What did WWE Hall of Famer “Rowdy” Roddy Piper teach Jared Ganem about the work? Read on to find out!
How awesome was Roddy Piper? He was one of the greatest of all times, wasn’t he? He taught me a really amazing concept called, “Think Shoot, but Work.”
What does it mean to Think Shoot, but Work? It means in wrestling, as a performer, you have to actually, in your own head, start to believe it’s real for a minute and get lost in the moment, yet still be cooperative.
Can I share with you a really cool personal backstage story with you about him?
I didn’t even know this until recently, but apparently, I was Roddy Piper’s last one on one match in the Northeast. I had no idea about this until a “This Day in History” thing came up. It was in the Mid-Hudson Civic Center. This was a different event.
Rewind to a few months earlier, this story begins when Roddy was scheduled to do a Piper’s Pit for an event at Northeast Wrestling. Northeast Wrestling was and still is a great promotion that draws huge crowds and does a great mix of up and coming independent talent verses established big named stars.
I was wrestling Jerry Lawler that night, and Lawler and Piper are apparently good friends. So Piper, being booked on the show already, watches Jerry’s match, which means Piper’s watching ME! It was awesome.
Anyway, I get back through the curtain, and he pulls me aside. “You did a great job in there. What do you want to do in this business?” And I explained to him that at the time, I wanted to make it to WWE, get tryouts, etc. He was very encouraging, and said, “If you ever need anything, I’d love to help you.”
I sincerely thanked him, but I also thought he was just being polite. Because if you’ve ever been in this wrestling business, we both know that people mean really well, but sometimes they don’t always do what they say.
I ended up going out to eat that night at a different restaurant than the rest of the guys. It was me and my group of friends that always hung out at the time. The regulars I used to travel with would have been Mike Bennett, Matt Taven, an independent star named Jason Blade, and Robbie E at the time. We didn’t want to be with the group of guys “Marking Out” to hang out with Piper and Lawler at the usual restaurant, so as professionals, we chose to eat somewhere else.
I get a phone call from the promoter, “Jared, are you coming to the restaurant?”
I say, “I wasn’t planning on it.”
The promoter responds, “Piper is specifically asking for you by name and wondering why you’re not here. Can you get here before he goes to the hotel?”
I’m looking at my friends and they were all like, “Dude, you have to go if he’s asking for you.” So I head over to the restaurant/hotel that Piper’s at with the rest of the guys.
Side note: ALL the “talent” are hanging out and partying with Piper as if they’re fans. Getting their pictures taken, loudly laughing, trying to impress him. It was kind of like a circus. Piper gives me an eye signal and a little “iggy” and he says, “10 minutes after everyone leaves, meet me near the elevators by yourself.”
So side note CONTINUED: Everyone gets their pictures taken, tries to peacock in front of him, then they’re all like, “OKAY! See you later Hot Rod! Bye!” and left HIM with the bill. No joke.
So I meet up with Piper at the elevator, and the first thing he said to me was, “I’m a Hall of Famer, and everyone wants to be your best friend, but all this ring means is they get to hang out with me until it’s time to pay the bill.”
He seemed kind of sad about the whole thing. He was gracious and loved hanging out with everyone, but he also knew who was just there to “get the rub” so to speak. Does that make sense?
So he says, “I asked you to come here privately because if I said this in public, they all would have showed up too and we’d never be able to really talk.”
So he invites me to his room. We go inside and this is what happens.
He goes, “So… you want to be in WWE. You’re getting tryouts soon. Is that right?”
I go, “Yes sir.”
Piper takes off his jacket, throws it on the bed, looks me up and down, and gets nose to nose with me.
“Why… the F*CK… are you in MY business?!”
I start to get very uncomfortable.
He goes, “Stand up like a man and answer me. I busted my ass. I bled for this business. I slept in my car. I’ve sacrified in the early days. I’ve paved the way. Why does some PUNK like you get to come in here and be in MY business? SAY SOMETHING. STAND UP FOR YOURSELF. WHY do you deserve to be in MY business?”
