Hello and Happy Holidays to all of my ‘students? here on WrestleView.com! It is I, the columnist that always that is known as The WrestleView resident teacher (though Ryan Droste and Mike Tedesco deserve that title more than I do as both teachers as well).
For eleven months I had a hard time to pick a topic for my Christmas Edition of ?From the Desk of Mr. V?. So this week if you are looking for the normal antics of this teacher, then I am sorry to disappoint. I will get back to that either this weekend or next week. The column goes to the heart this time around. A column that I have never done before, yet plan on doing on the days before Christmas Day.
No Classroom Rules, No Detentions, No Quotes, and I will not grade the commentators this week. However I will be thanking the many readers, wrestlers, and other things that made this teacher glad to be a pro wrestling columnist and fan. To be honest if it was not for your support and your desire to read my columns each week, Mr. V would have been gone two months after my debut.
Also, I will give out my Honor Roll, A Special Letter to someone who witnessed WWE’s Tribute to the Troops, and my Weekly TV Wars. To conclude my column, I will present the current Predictions From the Faculty Standings and a large list of Gold Stars from not only myself, but from other columnists and friends of mine throughout the months.
And if you are brave enough to read something else from Mr. V, I have a gift to all of you on the first full year of this column. It will be the ?writing sample? that I sent Hunter Golden right before the Deadline passed to become a columnist. Looking back on it, I am still proud of that sample and I hope you will be too.
I know that most of you are anxious to know what you will get on Christmas Day, but instead of biting your nails off and looking at the gifts under the tree read this column. It should make your wait a little better.
Abbreviated Honor Roll and Weekly TV Wars
Week of December 14 – December 19, 2009
Distinguished Honors – Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Batista, Friday Night Smackdown, 12/18.
High Honors – Daniels vs. Desmond Wolfe, TNA Impact, 12/17.
Honors – Tyler Black vs. Sonjay Dutt, ROH on HDNet, 12/14.
Honorable Mention awarded to: Delirious vs. King on 12/14; DiBiase/Rhodes vs. Bourne/Kingston on 12/14; Hurricane vs. ?The Ripper? on 12/15; JTG/Gaspard vs. Knox/Ziggler on 12/17; Roxxi vs. ODB on 12/17; Tatanka vs. Lethal on 12/17; McIntyre/Punk/Gallows vs. Morrison/M. Hardy/R-Truth on 12/18; Kidd/Smith vs. Wang Yang/Master J on 12/18; Miz vs. Morrison on 12/19; and Cena vs. Jericho on 12/19
Worst Match of the Week – 14-Diva Tag Match, Monday Night Raw, 12/14.
Dishonorable Mention went to: Corino vs. Lude on 12/14; Stevens vs. Marcel on 12/14; Kane/Khali/Christian vs. Regal/Kozlov/Jackson on 12/14; Rhodes vs. Kingston on 12/14; Cena vs. Punk on 12/14; HHH/HBK vs. Jericho/Show on 12/14; Jackson vs. Kozlov on 12/15; Croft/Baretta vs. Cruz/Alias on 12/15; Brother Ray vs. Morgan on 12/17; Hamada/Kong vs. Rayne/Sky vs. Sarita/Wilde on 12/17; Styles/Tomko/Lashley/Abyss/Angle vs. Steiner/Raven/Stevie/Magnus/D. Williams on 12/17; Kane vs. Escobar on 12/18; Khali vs. Jericho on 12/18; and Phoenix vs. Maria on 12/18.
WEEKLY TV WARS
Students Choice: Monday Night Raw (1 Point)
– Raw got 4 out of the 5 votes by the students.
Mr. V’s Runner-Up: Friday Night Smackdown (1 Point)
– SD had a great segment with Batista and Rey, which led to a fantastic match. As a matter of fact, most of the matches were pretty good. Now if they can get rid of this Eric Escobar/Vickie Guerrero storyline because it got real old real quick.
Mr. V’s Show of the Week: WWE’s Tribute to the Troops (2 Points)
– I will say that I am disappointed with the rating it got on NBC (but it was expected). Students, I really want you to watch this show. It was fantastic and their best ?Troops? show to date! Mike Tedesco, you were lucky to recap this great show. As a matter of fact, read a letter below the ?TV Standings? just to see how much one soldier appreciated the WWE taking time to visit Iraq and perform for those who are doing the most noble service of all.
