Friday, April 22, 2011

2011 TWB Draft Recap, Analysis and Other Stuff

The #1 overall pick... who followed?
Photo Credit:
Alright, for those who didn't attend the LiveBlog last night, or who don't have the patience to scroll through the entire transcript to see who was picked, here are the results from TWB's All-Time Draft last night. Before I start, I want to give a big shoutout to everyone who participated, either as drafters (Bill Baconhill, Dave McKinney, Sean McLaughlin, Billy Dunleavy, Rob Franklin, AnonymousJX, John Eibach and John's replacement after his computer crashed out, Collin "The Participator" Borrell) or as spectators providing a running commentary/outstanding trolling. Definitely made things awesome. Alright, so, without further ado, here are results, with the first five rounds receiving commentary from yours truly:

Round 1

1. TH - "Stone Cold" Steve Austin

I don't know if I surprised people by taking Austin first overall over guys like Flair, Hogan, Rocky, Michaels or the like, but I'd like to think this was a quality pick. I mean, Austin was the anchor for the biggest boom period in history, and it's not like he was a slouch before the WWF made him into their trademark superstar of the late '90s.

2. John - CM Punk

The first surprise pick comes with the second pick. I was almost certain Hogan or Flair would go here, but Punk? It was a bold choice albeit one that I thought was kind of a reach. But hey, Punk's career does seem to extrapolate to this level if he keeps going the way he's going.

3. Bacon - "Macho Man" Randy Savage

Another very surprising pick, although one that I think is more justifiable than the Punk choice. Savage was a multiple-time World Champion across two major feds, has had some of the hottest feuds ever, and really, is a guy that identifies with wrestling as much as anyone...

...except for the only two guys that he ever seemed to lose his World Titles to, Hogan and Flair. Shocking to see him go ahead of those two.

4. RF - Ric Flair

WOO! Flair drops to RF at #4, and honestly, if he had dropped any further, I might have called for the heads of everyone in this draft (except for me, because c'mon, AUSTIN AUSTIN BAH GAWD AUSTIN) to be examined. Don't let his TNA run fool you (although some will say he's far and away the best part of TNA right now); the man is a living legend.

5. Billy - Shawn Michaels

On one hand, Michaels, like the WWE talking point says he is, is one of the greatest in-ring performers, if not THE greatest of all-time. On the other hand, he was the top draw in the WWF at a time when the ship was sinking. Still, considering the picks that followed for Billy here, Michaels as a first round pick for his fed makes 100% sense.

6. AnonymousJX - Bret "The Hitman" Hart

The Best There Is, The Best There Was and the Best There Ever Will Be gets you to the 6th pick overall. A solid pick, even though I wouldn't have taken him over Hogan. Again, his drawing time on top was during a very down period for the WWF, BUT like Michaels, his strengths were always in the critical success of his matches. Plus, him leaving the WWF was pretty much the catalyst of the Attitude Era. Yeah, I know, but still.

7. Sean - "Rowdy" Roddy Piper

At this point, I imagine Hogan in the green room throwing chairs and posting snide Tweets from his Blackberry about how guys he carried or guys who didn't draw dick over him are getting drafted above him. Still, it's hard to argue with maybe the greatest promo of all-time. Yeah, he didn't hold any World Championships, but unlike the mythical green-room Hogan might believe, it's arguable that Hulkamania doesn't take off if it doesn't have Piper to play off of.

8. Dave - Jake "The Snake" Roberts

A controversial choice to end a controversial first round. Seriously, The Snake was an awesome performer, but above Hogan, The Rock, Harley Race, Bruno Sammartino, Bob Backlund and even John Cena? Not sure I buy that. Still, given Dave's later picks, it fits in with the flavor of the fed. Plus, he has a snake.

Round 2

9. Dave - Hulk Hogan

FINALLY, Hogan goes off the board and comes out of the green room cutting a promo about how no one knows talent yadda yadda yadda. This was perhaps the biggest shock in terms of how far talent like his dropped, but at the same time, in a room full of Internet smarks drafting? Yeah, maybe it wasn't so shocking.

10. Sean - Undertaker

Now it's The Rock's turn to sit in the green room as the best wrestler available as he sees Undertaker go ahead of him. Truth be told, I think there is a compelling argument for Taker over Rocky if you factor in longevity over peak. Taker's been a star for almost (over?) two decades. Rocky had a five year peak before he went off to make movies. Solid pick.

