Big TimBoski Show! Fans, Talent and More!

Tim Sampsell


Hello every body and welcome to the snow is right around the corner edition of The Big TimBoski Show! I am as always the man who can make snow but doesn’t eat snow wink, wink, hint, hint better known simply as your host Tim Sampsell. This week we talk about the alienation of causal fans, talent and we have trivia. All of this in the quick clean up and throw away service that you are used to but just do not appreciate so with all of that being said enough with the foreplay, lets get going.

The Alienation of Casual Fans:

The roster split has done many things in the WWF over the last two years. We have seen new stars, new feuds, the same feuds over and over again, more pay per view’s, split roster PPV’s and the return of the big four shows being the big four shows but we have also seen a decline in casual fans. I do not think this was the intentions of the WWF but in my opinion they have alienated their mainstream American audience. Let me explain. We hardcore fans watch RAW and SmackDown every week and keep up on the storylines and the feuds and know what is going on. Casual fans watch a show every now and then whenever they can catch it but leave very confused and it is because there is just too much going on. There are eight titles in the WWF. EIGHT! There are two world’s champions and one of them is Bradshaw! To a fan who hasn’t seen a show since WrestleMania that may be the weirdest thing ever. A few columns ago I talked about flavor of the month main eventers but now here in 2004 it seems like a revolving door of main eventers! Hardcore Holly, Bradshaw, Chris Benoit, Luther Reigns, Mark Jindrak, Gene Snitsky, Booker T and now Maven are just some examples of the WWF scrambling to find the right combination to bring casual fans back. The problem is that they are confusing their hardcore fans! Trust me I have no problem with Booker T in the main event at Survivor Series but how did he magically go through this change of heart and resurgence of talent to get a main event slot when just a month earlier he was losing the US Title to John Cena? If it’s confusing us imagine what it is doing to a casual fan? Most of my friends are casual fans who watch pro wrestling every now and then and it takes me a half an hour to give the short version of what is happening in the WWF and they just go “Wow Tim that is messed up.”

The reason why the Attitude Era was so successful was that the storylines and stables were simple and easy to grasp and the fans had stars that they could relate to. Austin and DX were the rebels’ while the Rock and his cronies were the corporate higher ups doing the boss’s dirty work. This is gone now. Why should I cheer for Booker T now when two weeks ago he hated me? Who is Gene Snitsky and why is he on HHH’s team at Survivor Series? How did Maven get a main event slot and why did Lita screw Kane? These are all questions that hardcore fans kind of know the answer to but casual fans have no clue about and are stuck scratching their heads. The problem is that there are way too many unknown guys in the WWF and there are too many pay per views. I have said it once, I have said it a thousand times and that is they just are not taking their time to build a good story to a pay per view. Everything is rushed. Why is there a Fatal Four Way for the Cruiserweight Title at Survivor Series? Chavo vs Kidman makes sense but how did Spike and Mysterio get involved? The WWF does not give us an explanation and that is the coot a gras of their problems. They are not explaining anything and thus they are leaving their casual fans in the dark and are turning them off from the product. See the hardcore fans just go “What are they thinking?” but we still watch. The casual fans just go “This blows!” and turns the channel. The WWF has to slow down, take its time and really explain to us the rhyme and reason for the situation. This is not 1989 where we were inept to what we liked as fans and would just eat up anything the company fed us. This is 2004 and all fans, casual and hardcore do not want things force fed to us. We want things to be relative and make sense. We want a rhyme and reason, that’s all!

I wish they would end the roster split but since they are going to keep it I think they should stick with twelve pay per views a year and use that two months that each roster has to really build a storyline and a PPV. For example; in between WrestleMania and Judgment Day SmackDown has two months that is about eight weeks of shows to put on a solid pay per view. Why are they rushing to get seven matches on in just four shows? You have eight. Use all eight! This will give fans and the wrestlers the time to ease into the feud and get everybody psyched and wanting to spend $35 bucks to get the big pay off. The best feuds over the last couple years in the WWF have been the feuds that have been building and building for months and you would just be salivating for the big match to happen. Chris Jericho vs Shawn Michaels last year and Mick Foley vs Randy Orton this year are just two examples of storylines that went for about five months and every week they would slowly build and build and get you pumped up about the epic match that would happen. This has worked. I remember I ordered WrestleManiaXIX strictly for HBK vs Y2J because the feud started in December and picked up and picked up and it made me want to see these two wrestle. This is what worked in the late 80’s and 90’s and it can still work now. Back in the day the WWF did this with every storyline and it reeled you in and made you watch. Now every once in a while they do this with a main event storyline. Go back to slowly building every feud and the WWF will see their casual fans comeback to them. Until then they will be alienating them or turning them into internet fans and that is the last thing the WWF wants.

