by Amish Patel - July 07, 2012
Welcome to Canton’s Corner. Every month I plan on making this a Question & Answer type of column because I want to hear from my readers and know what they’re thinking about things as it relates to the wrestling business. What I did this month was on Friday I asked for questions on the TJRWrestling Facebook page and as always I received a lot of interesting questions. Below are those questions along with my answers. Then once we get past the Facebook part there’s a Twitter part at the end with shorter questions along with brief answers.
The questions will be in bolded italics while my answers will follow in regular font.
What do you feel is the best thing for WWE to do with the Punk/AJ/Bryan love triangle?
I think the best thing to do is to keep it going for as long as possible. I remember the HHH/Angle/Stephanie story being so great in 2000, but then they cut it off before it could really be great. It was disappointing. When you have something this good you should keep the mystery going. I think Punk will retain the title at MITB somehow because I think he’ll have the WWE Title with Cena, but long term seeing Bryan with AJ as a heel duo would be fun.
When do you realistically see Undertaker retiring? Do you believe the streak will ever be broken or even defended again?
When he wants. What else is there to say? He’s pretty much retired now in that he works just one match a year and it’s always a high profile match that has been really good for four years in row. I don’t think the streak will ever be broken. It will end when he can’t physically do it anymore whether that’s in two years or five years or more the only one that knows is him.
Considering Dolph Ziggler has proven himself in the Main Event recently, do you really think he needs to win the Money in the Bank? He’s fresh in peoples mind, and I feel he doesn’t need it as much as others. Besides we rarely see new challengers winning through something other than the Royal Rumble or MITB anymore, so seeing someone doing it by working for it and winning it in a long hard match, I feel would be better for him. Besides I think Rhodes or Barrett would benefit from it more. Thoughts?
You make a good point because he doesn’t really need it to go that next level, but I think the person holding the briefcase becomes a bigger star because every time their music hits the fans think of the briefcase. The anticipation builds for their cash-in moment. Plus, we’ve seen Ziggler lose clean multiple times to Punk & Sheamus this year. It makes me think that he’ll be the one to get it because he does in fact need it to be seen on their level. I think he, Rhodes & Barrett will all be pushed for the rest of this year and next year regardless who wins the briefcase. They’re all in line for pushes, so it’s a question more so of how they get there rather than when or if the get there.
Why is stone cold steve austin considered a bigger star than the the rock as opposed to equals?
Because he was the main eventer breaking box office records in 1998. Rock main evented in 1999, but Austin was there a whole year ahead of him. Austin also sold more t-shirts too. Everything across the board was up with Austin on top from attendance to TV ratings to PPV numbers and general interest in the company. Rock’s near the top, but Austin is at the top. Obviously post WWE Rock is the one that became the bigger star. Neither guy is hurting, though. That’s for damn sure!
What is the story with Ryback? Is this story line leading to a clash with Goldberg as the fans keep chanting his name?
I don’t think we’ll ever see Goldberg in WWE again. He left on bad terms and hasn’t said nice things about WWE his days, so why bring him back? The Goldberg chants exist because Ryback’s streak is similar to that of Goldberg. I don’t think WWE likes fans chanting that name, but what can you do? It happens.
What do you think of the idea of putting Justin Gabriel and Sin Cara in a tag team similar Edge & Mysterio?
Not a bad idea. They need to do something with Sin Cara. Putting him in singles isn’t really working as much as they would like, so why not try a team? I think Gabriel’s team with Kidd might still happen, but if not then putting him with Cara would work for me.
When do you think the WWE Network will actually start and how long do you think it will be on the air?
The hope is end of this year. It might not happen as soon as they want though. Could be February or March. We don’t really know. I hope it’s on the air for many years, but until we see what the content is and what kind of money they make it’s hard to forecast how long it might be on television.
If TNA stays on an upward trend in their booking/storylines, they could give WWE a run for their money, in say, 5 years?
It’s not about booking/storylines. Yes the show is getting better, but until they make money on live events, taping outside of Orlando and getting more PPV buys it’s going to be tough to see them challenge WWE. There are many steps they have to take to get there. I don’t see them ever truly competing with WWE especially in the same way that WCW did. There’s nothing wrong with being number two.
