We all know Chyna is deserving of a WWE Hall Of Fame induction, but who would even induct her? Eric Ames breaks down the options today in The Nominees Are…
For some reason here in America, a lot of people still have this strange obsession with awards shows, whether that be the Grammy’s, Emmy’s, Oscar’s, perhaps the MTV VMA’s. There’s no shortage of them. On top of that, being your News Editor, Social Media Director and with contributions to the Chairshot Classics section, a full-on opinion piece from me here at The Chairshot is a rarity. With that being said, I took both of these thoughts and combined them (because quite frankly I just thought the title was catchy) to bring this new list-style, semi-frequent piece. Basically, I’ll do one when something strikes me or I have the time after my other responsibilities.
So to kickoff we will look at one hot topic from a different point of view. Chyna absolutely should be in WWE’s Hall Of Fame, but the company has stated that due to her past pornography “career”, it’s a controversial situation. I see their point. I also see the point of fans who think that’s just a load of bull manure and the company wants to avoid the truth about how Chyna’s ex, Triple H, cheated on her with his now wife and WWE’s Chief Brand Officer, Stephanie McMahon.
Regardless, let’s all assume that the only female Intercontinental Champion in WWE history will get her due some day. This leaves me wondering, who the heck could even induct her? There are a lot of people she was involved with on television that would make sense, but there are also a lot of reasons why said people either would be a bad choice or simply won’t be an option. Let’s look at them. The Nominees Are…
Triple H: To put it simply, did you NOT read the above paragraphs? Obviously ‘The Ninth Wonder of the World’ will forever be linked to her ex-boyfriend in the WWE Universe, but not only would it be in bad taste for Trips to do it, I can’t imagine he’d feel comfortable with it.
Stephanie McMahon: It’s been said by those inside the company during Chyna’s final months that Stephanie was still leading the charge for her behind-the-scenes. Maybe it was because of what she was doing with Chyna’s man behind closed doors or maybe it was because Stephanie wanted to see women in wrestling progress. Who knows? She does like to put herself at the forefront of the current WWE Women’s Revolution, but again, I just think it would be in poor taste.
X-Pac/Sean Waltman: Another man that Chyna will be synonymous with in the WWE Universe, but also had a very toxic relationship that played out in the public eye is X-Pac. I’m old enough to remember Chyna being a cast member on the old VH1 reality series The Surreal Life and the issues in her relationship with Waltman being broadcast for the world to see. It wasn’t a good look. Not to mention he’s also in a sex tape with her that was released to the public. So if WWE really is worried about kids finding Chyna’s adult work on the internet, then picking her “co-star” would be just another reason why Waltman is a terrible choice.
Shawn Michaels: Another fellow founding D-Generation X member would make a lot of sense. ‘The Heartbreak Kid’ was only around sporadically by the time things went sour with his pal Triple H and Chyna. However, the answer to Michaels as an inductor for Chyna may lie in my previous sentence, “his pal Triple H”. Ultimately, I think it would come down to whether Shawn would be okay with it.
Billy Gunn: ‘Badd Ass’ Billy Gunn might be the pick due to how well he always got along with Chyna and of course there’s the obvious DX association. Unfortunately, he just signed that All Elite Wrestling contract. No way WWE touches him.
Chris Jericho: The first real feud for ‘Y2J’ upon his arrival to the WWE back in 1999 was in fact with Chyna, which also gave him his first taste of WWE gold with the Intercontinental Championship. So it would be logical from that standpoint, but much like Billy Gunn, Jericho’s signed to AEW. Not going to happen.
Jeff Jarrett: Another one of Chyna’s more memorable feuds in the WWE was against none other than WWE Hall Of Famer Jeff Jarrett and a lot of fans remember their Good Housekeeping Match. Chyna was able to break barriers against ‘Double J’, but it’s not secret he didn’t like it and ultimately it led him towards jumping ship back to WCW. Fans know it too, so Jarrett’s out.
Ivory: Chyna’s last real rivalry before leaving the WWE in 2001 was with Right To Censor, more specifically the Women’s Champion Ivory, leading to the only singles WrestleMania match of both Superstars’ careers. While you can find some shoot interviews where Ivory doesn’t have too nice of things to say about ‘The Ninth Wonder of the World’, she also says some things about the Triple H break-up as well and that didn’t prevent her from being inducted. This is our best option so far, but that brings us to my pick…
And the ‘award goes to’…
‘Road Dogg’ Jesse James: If I have to select someone that isn’t just a random female Superstar from the current roster (like they’ve done with Alundra Blayze), I think the only choice is Road Dogg. He’s certainly the member of D-Generation X that is least remembered along with Joanie Laurer, but he’s also the only one that doesn’t have a history of controversy with her and also doesn’t work for a company other than WWE. What do you think? Send me your choices on Twitter @E_Ames323!
Steve Cook’s Top 5 Pro Wrestling Tournaments
Wrestling’s best tournaments?
The NCAA Tournament is in full swing, and Steve Cook is inspired to take a look back at wrestling’s tournaments!
