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DeMarco: WWE Isn’t For Everyone, And That’s Okay

Recent Jimmy Jacobs comments on working for WWE brings a reminder from Greg DeMarco: it’s not for everyone, and that’s totally okay.

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Jimmy Jacobs WWE

Recent Jimmy Jacobs comments on working for WWE brings a reminder from Greg DeMarco: it’s not for everyone, and that’s totally okay.

Jimmy Jacobs is one of the most creative minds in professional wrestling. “The Zombie Princess” can be credited with a good portion of the creative output from Impact Wrestling today, and he was the brain child behind Project 151, which became Age Of The Fall in ROH and jump-started the career of Tyler Black…who would later become the Seth Rollins we know today.

From 2015 to 2017, Jimmy Jacobs worked as a writer for WWE. His time there is something fans will bring up from time-to-time, and Jacobs himself will often be asked about in interviews. He recently appeared on Jordan Garber NOW, and had this to say:

“WWE is such a faux corporate environment and Vince [McMahon] wants it to appear as corporate. It made me feel like I couldn’t be myself. I missed having nail polish on and being kind of like a maniac. I felt like I was in a shell. I spent the majority of my time there basically scared of Vince and ultimately afraid of losing my job. It wasn’t until the last couple of months of my time there where I was so sick of feeling just tied and boxed up that I wasn’t scared of getting fired anymore. Which I spent most of my time doing. Maybe I would last longer if I wasn’t scared of Vince. It’s his sandbox …he’s just letting you play in it.”

That quote comes courtesy of the write-up I found at SEScoops.

I respect Jimmy Jacobs, what he’s done in the wrestling business, and oftentimes his opinion. But I do think this needs to be taken as opinion, and not fact. I’d go so far to say it’s unfair to call WWE a “faux corporate environment,” because a company gets to set its culture–like it or not. And when you sign on the dotted line, you have to know what you’re getting yourself into.

But it’s also unfair of me to make a blanket statement, so let’s break it down:

“Faux corporate environment / Vince wants it to appear as corporate” – I do understand that Vince McMahon has set a certain standard for his company. And some might not agree with it in 2019. That doesn’t mean that it’s fake. It is what it is–know what you’re signing up for!

“I missed having nail polish on and being kind of like a maniac.” – That doesn’t sound like a bad (or “faux”) corporate environment, it sounds like a bad fit. The challenge in getting a job is you need to know what you’re getting into. You need to ensure it’s a good fit. WWE is the dream job for 95% of the people in this business, and when they get there plenty will realize it’s not really what they thought it was–or more accurately what they wanted it to be.

“I spent the majority of my time there basically scared of Vince and ultimately afraid of losing my job.” – Plenty of people work with Vince McMahon, and within Vince McMahon’s WWE, and are successful. Many of them for decades. Many of them are quite wealthy because of it. No offense to the guy, but this sounds like a Jimmy Jacobs problem, not a Vince McMahon problem. Learn the system, learn the culture, and you can be successful within it.

“Maybe I would last longer if I wasn’t scared of Vince. It’s his sandbox …he’s just letting you play in it.” – We’ve heard plenty of stories where Vince McMahon appreciates being challenged. Every third edition of “Something To Wrestle with Bruce Prichard” has  story about talking to Vince, and how to approach him. People are people, and knowing how to manage personalities–and how to “manage up”–is a key to success in any organization. Yeah, one trait of a great leader is the ability to adapt for those you lead, but that doesn’t mean all great leaders have that trait. You can apply that logic both ways–a trait of a great employee with upward mobility is knowing your leader, and adjusting.

So, what’s the deal?

I am glad you asked, because here is the deal. WWE isn’t for everyone. That goes for fans–plenty of them online who want WWE to be something it’s not (when you have all sorts of options at your fingertips). It also goes for talent, writers, producers, broadcasters, management, corporate employees, etc. Eric Bischoff just went through it, and his explanation is the best: it wasn’t a good fit and it didn’t work.

When my company shut down in January, I was back in the job market. I’d worked there for 8 years, and knew how to be successful there. When I was picking my new job (I was lucky enough to have a couple of options pretty quick), fit was one of my top concerns. I love where I am, and was able to advance after 4 months. There is always luck involved in that, but I get how it works. And I adjusted. Had it not worked and wasn’t for me, that would be okay. It happens.

Where I work isn’t for everyone. WWE isn’t for everyone. And that’s okay.


Pro wrestling, along with sports entertainment, is a fun ride. Enjoy it! Follow me on social media @ChairshotGreg and drop me a line at gregdemarco@thechairshot.com.


