Monday, January 8, 2018

Twitter Request Line, Vol. 218

New Year's resolution? Less of this shitbag's main product, more of the underbelly and below
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:

Christmas was okay, but I'm hoping that 2018 is a better year all around for ya boy, TH. First, I hope to lose some weight and eat a little healthier. I also want to watch a more diverse palette of wrestling more often. Doing just WWE, or more specifically, WWE main roster regularly has warped my sense of enjoyment of wrestling. Part of it is because I'm a dad now, but I mean, I could spend more time watching wrestling, and less time watching wrestling on Mondays and Tuesdays. I spend so much time shitposting anyway. Either way, more 205 Live, more NXT, more indies, more Lucha Underground, more worldly stuff, less Vince McMahon-approved family drama with a churn of supporting characters.

Very carefully. It's how Rusev would want it.

CUZ I'D REALLY LIKE TO EAT IT. Sorry, I had a flashback to late '90s alt-rock radio. Anyway, cheese is generally good. The only cheese I don't like is the powdered shit that gets put on snacks, but is that really cheese, to be honest? They call it "cheese-based product" for a reason. Anyway, cheese makes most dishes it's served with better, and I am all for it.

Black Label Pro out in the Midwest seems to be a hot button place. It got a start last year, and it's been garnering a lot of praise over the last few months. It just crowned Filthy Tom Lawlor as its champion, which I approve of heartily, but more importantly, it showed at least some sensitivity towards non-privileged fans and wrestlers by ceasing ties with Nick Cutler, who came into a locker room and loudly boasted to the only three Black wrestlers on the roster that he had a pass to say the n-word. Cutler is White, for the record. It doesn't make BLP "woke," but at least it did better than some other promotions *cough* AAW and its mealy-mouthed explanation of its temporary non-booking of Michael Elgin *cough*. Hopefully, I'll get more into them as the year goes on.

Not so much a move, but a move exchange, I would outlaw wrestlers trading chops with each other with no defense, because holy shit, it's overdone. You would have to file for a permit to do it at the National Wrestling Service. It doesn't belong in every match, and yet if I go to an indie show with eight matches on it, it's done at least nine times a show. WWE isn't much better, because even though it's not in every match, those fucking agents are supposed to know better.

If just one move you're looking for, then I'd go for the Sling Blade, because no one does it well except for perhaps Hiroshi Tanahashi.

Scott, your website is tremendous, and I'm not mad at it because it looks like you already covered a lot of stuff there here already. Anyway, SURPRISE ENTRANTS:
  • Neville - It's too quiet on his front right now. The raging conspiracy theorist in me says that it's because he's making the biggest surprise entrance in the Rumble possible without it being a debut or non-current return.
  • Lars Sullivan - I don't think he's getting the NXT title track program down there. Whether it's as a soft debut/preview like Rusev got before his official call-up or the start for an introduction path into the Andre Battle Royale, Sullivan feels tailor-made for a spot in this Rumble.
  • Tommy Dreamer - The Rumble is in Philly, Philly is home of ECW, Dreamer has kept quite the good relationship with WWE over the years. I'm not saying he's a lock to be in, but if anyone tickles WWE's penchant for nostalgia this year, it's the Innovator of Violence.
Now, I would do surprise entrants for the women's Rumble, but that would impinge upon the next question....

From protected user @adamsgroove:
Who's winning the inaugural women's Royal Rumble? Any surprise entrants like Beth Phoenix or Kharma (Awesome Kong)? And if so, why?
So, the winner of the Rumble will come from three possible sources. First is Ronda Rousey, whom WWE is negotiating with, and who has been training for a pro wrestling career AT the Performance Center. If she debuts here (i.e. if she signs in time), she will win to set up a match with Asuka at WrestleMania. If she doesn't debut here, then the choice falls onto two wrestlers, one from each brand. Obviously, Asuka is the first choice, as it would be an alternate path for her into the women's marquee match at Mania against Rousey, who would debut and then defeat Alexa Bliss to get the title to make the match. The second choice might be out of the pale a bit, but Becky Lynch ticks a few boxes. One, I have a strong gut feeling that the Smackdown Women's Championship match will pit Horsewoman vs.  Horsewoman, Charlotte Flair vs. Lynch. Lynch winning the Rumble is the easiest way to get from point A to point B. Second, if Asuka vs. Rousey is so obvious it hurts for the RAW Women's Title match and you want a surprising winner, then Lynch is your woman. She's also fairly popular, so she in theory wouldn't cause backlash that say, I don't know, Natalya Neidhart would?


  • Candice LeRae - Depending on who your sources are, she's either close to signing or has signed. One might think she'd go to NXT, especially since the Mae Young Classic left her cliffhanging with Shayna Baszler heat, but I think Philly and the Rumble crowd would know her enough to pop for her one time before she left for her Mr. Toad's Wild Ride at Full Sail, Center Stage, and the Saturdays before Big Four PPVs.
  • Kaitlyn - She's making a wrestling comeback, and she's actually booked for a few indie shows. I don't know if she'll make the comeback to WWE, but hey, that's never stopped the company from getting dudes in the men's Rumble in the past. She'll be a nice surprise for the live crowd and at least she and Big E will be able to reunite backstage once more.
  • One or Both Bella Twins - This is the "so obvious it hurts" choice. Nikki Bella is probably the lock, but what if the mind-distorting BRIEEEEE MOOOOOOOODE theme hit? It might happen. I'd put money on it.

Now, I'm not saying Kharma or Beth Phoenix won't be surprise entrants — Kharma has the POP CULTURE connection with GLOW, and Phoenix will be calling the Mixed Match Classic on Facebook Live — but I'm saying the other ones feel a bit more on the nose from where I sit. But I could be wrong. I often am.