Friday Night Smackdown (64 Points) **Clinched Best Show of 2009**
Monday Night Raw (47 Points)
TNA Impact (43 Points)
ECW (29 Points)
ROH on HDNet (14 Points)
WWE’s Tribute to the Troops (2 Points)
WWE Superstars (2 Points)
Well, if Monday Night Raw is labeled in my eyes as a ‘solid? show next week, then we just clinched our second spot in the TV Wars Standings. However with a few more shows this week I am not sure. Send your pick for best show by e-mailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you all for participating throughout the year.
A SPECIAL THANK YOU FROM A REAL HERO
As I mentioned before I have family members and friends who served unselfishly in Iraq, Afghanistan, and many other parts around the world. My brother served a year and a half overseas and is currently protecting the people of Pittsburgh, PA as he is a police officer on that force. My wife’s stepfather served in Vietnam and not too long ago finished up his tenure as the Commander for the Pennsylvania Veterans of Foreign Wars (V.F.W.) I also have a cousin that is in the U.S. Navy, and many uncles and cousins that served in Vietnam, Korea, and (God rest my grandpap’s soul) World War II.
I also have a real good friend of mine, back from elementary school, who currently is on active duty for the United States Army. Now I am not allowed to disclose the name of my friend because we must keep it secret. However my friend wanted to share with all of you (as well as myself) his experiences with the WWE. He witnessed the ?Tribute to the Troops? show twice. Here is what my friend typed to me just the other day. Enjoy, my ‘students?.
?Well as for my experience with the tribute for the troops by the WWE, it was great! I was in an undisclosed location in Iraq when the superstars of the WWE flew in. When greeting these famous, bigger then life stars, the first thing I noticed was that they weren’t scared! They felt safe with us around! They were so very personable! You would have never guessed these were million dollar athletes, TV stars, and movie stars! We got to hang out with the likes of Steve Austin, Big Show and Torrie Wilson just to name a few. What was really cool to see was the fact that the WWE superstars were like kids when we (military) were able to take them around in military vehicles and let them shot military weapons. Then getting to see them do a live show in the middle of the desert in a war zone was just phenomenal!
I have been part of a few USO tours, but this one made me feel like I was in the presence of friends rather then the presence of Stars! I have been out of the loop in following the WWE since I was a little kid! However one thing I always do is watch the tribute to the troops show. I make sure if nothing else, I do that! My respect for the WWE is higher then most because of the respect they show us!?
To my friend that typed this, to my brother, and to all the men and women serving (and who served) in the military in order to keep all of us safe I say thank you. Though at times I question our government, I am ALWAYS 100% ON BOARD with the men and women that go into harm’s way in order for us to keep our freedoms. Thank you to all of you and stay safe out there. I do keep you in my prayers.
PREDICTIONS FROM THE FACULTY STANDINGS
Well, this is really getting close. So close that it is too much to contain.
The ?professors? of WrestleView.com always come through in this project. Since February of 2009 we started up this Predictions game and whoever finished in first overall is titled ?The Dean of WrestleView?. Though Mr. V is nowhere near the top of this I am proud to have worked with these great people over the months of this project.
With that said we have a FIRST (actually a couple FIRSTS).
First #1: We decided to scrap our first match. The Feast or Fired match was NOT COUNTED in the Predictions game. It was too much of a cluster____ to really predict an outcome. I am sure many did not mind.
First #2: For the First time during the course of the year, a columnist posted two perfect records. And they both happened to be on TNA Pay-Per-Views. So to JOSH BOUTWELL, I say congrats to you on a 7-0 record for Final Resolution.
First #3: MATT O?BRIEN got his first ever perfect record for a PPV with Final Resolution. I have to say he is one of the most underrated columnists in professional wrestling and I think students of mine can learn a thing or two with his columns. Check them out every Saturday (Notes From the Nosebleeds) on WrestleView.com.
First #4: For the First time since we started the Predictions, we have a THREE WAY TIE for the title of ?Dean?. By winning percentage, Joe Baiamonte is ranked #1 as he omitted a pick on one PPV. However, JOE BAIAMONTE, JOSE MARRERO, AND JOSH BOUTWELL each posted 108 matches on PPV correct.
Well, without too much rambling, here are the current standings of Predictions From the Faculty?
(Final Resolution Picks are in Parentheses)
Remember, The WV Faculty did not count Feast or Fired!
