Off The Record – Credible Main Event Wrestlers

Euan Conway


Hello everyone and welcome to another edition of the column known as Off The Record with me Euan Conway. It has been a while since my last column – in actual fact it was after Wrestlemania – so before I get into what I really want to say I will just go over what has been happening recently in the world of Vince McMahon.

I still do not get to see enough TNA because I do not have the channels here in the UK. It really annoys me because I hear so much about their talent but haven’t really seen it all that often to make comment.

I am kind of bothered about ECW coming back. Sure I am happy to see it back like everyone else but I am really bothered about how it is going to be brought to us. It must have its own show at its own time. None of this taping ECW matches before Raw and Smackdown crap. What will happen is that fans that arrive late to the arena will just miss the ECW matches.

Raw is better than Smackdown just now although that is saying something. I am tired of seeing the same thing with HHH and Cena on Raw every week. WWE needs to freshen up the main event storylines.

Batista, Randy Orton, Kurt Angle and The Undertaker are needed desperately on Smackdown. It has been very weak in recent weeks despite the welcomed return of the King Of The Ring. It bothers me that the main event of Smackdown is Mysterio v Mark Henry. No offence to Mysterio but this match is not even main event quality for Smackdown let alone a PPV.

The Great Khali Sucks, plain and simple. This guy should be nowhere near a wrestling ring.

I cannot for the life of me understand why they fired Rosey and brought in this stupid Umaga character. I was really looking forward to the return of 3 Minute Warning and they could still have had Armando Alejandro (whatever his name is) manage them.

Disagreeing with another columnist here, I am very happy to see the push Finlay is getting recently. I see a US Title run in his feature although I still yearn for a British faction with him and Burchill and maybe Regal.

Trish and Mickie’s feud was the best thing on Raw till Trish’s injury. I for one hope it continues when she returns to active wrestling.

The Spirit Squad has been a breath of fresh air recently on Raw. It is about time new talent was given a chance and a proper push.

Anyway onto today’s column and it is based on a question called “why is there often a lack of credible main eventers in the WWE? Well I will tell you why. I was scrolling through threads on the main wrestling forums in the United Kingdom called the UK Fan Forum’s and I saw a thread that gave me a brilliant idea for a subject to write to you about. It was based on the two mid card titles, The Intercontinental Championship and the United States Championship. I suddenly realised after reading the discussion in this thread that these two titles are the problem. Now before anyone gets on my back with the usual arguments about how these championships elevate careers and so on I will explain what I mean. I am not against these titles being used to build a true main event wrestler that is fine. What I am against is the way they are often being used by the WWE at the moment. What I am talking about is the fact that wrestlers holding these Titles are often wrestlers who have been at main event level before and in some cases held the WWE or World Titles. It can be seen in some cases in my view as a step backwards for a wrestler rather than a step forwards. So in other words some wrestlers who already are main event guys are moving back down the card thus blocking mid card wrestlers moving up the card. To highlight what I mean with this rant lets have a look at the two championships starting with the US Title.

Now the US championship has been the scene of some very entertaining matches and segments over the past few months involving the likes of Chris Benoit, Booker T and JBL. Look no further. In my view none of these veteran wrestlers should be anywhere near competing for the US Title. JBL has not long come off a 9-month reign as WWE champion and is a fully-fledged main event wrestler. Chris Benoit is a former WCW and WWE champ and doesn’t need the US Title to get over. Booker T who has been treated like s**t by WWE since arriving during the invasion angle in 2001 has been a 5 time WCW heavyweight champ and if handled properly would have been the superstar challenging Mysterio for the World Heavyweight Title just now. Anyway instead we have JBL as US champ just now and have him defending it on the biggest stage of all (Wrestlemania) against Chris Benoit. Now I have no problems with this match and I praised it at the time but I still don’t see why it could not have been a normal match, perhaps a number one contender match for the World Heavyweight Title. In my view it is holding guys who should be feuding for the Title like Finlay, Lashley, Matt Hardy, Ken Kennedy (when he returns), Regal and Burchill back. At least three out of this list of six wrestlers are future main event wrestlers in my view but are being blocked in their quest to climb up the ladder by the fact that JBL holds the Title they should be going for. In my view here you only need to look at the fact that the US Title is not being defended at Judgement Day (because JBL is challenging for the World Title) to see why there is a lack of chances for mid card talent to become credible main event wrestlers on Smackdown.