Given free reign and ability to use Diva/Knockouts/Female Wrestlers, how would you book a women’s division in today’s environment?
I would put the Divas title back on Beth Phoenix as a heel. I’d also have Natalya as her ally again. Have them beat Kelly & Layla in a dominant way. Then all of a sudden Kharma’s music hits and she returns as a babyface. After building it for a month or two, do a Kharma vs. Beth match that almost leads to a Kharma win, but Natalya’s interference helps Beth retain. Then in the rematch Kharma wins the title. Meanwhile, Beth blames Natalya for the loss and then they end up feuding with Natalya going babyface. You would have to involve some of the other girls too, but I would make those three the focus of a storyline that takes 6 to 8 months to truly develop.
How do you think WWE will handle the return of the Awesome One, the Miz? I’d personally love to see him get a face push on Smackdown!
Agree. Of course he would be on both shows, but I’ve been calling for a Miz face turn for a while as well. His heel run isn’t working as well as it did before. I think he would work well as a face. Plus the roster is heel heavy with heels they need to push, so bring him back as a face and see what he can do.
John with more and more wrestlers making movies these days….some tolerable and some completely ridiculous…which wrestler or wrestlers would you like to see make a film?
I don’t watch many wrestler films. I just don’t see the appeal. For me it’s about a movie plot than it is about who is in it. With that said, I would love to see Austin in a supporting role in a Rock comedy film. Their chemistry is great. They’re both solid actors for wrestlers. Why not reunite them in a film? Every wrestling fan would mark out for it in a major way.
Do you see CM Punk losing to Daniel Bryan at MITB? I see AJ costing him the title.
I don’t think so. I thought it would happen last month. I had predicted the Bryan win at No Way Out. It didn’t happen. Now I think Punk will retain because I think he’ll defend the WWE Title versus John Cena at Summerslam as the co-main event along with Lesnar/HHH.
Will TNA ever get WCW type numbers and will it be able (ever) to compete with WWE?
I don’t think so. Times have changed. Only difference maker they could get would be Cena, but that’s never going to happen. Hogan going to WCW was a big move that helped turn the tide in the mid-90s. Only if Cena were to go to TNA could they come close to really contending to WWE. TNA still tapes their house shows for free in front of the same fans in Orlando while WCW used to tour the world. There’s a big difference.
Do you see Tyson Kidd as a future World Champion? He’s got the talent, and with the success of smaller guys like Punk and Bryan, can he make it to that level?
I hope so. I think everybody that reads my work knows I’m a big fan of my fellow Canadian and have been since his indy days as TJ Wilson. He has all of the in-ring skills to get there. I don’t know if that means he’ll ever be a WWE or World Champion. Let’s start with a midcard push first and see what happens.
Who do you see Daniel Bryan feuding with after he’s done with Punk? If they weren’t both heels, I’d kill for DB vs. Y2J.
That would be an awesome feud. I think Bryan could turn face at any time and be successful at it, as could Jericho. So I’m sure we could see it at some point. I think Bryan vs. Cena would be pretty awesome, so I kind of want to see that one. I’m not a Cena hater like some people are.
Do you think Undertaker will go 25-0?
I would say no to that. I think he would likely stop at 22 or 23. Like I’ve said though it’s up to him. If he can go he will. When he can’t I assume he’ll stop. I don’t see Undertake ever losing at WrestleMania, though.
Do you think Dolph Ziggler will win Smackdown MITB?
Yes. That’s my official pick. Could be a bad sign for him!
Why isn’t WWE using superstars like Swagger, Kofi Kingston, Alex Riley (Yes, Alex Riley) Cody Rhodes, Zack Ryder or even my boy Justin Gabriel in the main event?
Not everybody can main event. Of those guys, Cody will likely main event sooner rather than later and the rest likely never will (or never will again in Swagger’s case). You can’t push everyone.
Hey JC, if you were a wrestler what would your gimmick, entrance music and finisher be?