1) Joe Baiamonte (Baiamonte’s Casa)?????????……..108-74 (6-1)
2) Jose Marrero (Wrestling Rumblings)?????????..??108-75 (4-3)
3) Josh Boutwell (Viva La Raza and TNA Recapper)…???108-75 (7-0)
4) WrestleView Students (The Loyal Readers)???????..103-80 (5-2)
5) David Stephens (That’s a Wrap and ECW Recapper)??102-81 (6-1)
6) Anthony Valvo (From the Desk of Mr. V/ROH Recaps)?98-85 (6-1)
7) Josh Piedra (The Shoot)???????????????????97-66 (5-2)
8) Mike Siciliano (Pro’s From the Palace)???????????93-84 (4-3)
9) Matt O?Brien (Notes From The Nosebleeds)????????88-64 (7-0)
10) Chris Kelly (King of All Wrestling Media)?????????80-53 (6-1)
11) Doug Lackey (Reality From Ringside)???????????.70-78 (3-4)
12) Sean Hurley (The Sharpshooter)??????????????.66-44 (INC)
13) Phil Chroniger (On Second Thought..)??????????..64-62 (INC)
14) Mike Tedesco (Smackdown and Superstars Recapper)?.38-28 (4-3)
15) Mike Klubnik (Stylin? and Profilin?)?????????????..20-14 (INC)
16) Ryan Droste (Ask WV)?????????????????????.4-4 (INC)
Eight Students made their picks for Final Resolution. They averaged 4.5 wins. By rules of estimation, I gave the students a 5-2 average for the PPV.
Also, Thanks to Robert Downing for this recent idea in which I will allow. Start with the 2010 TNA Against All Odds PPV I will pick out the student with the best PPV from the previous PPV and have their picks in our articles.
So, to whoever gets the best record on the 2010 Royal Rumble will be invited to represent the Students of WrestleView. Don?t worry class; you will still be able to present picks even if I do not select you.
HOW ANTHONY J. VALVO TURNED INTO ?MR. V?
As mentioned before I was introduced to WrestleView.com by a friend of mine, Travis Thomas. After listening to Wrestling News Live for a couple weeks, I was hooked. When they had job openings for ?Columnists?, I knew I had to do it. Who were my inspirations to wanting to write for WrestleView? I always answered two men: Mike Siciliano and David Stephens. Both of them have contrasting views, but I always liked their work the best and they were inspirations to me as an up-and-coming writer.
The question was what should I write about? I gave up watching pro wrestling (there, I admit it) during JBL’s Title Run on Smackdown during my college years and a couple years after that. I never got back into watching professional wrestling until I was introduced to The Minority Report (now called The Don Tony and Kevin Castle Show) on wrestling-news.com. But that is a different story.
Now, where was I?YES! How I now became Mr. V. Ok, I decided in November 2008, since I am a Pittsburgh Wrestling fan, I decided to do an essay on Pittsburgh Pro Wrestling in the Past, Present, and Future. It may look goofy to you, but this is the essay I sent to WrestleView in 2008. I waited days upon days. I get an e-mail a couple weeks later from ?King? Hunter Golden stating that I was among the finalists (I think, this is from memorization). Well, on December 24, 2008 I was ill and could not make my family’s yearly Christmas party. As I was listening to Bing Crosby on the radio and watching a Campfire on my television set (yes, we do have one of those On Demand). I got an e-mail from ?King? Golden saying that I got the job! I still am in complete and utter shock.
So, for the first time I will show you the sample. If you don?t feel like reading this, then just skip ahead to the Gold Stars.
Oh, I just saw that this sample was long as well, so my apologies. But heck, you need to kill some time until Christmas Morning, right?
Oh, and my ideas on some of the material has drastically changed since I started being a columnists. However below is the article that gained the trust from the WrestleView Staff. And again to Hunter Golden, Adam Martin, Tom Van Stone, and Paul Nemer I say thank you for giving this substitute teacher a chance. I hope this year I did not let you guys down.
Wrestling in Pittsburgh, Past, Present, and Future
(Article written in Nov. 2008)
By: Anthony J. Valvo
Pittsburgh. This is a region that I had called home for all twenty eight years of my life. A city and region that is proud of its many accomplishments. Pittsburgh has been known to bring us great names in sports and sports entertainment. Pittsburgh welcomed the world to many superstars in various leagues. We introduced the sporting world to many great athletes, such as Mike Ditka, Tony Dorsett, Dan Marino, Joe Montana, Joe Namath, Johnny Unitas, Arnold Palmer, Stan Musial, and Jim Kelly. All that I mentioned were in their respected halls of fame, and all of them are very close to the city of Pittsburgh. But not many people around Pittsburgh mention Bruno Sammartino, Shane Douglas, Kurt Angle, and Larry Zbyszko. All of these men are also natives of the Pittsburgh area. I want to explain why in some ways; the Pittsburgh region may have developed some of the finest professional wrestlers in the country, and possibly the world.
