Wrestling Rumblings #96
November 5, 2010
By: Jose Marrero of Wrestleview.com

It was about a year and a half ago (Wrestling Rumblings #7) where I did a column talking about some of the wrestlers who I felt deserved WWE Hall of Fame consideration that don’t always get their cause championed. At the time I named 5 wrestlers and 2 of those five got in the following year and while I am not saying it was because of the column it did sort of give me personal joy to see those who I petitioned for become enshrined, especially since I have attended the WWE Hall of Fame for the past 3 years. This year many fans, reporters, etc. are talking about the next WWE Hall of Fame ceremony having a WCW/Mid Atlantic Wrestling theme with many of those talents being the centerpiece. I have absolutely no problem with this idea at all and just like in Wrestling Rumblings #7 where I took up the cause for those less championed I will do the same here. So go ahead and petition for Lex Luger, Sting, The Road Warriors, and Arn Anderson but what about these next 5 guys? You’re reading “Wrestling Rumblings.”

The Great Muta- Last year Antonio Inoki’s induction went over very well in front of a live audience and from my understanding was a big story in Japan. You would be hard pressed to tell me that the same wouldn’t hold true for Keiji Mutoh AKA The Great Muta. Easily one of the greatest wrestlers in the world and would keep the WCW theme intact since he really first developed his craft here in the United States in the NWA and eventually migrated to WCW where he would really gain the steam that would carry him the rest of his legendary career. As a matter of fact many of some of WCW’s biggest names had some career moments with Mutoh. Who remembers that it was Sting who probably had his biggest feud to date against Mutoh for the TV title which produced several great matchups? Who remembers some of the matchups between The Great Muta and Ric Flair? While he was successful in the United States he dominated Japan winning world titles in both AJPW and New Japan Pro Wrestling. As a matter of fact if you count his time in WCW with his time in the orient Mutoh is a 9 time world champion and is the only wrestler to the best of my knowledge to simultaneously hold the NWA and IWGP titles at the same time. He is also the second man to ever hold the IWGP title and the AJPW Triple Crown titles at the same time which would be the equivalent of holding the WCW and WWE titles when both of those companies were separate. That’s just amazing, plus when you factor in that Mutoh unlike Antonio Inoki has competed in smaller companies in the United States like Ring of Honor I think the smart fans would be more likely to really champion his cause of being inducted into WWE’s Hall of Fame.

Big Van Vader- At one point in time Vader was probably the most dominant wrestler in the world holding major championships on 3 continents simultaneously. The man who was once known as “The Baby Bull” really blossomed when he went to Japan and was given The Big Van Vader gimmick which was originally intended for of all people believe it or not the Ultimate Warrior. It was a good thing Warrior passed and the man who got the gimmick prevailed as I doubt the Warrior could have duplicated what Vader did throughout the world. Arguably one of the top 3 big men in wrestling ever Vader has had amazing matches with a variety of wrestlers including Stan Hansen (who literally knocked out his eye in one match), Shinya Hashimoto, El Canek, Sting, Davey Boy Smith, Ric Flair and Shawn Micheals. If you count all of his world travels he is a 9 time world champion and has pretty much competed in every major available company of his era. Simply put one of my favorite world champions in WCW ever. “Who’s the Man?” Big Van Vader that’s who put him in the Hall of Fame Vince McMahon.

Brian Pillman- This was a more selfish pick on my end as Brian’s “Loose Cannon” gimmick is my all time favorite gimmick in wrestling. Rest assured though Brian was a fantastic competitor and it can be argued that if it were not for injuries that led to his changing his in ring style he probably would have become a world champion. He didn’t win a mess of titles and actually only held one singles championship that being the WCW Light Heavyweight Championship in which he was the first wrestler to hold that title. WWE has linked WCW’s and WWE’s Crusierweight title lineage back to this title so in a way Brian was sort of ahead of his time with the Cruiserweight/X Division style that many fans would enjoy later on. While in WCW he had great matches with Jushin “Thunder” Liger, matches that would really help Liger get over with the American audience that he is still over with today and would also take part in one of the shortest but most beloved tag teams ever in The Hollywood Blondes with Steve Austin. Upon the dissolution of that tag team we would see Brian become a member of the 4 Horsemen with his loose cannon gimmick which was really something out of the “Attitude Era” before that era even existed. I could sit here and tell you about the time he had Bobby Heenan curse on live TV because Heenan was unaware of what Brian would pull or about his debut in the ECW arena in which he attempted to urinate in the ring or about the “Pillman has a gun” episode of Raw but would much rather you go back and watch it yourselves. Brian Pillman in my opinion (and since this is my column it is MY OPINION) was a visionary who was ahead of his time and I would truly enjoy seeing him honored at the WWE Hall of Fame in Atlanta.