And I start sweating.
We’re nose to nose, in an empty hotel room.
I’m thinking to myself, “Oh my god, Roddy Piper is going to murder me in this hotel room. This is how it all ends for me. How do the newspapers write about this?”
Then, he asked me the question.
He goes, “Are you uncomfortable right now?” I said, “With all due respect sir, yes I am.” He goes, “Do you think I’m about to fight you.” I said, “Yes sir, I do.” He goes, “Yes. And so do these 15,000 other people right now.” And he points around to the imaginary 15,000 seat arena that’s surrounding him in his mind.
And then it clicked.
He goes, “If you want to get the emotion from the crowd, it has to start with YOU being emotional. It’s not enough for you to just remember moves and do them A B C.” He goes, “If you want them to believe, you have to believe it first.”
The rest of the evening, we sat down, we laughed, he shared stories, and he was VERY helpful in telling me psychology that would really help me out even today.
But it was in that demonstration it really clicked. I had to “Think Shoot, but Work.”
If this has been helpful for you, and you want to find out even MORE psychology on the REAL stuff that makes a difference in this business, put yourself on the Notification List for my booklet coming out! It’s called “Dream it or Do It” and it’s going to teach you all the tips and tricks that help people stand out and actually LIVE the dream rather than just saying they dream about it
If you’re interested in Doubling Your Bookings right now, you can have a free one on one consultation with me to find out where you are now, what’s holding you back in your career, where you want to go instead! You can sign up for that right here:
I’ll see you guys next week!
Andrew’s WWE Raw and SmackDown Live Ratings & Analysis (4/22 + 4/23/2019)
More changes after the Shakeup! It’s like we get an extended draft before the NFL Draft! How did WWE’s main roster shows pan out?
More changes after the Shakeup! It’s like we get an extended draft before the NFL Draft! How did WWE’s main roster shows pan out?
Shortly before Raw went live, there were reports of some Superstars being moved again even though the Shakeup was last week. We also heard some rumblings that our favorite Experience was getting a different name.
So were we happy with the shows? Were they just a mess? Let’s find out!
- Samoa Joe vs Rey Mysterio vs AJ Styles: Styles wins via Styles Clash – *** ¼
- Billie Kay vs Naomi: Naomi wins via Roll-Up – N/A
- The Miz vs Baron Corbin vs Drew McIntyre: Corbin wins via Claymore – *** ½
- Cesaro vs Cedric Alexander: Cesaro wins via Swiss Death Uppercut – ***
- Alicia Fox vs Becky Lynch: Lynch wins via DisArm-Her – * ½
- Ricochet vs Robert Roode: Roode wins via Glorious DDT – ** ½
- AJ Styles vs Baron Corbin: Styles wins via Phenomenal Forearm – *** ¼
So this opening segment was generally worthless. Triple H was added to the proceedings purely because…well…he can be? Seth is a travesty on the microphone and the others march out like we weren’t just told there was going to be 2 Triple Threats. So it was just messy. Unless this is the first hint towards Seth rejoining with Hunter, this dynamic was almost as worthless as the word salad they threw at ass.
Our first Triple Threat is the work rate match. There’s really no story here aside from both Rey and AJ have had issues with Samoa Joe, but it wasn’t conveyed in the match well. Joe’s Avalanche Double Mountain Bomb was a spot, but really just took too long to set up and looked too cooperative. This match is fine, but I doubt it stopped anyone who still flips through channels at 8:30 est looking for something to watch.
Now I love the IIconics, and I know the corny/cringe worthy promos are part of their gimmick…but can we stop? The crowd didn’t react to anything and came off forced and trying waaaay too hard, like Mauro Ranallo’s pop culture references. Billie got made a fool of in this match, and then the promo the IIconics had in the back was much better than their walking down the ramp crap. Do more of the backstage dynamic and less of the really bad comedy.
