I guess every wrestling TV commentator has his sayings that take on a life of their own. Certainly, Jim Ross’ “slobber knocker” phrase is well-known to WWE fans, as is Jerry “The King” Lawler’s penchant for racy suggestions during diva matches.
But no one had more well-remembered one-liners than the chairman himself, Vince McMahon, back when he was the lead commentator on WWF Championship Wrestling in the 1970s and ’80s. Here is a collection of McMahon-isms that I bet many of you can still hear in your mind: Continue reading
It’s been a while in the WWE since we’ve seen a public vote-of-confidence angle. Triple H standing in the middle of the ring at the end of Monday Night Raw, with even the referees and camera crew walking out on him, was at least a unique visual.
But HHH isn’t the only wrestler to have suffered an ill-fated vote of confidence. Back in 1986, it also happened to the Honky Tonk Man. Continue reading
All of us who grew up as WWF fans have grown accustomed to hearing about wrestlers dying. But the death of Randy “Macho Man” Savage on May 20 was different and took the wind out of us.
Behind Hulk Hogan, Savage was among the the most well-known pro wrestlers to come out the 1980s WWF expansion (along with Roddy Piper, Jesse Ventura, and Andre the Giant). Thanks to Savage’s in-ring abilties, his matches with Hogan elevated Hogan’s status as WWF Champion.
But he also transcended wrestling. His Slim Jim commercials, appearance in the 2002 Spider-Man movie with Tobey Maguire, and being named the Harvard Lampoon’s spoof Real Man of the Year in 1998 all point to his pop culture grip on people. The fact that his death briefly garnered front page news on most of the major news and sports websites was testament to how well people remembered him.
There’s been an awful lot of talk about how some longtime pro wrestling stars, such as the Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Jerry “The King” Lawler, have swooped into angles on WWE Monday Night Raw and delivered promos better than anyone else on the current roster.
Let’s face it: The on-the-job training for interviews was a lot better in yesteryear. In the 1980s, the WWF had a lot of wrestlers and managers who could talk well on the microphone. People like Roddy Piper, Randy “Macho Man” Savage, Hulk Hogan, and Jake “The Snake” Roberts understood how to push matches and angles.
However, more than a few promos in that decade were stinkers, which made me ponder the worst ones I had heard during the ‘80s. One of my qualifications here is that it had to be an interview that anyone could have seen (so house show promos really can’t count). And a bad segment doesn’t mean you gave a bad promo, as plenty of gifted talkers have been saddled with lousy circumstances (think about some of those corny Saturday Night’s Main Event skits).
Instead, my choices are reserved for those who truly butchered the art of the pro wrestling promo. With that, below are my five lamest promos from the ‘80s: Continue reading
Bob Backlund gets a bad rap these days. Most fans either remember him as the nutty heel who turned on Bret Hart in 1994 and briefly won the WWF Title before losing it to Diesel (better known as Kevin Nash), or worse, they remember his tenure acting as a kook for TNA Wrestling.
But for those of us who grew up watching pro wrestling in the early 1980s, Backlund was one of the biggest stars. Continue reading
The WWE took a nostalgic turn this week with Monday Night Raw “Old School,” with many nods to the former stars of wrestling, including plenty of 1980s characters.
I’m not going to give a play-by-play on the show because many of you saw it, but I wanted to write about a few observations.
To start, the night would not have been complete without the Iron Sheik once again pissing on Continue reading