Magnum T.A.- Some would call this man “The greatest wrestler to never hold the world title” and while I am sure that Ted Dibiase and Scott Hall amongst others would love to argue that claim one thing that can’t be disputed is that while Magnum was active he was on the fast track to stardom. Fact is while many fans are clamoring for Sting’s induction we may not have even had Sting as we know him today if Magnum T.A was never injured in that fatal car accident and became the flagship star that many believed him to be. He didn’t have a long career as I believe he only wrestled 9 years but it was memorable with him winning the United States title twice when that title actually meant something. Magnum was involved in two programs that have since been imitated but never quite duplicated that being the program with Tully Blanchard which resulted in the infamous “I Quit” match and his program with Nikita Koloff which resulted in “The best of 7 series”. If we are having a WCW/Mid Atlantic theme than I would say we would have to induct Magnum as he was one of the biggest babyfaces in that company’s history.

Kevin Nash- Some of you may not like him but how can you not respect the career this man has had. This was a guy who originally started his career on national TV as Steel in the Master Blasters and while everyone is entitled to one bad gimmick he then went on to become Oz and Vinnie Vegas (although in defense of that I may be the only one who liked him as Vinnie Vegas at the time). Somehow he overcame that and became Diesel in WWE and had a run like no other who had preceded him winning the WWE Triple Crown inside of a year. Now bear in mind this was in 1994 where titles weren’t changing hands every week. As a matter of fact Nash was just the 3rd Triple Crown champion at the time in WWE history. WWE had only existed for about 30 years at that point and the third leg of that Triple Crown which was the Intercontinental title for those keeping score didn’t come into existence until 1979 so in 15 years this was only done 3 times. Let’s compare it to 2010 where we now have 21 Triple Crown winners. 3 in 15, 18 in the next 16…yeah that was a big accomplishment for that era. Let’s also not forget that Nash was one of the longer reigning WWE champions in the modern era and has one of the top 10 longest WWE title reigns ever. Considering t here has been over 100 title reigns I would say that is a tremendous accomplishment as well. For all the fans who would criticize his work I thought he was involved in several entertaining matches against both Bret Hart and Shawn Micheals and while it is true both of those guys were great I still think Kevin deserves a bit of credit for those matches as well. Of course who can forget his role in going to WCW and co founding the NWO? Kevin Nash and Scott Hall made being bad guys at the time cool and WCW was making money at the time hand over fist and while Hulk Hogan, Eric Bischoff and others would like to take credit for the success that WCW had I think some of that success could also be attributed to Kevin Nash. His career may have had some lowlights but I think I would like to focus on some of his highlights like being a 6 time world champion and main eventing in 3 major companies (WWE, WCW, and TNA). While I have not always been a fan of his role in recent years I can say I have always been entertained by him and I think he deserves a spot in the WWE Hall of Fame.

As I stated previously these are names that are not necessarily championed by the popular vote of fans but if Wrestling Rumblings #7 proved anything it’s that anyone has a shot of getting in. It would be really nice to see 1 or 2 if not all of these names inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame if not this next year in Atlanta in coming years ahead. It’s time to wrap this one up but as always I have to give you guys something to do. This Sunday is TNA’s Turning Point which I doubt is going to get anyone’s attention due to the poor way it has been built up but this is a wrestling column on a wrestling site and we want all wrestling to do well so if you’re up for it give it a shot. Another item that I feel is worth giving a shot is the Women’s Superstars Unleashed IPPV this Saturday at Gofightlive.tv if you haven’t taken advantage already I believe Gofightlive.tv is still showing WSU Uncensored Rumble 3 for free on their website so you can go ahead and view that and see if the IPPV is right for you. For those of you who are in the NY/NJ area go and see it live as you will not just see the IPPV but also the next IPPV which is being taped right after and have free admission to a special meet and greet with all the WSU superstars which will be conducted before either show. All this access for $20 if you get your tickets right now and $25 if you get it at the door but it’s a great deal. You’re looking at 8 hours of entertainment with stars such as WSU Champion Mercedes Martinez, Alicia, former TNA Knockout Traci Brooks, former WWE Diva Serena, former WWE Diva Jazz, former TNA Knockout Rain (Peyton Banks) and even former TNA star Homicide. If you are interested in seeing a women’s wrestling product that doesn’t just treat it’s women as T & A than this is the product for you, if you’re looking for something different to get into in the world of wrestling than this is the product for you, if you want to support something new and innovative than again THIS IS THE PRODUCT FOR YOU!!! So go ahead for $15 bucks to watch online you can’t go wrong. There will be a report from yours truly who will be there live at the show right here on Wrestleview so there you have it Homicide, Mercedes Martinez, Jazz, Serena and Jose Marrero (OK maybe my name shouldn’t be up there with those guys but I will be there).

A few weeks ago I mentioned doing a review style column called “The Eye Gouge” that will be for books and possibly DVD’s this is still on the table and it will still be done right here on the main site for absolutely free. The only reason it hasn’t been done sooner is because my schedule is very hectic and it’s hard enough as it is to get “Wrestling Rumblings” out every week. This will be done very soon just bear with me. If you wish to write me please do so at wrestlingrumblings@hotmail.com I try my best to answer each and every email as long as it is respectable (and I even answer some that aren’t at times) so go ahead and email me as I love the feedback. That’s it for the column this week, next week I will try to do better and until then, I am out.