Most people might right off this second Triple Threat, but hey, this was the better pro wrestling match. We saw an easy to follow storyline for people who have watched somewhat recently, we saw progression when Baron took cheap shots on McIntyre and Miz was a wonderful babyface in peril. I really enjoyed everything about this, including Corbin taking advantage of McIntyre laying out Miz with the Claymore, dumping Drew to the outside and stealing the pinfall. Great story telling.
Sami Sami Sami. I have to admit, I like this concept of running down the IWC and it seems like he genuinely enjoys cutting the promos, or his a great actor. I’m still not 100% on board with this, since it can fall apart at any moment given WWE’s track record. But for now, it’s fun, it’s smarmy and I like it.
Ahh now here we get a paradox. Both Cesaro and Cedric are making their official post Shakeup returns/debuts, so someone has to lose. This was a nice match in the regard that it proved Cedric can go toe to toe with someone the pedigree of Cesaro. Cedric will need time adjusting to the size difference since he was one of the bigger Cruiserweights, now he’s a little below average. As long as this is an actual building block and not just a throw away match, this could go somewhere for Cedric. OH! Cesaro picked up the win! Weird…right?
Usos backstage, Jey takes a small jab at Jimmy and then start going through the tag team roster. The Revival show up to try and check the Uce Troop, but the brothers pretend to fall asleep and just clown The Revival. It was good stuff and that should be a great match whenever it happens.
Oh God no! Lucha House Party against the Viking Exp…wait…Viking Raiders? So will Asuka and Kairi be known as the Steeler Buccaneers? Anyway, we all know my rule, if the Lucha House Party are on I drop the show score a half point. Oh-WAIT! The Vikings destroy all three, the match doesn’t begin and they just beat the hell out of the Mexican Masked Geeks? I retract my statement about dropping a half point. Hell this might raise it. Though I’m not a fan of Thor’s Hammer being renamed The Viking Experience, but I guess Vince just wanted it in there somewhere.
Lacey is wonderful. I love the character, I love her look…just…ahh. Okay that’s bad English, especially when written out, but did you expect me to talk about the match? At this point I’m not sure if Alicia is a bad wrestler or if she’s just told to go be a spazz on purpose. However Lacey getting in two Woman’s Rights, was nice. Again…Lacey Evans.
Ricochet fights his dad! Erm, I mean Robert Roode. I really do like him going back to the full name. It sounds more like an adult since, what 40 year old man is known as Bobby? The match was okay, but honestly you have a theme song with a porn stache facing a superball with no personality. So…don’t expect anyone to care, but Robert gets a win!
It’s been a pretty okay show so far, but since Corbin closes out the show, it’s gonna end with a wet fart right?
WAIT- FIREFLY FUN HOUSE?
This is…pure genius! I loved every second of this demented dark comedic children’s show. I want Bo Dallas to show up as a Mailman or Curtis Axel as a Cowboy (Cowboy Curtis reference). I literally can’t stop snickering from how random, but beautiful this vignette was. Just…I think a tear is coming to my eye.
MORE STORYTELLING IN THE RING!! YAY! Styles tweaked something in his Triple Threat and it effects how he throws his offense. Corbin tries to take every advantage possible, but Styles’ resolve is proving troublesome. Styles tries for a Styles Clash, but can’t do it, Corbin looks like he’s going to win, but AJ Styles is Phenomenal after all. Fights through everything and hits the Forearm for the surprise pinfall. I say surprise mainly because it’s a pretty big angle, fairly quick. But with MITB and then Saudi Arabia, Styles could always be slated for both of them. That carries immensely more star power than anything involving Corbin.
Overall Score: 8/10
Great show! Extra points for Lucha House Party destruction, Firefly Fun House being fantastic, not knowing if Alicia Fox does that on purpose and…Corbin, being involved in the best story matches of the night.
The show started off questionably, but yeah I can’t be mad. I was entertained for most of the show and even the down points were partially expected, so it didn’t leave the lingering taste of disappointment in my mouth. It’s gonna be hard for SmackDown to top Raw!