11. AnonymousJX - Eddie Guerrero

SOMEONE LIKES EDDIE AS MUCH AS I DO! This was a personal mark-out pick for me, because I love Eddie G. and think he belongs in the discussion for GOAT. I also think that his pick over Rock makes sense because Guerrero was a stone cold star in three different countries. I wouldn't have done it if Rocky were still on the board, but if things had shaken out differently, and Rock were gone here, I'd definitely go with Eddie.

12. Billy - Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat

Steamboat vs. Michaels as the top match? I like it. Again, fed direction has a lot to do with making this pick make sense (although I think The Rock is a great worker in his own right...)

13. RF - SKIPP'D

Rob's computer crapped out for the moment.

14. Bacon - Big Van Vader

A borderline pick here if you judge just his American work (although how can a two-time WCW Champion not get that kind of praise?), but when factoring in his gaijin work in Japan? Yeah, I can see him totally belonging here. Solid pick.

15. John - "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes

OH LAWDY LAWDY JOHN DONE GOT HIMSELF TO DUH PAY WINDUH! Great pick, and unlike his first pick that could have been a reach, this one is more of a value pick. I thought Big Dust would be gone by now.

16. TH - Harley Race

I was shocked at how Race lasted this long too, so I had to snap him up. Putting aside the intangible reasons why he belongs here (MUTTON CHOPS WORD LIFE), I don't think anyone who won the NWA World Heavyweight Championship six times in an era where that was an accomplishment rather than the average number of reigns should have fallen this far. I had to snap him up with the front end of my picks.

Continue for the next three rounds of analysis plus a list of the rest of the draftees plus the UFAsRound 3

17. TH - The Rock

Finally, The Rock, HAS COME BACK.... to a place other than the green room. I almost picked Jericho here, almost, but how could I pass up Rocky? I couldn't, that's how. I think he makes up for his lack of longevity with a blistering peak that ranks up there with anyone else in history.

17a. RF (make-up pick) - Chris Jericho

DAMN YOU ROB... err, a great pick for round three, actually. Jericho quietly has had himself a stellar career, and one that once he stops dancing and prancing will probably continue to have legacy added to it.

18. John - "The Enforcer" Arn Anderson

I liked this pick a lot more last night, but looking back at it? Arn may have been the ultimate sidekick, but is that worthy enough to have a high third round pick spent on you, especially over major draws in the World Championship scene like Bruno Sammartino, Bob Backlund, John Cena, Kevin Nash or Triple H? (my skin burns for having typed that) I don't think so. Reach.

19. Bacon - "The Million Dollar Man" Ted DiBiase

Not to be confused with his ne'er-do-well son, that is. This is an interesting pick, if only because DiBiase has this weird place in the WWF's history. He was definitely a main event heel attraction, and he definitely was among the best mic men of all-time. However, he spent a lot of time on the injured list and never got to the top of the mountain (although in his defense, heels rarely ever got to the top of the mountain when he was active as a wrestler in WWF).

20. RF - Mick Foley

Now here's a value pick. Foley maybe the least appreciated WWF superstar ever, if only because his run came at a time when his star was outshone by Austin and Rocky. However, he had some very memorable matches with a lot of opponents, had maybe the single most memorable bump of that time, and his career before getting to Titan was still pretty solid. I mean, he did main event in WCW against Vader.

21. Billy - The Great Muta

In a draft that would pretty much become heavy on Japanese talent, Muta being the first pick among them is not surprising. He's the rare guy who found success on both sides of the Pacific, and he still packs 'em in today in Japan. I'm surprised he didn't go higher, to tell you the truth.

22. AnonymousJX - Brock Lesnar

Talk about peak vs. longevity... I'm torn on this pick. Yes, Lesnar was great when he was around, but that was for what, two years? He didn't even have the benefit of being on top during a boom period either. All the media frenzy he has generated came when he was in UFC, so that's really kind of counterproductive in a pro wrestling draft. In a vacuum, maybe this is a great pick, but with Bruno, Andre the Giant, Backlund, Sting, Luger, Trips, Nash and Thesz still on the draft board? Eh... I'm not sure.

23. Sean - Ultimo Dragon

Speaking of reaches... then again, I don't think Dragon here is that bad of a reach. If this were strictly a junior-heavyweight draft, then this would be a value pick. Then again, Sean did end up going after more junior heavyweights later on, so this kind of makes sense.

24. Dave - Andre the Giant

Big value pick here. Andre was the best special attraction of all-time. With Hogan and Roberts already in tow to be in the World title picture, taking a guy like Andre to fill out main events away from the strap is an excellent move. Hell, Dave could even recreate the WrestleMania III main event if he wanted to.

Round 4

25. Dave - Randy Orton

Then he had to go and screw up his mojo by picking Randy Snoreton. Okay, my biases aside, this is an okay if questionable pick. I know Dave hates Triple H, and as one guy who definitely let his biases influence whom he picked, I can empathize, but I'm surprised he didn't pick a guy like Sting, Luger or one of the Funk boys.

