Thursday, February 11, 2016

Twitter Request Line, Vol. Limekiln Pike

O'Neil, left, got a raw deal, but how would other roster members fare if they'd touched Vince McMahon?
Photo Credit:
It's Twitter Request Line time, everyone! I take to Twitter to get questions about issues in wrestling, past and present, and answer them on here because 140 characters can't restrain me, fool! If you don't know already, follow me @tholzerman, and wait for the call on Wednesday to ask your questions. Hash-tag your questions #TweetBag, and look for the bag to drop Thursday afternoon (most of the time). Without further ado, here are your questions and my answers!

First off, Titus O'Neil's suspension is ludicrous, even taking into account the face value reason given by WWE, that Vince McMahon was tired of "unprofessionalism." How is O'Neil grabbing McMahon on camera worse than running a gay panic angle in 2016 to set up a tag team between two older veterans in Goldust and R-Truth that will go nowhere? Or Miz doing a commercial for an erectile dysfunction drug that gets turned into a prolonged dick joke? Or Roman Reigns referring to Sheamus' genitals as tater tots as the go-home segment for TLC? If McMahon wants to look at WWE as an unprofessional entity, maybe he needs to look at himself and his writers.

Anyway, O'Neil got 90 days, which was reduced to 60 after public outcry. Assuming that punishments are doled out by card position, then I'd say everyone who is on the RAW roster that isn't John Cena, Reigns, Dean Ambrose, a part-timer, or AJ Styles would have also gotten 60-90 days. The guys mentioned would have gotten fined, no suspensions. Any super-new RAW roster member from NXT or a NXT roster member likely would have been fired. If race is added into the mix, because truth be told McMahon's record on race relations isn't exactly good, then maybe if O'Neil were a white dude in his position, he may have gotten 60 days to start and 30 days after the outcry. It's hard to say because it's an unprecedented thing. Either way, it's a shitty look.

Protected user @MrsKillerRoo asks:
you can invite seven of the "every awesome wrestler" crew to a sweet party you're throwing. Who you got?

For those who don't know, someone leaked a Kanye West text where he asked to have a party where he could invite all the awesome wrestlers like Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair. Apparently, no one told him that Hogan said some racist shit and Flair would probably end up borrowing a half a mil off him and never pay it back. I dunno. Either way, my list of seven would be as follows:
  • Bryan Danielson - He's got time now, and he is perhaps the most awesome wrestler in existence right now.
  • Sasha Banks - My party would need a little bit of swag, and she'd provide more than enough of it to be sufficient.
  • Jervis Cottonbelly - Every party needs manners, and Cottonbelly is the one to enforce them in the warmest way possible.
  • Dalton Castle - What's a party without the most insane dude in pro wrestling?
  • Kevin Owens
  • Sami Zayn - Maybe they should be kept on other sides of the room for this shindig, but they'd each provide their own mirth and merriment in their own way.
  • Heidi Lovelace - Every party needs a little punk rock chic, right?
C'mon, you just gotta find some friends who aren't totally embarrassing to watch wrestling with. Watching with friends is definitely the best, but at the same time, I've been to a lot of wrestling shows and seen a lot of embarrassing people there. Not everyone is lucky enough to have a few close friends to watch with, or is tactful and decent enough to attract the cool kids at live shows like, well, me. So if you're in limbo, then yeah, I guess the incognito avenue is the way to go. But trust me, wrestling with friends is the best.

At some point, I think I'm gonna have to open up the NXTavern, aren't I?
  • SWAGBurger - To celebrate the arrival of Shinsuke Nakamura to NXT, the menu has made room for the swaggiest of meals. The SWAGBurger puts a patty of a proprietary mix of short rib and sirloin, both Wagyu, on a brioche bun with a soy-mirin glaze and truffled mushrooms. No need for cheese on this burger.
  • The In-ZAYN Poutine Burger - I've had an open-faced poutine burger before at Frankford Hall in Philly, which is the inspiration for this Sami Zayn-themed dish. You get the whole bun, but you may need a fork and knife for this one, which features cheese curds, double-fried french fries, and herbed beef gravy over a patty.
  • The Hussy Buster - The former Athena liked to bill herself from Texas, St. Louis, and Chicago, so I threw all those places into one burger. From Texas, a patty made out of the primest brisket available. From St. Louis, a heaping layer of Provel cheese. From Chicago, a whole bunch of giardiniera on the top. 
  • Dana Brooke's Training Burger - Look, carbs are great, but sometimes, you wanna bulk up so you can kill the Arnold Classic. This burger has a turkey patty topped with fried egg whites nestled in a lettuce wrap.
  • The Olde-Fashioned - The Vaudevillains like them a good hamburger, like the ones they used to eat in Germany back at the turn of last century. This butter-fried patty is placed on a Kaiser roll and topped with an over-easy egg, and it appeals to palates both modern and classic.
  • The A-Double Vegan Special - Just because you don't eat meat doesn't mean you can't indulge in a burger. Because Austin Aries is Double A, his burger contains two patties made with a proprietary blend of quinoa, veggies, and spices before it is grilled and topped with soy cheese, roasted bean sprouts, and a Vegan garlic aioli, all on a seeded bun.

He and Brie Bella have kids, who have grandkids, and he has a long, fruitful life helping to advocate for head safety in wrestling. It's a boring booking, but it's the one I so wish for him to have for the rest of his life.

The snide answer would be "whomever you want to root for, dingus," but I think you mean which wrestler can be universally loved enough to get behind as a cause. The answer, obviously, is Bayley. Just as Bryan represented the undersized indie guy, Bayley represents the woman, who has been even more criminally underrepresented in pro wrestling. She has the innate connection with crowds and excellent working ability. Once she learns how to cut a consistently good promo, she will be bigger than John Cena with most crowds. But will she get the same shine that goes along with it? She will if the fans get behind her like they did with Bryan.

Since poutine is off the table, my vote goes to All-Dressed Chips. Everyone who is either from Canada or who has been there raves about these things. I wanna see what the hubbub is all about.

Honestly, I have very little recollection of ECW shirts outside of the black and white logo one and the Blue World Order one, but Taz did have a t-shirt that was basically a rip of Austin 3:16 which was Taz 6:32. I know ECW made its bones attacking the WWF's cultural hegemony subversively, but that shirt was just rote and uninspired.

All the great women's matches I can remember are either from before the Attitude Era or in the last few years. However, Akira Hokuto did work Nitro during the Monday Night Wars era, so maybe her stuff on Nitro was the best by default?

Going back and booking anything with the benefit of hindsight is tricky because the variables will end up changing when other things change too. However, the biggest mistakes WWE made were one, heeling WCW and ECW completely, two, forcing Steve Austin to join the Alliance, and three, not ponying up for any of the big names until after the Invasion failed. What I would have done, which may or may not have succeeded, would be to have a band of WCW and ECW guys try to get in the right way and be rebuked by Triple H, Steve Austin, and Vince McMahon. The next play would be to have another band of those guys (the New World Order, maybe?) come in and start attacking babyfaces. I would establish faces and heels on both sides and have a four-sided gang warfare where tenuous alliances are made and broken. Trips and Austin would attempt to bring in hired guns from WCW (Scott Steiner?), while loyalties of guys like the Radicalz or Chris Jericho would be called into question. Obviously, this isn't so much a plan as it is a framework. I don't have the attention span to craft an entire alternate reality, but it would end with the integration of all the WCW and ECW guys into a unified WWE, and then a jump-start into the brand split.