Not too many people know, but from 1959 to 1974, a local station in Pittsburgh known as WIIC (which is now WPXI), televised a program called Studio Wrestling. This program introduced some of the world’s best wrestlers to come from the Pittsburgh area. The most recognizable superstar to ever wrestle in this program was Bruno Sammartino. Sammartino is easily the most accomplished professional wrestler ever in the Steel City, as he held numerous titles in his illustrious career. He was an NWA Champion, a multiple tag team champion, but most importantly, he held the WWWF Heavyweight Championship for a record eight years. Such longevity of holding that title will never be duplicated by anyone. He has the honor of headlining more Madison Square Garden cards than any other wrestler, including about forty five sellouts. He is also enshrined at the Madison Square Garden Walk of Fame, which is rarely awarded to professional wrestlers.
Another wrestler that got his claim to fame on Studio Wrestling was Larry Zbyszko. Not everyone knows this fact, but he spent his first two years wrestling for Studio Wrestling, teaming up with Bruno Sammartino (whom trained Larry) on many occasions. Currently, Zbyszko still actively wrestles in the independent circuit, recently holding the AWA Superstars or Wrestling Heavyweight Championship.
Studio Wrestling lasted until 1974, when the World Wide Wrestling Federation claimed the show and syndicated runs of the WWWF’s programming took place of Studio Wrestling. Other wrestlers who got their first taste of the wrestling business from Studio Wrestling were 4-time WWF Junior Heavyweight Champion Johnny De Fazio, WWWF Tag Team Champion, and wrestling trainer to Mick Foley and Shane Douglas Dominic DeNucci(who trained Shane Douglas and Mick Foley), George ?The Animal? Steele (he wrestled in Studio Wrestling as ?The Student?), WWF International Tag Champions The Mongols (which featured a young Nikolai Volkoff) and WWE Hall of Famer Johnny Valiant.
One well-known wrestler who debuted after the end of Studio Wrestling was John Minton, which to the common fan may know him as Big John Studd. Minton was best known for having a very nice feud with Andre the Giant. Not as big as Andre, about a few inches shorter and over one pounds lighter, he was able to do a very nice job during their feud. The climax of this storyline feud was reached in the very first Wrestlemania took place, and Big John Studd issued a $15,000 challenge against Andre the Giant. Andre won the challenge, and has been featured as a quality highlight among every Wrestlemania. What a shame it was that not even ten years later, Minton died of both Hodgkin’s Disease and liver cancer in 1995 at the age of forty seven. Minton’s greatest achievements was winning the 1989 Royal Rumble (which featured many wrestlers such as Mr. Perfect, Shawn Michaels, Hulk Hogan, and Andre the Giant), a WWWF tag team champion with the legendary Killer Kowalski, and inductions to both the WCW and WWE Halls of Fame.
I started watching wrestling with my dad and my brother in the early 1990s. I watched all the shows, All-America Wrestling, WWF Superstars, Prime Time Wrestling, etc. Little did I know, when I was young, that there were a few representatives from the Pittsburgh area that performed for WWE, WCW, and ECW. Although only a couple wrestlers since 1990 can call themselves ?World Champion?, the Pittsburgh area still produced a couple other mid-card wrestlers for the WWE.
The first mid-card wrestler I can think of is Mike Jones, who wrestled under many aliases, mainly Ted DiBiase’s bodyguard ?Virgil?. He was the heel bodyguard, always flashing the Million Dollar Man’s money around; creating devious ways in helping his ?employer? win his matches. Later on during the storyline, he turns face and begin a nice feud with the Million Dollar Man. He reached many high points during his eight year run with the World Wrestling Federation. He won a match in Wrestlemania VII (by countout) and, in SummerSlam 1991 pinned DiBiase to win the Million Dollar Championship, which I believe is the most gorgeous looking belt I have ever seen. He would also be in one of the best factions in wrestling history as he was a member of the famous New World Order. He was never seriously pushed, only winning low-card matches on WCW Saturday Night before retiring in 2000.
Another mid-card wrestler, and was quite underrated (but only briefly in the WWE), was Sylvester Terkay. Terkay was once a phenomenal amateur wrestler from neighboring Washington County, PA and later went on to have an illustrious collegiate career at North Carolina State. Terkay is also well known around my circle of friends to be the first Ultimate Pro Wrestling (UPW) Champion. UPW was once a training ground for World Wrestling Entertainment and has developed such superstars as John Cena, The Miz, The Brian Kendrick, and Chris Masters. Some may say that the UPW championship is worthless, but superstars such as Cena, Samoa Joe, and Christopher Daniels once held this championship. Terkay went on to win a couple of championships in Zero-One before the WWE called him up from Ohio Valley Wrestling in 2006. Terkay was mainly an enforcer for another underrated wrestler, Elijah Burke. His run only lasted a few months with the WWE, but I am sure we will hear his name again, in the indies and a main organization such as TNA or WWE.
