Disclaimer – Sometimes you might wonder what the point of the stories are… I’ll be honest, sometimes there isn’t going to be any meaning to what I’m blogging. I just simply want to share these really cool moments I get to experience. I get to experience these wonderful moments because I work in “The Business.” I work in wrestling, that might not mean much to a non fan, but to wrestling fans, being a full time wrestling employee, like I am, is the Holy Grail.
The wrestling business is my full time job, my “shoot” job & this blog details the fun I experience in our wacky world of wrestling… ENJOY!
I feel weird saying this & I’m hoping that I can adequately explain what I’m trying to say but… In the last few days & weeks I feel like I’m really starting to see the “artform” of wrestling in a different light.
For the majority of the time I’ve been in the business I’ve kind of thought that there were 2 jobs for me. 1) learn to wrestle so that when i become a commentator (which is job number 2) I’m speaking from experience.
But lately, & I’m not even sure that what made me start thinking about it differently, I’ve started thinking about all the other jobs within the business. after match interviewer, camera man, video editor, booker & the million other roles.
I always knew that these jobs had to be done for there to be an in-ring product but I wasn’t looking at them as an artform, just simply as jobs. But, as any video editor will tell you, there is absolutely an artform to it.
I want to start work on a docu series sometime in the year 2019. The premise of the show is going to be about what it is like to be a 30 year old man breaking into wrestling full time & what it’s like to have to learn to wrestle, hustle for bookings around the state/region, stay in shape, learn to video edit to have copies of my matches, alllllll the while of having a wife & family at home.
Maybe the thought of wanting to do the docu series has inspired me to look at other parts of the business in a different light, idk, but I think it’s helping me find my artistic side. I’ve found myself thinking outside the box on commentary & trying to say unique things & trying to be funny & trying not allow my anxiety dictate how much fun I can have.
The key word in all of that is “trying” because I truly am trying very hard to bring out my artistic side. Before this new found view of wrestling came to light for me, there were times that I would have anxiety about doing certain things. For instance, I wouldn’t always go all out on commentary because I’d be self concious about people looking at me as a weirdo. I know that that sounds insane but it’s the truth. I’d damn near have an anxiety attack worrying about it.
But now I’ve started telling myself “You only live once! Don’t worry about what people think about you. Create the art you were meant to create.” I try to tell myself those 3 sentences over and over and over.
I don’t really know if i struggled with anxiety before I came home from Iraq or not. I’ve blocked out so many negative memories from my youth that I have a hard time remembering things like that. But, I do know that I’ve struggled with anxiety as an adult. It’s anxiety over the weirdest stuff, too. Like I’d work a car wreck as a Paramedic with my partner Nick (who is the absolute best EMT/Paramedic you could ever have working on you BTW) & I’d have no anxiety at all. Nick & I would get our hands dirty & do what we needed to do to give first rate medical treatment to those in need.
BUT you stick me on a microphone to commentate on a wrestling match, with no ones life on the line, with no danger looming & I’ll have to talk myself down from an anxiety attack simply because I won’t want to look stupid in front of a few people. & the thing is, I won’t look stupid! I’ll be giving the fans exactly what they want, an entertaining heel commentator! I just don’t get it.
The reason I brought all this up in one conversation is because i think it’s all connected. I think that now that I’m learning to talk myself through my anxiety & allowing myself to let go on commentary & really play the part, it’s allowing me to truly find my artistic side which now has me looking at every angle of the wrestling business as a piece of the puzzle. Man, I hope that makes sense hahahaha. (see, in a weird way, that last sentence is me being self concious about something I’m doing. Instead I should just be confident in myself that I adequately explained everything I was thinking & feeling.)
I got to work with Chris Burnham on commentary for the first time last Saturday. We were together for what he believes was the first ever pro wrestling show in Locust Grove, Oklahoma.
