning quick pace, especially nowadays. Ask JBL, who went from a lower mid card veteran to the longest reigning WWE champion in SmackDown history within a short few months. So usually, the ethos is, the more unlikely something is to happen, chances are in professional wrestling, it?ll happen.
So, with this ethos in mind, I decided to make some predictions of my own for the future of professional wrestling. I just hope Vince Russo doesn?t read this, it might just melt his mind.
1) The ?circle? ring will be introduced ? TNA went hexagon on us and the octagon already exists, and anything bigger than that would be too bizarre even for the carnival that is pro wrestling, so why not adopt a more traditional ?ring? shape? Independent feds are always going out of their way to get noticed. Whether it’s having a guy on their roster who can do 1080 degree moonsault or some weirdo who enjoys stapling his butt cheeks together. So why not go for something that little bit zanier? Hey, why stop at a circular ring? If geometry taught me anything (and it didn?t) it’s that there’s a million and one shapes in the world at least, many of which could be applied to a wrestling ring. Imagine the destruction that could take place inside the ‘squared triangle? or the ?parallelogram of pain?!
2) A ?Knockout? becomes TNA World Champion ? Well, I?m not even sure if this is surreal enough for the Casa. I actually believe that this COULD happen, especially if Awesome Kong stays in TNA for the next few years. Let’s face it, it’s only because of injury that Kong dropped the belt in the first place, and as far as I can see, there’s no real viable contenders to the Knockout Title when she’s 100%, especially now Gail Kim’s gone. Add to this the fact that Vince Russo is holding the book in TNA and all of a sudden this all makes sense. If the guy will make himself AND David Arquette WCW World Champion, why not put the TNA belt on Kong? She’s probably the best worker they?ve got to boot. As ridiculous as the idea is, I?d still pay good money to see Kong make Mick Foley her woman for 20 minutes.
3) Vince McMahon will work out a deal to have his funeral on PPV ? C?mon, every one of you would buy this PPV if it happened. Vinnie Mac was the guy who wanted HHH and Stephanie’s marriage on PPV remember? He also wanted to run a storyline where he was the father of Stephanie’s child. So if he would try and run those deals, he?ll definitely try and arrange this if it kills him (which ironically would be the ideal situation for everyone involved). I can just picture Vince now saying ?well if Princess Di can have her funeral all over the TV, so can Vincent Kennedy Mcmahon damn it!? The funeral itself would also be the most entertaining burial known to man, with Vince being cremated in a multi million dollar pyro display with ?No Chance In Hell? blaring out of the Madison Square Garden (yes, he?d even go as far as to host the funeral at the Garden. In front of a sold out crowd no less) PA system. His ashes would then be put in an urn, which a retired Undertaker would then use to control Shane and Stephanie in order to run the company. Well, perhaps not the last bit, but the rest I?m almost 100% sure on.
4) Following his retirement, Shawn Michaels will become a spokesperson for hair transplant surgery ? This prediction comes off the back of last week’s column. HBK’s hairline seemingly recedes another couple of centimeters each week, and he’s obviously too proud to shave his wispy locks off, so instead he?ll go the Elton John route (not THAT route) and treat himself to some hair transplants. Following the successful surgery, Michaels will preach the good word of hair transplants to anybody going through the same anguish he did in his last few years as a pro wrestler. This career move will also overshadow Shane Mcmahon’s foray into the advertising world of Just For Men (is he getting greyer by the minute?).
5) An Independent fed will start promoting matches pitting wrestlers against animals ? Now, I?m fully aware that in Japan there have been matches where scorpions and piranhas have been involved. However, I think we can all agree that the Japanese are a few egg noodles short of a bowl of ramen (nice cultural link there) when it comes to garbage wrestling. Now, in America, almost every shock value tactic has been employed. From barbed wire to flaming tables to staples, every form of brutality has been exhausted. It’s even become part of the norm in the mainstream, with thumbtacks and flames being regularly used in both the WWE and TNA in the past few years. So the indies are obviously going to try and kick it up a few notches. Cages of death aren?t quite going to cut it any more. Neither are barbed wire wrapped vibrators and wooden legs or whatever the Christ they use to brutalize each other with nowadays. They?re going to be restricted to the animal kingdom to get their kicks. So don?t be surprised when in the next few years a guy like Necro Butcher or New Jack is pitting their wits against a grizzly bear or a silverback in mating season. It?d be taking wrestling back to it’s most basic carny roots. It’s only tradition. Wrestling recycles all the time, and there’s been a lack of dangerous animals employed for too long now. Although I?ll admit I?ve been a huge fan of the amount of puppies being paraded on WWE television for some time now. Ayoooooooooooooooo.
6) A wrestling PPV will be held at sea ? Now I?m not sure which company will go down this route, but either way it’s going to happen. WCW went so far as to host events where the ring was surrounded by water as if it was wrestling’s equivalent to Spring break, so why not go the extra mile and book out a cruise liner and drop anchor in the middle of the Pacific for a few hours? Superstars could make their entrances via speedboat, or in William Regal’s case, an old fashioned Oxford/Cambridge rowing boat, powered by Olympic gold medalists Sir Steve Redgrave and Matthew Pinsent. Following the event, Pat Patterson would provide cabaret.
So that’s what I believe wrestling holds for us in the future. What do my loyal readers think? Any other ideas you want to shoot my way? Email me at email@example.com or follow me on Twitter. My username is @JoeBaia.
Next week’s visit to the Casa is going to chronicle wrestling’s greatest bladejobs and see where I rank them on the legendary ?Muta Scale?. It’s going to be horrific folks. Required viewing is anything involving the Great Muta obviously, as well as Eddie Guerrero vs JBL from Judgement Day ?04, Cactus Jack vs HHH from the 2000 Rumble and Taker vs Mcmahon from Survivor Series ?03.
Until next time Casa fans, arriverderci!