The two main event superstars I can recall during my glory days of the early 90s through today would be ?The Franchise? Shane Douglas and Kurt Angle. If I had to rank all-time favorites in this business, it would be these two and the aforementioned Sammartino, in no particular order. Both Douglas and Angle grew up not far from the city of Pittsburgh. Shane Douglas grew up in New Brighton, PA, about a half an hour northwest of Pittsburgh. Angle resided in nearby Mount Pleasant, PA. These two places are only ninety minutes apart, but both of these great superstars made a big name for themselves in the past fifteen years.
Let me start off with Kurt Angle. The obvious achievements he received before he became a pro wrestling superstar was becoming an NCAA Wrestling Champion for two years (believe it or not, defeating Sylvester Terkay in 1993) for Clarion University in the early 90s, as well as being a world amateur wrestling champion in 1995. The pinnacle of his pre-wrestling career was in 1996, where he won an Olympic gold metal. In my opinion, he was already a legend in this fine region of Pittsburgh. After his infamous year as a sportscaster for local station WPGH (a terrible sight to watch, one viewer would never find that a ?great? career move) and a spokesman for a Pizza chain in the Pittsburgh Area (which was ridiculed beautifully by the Rock in the early 2000s), he worked for the WWE in 1998. I for once thought this was a great move for his career, but was afraid they would have buried him the way they did with another Pittsburgh wrestler, Shane Douglas, but I was very surprised of how quickly he was pushed to the main event status with World Wrestling Entertainment. He has been equally successful as a main guy for Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling. He was good as a face in his initial push, but his main heel status is a stroke of genius. He is part of what I think has been a great faction for TNA with the Main Event Mafia, and he continues to put on a great show when called upon. I can go on forever of how successful Angle has been with this industry, but to keep this short (for the most part), he was one of the very few people in this business that could be great as either a face or a heel, he was that entertaining. He is the main reason why I continued to watch WWE in the past, and the only reason why I watch TNA now. He won many titles in the WWE, becoming one of only seventeen ?Triple Crown? champions in the WWE, one of only three ?Triple Crown? champions with TNA wrestling, and one of only six WWE ?Grand Slam? champions. As a matter of fact, he is the only ?Triple Crown Champion? in both TNA and WWE. He was a King of the Ring winner, an IWGP Third Belt champion, and a member of the Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame.
I was a huge fan of Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) when I was in high school in the mid to late 90s. Not the crap that the WWE is making money off of with the ECW show on the Sci-Fi Network. Nothing can compare to any atmosphere than when I went to a few ECW shows at the Golden Dome in Monaca, Pennsylvania. The one wrestler that stood out when I watched ECW was not Raven, Rob Van Dam, Taz, or Sabu. I paid to see Shane Douglas. My wrestling friends thought I was crazy, but I think Shane Douglas was what he called himself, ?The Franchise? of ECW. He had the mic skills that any wrestler past or present can ever have, and the crowd either hated him (in Philadelphia), or cheer him on (in Pittsburgh). Before he was very successful in ECW, he wrestled for both the WWF and WCW. He was in some of the worst gimmicks I can ever think of at that time, but none tops what I will mention soon. He was one half of the Dynamic Dudes in NWA, and that tag team failed miserably. He went into the WWF in the early nineties for a year, and had brief success, most notably in the Royal Rumble of 1991, which was won by Hulk Hogan. In 1992, he went back to WCW, and formed a moderately well tag team called ?Dos Hombres? with the famous Ricky Steamboat. Dos Hombres has decent success, winning the WCW tag team belts before losing to a couple pretty good wrestlers by the names of Brian Pillman and Steve Austin. From 1993 ? 1996, that is when Shane Douglas became a great performer in the wrestling industry. His crowning achievement in his first tenure at ECW was winning the NWA Championship. However just minutes after winning the belt, Shane Douglas rejected it and raised what was then the Eastern Championship Wrestling Title. ?The Franchise? Shane Douglas was born. Quite frankly, he put ECW on the map in the early-mid nineties. ECW was becoming a legitimate wrestling organization, an alternative to the WWF and WCW. He formed at this time a legendary faction called the ?Triple Threat?. Some of the great wrestlers were part of these incarnations of this faction, most notably Bam Bam Bigelow, Chris Candido, Chris Benoit, and Dean Malenko.