What did I just say? I blame Bray.
SmackDown Live Ratings:
- Andrade vs Finn Balor: Balor wins via Coup de Grace – *** ¼
- Kairi Sane vs Peyton Royce: Kairi wins via Insane Elbow – N/A
- Charlotte Flair vs Bayley: Flair wins via Spear – ** ½
- Kofi Kingston vs Shinsuke Nakamura: Kofi wins via DQ – ** ¾
Shane opens up the show to address Reigns and the actions against Vince last week. He takes the obviously hypocritical stance of “who puts hands on someone’s father”, and it gets a decent reaction of boos from the crowd. Roman comes out to a good pop, confronts Shane, doesn’t speak and just throws the mic down. THIS is the Roman most people love. No talking, just ass beatings.
To Shane’s credit, he squares up, but Elias blind sides Roman and the two on one begins. Elias coming out of two weeks where he was in the same segments with John Cena and The Undertaker, now he’s chosen by Vince and positioned with Roman and Shane…this is all great for Elias. I don’t exactly know where the whole thing plays out to, but starting with a Money in the Bank match, Elias could have a bit of a rocket.
Big O, Xavier and Kofi in the back, have an entertaining mini-interview. This is a very fun grouping.
So WWE validates Andrade and Zelina coming back to SmackDown Live with the fact that Finn ran after he lost to Andrade. So Andrade wasn’t going to let him off the hook. I don’t hate it, it makes enough sense. And much like last week, the match is good, but the problem is they already had Zelina cost Andrade this match. I’m not sure why they would do that unless they’re moving towards breaking them up soon. Andrade is talking more, but he still very definitely needs a manager. Maybe they will position the couples together, that could be the direction. But Zelina and Andrade are so good as a duo, I’d like to see them accomplish something on main roster before splitting apart.
So Paige’s ex-stablemates are jealous of her new friends. So even though Kairi got a very one sided win over Peyton, we may be seeing Fire & Desire face the Pirates of Tomorrow. Could be a fun first feud for Asuka and Kairi to work on some team synergy. Plus Fire & Desire have issues with Asuka as well as Paige, so it all makes enough sense.
Aleister Black saying nothing. But he said it ominously. The last person to speak hollow words now has a Fun House. Just…be mindful.
Jinder Mahal is moved to SmackDown! Chad Gable comes down for a match, but Lar Sullivan wipes him out, goes after Jinder, but plays Fling the Singh instead! Surprisingly, R-Truth’s music hits and he tries to stand up to Lars, but Lars eats him for lunch. I still don’t care, but they’re trying.
Charlotte starts complaining even though she knew the rules to the previous Winner Take All match. Becky says she wants new challengers and puts over a few women in the back. Bayley comes out to much better reception than last week. She thanks Becky for noticing her, and then when Charlotte tries to dismiss her, Bayley snaps back and shows some attitude.
This match was like a lot of Charlotte’s matches, sloppy at different points. Also, Bayley needs to stop the attempted sliding kick through the bottom turnbuckle. It looks awful. Leave those moves to Sami Zayn. Charlotte misses a Moonsault and falls on Bayley, and it’s just weird. I get they haven’t locked up in a while, but there were numerous moments this was a little rough. Sadly, Charlotte wins even though no one wants it. But it could be for the same reason that AJ won on Raw. Saudi Arabia could be driving a few stop gap angles before we get back to normal PPV pacing.
FIREFLY FUN HOUSE!
Dammit, it’s a rerun. Still made me snicker, and I like the fact they’re capitalizing on the viral aspect by showing anyone who may just watch SmackDown or somehow missed it Monday and on the entire internet.
Kofi and Nakamura, I wait with baited breath that we see a small glimmer of 2015 Nakamura and not the last couple years. Honestly, Shinsuke did seem a little more like his old self. Stiff kicks, animated head games, big brothering Kofi with some antagonistic kicks, all classic Shinsuke. Rusev interferes for the DQ, but that’s not the catch!
