Old School’s Take: How TNA may have overtaken WWE in the top slot in Pro Wrestling

Frank Ram

After almost a year’s absence from the IWC, Old School’s Take in marking its return. I’m going to be renaming my column to Speaking of Sports… what do you guys think? I like it. Anyways to those of you who have read my column before, thanks for giving me a look a year later. The Talking Points will also be renamed to something, but I haven’t come up with anything catchy. One of the only things WWE has going in its favor is the HBK and Vince McMahon rivalry. Seeing as the entire rivalry started at a review segment of the Bret Hart DVD, I see Hart making an appearance at some point. That will probably come at WrestleMania XXII since he’s being inducted in the Hall of Fame. The possibilities could be endless. Now that it looks like the Rockers are reunited with Marty Jannetty’s return on Raw, I see a tag team match being built up towards Mania when Bret Hart will be named the special guest referee. In the back of my mind I see Jannetty turning heel on Michaels, but that would mark the end of Jannetty. At this point of his career he can’t be built up to a singles wrestler. Now onto the column.

Recently, WWE has had a lot of flaws. Especially when it comes to the WWE title situation in RAW. Edge was a champion that the WWE fans wanted to see. Although some Internet marks are still wrapped up in the whole Matt Hardy situation, the educated fan could tell that Edge was the fresh face Vince needs to carry his company once in a while. When edge won the title, and in the fashion he did by attacking a beaten John Cena, it established him as the top heel in the business if he wasn’t already. However, in the infamous words of Shane Douglas “Vince will always find a way to f*** it up.” Not only did Cena win the title back, but also he beat him cleanly in the rematch. It’s a shame that a wrestler who was on fire and only going up was extinguished just as fast.

Another flaw lies in the continuous misuse of the mid-card superstars. What was oncethe glorious Intercontinental Championship, with title holders such as Randy Savage, Ultimate Warrior, Rick Rude, Steve Austin, The Rock, and a few more elite wrestlers has been reduced to being around a watered down champ who has lost more than he has won since winning the title. At least Vince had the good sense to get Benjamin the title and maybe flair will finally retire. Because unlike Hogan, who could do a good job of faking that he still has it, flair hasn’t had it for seven years.

You also have a bunch of “Junior Division” wrestlers running around on SmackDown and it is just horrible to watch. Maybe if they tried to build this up as a legit division and make a junior Division title it might grab my attention a little better. But the “excellent” announcing by Michael Cole and Tazz make them apper to be children running around the ring. Thank God for Joey Styles on Raw, at least there is still some good announcing in WWE.

TNA on the other hand is going up like a rocket. Spike TV seems to be behind them and the company is in negotiations to get TNA a timeslot on Wednesdays. The WWE should take notes on what TNA is doing with the X Division. It is no longer a Cruiserweight title, but its ore of a Mid Card title since Samoa Joe took the reigns. The mere thought of Ultimate X with Samoa Joe, Chris Daniels and AJ Styles has me salivating. Samoa Joe is TNA’S Goldberg and I hope they continue to use him right.

The bringing in of new talent was a must and TNA did that. When Eric Bischoff first started off, he brought in the big names of Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, The Nasty Boys, Lex Lugar, The Steiner Brothers and a few more. TNA is taking the same route with Sting, Christian, and The Dudleys.

The storylines are also getting there as well. I’m not exactly sure where the whole Jackie Gayta vs. Jeff Jarrett angle is going (Maybe the spoilers have said something about it but I’m not positive). Anyways, I’m really enjoying the TNA management storyline with Jarrett. When Raven returns, hopefully he turns heel and joins up with Jarrett. A new school of TNA vs. the Loyalist like a Raven or Jarrett would be a great feud that could be ended in a War Games type atmosphere. Larry Zbyszko is the perfect man to be in the middle of this and he plays his role great. The clueless boss who has everyone pissed of at him. Hopefully there is a heel turn in his future.

All this is great for TNA however, if TNA really wants to become competition for WWE, they need to step up their game even further. Storylines such as the Gayta and Jarrett one need have more direction. And there needs to be improvement on the mic for everyone. Jarrett knows what he’s doing, so do Christian and a few others, but the majority of promos are just a few seconds long and is very lackluster. TNA does have its flaws, but if they do pick up their game to the level needed then WWE better beware. If they don’t have an other huge run in them like 97-00 they may be in trouble

E-Mail: ccsportseditor@yahoo.com

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