He left ECW for a short time in 1995 to wrestle in his second tenure for the WWF. They gave him the abysmal gimmick of a teacher called ?Dean Douglas?, and I thought he was going to be buried. I did not know the politics of wrestling when I was a teenager watching his atrocious gimmick, but I could not believe the way they treated him then. I always wondered to this day why the powers that be back then did not give him a shot at a main belt, or allow him to be a mega-heel and open up more of his ?Franchise? gimmick with the WWF. I was glad that he left immediately and come back to ECW.
For the next few years at ECW, he was a main event player, holding the ECW Heavyweight Title on a few occasions and the ECW TV Championship for a couple times. It was then my personal favorite memory of Shane Douglas occurred. That was when he pinned Bigelow to become the ECW World Champion in November to Remember 1997. It was held, at my favorite venue to watch a show, the Golden Dome about fifteen minutes from where I lived at the time. I was sick at the time and did not make the show, but when I saw it on pay-per-view, I was never so jubilant to see someone win a title in my life as a wrestling fan. It was his tenure with the ECW Title that the wrestling media considered this title a ?World Title?. Once the finances took a toll with ECW, he returned to WCW and never lived up to his success when he was in ECW. He did hold the Tag Team Title for a second time with Buff Bagwell, and the United States Championship. He also spent time with TNA, but his injuries from previous years took a toll, and he was never a champion for TNA. His mic work was still among the best in the business, but his ability diminished a bit. However, when I was in high school and really started to follow pro wrestling, the wrestler I admired the most was ?The Franchise? Shane Douglas.
For the past few years, there was not a wrestler from this area that gained popularity in the major organizations or the independents, other than Kurt Angle. However, there might be a superstar in the making in Sterling James Keenan. Keenan started out training for another great in Dory Funk, Jr., and then debuted in March of 2000. I believe in that match he defeated ex-World Heavyweight Champion CM Punk, which is a feat by itself. Since then, he wrestled in various organizations, most notably Ring of Honor (which many people saw him as impressive) and made a couple of appearances in WWE. He has also wrestled in 1 Pro Wrestling, Ohio Valley Wrestling, ZERO-ONE, and the Funkin? Conservatory. I have watched a few videos in which he appeared in those events, and I could not believe this guy’s ability. I continuously ask myself why he is not working for a bigger company. At only twenty-four years old, I still see much potential, and hope one day his hard work and determination will land him a spot at either TNA Wrestling or, hopefully, the WWE.
I know at this time that the hot spots to see good pro wrestling potential is either in New York, Florida, or California. I don?t mind that, because of the great wrestling academies and training facilities at those locations. However, I write this essay to let people understand that the Pittsburgh area still is a hot bed for wrestling talent. From the past (Sammartino, DeFazio), the present (Angle, Douglas), and future (Keenan), Pittsburgh still produces great talent for the entire wrestling business. I hope that more people recognize how important wrestling was for Pittsburgh. I also hope that you, the reader might develop a bit more knowledge for professional wrestling in this wonderful area I call, the Pittsburgh area.
I told you it was long, yet powerful. Gold Star to all of you who read this in one sitting.
AND NOW?.MR. V?S END OF THE YEAR GOLD STAR SEGEMENTS
(Provided by: The Students of WrestleView.com)
Gold Stars are plenty this week, so let us all see who earned a Gold Star from not just me, but from the students and columnists of WrestleView.
And please, don?t type e-mails saying ?They don?t deserve it?. In my view I will shun those down. These people presented their thoughts and since this is the column of the fans I honor the choices.
(names who requested the stars are in parentheses)
I would like to give a gold star to all of the kids I help send to muscular dystrophy camp – “Jerry’s Kids”. They are the reason why I have raised over $60,000 – so they can enjoy what all children should in the summer. (James Lacerenza)
I would also like to give a gold star to Michael O’Brien of Northeast Wrestling and one to Ric Flair on behalf of what they did for MDA Summer Camp this past year – Mr. V., if you read?Wrestleview.com back in May and September, I auctioned off some shirts Flair signed at a Northeast Wrestling show put on by Mr. O’Brien on April 24, in Newbergh, NY. We were able to raise close to $200 for the cause, plus Mr. O’Brien threw in an extra $100. Then Ric showed up during the afternoon hours of this year’s MDA Telethon in Las Vegas as a surprise. I literally marked out when I saw him next to Jerry Lewis because our meeting back in April may have had a very minor role in Ric doing that. (James Lacerenza)
I deserve multiple gold stars for trying to make nephews Christmas a dream come true. Which I’m still trying to work on 🙂 (lordofdarkness2u and from Mr. V).