Who doesn’t love a good tournament? This is the time of year where we all become obsessed with brackets. March Madness is in full bloom, and we’re all keeping track of who beat who and who’s playing next. We all know that pro wrestling lends itself well to a tournament format… Do I need to go any further? Probably not. Here are the Top 5 Pro Wrestling Tournaments of all time.
5. Ultraviolent Tournament of Death II
I know some people are not going to be happy with this pick. Thing is, I don’t feel a list of American wrestling tournaments would be complete without a selection from the deathmatch genre. It was the bread & butter for many indy companies back in the day, and I’m sure there’s still something of an audience for it now.
I’ll admit it. There was a period of time where I was into guys getting hit with light tubes & thrown into barbed wire and fun stuff like that. I’m over it now, so I can’t tell you if any of the tournaments over the past ten years have blown the stuff from the 2000s out of the water. What I can tell you is which deathmatch tournament was most memorable to me. The second TOD made “Sick” Nick Mondo a CZW legend. Dude got thrown off a building by Zandig! Mondo beat JC Bailey in a Light Tubes & Ladders match, Zandig in a 2 out of 3 fall Light Tube Log Cabins match, and Ian Rotten in a Barbed Wire ropes, 200 Light Tubes match.
Mondo became a star that night. Unfortunately it was his last night in the business, as injuries suffered during the evening made him think twice about the whole wrestling thing. Hey, at least give him credit for being smart enough to get out.
4. 2008 Battle of Los Angeles
Pro Wrestling Guerrilla’s strength over the years has been staying in their lane. Sometimes people would like to see the company get bigger, but they’ve spent most of their existence working around other promotions’ rules. As long PWG they remained DVD-only, companies that had TV & PPV with not many other dates on the schedule were happy to let some of their guys get a payday out west.
Since 2005, PWG’s Battle of Los Angeles tournament has featured pretty much anybody that ever made any kind of name on the indy wrestling circuit. Winners include the likes of Kenny Omega, Adam Cole, Kyle O’Reilly, Ricochet, and Sami Zayn’s mentor El Generico (RIP). The best one I’ve seen, the 2008 edition was won by none other than Low Ki. It was when he wasn’t jobbing to anybody, so the result was kind of obvious.
It was still a fun show with a ridiculously stacked roster. Ki, Nigel McGuinness, Bryan Danielson & Chris Hero made up the final four. Danielson had matches with Hero, T.J. Perkins & Davey Richards. Hero also had a Necro Butcher Rules match with Necro Butcher. The finals featured Ki & Hero working with only one rope…and having a pretty darn good match.
3. 1993 King of the Ring
Every so often, fans clamor for the return of King of the Ring to WWE programming. It’s like they forget King Sheamus, King Barrett and the other weak noblemen to rule over WWE’s kingdom. The event definitely had its ups & downs, but it certainly got off to a good start in Dayton, Ohio.
Let’s be honest, any show in 1993 that had Bret Hart wrestling three times was bound to be a good one. He went through Razor Ramon in the first round in a solid starter. Mr. Perfect awaited in the semi-finals, and the two men had a classic match like they always had with each other. Then Bret took on Bam Bam Bigelow in the finals, and overcame the odds against a bigger man that had the semi-finals off thanks to a Lex Luger/Tatanka draw.
Bret’s goal on this evening was to prove that he was the best wrestler in the WWF, even if he had been taken out of the championship picture at the moment. He did just that, and put the KOTR tournament on the map in the process. Owen Hart following in Bret’s footsteps and winning the next year meant so much because people remembered that performance.
2. 1987 Crockett Cup
Going back to the days of Jim Crockett Sr., the Mid-Atlantic territory was always a tag team-heavy promotion. Fans in the Carolinas, Virginia & surrounding areas loved that style of wrestling. The tradition continued after Jim Sr’s death, and when it was decided that a major show was needed between Starrcade & the Great American Bash tour, the idea of the Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Cup Tag Team Tournament was hatched. The Crockett Cup featured most of the best tag teams in the world coming together for a twenty-four team tournament where the winners would split $1,000,000 & get a trophy.
Jim Crockett Promotions held three of these events from 1986-88. The first edition in the Superdome didn’t draw much of a house, but Baltimore came out in full support in 1987. A who’s who of tag teams from the Road Warriors to the Midnight Express & the Mulkeys were there, but at the end of the night it was the Super Powers, Dusty Rhodes & Nikita Koloff beating the Horsemen team of Tully Blanchard & Lex Luger to take the prize.
Even bigger than all that…Magnum T.A. made his first appearance in a wrestling arena since his car accident the previous year. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house, and not a doubt that his friends Dusty & Nikita would win the main event.
1. The Deadly Game
Survivor Series 1998 is one of those shows that people either really love or really hate. Workrate fans really hate it, as there wasn’t a classic match to be found on the card. Fans that are more into characters & story really love it. To me, this night was Vince Russo’s highpoint as a wrestling writer.