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Opinion

NXT Minus 6: Let’s Make History!

Bradley Jay makes history in this week’s edition of the NXT Minus 6. What kind of history is he making? Well, that’s for you to read and see!

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WWE NXT Undisputed Era Breezango

Bradley Jay makes history in this week’s edition of the NXT Minus 6. What kind of history is he making? Well, that’s for you to read and see!

This will be the most historic column in the history of history!

Less than half of Americans know that alcohol is a carcinogen. Big Booze wants to keep it that way.

6. Did you notice how many people want to make history? It’s all anybody talked about this week. I turned it into a drinking game. Every time someone said they wanted to make history, I took a shot. After 10 minutes, I died from alcohol poisoning. So much history.

NXT's Shotzi Blackheart Reveals Ember Moon as Women's Dusty Classic Partner

5. Shotzi Blackheart will make history as the first person with green hair to win a Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic tournament. Kayden Carter & Kacy Catanzaro will become the first tag team in history to win a DRTTC whose collective weight would qualify for 205 Live. Ember Moon will make history as the first person to leave NXT, return and win a tournament that didn’t exist the first time she was there. BTW, the tag team I want to see is Kayden Carter & Ember Moon.  

MSK Revealed After Debut on Tonight's WWE NXT

4. Johnny Gargano and Austin Theory will make history as the first mentor/mentee team to win the DRTTC. KUSHIDA will make history as the first wrestler to win in all caps! MSK will make history as having the most God-awful name of any team to win. Unless it’s a shout out to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, then the name is doo doo on a stick.

Killian Dain | WWE3. Grizzled Young Veterans are sssssooooooon to make history as the first team to lose in the finals and win it the next year. Killian Dain by himself will be the hairiest team ever to win the DRTTC. Bollywood Boyz will make history as the first…I can’t finish that sentence. Those gomers aren’t winning Jack Squat. 

WWE NXT Releases the 2021 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Bracket

2. Overall, it was a good start to the tournament. Every match was 3.5 stars. Nothing memorable, nothing horrible. Breezango versus Undisputed Era was the best of the bunch. It would have been better without the horribly overbooked end. I’m not sure the point of it all if Breezango couldn’t use it to pick up a victory.   

Video: Wade Barrett sits down with Tommaso Ciampa and Timothy Thatcher before NXT Fight Pit on WWE NXT - Wrestling Inc.

1. “You look like a man who is questioning if he’s still got it.” It was a filler line, but that’s the story! I’m slightly excited for Tommaso Ciampa versus Timothy Thatcher, primarily because of the Fight Pit. Right now, it’s two tough guys wanting to beat each other up. I want to see Ciampa fighting to prove he’s still got it. I want to see Thatcher fighting to crush the soul of the locker room leader. That’s the story.  


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NFL

Cook: Breaking Down The 2021 NFL Divisional Round

Steve Cook breaks down the NFL Divisional Round Playoffs, getting you ready for one of the best football weekends of the year!

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NFL Divisional Round Playoffs Aaron Rodgers Green Bay Packers

Steve Cook breaks down the NFL Divisional Round Playoffs, getting you ready for one of the best football weekends of the year!

Many experts say that the Divisional Round is the best weekend of the NFL season, and I agree with them. The Wild Card Weekend gets rid of all the riff-raff, and we’re left with teams that deserve to be there. A bitter pill to swallow for me as a Cincinnati Bengals fan whose team can never win one playoff game when they get there, due to the Bo Jackson Curse. I still have to swallow it because it is what it is. The cream rises to the top, and any team that manages to win one playoff game has earned their position on the stage.

I know everybody out there is wondering who will win these games. Fortunately, I’m here to break it down for you, and let you know what’s going to happen. After all, I did win 3 out of the 3 fantasy leagues I was in this season. Just saying, I know what these folks are capable of statistically. Ask anybody here on The Chairshot. I broke them all down and made them humble at some point during the fantasy season. Laid waste to all these folks, who all are intelligent in their own right. No disrespect to anybody I was up against. Their arms were just too short to box with God.

Saturday, 4:35 PM: LA Rams at Green Bay Packers

You know it’s a stacked weekend of action when this is the curtain-jerker. We got the best defense in the NFL going against Aaron Rodgers, on the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field. Where there will be 6,000 ticketed fans, along with first responders. Not enough to make a difference like a typical Packers home game.

