View Single Post
Unread 04-11-2017, 11:59 AM
The Final Countdown's Avatar
The Final Countdown The Final Countdown is offline
All Star
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bluthton
Posts: 3,456
Default April 2002: Post-Slamboree News and Notes

April 22nd, 2002
05:35 a.m.

A middle of the night phone call from Dusty Rhodes was not what I needed right after Slamboree. Overseeing (and providing color commentary for) a PPV show is tiring, as Dusty well knows. I told him I hoped he had a good reason for waking me up, and he said simply: "Turn on your computah, daddeh."

I sighed but did as he suggested, turning the hotel room light on and pulling my laptop out of its case. It reloaded the Observing Wrestling website, which I'd visited just after Slamboree ended last night to get a sense of the fans' feelings of what I thought was our best show since WCW vs. The World, as well as their thoughts on the WWF PPV that aired the same night. There had been a lot of discussion and praise for both shows last night, but I now saw they had been all but forgotten less than twelve hours after they aired. A regional company in Europe had begun promoting their next tour on their website, and the entire wrestling world was talking about it.

I clicked on the link to the article with a healthy dose of skepticism, wondering if this was really why Dusty had woken me up. I knew full well how rumors on the internet went, and this one bordered on the absurd. The article included an update with an official reply from the European Wrestling Promotion, which insisted that it was not engaging in false advertisement and the superstar in question legitimately would be joining them for their next tour. I rolled my eyes upon reading that, sure the company was just trying to draw attention to themselves with no hope of actually delivering on their promise.

Some emails to Wade Keller and Dave Meltzer (wonder how Dave feels about this Observing Wrestling website?) triggered responses that I was not expecting. Both insiders said that their well-placed sources were insisting that there was truth to this. Whether Vince had chosen not to offer him an extension or he'd just decided to leave, all signs pointed to this being a genuine story.

Was Vince insane? Was there more to the story; did Vince know something I didn't? Or was this a decision made by the wrestler? Was he unhappy and walking away despite Vince's money? Or was this all smoke and mirrors after all, and a contract extension would come at the 11th hour?

A thousand questions were running through my mind, and I had answers for none of them. Well, that's not entirely true. I knew for a fact that this had the potential to change the game forever. I grabbed my phone from the nightstand and called my secretary, who I knew would already be in the office despite the early hour. She answered the phone sure enough, sounding perfectly awake and alert.

"Emma?" I said, ignoring her greeting. "It's Bret. Could you get me Steve Austin's phone number?"

I praised Scott Steiner and Jeff Hardy for their tremendous show-stealer, and also gave Rey a pat on the back for a great job in the main event. I could tell Rey was very happy at the acknowledgement. I think he's more than proven over the past couple of months that he is capable of being a true main event star for us.

Shane Helms was furious about losing to Hayabusa. Hayabusa's more over than him in Japan, where the show was held, but I guess he was worried about how the loss would reflect on him in the other areas where Hayabusa isn't well known yet.

Ric Flair was again pretty unhappy about losing to The Empire, but he didn't care as much once he heard the exact finish. He's now on a vacation to sell the injury angle, which I'm sure will improve his mood further.

The WWF ran their first post-Mania PPV, 'Backlash', in Texas heads-up against Slamboree. It was a strong show; definitely an improvement over Mania, and right on the same level as our own PPV offering. Hogan retained the title over Austin in the main event in what would be considered a great match overall, but was still well below the string of classics Steve was putting on every month as champion. The show also featured Edge and Christian beating T&A for their 8th tag title reign, setting the record for most reigns even farther along for any future teams to try and break. That was a puzzling decision to me since there were rumors not too long ago that they'd both be focusing on their singles careers. Match of the night belonged to The Rock, who carried Crash Holly of all people to a fantastic performance in the middle of the show.