Stone Cold Steve Austin had lost the WWF Championship in September, getting pinned by both Kane & Undertaker. Austin refereed a match between Kane & Undertaker in October, where he knocked them both out & made the match a no-decision. Vince McMahon came up with the idea of a tournament after that, and his primary objective was to keep Austin from winning it. It became known as the Deadly Game…I’m still not sure why, but it gave us one of the best PPV theme songs of all time.
Mankind was thought to be Vince’s favorite, while The Rock was seen as the next worst option for Vince other than Stone Cold. After a night of seemingly never-ending twists & turns, including Austin getting screwed yet again by a McMahon (Shane this time), Rock & Mankind met in the finals. And wouldn’t you know it, a year after Survivor Series 1997, which Jim Ross kept dreading a reprise of all night with Mankind winning at the behest of Mr. McMahon, it turned out that Rock was the man locking in the Sharpshooter while Vince yelled to ring the damn bell.
Fourteen year old me couldn’t have enjoyed the show more, even if Rock was my third choice behind Austin & Mankind. Yeah, this time period was tough for me as far as favorite wrestlers feuding went.
New Japan Cup Fallout : Will It Really Be Okada’s Revenge at G1 Supercard ?
The New Japan Cup has come to an end, with Kazuchika Okada winning the tournament. Will Okada prevail and cut the Switchblade’s new era short ?
The New Japan Cup has now come to an end, with Kazuchika Okada winning the tournament for the second time in his career. The Rainmaker will look to get his revenge over Jay White in MSG, which is exactly the subject of today’s article. Will Okada prevail and cut the Switchblade’s new era short ? Let’s dive into the matter at hand !
If there is one thing I learned watching New Japan Pro Wrestling, it is to NEVER neglect any possibility. Such a statement has never felt more true since Jay White came back to New Japan at Power Struggle in 2017. Since then, White has kept being the ultimate trump card. First by defeating Kenny Omega for the IWGP US Heavyweight championship. Then, he defeated both Okada and Tanahashi in the G1 Climax, took over Bullet Club, and went on to repeat his G1 upsets over Okada and Tanahashi, at Wrestle Kingdom and New Beginning, claiming the IWGP Heavyweight championship from Tanahashi in Osaka.
What New Japan called the “Switchblade shock” in reference to Okada’s “Rainmaker shock” from 2012 is now real, and with Okada marching to MSG with the purpose of finally vanquishing his nemesis, I have to wonder if Okada will actually do it, because if there is one thing I am actually sure of, it is that the outcome of the match between the Rainmaker and the Switchblade is as uncertain as it could be. Sounds paradoxical ? I will explain.
Here’s the thing. While the possibility of the rest of this year gravitating around Okada and White fighting over the Heavyweight championship is not something to rule out, I find it hard to imagine that other people will not be involved. I can think of Tetsuya Naito or Kota Ibushi, depending on the result of their soon to come IWGP Intercontinental championship match. I believe this match will help shape up the new direction following the Okada vs White encounter. I have already touched on Kota Ibushi in a previous article, explaining why I could see him take the Intercontinental championship away from Naito, so let’s follow that logic. This would leave the leader of L.I.J empty handed in every sense of the term…or does it ? While Naito won’t be able to reach his goal of becoming a dual champion, it is doubtful that he will stop looking to take back the Heavyweight championship, the first chance he gets.
This is actually important to consider in the eventual result of Okada vs White and especially what will happen going forward. Naito being the biggest star in New Japan to not hold a championship while haven’t taking part in any Heavyweight championship matches since Wrestle Kingdom 12, and with Dominion slowly coming up, we have to think of who would challenge for the Heavyweight championship in Osaka-Jo Hall this year.
With that in mind, we are left with two options. Assuming whoever leaves MSG as Heavyweight champion keeps the title until Dominion, which seems likely, will New Japan add another chapter to one of the most storied rivalries of the last decade, or will we see the continuation of New Japan’s new era in a more explicit way, with a never seen before IWGP Heavyweight championship to main event the second biggest New Japan show of the year ? Of course, this is only based off assumptions. Who knows, depending on the circumstances of this upcoming Okada vs White III, we could be up for a fourth encounter even sooner than expected.
To cap off with this opinion piece, let’s actually give an answer to the initial question. I do not believe G1 Supercard will be marked by the Rainmaker’s revenge over the Switchblade. Let me ask you one question : Do you fully expect Jay White to lose the Heavyweight championship without any defenses, considering the faith New Japan seems to have in him ?
You guessed my stance, I think that feels unlikely. Not impossible, remember what I said about never putting any possibility aside, but unlikely. We could even witness a surprise in Madison Square Garden, but it won’t be Jay White retaining the championship, if that does happen.
Let me add that, as a nod to another previous article concerning Bullet Club dominating G1 Supercard, the best way to dominate the event, in terms of results and talk created afterwards, would probably be include Jay White winning. After all, White would be 3-0 against Okada, which says something considering how highly regarded of a wrestler the Rainmaker is.
This is how I now conclude this article. What did you think of the New Japan Cup ? What are your thoughts going forward ? Do you breathe with the Switchblade or will Okada make it rain all over Madison Square Garden ?
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