As good as that Rams defense is, you don’t like them nearly as much when Aaron Donald is off the field. Donald says he’s ready to do, so does Jared Goff, so the Rams are heading into Green Bay with all hands on deck. I went with the Rams at +6.5, largely because they’re looking as healthy as possible heading into this one, and you have to be impressed with what they did in Seattle. That being said, the Packers represent much stiffer competition. And I don’t care if Aaron Rodgers has only won one Super Bowl, I’m still picking his team to win in Green Bay. They don’t have to leave Wisconsin until the Super Bowl, though they might want to leave before then.

Yeah, I know. Kentucky guy talking state smack.

Cook’s Pick: Green Bay Packers

Saturday, 8:15 PM: Baltimore Ravens at Buffalo Bills

Lamar Jackson finally got that monkey off of his back and won a playoff game. I was in a tough spot seeing Lamar compared to Andy Dalton, a perfectly competent Bengals QB that couldn’t win a postseason game. This is the closest line right now, because Vegas and everybody knows this: Once you let Lamar Jackson out of his cage, he’ll pile the bodies to the sky. One of the most fun athletes to watch of my, or anybody else’s, lifetime. I mean, if you don’t like Lamar, what do you like?

I’m a big fan of the Bills’ story, and I’d like for them to go a long way. Josh Allen is a talented SOB and fun to watch. I’m not sure he’s as fun as Lamar Jackson, but then I’ve seen many more Lamar Jackson games. This will be a big game for the future of both men, and might not be the last time we see them face off in the playoffs. I picked Baltimore at +2.5 largely because of my Lamar Jackson fandom, and the fact that the Ravens are just one of those franchises that excel in the playoffs. You always see them making a deep run. Buffalo? Well, they had four pretty deep runs, and you don’t mention any of those in Buffalo if you want to get out alive.

Cook’s Pick: Baltimore Ravens

Sunday, 3:05 PM: Cleveland Browns at Kansas City Chiefs

One of those games that will be closer than it should be for most of the game. Imagine the Browns going into an overly loud Arrowhead Stadium against Patrick Mahomes. It would be ugly. The fact that this stadium won’t be crowded as usual kind of gives Cleveland a chance. The spread is -10. I’d typically take Cleveland on those odds in this environment. Except…man, that offense is pretty awesome and I bet KC wants to put on a show. Pittsburgh couldn’t do it because they’re awful, but Kansas City definitely can.

Browns fans are hoping that the Chiefs overlook them, and the team itself is trying to use Chiefs quotes as bulletin board material, but I just don’t see Kansas City overlooking these guys. The “NOBODY RESPECTS US!” motivational tactic is as old as time and more often than not is based off of nothing. Listen, if you’ve made it to this point of the NFL season, there is somebody out there that respects you. This is the best Browns team since the days of Bernie Kosar. Just don’t ask Cleveland fans of a certain age what happened when they played an AFC West team in the playoffs. Still a touchy subject.

I’m kind of hoping the Browns go away for one simple reason: It’s awkward being a Bengals fan and seeing everybody in love with these guys. Not to be “NOBODY RESPECTS US!” guy, but I sure don’t remember the Bengals getting the same type of good vibes from the people when they were good. What’s up with that?

Cook’s Pick: Kansas City Chiefs

Sunday, 6:40 PM: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints

We got Tom Brady & Drew Brees up past their bedtime. Nah, we need to get past the old people jokes, as honestly I’m pretty happy to see a game with two quarterbacks older than me playing in it. Makes me feel not quite as old. They still got skill too, both men were in the top 10 QBR rankings for the 2020 regular season. I’m pretty sure QBR gives Brady & Brees 50 points just based off of being Brady & Brees, but they still had impressive seasons. We’re talking about their buddy Ben Roethlisberger possibly retiring, but nobody’s really talking about either of these guys doing it. Unless they just want to go out on top, which with Brees is definitely a possibility.

The Saints won the first two meetings, and we all know the old saying about teams that meet three times. We also know that it’s dang near impossible to beat a Tom Brady-quarterbacked team in the postseason. Dude’s won more postseason games than some teams have won games over the past twenty years. OK, a little exaggeration, but would you be surprised if it’s true? Betting against Tom Brady in the postseason is like betting against Undertaker at WrestleMania. You just don’t do it.

Unless it’s in New Orleans.

Wrestling Fans

See what I did there? I like the Saints because I like their skill position players better. Alvin Kamara looks good and recovered from the rona. Michael Thomas is back in the mix, which can only be a good thing for the Saints’ passing game. They also have a slightly better defense, and we all know that as much as we talk about the shiny quarterbacks, defense wins championships. Saints in a barn burner to end the weekend on a good note.

Cook’s Pick: New Orleans Saints

Thanks for reading! Fun to do the ol’ sports again, maybe I’ll do more of it in the future…


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