Hall of Champions:

World Heavyweight Champion:

Rob Van Dam

Won: December 30th, 2001 from Scott Steiner at Starrcade in Tokyo, Japan

Previous Champions (since March 2001):
Scott Steiner: July 15th, 2001-December 30th, 3001 (168 days)
Booker T: March 26th, 2001-July 15th, 2001 (111 days)

World Women's Champion:

Etsuko Mita

Won: January 9th, 2002 against Zap I during the AJW Glass Grave Yard tour in Annaka, Japan after Aja Kong vacated the title when she left AJW
((Mita was the reigning WWWA World champion when AJW was bought out by WCW. The title was adopted into WCW with its lineage intact, and Mita was recognized as WCW's Women's World Champion.))

Previous Champions (since January 2002):

United States Heavyweight Champion:

Shane Douglas (2nd reign)

Won: April 1st, 2002 from Rey Misterio Jr. at Monday Nitro in Pikeville, Kentucky

Previous Champions (since March 2001):
Rey Misterio Jr (#2): October 14th, 2001-April 1st, 2002 (169 days)
Kanyon: August 5th, 2001-October 14th, 2001 (70 days)
Rey Misterio Jr: May 13th, 2001-August 5th, 2001 (85 days)
Booker T: March 18th, 2001-April 30th, 2001 (44 days)

Cruiserweight Champion:

AJ Styles

Won: April 21st, 2002 from TAKA at Slamboree in Tokyo, Japan

Previous Champions (since March 2001):
TAKA: December 30th, 2001-April 21st, 2002 (112 days)
Jushin Liger: August 5th, 2001-December 30th, 2001 (147 days)
Shane Helms: March 18th, 2001-August 5th, 2001 (140 days)

World Tag Team Champions:

True Heroes (Lance Storm and CM Punk)

Won: December 30th, 2001 from The Natural Born Thrillers at Starrcade in Tokyo, Japan

Previous Champions (since March 2001):
The Natural Born Thrillers (Chuck Palumbo and Sean O'Haire): January 14th, 2001-December 30th, 2001 (351 days)

Originally Posted by crackerjack View Post
World Tag Team Championship: The Road Warriors vs. True Heroes {}
If he's anything like he is in my save, Hawk will need a Straight-Edge Suspension pretty soon.
You aren't wrong there! The only reason he got off with fines is because he was only with me for a few weeks.

Originally Posted by Armando Payne View Post
Cruiserweight Championship: AJ Styles vs. TAKA {}

But only via DQ, TAKA drops it next PPV in a rematch with The Empire banned from ringside.
I did consider this.

General diary comments/questions/critiques:

You're doing real good kid, real good. It's real fun to read. (What's weird is that I can only read this if I'm not signed in.)
Thanks, good sir!

That's really strange.

Originally Posted by michgcs View Post
Wow, congrats on the USA network deal! That's huge!
It really is. Between that and also getting better PPV coverage in the US, I should be able to start making some much bigger strides towards National status.

Originally Posted by Armando Payne View Post
So did I get all of them except for 1 right or all of them except for 3 right? (Like I predicted AJ Styles to win but I didn't expect him to win the belt and I predicted Sugar Shane Helms to lose but I didn't predict him to lose to Hayabusa.)
I don't add it up as a percentage of how many were correct; I just tally up the total number of things you got correct. In that case you'd get two points for AJ winning and Helms losing. The title change prediction is solely about getting the number correct, regardless of whether or not you get the matches themselves right.

Still pretty darn good PPV can't wait for Mayhem cause brutha I dig Aztec Warfare so you booking it will be pretty darn dope. The only thing which would've improved it would be Lex Luger driving The Lex Express all over Kyoto bay bay. Drive 'MURICA all over Japan, rein in that babyface heat.
I've only watched like one episode of Lucha Underground and so only have a cursory knowledge of it. I didn't know that was what Aztec Warfare was. That's pretty cool, as it seems like it could be a fun matchtype. I loved writing the Royal Rumble when I was running WWF, and this'll be how I fill that void in this project.

Lex is very busy going "back to basics" at this point in time. I'm sure he will soon be back and better than ever!

Last edited by The Final Countdown : 08-12-2017 at 08:31 AM.
Reply With Quote