26. Sean - Honky Tonk Man

I like Sean, so I'm not going to rip this pick apart...

...too much *devil smiley* Yeah, this is the classic example of a guy who holds the belt for a long time and yet wasn't really a great wrestler behind that reign. Honky probably should have been drafted, but not this high.

27. AnonymousJX - Tiger Mask I (Satoru Sayama)

This one was out of leftfield to me, but in a good way. I didn't think Tiger Mask would go this high, but you can't deny his influence on the current scene, as he and DK really defined what the junior heavyweight style would become. Great pick. JX has one of my favorite feds so far outside of mine, the Lesnar pick notwithstanding.

28. Billy - Kurt Angle

No, Billy doesn't get the mysterious Twitter hacker here *devil smiley*. Anyway, I think this is a great value pick too. Angle may have taken a hit in his waning WWE days and his TNA run, but when he was on, he was a great worker in his prime. Again, he fits in with the oeuvre of Billy's fed.

29. RF - Triple H

IT'S TIME TO PLAY THE GAME! Trips fell further than he should have, but I'm not complaining about it.

30. Bacon - Sting

I like this pick. While Sting has had a lot of success, I feel like he's the epitome of a fourth round pick. Always the foil, never really great as a standalone, but in the scheme of things, those guys are needed too. Plus, all the hardware he accumulated doesn't hurt.

31. John - SKIPP'D

John's computer crapped out, and from here on out, his picks were assumed by Collin.

32. TH - Bruno Sammartino

Yes, the REAL Living Legend fell all the way here. In a way, I'm not surprised given the lack of historical perspective among SOME modern fans. I'll cop to never seeing a Bruno match, but at the same time, I can't deny his drawing power or longevity. Plus, I need a "good guy" top face to counterbalance my other top face, the Chaotic Neutral fan favorite Steve Austin.

Round 5 - Dedicated Tag Team Round

33. TH - The Road Warriors (Hawk and Animal)

I hope you think this is as much a no-brainer as I did when I picked them.

33a. Collin - make-up pick - Chris Benoit

I'm not sure I can objectively rate this pick due to how I see Familymurder McChairshottotheskull, but hey, you can't deny he was a great wrestler.

34. Collin - Curt Hennig and Eddie Gilbert

This was my favorite pick of the whole draft. Collin effectively got two awesome guys in one fell swoop through the savviness of realizing that they were at one time a regular team. Well-played, sir.

35. Bacon - Steiner Bros. (Rick and Scott)

Bacon worried that his WCW bias was showing through here. I reminded him that the Steiners did have that awesome cage match on SNME against Money Inc. back in the mid-'90s. Anyway, solid pick here, as the Steiners are probably 1a in the discussion of tag teams to the Roadies' 1. Plus, if needed, he can break the team up and have Scott move up the card if needed.

36. RF - Outsiders (Kevin Nash and Scott Hall)

This is the ultimate dual-threat pick. Nash is underrated as a draw in the mid-'90s, I think, although really, if Hart and Michaels get overrated for their drawing power, how much impact could Nash have had? Either way, their jumping to WCW really made shit REAL in the Monday Night Wars. Good as a tag and better solo.

37. Billy - Edge and Christian

Another solid dual-threat pick. Edge's resume speaks for itself, and Christian might have a non-TNA promoted World Title on his mantel after May 1st. They were always my favorite team amongst the 2000-01 TLC frenzy, and I think they're a solid, top-five-of-all-time tag team, or at least in the discussion.

38. AnonymousJX - Kings of Wrestling (Claudio Castagnoli and Chris Hero)

I know my meme in the LiveBlog last night was "THAT WAS A BOLD PICK", but I think this seriously was a bold pick. Bypassing the older tag teams from days of yore that may not have aged as well (although I'd say this is a reach over Demolition at the very least), JX picked maybe the one team from the modern indies that can stand up to other eras' best. Yeah, the Briscoes teamed longer and have more of an inreach, but there are many out there, myself included, who'll defend to the death the quality of tag matches by the Kings over the quantity of the Briscoes. Again, I'm not sure I'd have made this pick with Demolition, the Dudleys, Harlem Heat, the Hardys and the British Bulldogs still on the board, but all things considered, this was still a bold and solid pick.

39. Sean - Demolition (Ax and Smash)

An unabashed imitation of the Road Warriors (created after Vince couldn't land the real magilla), Demolition proved that the imitation could come close to the real thing (and in the minds of some people, Jason Mann included, exceed it). Excellent pick-up by Sean here.