The bastard son of Vince McMahon. Push me! I like the egotistical heels, possibly somebody with money and has the ability to back up his work in the ring. I guess that’s not very original huh? Entrance music would be Sabotage from the Beastie Boys. I always thought that would make a great song for a wrestler’s entrance. For finisher I always liked the Cradle Piledriver of Jerry Lynn (of ECW fame mainly). That move is great.
Who do you see leading WWE & TNA in 2013?
The same people that are leading the company now. I think Cena, Punk, Sheamus and probably Orton will remain the top guys in WWE from a babyface side going forward. In TNA I think James Storm will win the title in October and be the top face of that company. Jeff Hardy and Kurt Angle will be big time. I don’t think there will be much change.
Why do you think John Cena gets so much hate from fans?
He’s been the top guy for about seven years now and there hasn’t been much of a change in character since then. I also think some dislike his style of in-ring performance. For me personally I don’t dislike him. I like him, but he’s not in my current top ten list or anything like that.
I remember DDP stating in an interview that if he were to have one more match he’d want it against Randy Orton, considering DDP is in good shape do you think the match would be any good and how would you build up the match if you could book it?
He’s in his mid 50s, but I think he could do it if he really wanted to. The build would be easy because they can base it off the finishing move. They could say Orton asked DDP if he could use his finisher (apparently that’s true) and then they could have Orton be upset that DDP did “his move” to somebody on Raw like he did to Slater. Then that leads to an attack, which leads to a match. It would work better if Orton was still a heel.
Ric Flair is my guess at who the new Raw GM will be. What do you think?
Very possible. It could happen. I don’t really have a guess, but I’d be happy if it was Flair or Foley. I’m still surprised that they removed Laurinaitis from the position so early in his run. They didn’t even give him a year as the guy in the charge.
Will WWE ever be able to find another way to kick it to a commercial without someone having been thrown to the floor?
Apparently not. They love the vintage floor to commercial spot. It’s the longest running way to throw to commercial in the history of a weekly episodic television show. That was a mouthful! (That’s what she said.)
What legends would you bring back for the 1000th RAW? Also, what new feuds would you create?
I would bring back Austin, Hart, Michaels, Undertaker and I would love to see Undertaker destroy Heath Slater. The other three could be use to verbally put over the current champions as guys that make them proud. Use them to boost the current product rather than make us relive the old days too much. New feud? Cena vs. Bryan and Ziggler vs. Kidd are two I’d really love to see. I think Punk vs. Barrett would be really interesting too.
Could Kevin Steen be beneficial to WWE or TNA? He reminds me of a cross between Samoa Joe and Kurt Angle.
I’m not as familiar with him as I would like to be, but I don’t know if he’s the WWE type. He is a bigger worker that can have some good matches, though, so any promotion should find value in a guy like that. Promo-wise he’s above average too, I think.
Why was the Swagger/Ziggler break up rushed so much? It could have been a good angle leading up to a great PPV match.
I agree. The problem is neither guy turned face, so it’s pointless to do a feud if neither one is going to be the good guy.
Isn’t it sad to think that this time next year, AJ will be dating Hornswoggle in some lame Smackdown angle?
She already did on NXT! Poor girl. No wonder she’s yelling “yes” so much about being in a main event angle.
Who do you consider to be the most under used superstars on the WWE roster? Who do you get tired of seeing?
Now that Tyson Kidd is being used I guess I can’t pick him huh? I think from the current roster the one name that stands out to me is Drew McIntrye. I’m not sure why they gave up on him so fast when he was getting a push. Perhaps it was because his former wife Taryn (Tiffany in WWE) had an incident at the hotel with him where she apparently attacked him, so that looked bad on him obviously. That should be something they could look past by now, though. McIntyre has the look, he’s good in the ring and he can talk. Plus he’s in his mid-20s. He has all the tools to be a success. Another name is Jack Swagger, who is going nowhere as the jock heel character he has had for far too long. Turn him face. Give him something new.
If I were to look at a developmental standpoint, I’m going with Seth Rollins. I think it’s crazy that a talent like him has been in developmental for two years. He’s the kind of talent that could make things very interesting if he was pushed right now. Two years in developmental is too long for somebody as talented as him. For me that’s somebody that is underused. Obviously he’s only 26 so there’s plenty of time for him to make his mark, but why hasn’t it happened yet?