Bryan Danielson – He handled leaving ROH with class.. it was a moving moment at GBH 8. (Mike Silciliano)
The Power, Andy Knowles – for giving this b@stard a shot at his dream of working in radio. (Mike Siciliano)
Adam & Paul – for putting up with my stammering bullsh!t for over 5 years. (Mike Siciliano)
Randy Orton – He has totally put over Kofi Kingston. Orton’s feud with Kingston has taken Kingston from mid carder to on his way to being a top tier face. I?m not big fan of Orton but I give him credit for this. (Jesse Grams)
Mick Foley – for being a possitive influence on his fans and a mentor to young wrestlers. (He has been helping the Young Bucks, Eric Young and Colt Cabana – hence why the bucks are getting a TNA tryout and are hoping to sign Cabana when his ROH contract is up). (Jason Bitzegaio)
AJ Styles – in spit of some bad angles, he has had a great year, caped off with a run with the TNA World Title. (Jason Bitzegaio)
Christian – For making the best of a bad situation. He could have complained and threw temper tantrums, but he has stuck it out in the hell hole called ECW, and shinned greatly. (Jason Bitzegaio)
The WrestleView staff, for the hard work they put in all year long. (Jason Bitzegaio)
Nigel McGuiness/Desmond Wolfe – For showing the WWE that they made a hell of a mistake by not signing him. (Jason Bitzegaio)
Kurt Angle – For just being tough as hell, working through a lot of pain, and putting up with getting his name dragged into the mud for months and coming out smelling like a rose. (Jason Bitzegaio)
WWE, TNA and ROH – for working hard with little thanks to provide great wrestling shows. (Jason Bitzegaio)
The wrestling fans – without whom, no wrestler would have a job, and there would something missing in each of our lives. (Jason Bitzegaio)
All pro wrestlers – We/they work hard, train hard and bleed buckets to put on a great show. You may have a favorite, or a guy you hate, but one should always respect the men and women who bust their asses to put on a great show. (Jason Bitzegaio)
Jim Ross – for bravely battling through and being a class act for many, many years.
That dude that runs ?From Headlocks to Headlines? (Chris Kelly)
Kofi Kingston for getting over well -credit goes to Orton as well. (Chris Kelly)
Sheamus for being the only first time world champion this year. (Chris Kelly)
Christian for making ECW watchable (Chris Kelly)
Mister V because he needs to replace Petta (Chris Kelly) (Mr. V Note: I will NOT take one’s spot, Petta is doing a fine job.)
Bret Hart for being over the 1997 screwjob. (Chris Kelly)
Ricky Langston – Do My actions Truly Need an Explanation to deserve a gold star? (Ricky Langston)
I think you should get one Anthony (Mr. V) for being so god damn interactive and everything. (Co-Dean Jose Marrero)
You (Mr. V) should get one for being such a great columnist/Journalist and good friend. You came on my show and Missionary Pyro joined us unexpectedly- You never complained- You are a real sport and I’m glad to have you as a friend.? By the way – The Gold Star =has your name on it. From all of us to you =”Mr. V” – Anthony J. Valvo? -? Nuff said! (Joesph ?Sandstorm? Ventura)
Vince McMahon – For making Jeff Hardy the biggest face wrestling star in the world though same couldn?t be said about Jeff excellent in the ring not so good outside it. (Osaid Ahmad)
To any face wrestler that is popular among fans in WWE as I always believe being face is more difficult then being a heel. (Osaid Ahmad)
Undertaker earns a gold star for still performing even though his body is not wanting him to. He cares about his craft and the fans. (Lester Junior)
Gold Star to Jeri-Show…For doing what no one else could in WWE…bringing Tag Team wrestling back to standard, cause when the colons had the titles…it was the death of the division…but once Jeri-Show obtained them at Night of Champions the whole tag team division in the WWE became important. (Ben Phillips)
I’d definitely give one to the following: Kofi Kingston (for obvious reasons), CM Punk (for becoming a major player on Smackdown for the foreseeable future), Chris Jericho (for being the most entertaining man on WWE television for the past six months), The Big Show (for reviving his career thanks to being one half of the best tag team of 2009), Austin Aries (for becoming the first two-time ROH champion), AJ Styles (for FINALLY winning back the TNA World Championship), and Josh Matthews and Byron Saxton (for being the best announce team on television). (Sam Newstone)
Christian, for winning not one, but TWO ECW Championships and basically carrying the brand on his back the entire year.? Major kudos to him. (Sam Newstone)