Now as we move on to Raw and the IC Championship we discover exactly the same situation happening with RVD holding the Title. As with JBL what purpose is this Title run serving RVD’s career. None. In the past we have also had guys like Kane and HHH holding the Title years after winning the WWE Title for the first time. Also fairly recently we have had Ric Flair holding the Title for several months and have had him defend it against HHH and Edge. Hello WWE. Encase you don’t know Ric Flair is a 16 time World Heavyweight champion and probably one of the greatest wrestlers ever. He does not need the IC Title in order to get over. The fans loved him 20 years ago. HHH is a 10 time WWE Champ and doesn’t need an IC Title shot. Now in Ric Flair’s case this is not a step backwards it is probably sadly an indication that he needs to retire. Anyway the point is that with RVD holding the championship just now it is preventing guys like Chris Masters, Carlito, Charlie Haas and others who need the IC Title for the next step in the career from climbing the ladder. If these grapplers were given there chance to feud for the strap just now that knows where they might be in 18 months time but they need to get the Title from RVD. RVD needs to be sticking to the MIB and possible ECW storylines at the moment. The IC Title is just a distraction and quite frankly having challenged for the WWE Title before I saw no reason to put the strap on RVD again.

The point is that during the early/mid 90s when guys like Bret Hart and HBK were holding the IC Title it was being used as a way to build their careers and they were defending it against people of the same ability as themselves and not against Hulk Hogan and The Undertaker. The IC Title and The US should be used to build the careers of future main event talent and not as a step back for wrestlers whom WWE have either pushed too quickly or have ran out of storylines at main event level for them. Every moment that these Titles are around the waste of guys like JBL and RVD who should be at World Title level then it is blocking the progress of mid card talent underneath and is reducing the likelihood of mid carders becoming credible main eventers in years to come.

Now to finish off my column I would just like to plug my local company’s next show. The Scottish Wrestling Alliance presents Last Rites – End of Days on this coming Saturday the 13th of May in the Sir Matt Busby Sports Centre, Bellshill, Glasgow, Scotland. Bell time is 6.30pm.

Tickets available from Scotsman Models Shop in the Centre of Glasgow, 55, Parnie St, Glasgow, Lanarkshire G1 5LU, 0141 5720481 or from SWA officials at scottishwrestling.co.uk.

This event is action packed from top to bottom and is being headlined by a casket match between former WWE tryouts Majik and Conscience. This feud has been really spicing up for months now and is set to come to a head in a casket match between two of the UK’s most well known faces.

Also on the card is a 3-way match for the NWA Scottish Heavyweight Championship with champion Eric Canyon defending against two as yet unnamed opponents. Canyon has held this Title since back in August last year and is set to face his toughest defence yet. Up and coming Tag Teams The Lowlanders and T2K will settle there feud in a lumberjack match for the SWA Tag Team Titles. Friends of both teams will surround the ring as these teams settle their score once and for all. In further championship action current WWE tryout Darren Lewis will take on SWA’s up and coming talent Chris Renfrew in what promises to be a hard hitting encounter for the T Division trophy.

All plus further Tag Team action and an open challenge from one of the UK’s best high flyers Falcon makes this a show not to be missed by British wrestling fans.

Well that’s me come to the end of another column, I hope you have enjoyed the read. I hope to be back soon with another edition of Off The Record. Any feedback please send to [email]euanconway@hotmail.com[/email].

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