Or should they? In the big picture, look at what that style did to the two of them. Neither is alive, and we can pretty much make the argument that the business broke them down and killed them. Did their style have anything to do with it? Of course. They took way too many bumps, performed way too many high risk moves, and worked way too hard each and every night when it wasn’t necessary. Even on their off days they put in countless, high intensity hours in the gym. Basically, they worked themselves to death.
So should we really study and embrace a style that has shown can actually kill you? I’m being brutally honest. As much as I enjoyed their work, and enjoyed working with them, I can’t endorse their style. I see a whole bunch of guys these days trying to emulate Eddie and Benoit, and in a not so humorous way I tell them that they’re going to end up killing themselves. The body can only take so much trauma. You can’t have an infinite number of concussions. When you’re hurt, don’t try to put on a good show at the expense of your long term health, take a night off and add some years to your career. It’s not too difficult to have a match without barely taking a bump. Bruno Sammartino did it for years in front of sellout crowds at the greatest arena in the world. A wrestler actually asked me the other day, as if I had to tell him, “If I think I have a concussion, should I get checked by the trainer?” Good grief.
So who should we study? Why not start with the guys that are still on top and still making a living after twenty or so years? There’s a reason why certain wrestlers still have the top spots. They know what they’re doing. The younger guys that have copied the style have found themselves at the top of the card, sharing their wealth and exposure. When they get hurt, they take time off. They don’t take unnecessary risks, and I can bet you that they’ll still be making hundreds of thousands of dollars many years from now.
Of course the internet community will scream and holler that their work sucks, and intensely campaign for their death defying favorites to be given the chance at their spots. But it’s better for the longevity of this business that things remain status quo. Keep the guys that are trying to kill themselves at their mid card level and let them make thousands of dollars, and keep the guys that know how to draw money at the top of the card and let them make millions.
You would think that the younger generation would have figured this equation out by now. Style A = Main Events + Tens of Thousands of Dollars + Longevity.
The funniest thing is, instead of following the math, they’re actually trying to change the equation. Do you actually think that the pro wrestling business, which we suspend disbelief and pretend is a real fight, should be driven by main events where two guys are running around and jumping all over the place? It hasn’t worked yet. And trust me. It never will.
If anyone is a pro wrestler and you read this, take this bit of wisdom: Don’t try to kill yourself.
*On a lighter note, my fantasy football team, behind Reggie bush, Peyton Manning, Brandon Jacobs, Braylon Edwards, and Nate Kaeding, made a big move these past two weeks in the standings. 10th to 6th. Not too far from the lead. I’m sure The Disco Nation would be proud to be following my team right now.
*Can’t believe former tag team champion Pacman jones got suspended again.
*Jeff Jarrett made a strong return to the ring this past week, and if asked he would probably give some credit to the cardio workout I gave him to follow. The key is to get your heart into the 150-160 bpm range for 1 to 3 min intervals. It’s the closest thing to being in the ring you can get.
Don’t try this at home.