Burnham to me has the skill level in regards to commentary that I strive for every single day. He can grab a mic & be a straight forward play by play guy or a heel that’ll have you worked up in 5 minutes. He is the total package when it comes to pro wrestling commentary. Seriously, I wouldn’t be surprised if he ends up in the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame one day.
But, back to the show. So, we called the WFC show together & it was a great show. I really got to let loose & play a full on heel commentator for the first time & it felt freakin great! Damn, it felt good.
Working with Burnham really reminds me how much I have to learn in regards to commentary. I’ve got a long way to go before I’m where I need to be. practice makes perfect though, right?!
I have to give a quick plug to Burnham. His website, OklaFan.com is the end all be all for Oklahoma Pro Wrestling. He has an index with every performer you could imagine on there. If they are from Oklahoma & are a professional wrestler, chances are you can find info on them on OklaFan, so be sure & check it out.
Till next time! Stay Strong & Too Sweet.
Personal Instagram & Twitter – @FoxThePodcaster
Show’s Twitter & Facebook – @IWRdaily
Predicting The Card: WWE WrestleMania 35 (Round 2)
The date is November 23, 2018, less than a week removed from WWE Survivor Series 2018. Greg DeMarco checks in with his top match predictions for the big event in New York City!
Survivor Series is behind us, meaning it’s time to update our WrestleMania speculations! October 7 was the date of my last WrestleMania speculations, and a lot has changed. Namely, Roman Reigns is off beating leukemia, with no timetable set for his return. We also have a new injury to Triple H, and there’s also talk of an injury to Samoa Joe. And who can forget Becky Lynch!?!?
Injured WWE Superstars & Their Expected Return Dates
So between the growing injury report, title changes, and Survivor Series fallout, we are ready to update our WrestleMania predictions!
Brock Lesnar (champion) vs. AJ Styles
Last time I called for a Shield Triple Threat here, with Roman Reigns walking in as Universal Champion. Reigns obviously vacated that championship, and Brock is the new champion. Reigns’ announcement left WWE with big void to fill–the WrestleMania closer.
As I referenced on a recent Greg DeMarco Show, WWE (and any company worth its salt) books backwards from a set ending. This is why the WrestleMania focus is typically set by the week after the prior year’s event itself, to give the booker, writing teams and agents a focal point to guide their decision making. When Reigns steps away, the first order of business was “What do we do at WrestleMania?”
I believe the answer to that question was AJ Styles.
Survivor Series went from AJ Styles vs. Roman Reigns to AJ Styles vs. Brock Lesnar to Daniel Bryan vs. Brock Lesnar–and the latter delivered an amazing and unique match that isn’t getting the love it deserves.
AJ Styles is the perfect story for WrestleMania. Signed to be a mid-carder, AJ has exceeded expectations within WWE, and has shown the ability to deliver in all scenarios. A Royal Rumble win and subsequent match with Brock Lesnar would have MetLife Stadium rocking, delivering the ultimate feel-good moment for WWE and likely the top highlight in a career full of highlights for AJ Styles.
Before you ask, yes I have read the rumors of Lesnar vs. Seth Rollins at ‘Mania. Doesn’t mean I believe them!
Raw Women’s Championship
Ronda Rousey (champion) vs. Charlotte Flair
Becky Lynch has set the world on fire, and I am among her top fans. But I also live in a place called reality, and I don’t see this match changing at all. I called this match last time, and for months everyone has been calling for this match to close the show (I don’t think it does).
The finish of their Survivor Series match served only to continue us on our path to Rousey-Flair at WrestleMania 35. Rousey said herself (in a red-carpet interview before Evolution) that she wants to take time off and have a family. She’s also struggling with life on the road.
WWE is building Charlotte Flair’s legacy. She ended Asuka’a “streak” at WrestleMania 34, and she is going to serve Ronda Rousey with her first loss at WrestleMania 35. Becky will be just fine, as another round of Becky-Charlotte after WrestleMania will do big business, and likely see both women main eventing house shows and possibly a pay-per-view along the way.