I’d like to give myself a gold star… both as an avid reader of your column with some interaction from time to time, but mostly because i’m stuck in retail hell, and deserve one just for putting myself through this. (Chad Robbins)
I’d bestow a gold star upon myself, because you don’t need a reason! Well maybe… if it weren’t for me, Tom Van Stone’s show might not be a best d@mn anything, WVCW eFed wouldn’t have the ‘feud of the year’, and the chat room would be about as lively as a beige room. (Doug Lackey)
WWE divas for being absolutely simmering hot. (Osaid Ahmad)
Mae Young deserves a gold star for her years in the business. She is a real pro. (Lester Junior)
To the first ‘students? who e-mailed me back from Column #1 – With that (and I may miss a name) but to Osaid Ahamd, Greg McNeish, Ricky Langston, and Jeremy Samples I say thanks to all of you. (Mr. V)
All the readers that had sent me their thoughts, ideas, and kind words – Thought I have not replied back to some of the e-mails that I receive, please keep in mind that I do read every message and I thank you for the feedback. (Mr. V)
To my wife and child – for allowing me to watch wrestling and then dedicate about few hours a week to type this up. I owe my wife an extravagant dinner when I am done with this column. As for the child, more bedtime stories from dad. (Mr. V)
To the Troops – Thank You once again for defending. I know many of us are proud of you. (Mr. V)
To every professional wrestler that I saw this year – Thank you for mostly keeping me entertained throughout 2009. (Mr. V)
To WrestleView Columnists and Staff – Happy Holidays to all of you, and thanks for letting me be part of this team. (Mr. V)
Matt O?Brien and Josh Boutwell – For posting a PERFECT 7-0 record for the TNA Final Resolution Pay Per View.
Rocky Jr. – For posting a PERFECT 7-0 record among the students of WrestleView.
Jose Marrero, Joe Baiamonte, and Josh Boutwell – Your Co-Deans of WrestleView.com!
Tara – Your NEW TNA Knockout’s Champion.
AJ Styles – STILL your TNA World Heavyweight Champion.
The British Invasion – STILL your TNA World Tag Team Champions.
WWE – For the touching Tribute to the Troops show. Once again, I encourage all my readers to watch this show. There were many days where the fans were disgusted with WWE, but this day was not one of them.
Jay and Mark Briscoe – Your NEW Ring of Honor Tag Team Champions!!
Austin Aries – STILL your Ring of Honor World Champion.
END OF CLASS ANNOUNCEMENTS
1) The 2009 Dream Tournament results will be posted later this weekend. I extended the deadline for the Quarterfinals until next week. In case you need the match-ups, here they are:
(1) Chris Jericho vs. (9) John Cena
(13) CM Punk vs. (5) Christian
(27) The Undertaker vs. (3) Kurt Angle
(2) AJ Styles vs. (7) Randy Orton.
Please post who you would book as the winner by e-mail (email@example.com) or by a message on my Facebook page. I did get a few, and I say thank you.
2) Next Week, I will do an abbreviated Honor Roll and TV Wars again. The reason? I will present the 2009 Golden Yardstick Awards (for the good of 2009) and the 2009 Rotten Apple Awards (for the bad of 2009). Remember that I am not in charge of the end of year awards, as Josh Piedra (The Shoot) offered his services to light my workload.
GOOD BYES AND HAPPY HOLIDAYS
Whew, a lot of copy and paste this week. I am sure the loyal students did not mind the length of this column for the week. With that said, I will just end this column by saying thank you for your loyalty and commitment in reading my material. I truly mean that. I just hope I can one-up in 2010, and there will be a few changes in the column. I think you may enjoy it.
So, until my Awards Column, I am going to spend the rest of my night by the TV Campfire while reading the Professional Wrestling Encyclopedia. Until next week, I wish all my readers and staff a Very Safe Christmas and I will be back on New Year’s Eve. Take Care, class. You are all?…DISMISSED!
Mr. V does read e-mail, so drop the teacher a line: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Look me up on Facebook under Anthony J. Valvo in the Pittsburgh Network
Mr. V does neither Twitter nor MySpace
Later ?From the Desk of Mr. V??.
ROH Recap for 12/21
Mr. V #48
The 2009 ?Dream Tournament? Quarterfinals Results.
And my much-anticipated 2009 Golden Yardstick (and 2009 Rotten Apple) Awards!
More work on my other site The Examiner
Check out my recent Examiner articles! Heck, you can even subscribe to my articles! Help me earn a little bit more cash by just going to the link, please.
If not for the students, there would be no Mr. V. Thanks for Reading.