40. Dave - The Fabulous Freebirds (Michael "PS" Hayes and Terry "Bam Bam" Gordy)

There were a few incarnations of the Birds, but this one was probably the best pick for a draft like this. Not only does it cockblock anyone going for the Miracle Violence Connection (Gordy and Dr. Death), but it secures a damn impressive team for the South Atlanta Wrestling fed. Very unsurprising for Dave (whose handle at A1 is "FreebirdSTF"), but very solid pick.

That's it for the armchair analysis, because if I write anymore, my eyes will bleed. Here's the recap of the rest of the draft though:

Round 6 - Dedicated Tag Round

41. Dave - Stan Hansen and Bruiser Brody
42. Sean - Sara del Rey and Daizee Haze (wtf? pick of the draft here)
43. AnonymousJX - American Wolves (Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards)
44. Billy - British Bulldogs (Davey Boy Smith and Dynamite Kid)
45. RF - Hardy Boys (Matt and Jeff)
46. Bacon - Crush Gals (Lioness Asuka and Chigusa Nagayo)
47. Collin - Terry Funk and Dory Funk, Jr.
48. TH - Dudley Boys (Bubba Ray and D-Von)

Round 7

49. TH - Batista
50. Collin - Mitsuharu Misawa
51. Bacon - Masahiro Chono
52. RF - Jushin "Thunder" Liger
53. Billy - John Cena
54. AnonymousJX - Toshiaki Kawada
55. Sean - Owen Hart
56. Dave - Magnum TA

Round 8

57. Dave - AJ Styles
58. Sean - Christopher Daniels
59. AnonymousJX - Rey Mysterio
60. Billy - Bryan "Daniel Bryan" Danielson
61. RF - Samoa Joe
62. Bacon - Awesome Kong
63. Collin - Kenta Kobashi
64. TH - Gorgeous George (the 50s effeminate heel icon, not the 90s slutbag who palled around with Savage)

Round 9

65. TH - Jumbo Tsuruta
66. Collin - Antonio Inoki
67. Bacon - Bull Nakano
68. RF - Taz
69. Billy - KENTA
70. AnonymousJX - Nigel "Desmond Wolfe" McGuinness
71. Sean - La Parka
72. Dave - Diamond Dallas Page

Round 10

73. Dave - Lex Luger
74. Sean - "Ravishing" Rick Rude
75. AnonymousJX - Koji Kanemoto
76. Billy - Kane
77. RF - Mistico/Sin Cara
78. Bacon - Tully Blanchard
79. Collin - Lou Thesz
80. TH - Jerry "The King" Lawler

Round 11

81. TH - Yokozuna
82. Collin - Sabu
83. Bacon - "Exotic" Adrian Street
84. RF - Ultimo Guerrero
85. Billy - Booker T
86. AnonymousJX - Prince Devitt
87. Sean - William Regal
88. Dave - Junkyard Dog

Round 12

89. Dave - Kamala
90. Sean - Raven
91. AnonymousJX - Umaga
92. Billy - Goldust/Dustin Rhodes
93. RF - Goldberg
94. Bacon - Madusa
95. Collin - Kensuke Sasaki
96. TH - "Superfly" Jimmy Snuka

Round 13

97. TH - The Miz
98. Collin - "The Franchise" Shane Douglas
99. Bacon  -Bam Bam Bigelow
100. RF - Rob Van Dam
101. Billy - Austin Aries
102. AnonymousJX - Alberto del Rio
103. Sean - 1-2-3 Kid/X Pac
104. Dave - Sheamus

Round 14

105. Dave - Barry Windham
106. Sean - Pinkie Sanchez
107. AnonymousJX - CIMA
108. Billy - Cody Rhodes
109. RF - Chuck Taylor
110. Bacon - Pope D'Angelo Dinero
111. Collin - Jun Akiyama
112. TH - "Dr. Death" Steve Williams

Round 15

113. TH - Colt Cabana
114. Collin - Hayabusa
115. Bacon - Cheerleader Melissa
116. RF - BxB Hulk
117. Billy - Big Show
118. AnonymousJX - Dolph Ziggler
119. Sean - "Lightning" Mike Quackenbush
120. Dave - Abdullah the Butcher

Round 16

121. Dave - The Big Boss Man
122. Sean - Steve Corino
123. AnonymousJX - Kevin Steen
124. Billy - Dean Malenko
125. RF - Iron Sheik
126. Bacon - Beth Phoenix
127. Collin - Genichiro Tenryu
128. TH - "Superstar" Billy Graham

