Wednesday, 20 March 2019

RE-POST: Foley, Flair, Lawler, Nash & Vince (2001)

This week has been a rather interesting one in the world of sports entertainment. Old friends have apparently left, while other old friends have returned, with a little unexpected help from others. And in one aspect, it reminds me just how money hungry another old friend is.

The Survivor Series seems to be the end of the InVasion angle. Those who did not acquire "immunity" vanished from the television, although I'm sure that the most talented, the most over, will soon regain a spot on WWF television. It does make you wonder what will happen to the likes of Hugh Morrus, Lance Storm and Mike Awesome, when the likes of DDP, Booker T and Hurricane Helms return to WWF television.

This week saw the "departure" of our old friend Mick Foley. When Mick was brought back as WWF commissioner, I immediately found myself asking, "why?". For some reason, he just didn't seem to fit into the story line. Mick put in perfectly himself last Sunday, speaking to the pay-per-view audience from WWF New York, the commissionership was a joke, and everyone watching knew it.
Nash seems to think the WWF are desperate to sign him. (WCW)

I am saddened that Mick is gone from our screens. Surely a mind as creative as his could, somehow, be found a job on the writing team. A talent like his should not be wasted.

Our old puppy-loving friend, Jerry Lawler, regained his throne from Paul Heyman. The King, with a little help from Jimmy Hart and the XWF, returned to his kingdom, and from what I've heard, immediately rekindled his relationship with good ol' JR. This may be the thing they need to get the viewers back. Paul Heyman was not that bad an announcer, but he didn't seem to compliment JR very well. There was one part of Heyman's style I hated, and in a way, I'm glad Rhyno got injured, because I wouldn't have had to put up with Heyman shouting "gore" three times at me through my television.

And then, another old friend returned to our screens. Stepping into a WWF ring for the first time in nearly ten years, the Nature Boy returned, revealing himself to be the man who, in effect, funded the Alliance by buying the WWF shares owned by the McMahon brats. A very interesting storyline here. Think about it for a few moments. A man who will forever be associated with the NWA/WCW, co-owner, for storyline purposes, of the WWF. It definitely seems more interesting than an over-pushed Shane O'Mac buying WCW.

The fact that Flair is actually working for the WWF says a lot about the man. In one respect, it says that he loves the limelight, and with a book coming out, what better place to promote it than on national television, twice a week?

But it also shows that Flair was willing to take a pay-cut to work for the WWF. Like Booker T and DDP before him, Flair showed that, more than anything, working for the world's biggest wrestling promotion meant more to him than collecting a big fat pay packet while sitting in his comfy chair in North Carolina.

Despite his advanced years, I do get the feeling that we will see Flair occasionally pull on the wrestling boots again. The temptation will be too great to resist. Besides, come Wrestlemania time, if Flair still "owns" half of the WWF, I can see Flair and Vinny Mac squaring off for ownership of the company.

But who would win such a match? Well, Flair certainly has the in-ring experience, but Vince definitely has the conditioning. But why the hell am I thinking of this match now? I'm getting away from the point here.

The fact that Booker, DDP and Flair were willing to take pay-cuts to work for the WWF made me think recently of Kevin Nash, still sitting on his big backside collecting a huge wad of cash every week.

In the past few weeks, we heard stories of how the WWF were in talks with Nash and Scott Hall, to return perhaps at the Royal Rumble. We also heard statements, apparently from Nash himself, that the WWF needed him more than ever right now, because of the falling television ratings and attendances. We also heard that he was apparently desperate to return to the WWF.

When Flair signed for the WWF, I began to think of Nash, and the words that had been attributed to him in the past few weeks. If the WWF needed Nash so badly, and if he was so desperate to return, why is it he was seemingly unwilling to take the buyout on his Time Warner contract? If he was so desperate to work for the WWF again, like Booker, DDP and Flair, he would have been willing to take the buyout and then take the lower WWF wage. Instead, Nash seems content to take the Time Warner megabucks. He is essentially being paid to do nothing.

I find myself agreeing with the recent comments made by the HonkyTonk Man with regards to Kevin Nash. I really don't see where he could fit in right now. I would rather see someone like Awesome, Storm, DDP, Booker, or the Hurricane return to WWF television right now. Nash's actions since the demise of WCW showed that he is more interested in money than wrestling. Perhaps bringing him back would be a mistake.

Before I go, I would like to say a big thanks to Steve Quintain, one of the stalwarts of my local promotion, the World Association of Wrestling. Steve is organising a charity show next month in Lowestoft. I was having trouble getting a ticket for the show, because I would have had to travel quite a way to just collect the ticket in person. Steve helped me out by reserving a ringside ticket for me, and letting me pay by check. A big up to Steve Quintain, and to his daughter Chloe as well, who also helped me out. Thanks fellas! I owe you one.

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