From the female standpoint, I think Natalya and Beth Phoenix are ridiculously underused. They should be on way more than they are. A feud between them would be very interesting I think.
Aside from the Invasion angle of 2001, what do you think is the biggest storyline that was mishandled by WWE?
I always think about the Triple H/Stephanie/Kurt Angle story in 2000, which I mentioned earlier. It should have carried over for months. Instead it was cut off way too soon. I also think the “bastard son” angle involving Vince McMahon was booked poorly too. As far as we know, Ken Kennedy was supposed to win that but then he got suspended for using drugs and they did the joke thing with Hornswoggle, which was all a ruse put on by Finlay of all people. To have a wrestler as the bastard son of Vince would have been the kind of story to really make things interesting. Instead it was ruined. Blame Ken Kennedy, who ended up future endeavored and in TNA of course.
Why exactly was Test never an instrumental part in the aftermath of the Trips/Steph wedding? He never even claimed a bit of vengeance- what’s the deal there? Was he ever supposed to get his revenge, and they switched it up at the last minute, or was he never in the plans at all for the after wedding events?
I think they tried with him at least on some levels. Sometimes the answer to questions like these is that the guy just wasn’t good enough. I didn’t mind Test as a performer, but I don’t think he had all the tools to be a main event level guy and obviously people in WWE agreed with that. Immediately after the “wedding” Hunter went to feuding with Vince, then Foley and then Rock, who are three of the best performers in company history. You think a guy like Test is going to outshine any of them? It was an uphill battle for him right from the start. His high profile match was Summerslam 1999 versus Shane McMahon, which was in his first year in WWE. Sadly, he was never able to top that.
Should John Cena turn heel?
Eventually yes. I don’t know when. I think it’s the biggest money drawing angle WWE could do. They can bring back guys like Rock and Lesnar and pop good ratings or PPV numbers, but neither guy is doing extraordinary business for them. Heel Cena could do that. However, I think there’s a reluctance on the part of Vince McMahon to do that because he’s the biggest draw they have still to this day, so unless you can find somebody to move ratings and sell as many tickets it’s hard to justify it. I don’t blame Vince for being reluctant. I love CM Punk and I think Sheamus is very good, but neither one has shown the ability to be the draw that Cena is. Perhaps they will in a year or two. For now though we really don’t know. I hope Cena does turn heel. It would be a lot of fun to see. I think he’d be good at it too.
Now for some Twitter questions that people asked me @johnreport There are less because I asked on a Saturday morning and I assume most of my Twitter followers are hungover at that time. God bless ‘em!
@THEPeterJones What mid and long term prospects do you see for Damien Sandow? Any mileage in his character?
I think WWE is very high on him and he has a bright future. Future main eventer perhaps. Will need some good feuds obviously.
@topecgaheel Do you think rey misterio will have a significant presence when he comes back? Personally I do not miss him one bit.
I like Rey. I think he has value as an upper midcard babyface that can have good matches and put ppl over. He helped Del Rio. I don’t see him being WWE/World Champ ever again, but you need veteran babyfaces to put over young heels. He can do that well.
@Justin_Version1 Tag team wrestling seems to be making a come back in the WWE do you see them bringing any tag teams back, or in? And who if any?
Not really interested in seeing old teams back. I think it’s better to start anew and they are doing that fairly well. Teams like PTPers, Usos, Reks/Hawkins, Kofi/Truth, Kidd/Gabriel, The Ascension on NXT. Lots of talent. Fresh is good!
@Mr_C_Hart How would the business be different today if WCW won the war?
Worse off, I think. Wrestling business is Vince McMahon’s life and for all the criticism he may get I’m glad he’s still doing it. Best promoter/booker ever.
@SophieRichard25 Do you think they keep Punk Babyface if he ends up facing Cena at Summerslam?
Yes absolutely. I think they will have a rematch from last year except this time I think Cena wins the title.
@TheMikeBlundell How have things changed for you in the last 5 years & where do you want to be in the next 5?
I’ve been able to parlay this writing gig into something really cool and have gained noteriety. I feel blessed. Have goals for next five years that I hope to obtain.