Round 17

129. TH - The Great Sasuke
130. Collin - "Loose Cannon" Brian Pillman
131. Bacon - Finlay
132. RF - Dick the Bruiser
133. Billy - Low Ki
134. AnonymousJX - El Generico
135. Sean - Bob Backlund
136. Dave - Paul Orndorff

Round 18

137. Dave - Nick Bockwinkel
138. Sean - Mikey Whipwreck
139. AnonymousJX - Akira Tozawa
140. Billy - Evan Bourne
141. RF - The Original Sheik
142. Bacon - Nattie Neidhart
143. Collin - Rikidozan
144. TH - Giant Baba

Round 19

145. TH - Sgt. Slaughter
146. Collin - Mike Awesome
147. Bacon - Brodie Lee
148. RF - Sandman
149. Billy - Drew McIntyre
150. AnonymousJX - Kota Ibushi
151. Sean - Gran Akuma
152. Dave - Nikita Koloff

Round 20

153. Dave - Kerry Von Erich
154. Sean - Naruki Doi
155. AnonymousJX - Shinya Hashimoto
156. Billy - Brian Kendrick
157. RF - Ken Anderson
158. Bacon - Bobby Eaton
159. Collin - Karl Gotch
160. TH - Manami Toyota

Round 21 - Dedicated Dual Pick Round

161. TH - Mad Dog Vachon and Mark Henry
162. Collin - Norman Smiley and "Sweet 'n Sour" Larry Sweeney
163. Bacon - Rock 'n Roll Express (Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson)
164. RF - Beer Money, Inc. (James Storm and Robert Roode)
165. Billy - Paul London and Zack Ryder
166. AnonymousJX - Motor City Machine Guns (Chris Sabin and Alex Shelley)
167. Sean - World's Greatest Tag Team (Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas)
168. Dave - Meng and Barbarian

Round 22

169. Dave - Larry Zbyszko
170. Sean - TAKA Michinoku
171. AnonymousJX - Fujita "Jr." Hiyato
172. Billy - Human Tornado
173. RF - Mascara Dorada
174. Bacon - Johnny Saint
175. Collin - "Leaping" Lanny Poffo
176. TH - Jacques "The Mountie" Rougeau

Round 23 - Dedicated Manager Round

177. TH - Bobby "The Brain" Heenan
178. Collin - "The Quintessential Stud Muffin" Joel Gertner
179. Bacon - James E. Cornette
180. RF - Paul E. Dangerously
181. Billy - "Sensational" Sherri Martel
182. AnonymousJX - Gary Hart
183. Sean - Paul Bearer/Percy Pringle III
184. Dave - Jeff G. Bailey

Undrafted Free Agents (in reverse order of Round 1)

Ron Simmons
Sid Vicious
Al Snow
Bad News Brown
Ole Anderson
Kofi Kingston
Andy Kaufman
One Man Gang
Ivan Koloff


Lance Storm
Masato Yoshino
Masato Tanaka
Jay Lethal
"The Model" Rick Martel
Scott Norton
Sugar Dunkerton


Kenny Omega
James Gibson
Art Barr
Munenori Sawa
Shinsuke Nakamura
Chris Masters
Daisuke Sekimoto
T.J. Perkins
Volador Jr.


"Mr. Ass" Billy Gunn
"The Road Dogg" Jesse James
Jimmy Jacobs
Tyler Black
Rocky Romero
Roderick Strong
Paul Burchill
Allison Wonderland
Portia Perez


Bobo Brazil
John Bradshaw Layfield
Billy Kidman
Doug Williams
Doug Furnas
Phil LaFon


Stan Lane
Akira Hokuto
Aja Kong
Molly Holly
Gail Kim
Stevie Richards
Tim Donst
Tyson Kidd
UltraMantis Black


Buddy Rogers
"Classy" Freddie Blassie
Johnny Saint Johnny Saint was selected in the 22nd round by Bacon - Collin gets another pick if he wants
Atsushi Onita
Rich Swann
Jack Evans
Jerry Lynn
New Jack
Ahmed Johnson
Greg Valentine


Mike Rotunda
Ray Rougeau
Dasher Hatfield
Pierre Carl Ouellet
Pedro Morales
Tito Santana
Necro Butcher
Jack Swagger
Eddie Kingston
Shinjiro Ohtani

And that's it. I'm gonna put up a poll on the side to poll YOU the readers who won the draft in your estimation. Also, if you want to write a draft analysis or anything involving what went down, feel free to let me know, and I'll publish it. Thanks again everyone, I had a blast. I hope all you guys did too.

Remember you can contact TH and ask him questions about wrestling, life or anything else. Please refer to this post for contact information. He always takes questions!