Becky Lynch vs. Nia Jax
Talk about things changing! In my first round of WrestleMania predictions, I said we’d get Asuka challenging Becky Lynch. I assume Becky will end up dropping (or forfeiting) the Smackdown Women’s Championship soon enough, and I think Asuka is still in a championship match at WrestleMania.
But Becky Lynch vs. Nia Jax is MONEY. I know it’s not Lynch-Rousey, which we may have been robbed of thanks to that errant punch thrown by Nia Jax. But assuming Rousey-Flair is in stone (as I am), the next best thing is for Becky Lynch to get her hands on Nia Jax in front of 90,000 rabid fans in the New York/New Jersey area. Nia is finally settling in as a heat magnet, and “The Man” is the true people’s champion.
Becky doesn’t need Ronda at WrestleMania, Becky sells this WrestleMania match on her own–and that’s the biggest compliment you can give a WWE superstar.
Daniel Bryan (champion) vs. The Miz
I was originally going to slot Shane McMahon in as The Miz’s opponent, but I think that storyline gets tied up sometime during the TLC-Royal Rumble-Elimination Chamber run.
I had Miz pegged as your challenger for the WWE Championship (then held by AJ Styles) along with a Royal Rumble win. Now that AJ is in a different position, it only makes sense that Miz–who is creeping closer and closer to being a babyface on a daily basis–to emerge as Bryan’s challenger. Bryan will have his supporters over WrestleMania Weekend, but Miz has emerged as a favorite of the internet fanbase himself. This match can steal the show, and is worthy of a top spot at WrestleMania.
Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose
I originally went with a Shield Triple Threat for WrestleMania 35, but that might have to wait a year. Instead we continue the issue between Ambrose and Rollins.
This is a much better match for Rollins, in my opinion. Yes, Lesnar is the money match, but Ambrose and Rollins will deliver big time, and the street fight stipulation only helps things.
I considered Hell In A Cell (which happened at WrestleManias 29 and 32), but the street fight makes sense here. If Roman is able to, an appearance either helping Rollins or celebrating at the end makes total sense as well.
The Undertaker vs. John Cena
No change from last time–to me this seems as “set in stone” as Rousey-Flair. (Mainly so I can be doubly wrong? Maybe…)
Drew McIntyre & Dolph Ziggler vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
One thing that really stood out to me in Eric’s injury report today was that both Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn are expected back by WrestleMania. I was racking my brain to figure out what the company would do with Drew McIntyre, and this provided the answer.
Owens and Zayn will get a heroes welcome upon return, as that is the standard return pop for WWE superstars these days. Ziggler and McIntyre are amazing as heels, and I would bet money on Drew getting a mega-push after WrestleMania. McIntyre vs. Styles could be a major program for the company. It’s fresh, it’s exciting, and it would deliver.
I’d expect Kevin & Sami to go over (on Ziggler), with McIntyre turning on his partner and ending their year long alliance in the process.
There’s a lot more ground to cover outside of those matches. You have Shane McMahon, Asuka & the Smackdown Women’s Championship, United States Championship, Braun Strowman, Triple H (if he’s back), and more. This will be another packed WrestleMania for sure, so get ready for 5+ hours of action next April!
Top 5: Things I Learned From WWE Survivor Series 2018
WrestleMania… Faces and Heels… what was learned from WWE Survivor Series 2018?
Greg DeMarco is back with the things he learned from WWE Survivor Series 2018–five of them!
After a really fun and insightful NXT Takeover War Games, the main roster took the stage to see if they can “keep up.” I use quotes because I find that notion hilarious, but I know it’s out there so I’ll roll with it.
But I learned some things from Survivor Series as well, and they’re equally important. Let’s have a look, eh?
5. We’ve Hit The Reset Button On AJ Styles
It’s kind of a soft reset, but it’s still a reset… or headed towards one.