@Trelane_ The ‘crazy chick’ angle for AJ, while VERY entertaining, will eventually end. Where do see her in the Divas division afterwards?
She’ll be a big part. She’s in her mid-20s and they are obviously high on her talent. Very bright future, I think.
@Thecull316 Do you think The Rock will win the Rumble then wwe title at mania? And against who?
I think he will. I think WWE Champion will be Brock Lesnar, so it’s Rock over Brock in the main event. I’d pencil in Cena vs. Undertaker. Just a hunch.
@rave1411 Out of the fcw roster who do you think will make the biggest impact when and if called to the main roster?
First will be Dean Ambrose. I’d expect a big push for him very soon. Also Seth Rollins. I think they’re the biggest stars there.
@ajrb92 How would you suggest Kofi Kingston could revamp his career? Will he ever be taken seriously at main event level?
There’s nothing wrong with his career. I don’t know think he’ll ever be a main eventer, but I didn’t think Christian would be and he became a World Champ. So you never know.
@LVW100 Do you think Zack Ryder may put himself in the MITB ladder match since he is the “GM” on Smackdown next week?
Shouldn’t he just book himself to win the WWE or World Title? MITB match is fine though. Just don’t make him look too stupid as GM.
That’s all for the Q&A. We’ll do it again the first week in August most likely.
Hello once again everyone and welcome to another epic edition of the Melo Out. So I tuned into RAW this week as I try to every week and once again I thought it was just an average show. It would seem that a lot of people are talking about this whole AJ, CM Punk & Daniel Bryan love triangle angle that is going on at the moment and to be honest, I don’t really care about it to tell you the truth.
The only thing that has me immersed about this whole thing is the actual wrestling matches that we have been graced with between arguably two of the best workers in the company today. That and AJ’s ass. And short shorts. She wears short shorts. As far as what I think will happen at the pay per view? It’s Money in the Bank, so it goes without saying that anything could happen when we are treated to one of these pay per views. Do I think it will top all the hype we had this time last year in regards to CM Punk? Well no because when I look at where CM Punk was then to where he is now, it seems like he has taken a step back in the hype or momentum train if you will. Yes he is WWE Champion, but let’s face it, he has been involved in some pretty lackluster storylines since then. His wrestling however has been top notch and people are obviously paying more attention to him.
What do I think will happen? I think it would be cool if AJ went full heel (because right now she seems to be stuck in crazy chick limbo land purgatory between that of a face and a heel) and costs Punk the title. Then (assuming Jericho wins MITB) he runs in the ring from out of nowhere with the briefcase and decks Bryan in the back on the head with his newly won briefcase. AJ then makes the three count and we have a new WWE Champion. Why do I think this would be awesome? Think about it my fellow Melonites. AJ goes full heel and she gets revenge on Bryan by making him think she took him back. She gets revenge on Punk for not appreciating her for the crazy chick she clearly is, and she has now aligned herself with Jericho. No one would see that coming and as a fan, that is exactly what I like to see. Sometimes knowing what to expect is okay, but we all know it is far better to be left with your jaw dropped. And how awesome would this be for Jericho now to mock Punk and say he is truly the best in the world (even though he lost all his matches since returning to Punk)? Oh the irony! But of course, now that the idea is out there, it will never happen.
Until next time, sit back, relax and melo out, because that is what wrestling is all about.
Steve “The Melo Man” Melo
Steve, you’re my pal and I like a lot of your ideas, but are you forgetting about that John Cena guy? You really think Jericho is going to win Money in the Bank? I think that’s very unlikely. Just saying.
Speaking of Money in the Bank, I’ll be back next weekend with Andrew & Christian for the Money in the Bank PPV preview. That will likely be a Saturday morning posting. Then next Sunday will be the Money in the Bank live PPV recap. Before that though is Monday’s Raw. I’ll write the Raw Deal on Tuesday since Monday night I’ll be watching the MLB Home Run Derby live.
You should also be checking out TJRWrestling.com every day because we have 2-4 posts on a daily basis from our incredible group of writers. Give it a look!
Until next time, thanks for reading.
John Canton – [email protected]
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