Kevin and Xavier were on the pancake desk doing alternate commentary, and they were actually pretty good together. But after only 1 week Big O turned into the Big Uh-Oh. Owens turns on Kofi, beats him down a beat and lays his claim to the being the next contender.
We all knew babyface Kevin Owens had a short shelf life. Right?
Overall Score: 7.5/10
Really good show! Very consistent show. Nothing was painfully offensive, but there were no really big highs like on Raw. Plus the fact that Firefly Fun House was a rerun, I have to rank this lower than Raw just because we literally saw a segment yesterday.
Main roster shows pulled off some good stuff. Yes, since we’re all jaded and cynical, I’m fully aware this could all tail spin and explode in no time flat. But for now, I’m taking what’s presented at face value, and it’s all solid entertainment and pretty decent in-ring work too boot.
Good job WWE!
Tiffany’s Takes: WWE 205 Live (4/23/19)
Who steps up on 205 Live?
It’s a new day for WWE 205 Live with new stars stepping to the forefront. Who will step up and become #1 contender for Tony Nese’s WWE Cruiserweight Championship?
With Ali, Murphy, and Alexander gone, how will the rest of the Cruiserweight division fare on 205 Live?
Drew Gulak vs Humberto Carrillo: We started with Drew Gulak giving one of his stump speeches and proving that he still has delusions of grandeur, vowing to become Cruiserweight Champion when he wasn’t even in the conversation.
I did like Gallagher’s explanation for his seeming turn on Gulak, he managed to stay heelish by not making it about Carrillo, but about himself, which was really nice.
The match with Carrillo was AMAZING! I so enjoyed watching it! I was actually surprised that Carrillo won, but there were so many good spots, such as Carrillo standing on the turnbuckle post like a kid on a very high branch daring ‘Dad’ (Gulak) to come up after him. I’m not sure where this feud is going for either man, but that match was super fun.
Drake Maverick and the Kanellises: I’m not sure what to make of this segment. I’m still hoping that Mike Kanellis is going to be re-made into a babyface, but Maria’s interference is going to be a problem. I LOVED her clapping back at Brian Kendrick, but I’m not really sure who the feud is going to be with: Tozawa or Kendrick. I did find Tozawa’s sneak attack fun, but we’ll have to see with this feud.
#1 Contender’s Match – Oney Lorcan vs Ariya Daivari: This was a HELL of a main event for 205 Live. Daivari has been largely in the shadow and on the injury list, so seeing him getting to shine in the main event was so much fun. Lorcan adaption to 205 has been a real surprise to me, I honestly thought he’d have more trouble with it than he has, but that’s not to say the match didn’t have a lot of awkward spots, but that could also be the different styles of Daivari and Lorcan not gelling.
Overall Thoughts: The first 205 Live without the pillars of Murphy, Alexander, and Ali actually went much better than I thought it would. The matches were great, as usual, and there was a lot of storyline building for next week, just like with SmackDown.
I’m NOT thrilled about David Otunga being part of the 205 Live announce team. Otunga has the ‘super smart guy’ creds, but he doesn’t really have any of the chops to be a good commentator. He doesn’t have the gift of gab, the long career experience, or the broadcast experience to be good at calling wrestling, which makes his commentary really hard to listen to. Aiden English is still learning too, which is another problem, but he definitely has the experience and the gift of gab to make it work.
One problem I notices was there’s definitely a lack of top babyfaces, there’s really no one for the audience to cheer for against the heels. Carrillo and Lorcan COULD be those guys, but it’s not quite there yet. Kanellis is another possibility, but he and Maria will need a major revamp to get them there.
I’m honestly excited about Nese vs Daivari, it’s definitely a fresh match up and will definitely signal how 205 will do without its OG top guys.
So, that’s it for tonight! Tune in tomorrow as I tackle the NXTs. Always Use Your Head, and not as a battering ram!
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