It’s easy to see that the original plan for this event was AJ Styles vs. Roman Reigns, but Roman’s well documented condition forced a change of sorts. That brought us here.
Daniel Bryan winning the WWE Championship was necessary so the WWE can make their plans with AJ Styles. The man appeared on 32 straight WWE PPV events until Survivor Series, not missing a beat since his debut. He loses his WWE Championship on Tuesday, isn’t on the Survivor Series card, and has a 365 special on the network right after.
Here’s what I see: AJ will lose to Daniel Bryan at WWE TLC, and go on to win the Royal Rumble. He then gets Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania, giving the internet smark happy crowd a moment they’ll cherish forever. Him not being there tonight was merely a step in that direction.
4. WWE Sees Money In Becky Lynch vs. Nia Jax
I know everyone thinks we are getting Becky Lynch vs. Ronda Rousey at WrestleMania, but I never believed that to be the case. And after Survivor Series, I can’t see how anyone thinks that’s the case. It’s merely wishful thinking. The company laid the foundation for Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte Flair II at WM35, and that path is crystal clear now.
But what about the real People’s Champion, Becky Lynch? My initial thought was her being challenged by Asuka at WrestleMania 35, but it seems like that isn’t happening. What could happen?
Becky is a pro, and WWE was smart enough to see there was money in Nia vs. Becky. And much like AJ Styles, absence makes the heart grow fonder. Don’t be shocked if Becky’s next match is the Royal Rumble, where she takes out Nia Jax and charts a course towards Met Life Stadium.
I know everyone wants to see Ronda Rousey vs. Becky Lynch, but we are actually in a place now where we could see Ronda-Charlotte, Becky-Nia, plus Asuka in a Smackdown Women’s Championship Match, all at WrestleMania. That’s a huge win.
3. The Miz Is Brilliant
Yes, The Miz ultimately met his demise in the Men’s Elimination Match, but it wasn’t until AFTER he basically owned Shane McMahon in the process.
We all know Shane’s crazy, right? He did his trademark elbow from the top rope through a table on Braun, and that’s probably the 15th time he’s done it. That doesn’t include a career full of other crazy spots.
Miz, like the rest of us, knows this, and used it against Shane by getting him to do Coast 2 Coast twice after he was visibly hurt.
Why? Because Shane ain’t saying no!
Miz knew he was opposite Braun Strowman, Drew McIntyre, and Bobby Lashley. He knew that even if Team Smackdown won, they still had two more matches against Ronda Rousey and Brock Lesnar to win just to TIE.
So what did Miz do? He manipulated the manipulator, and likely set the ball in motion for his WrestleMania match.
And that’s why The Miz Is…Brilliant.
2. The Tag Team Division Is Still Really Good
The Kickoff Match was crazy entertaining, and The Bar vs. AOP was a fun battle of brutality before Big Show, Drake Maverick, and pee got involved.
That shows me that if we can carve out even a little more television time, the tag teams can be an asset. Makes me want to check out a house show, were tag team wrestling is the norm.
Maybe it’s time for a #TagTeamEvolution?
1. Faces And Heels Are Dead
This isn’t a new statement, but it needs to be the end of the discussion.
It’s over. Done. There are no more faces and heels. WWE doesn’t need them. More importantly, the WWE fans don’t need them.
The fans, both in the arena and on social media, reacted to drama. They reacted to twists and turns that made the show interesting. They didn’t care because Daniel Bryan was working heel, they cared that it was fresh. They didn’t care because Charlotte Flair “turned heel,” they cared because it was different. Becky Lynch is different. People are finding ways to be more edgy, and it’s clicking.
As the company moves into their new television deals, we might see entry into a new “era.” Little more attitude, little more aggression, little more edge.
It’s also real life. Most people have face and heel tendencies. Many TV characters aren’t 100% good or evil anymore. It makes total sense for WWE to follow suit. My only concern is that the one group that will have the most trouble with it is the internet fans.