The Best Talent in the World:

For years the WWF was known as having the best wrestlers in the world. Top to bottom they had more talent then any other company did. Now of course there were some guys that slipped through the cracks like Ric Flair but promotion vs promotion you knew the WWF was the best. WCW had some greats but lets be honest they were using old WWF talent to get the job done and in the end the young WWF talent ended up winning. Call me crazy but I do not think this is the case anymore. Back in the day even the big guys like the late Big Bossman, Sid, Andre the Giant, Papa Shongo, King Kong Bundy and the Giant Gonzales just to name a few never made mistakes in the ring. They could not do much but what they could do they were great at. They had their signature moves and charisma that would draw you in and make you watch. Those guys are long gone, not forgotten but long gone. Guys like Tyson Tomko, Gene Snitsky, Mark Jindrak, Heidenreich, and Mark Henry are not any of those qualities. I often wonder how they got hired to begin with. Now a days there are alternatives to the WWF who do provide the best talent in the world.

Let’s be honest here…When you think of the best in the world right now you think Chris Benoit, Eddie Guerrero, Randy Orton, Kurt Angle, CM Punk, Bryan Danielson, AJ Styles, Christopher Daniels, America’s Most Wanted, Doug Williams, Samoa Joe, Homicide, and Chris Sabin to name a majority. There are some others I left out and for that I apologize but you notice how I named more TNA guys and ROH guys then WWF guys. This is because the WWF just is not supplying the goods and what is worse for them is that the goods do not want to go to the WWF! AJ Styles, and Low Ki were both offered contracts to go to the WWF and both refused in fear of being misused. Brian ‘Spanky’ Kendrick was in the WWF but left and is now in TNA because he thought he was being misused. Ultimo Dragon left for the same reasons. I’m not just talking lightweights here. Raven was let go and three months later he was in the biggest storyline in the biz at the time with Jeff Jarrett.

Right now man for man I believe that Ring Of Honor has the best talent in the world right now. Great tag teams like the Briscoe’s, Dunn and Marcos, Maff and Whitmer, and Special K. They also have some of the best main event talent you will ever see. CM Punk, Samoa Joe, Homicide, Bryan Danielson who they just brought Jushin Liger into wrestle against, Austin Aries, Alex Shelley and Doug Williams make wrestling fans salivate and drive cross country to watch. The reason why the talent is better is because they give it their all in every match, every night and are not restricted by the company. Rob Van Dam is simply one of the best if not the best athlete ever to get into a ring and used to be considered one of the best in the world but has been restricted by the WWF and fans are left wondering why? Lets be honest again here and that is take Chris Benoit now who do you want to see him against? When I think Benoit dream matches right now I want to see Benoit vs Danielson or Benoit vs Jerry Lynn when he gets heeled. I can’t think of anyone other then Eddie or Angle in the WWF that I want to see against Benoit against because there isn’t anybody. Punk vs Joe have put on two yes two sixty minute classics this year! ROH provides at least two match of the year candidate contests at every show! The WWF pulls this off once a year and that is at WrestleMania and ROH does this every single time out. This is not a praise ROH column but the indy’s have the best talent in the world right now. TNA has access or had access to many of the same talent but they misused them. Japan is loaded with talent. Tons of it and when they come to the states, they are not going to the WWF because the WWF is just not going to give their attributes their just deserts. Local independent promotions and regional independent promotions are spending big money to bring AJ Styles to their ring, Samoa Joe, CM Punk, Jay Lethal, Doug Williams, Low-Ki and it is because the talent speaks for themselves.

In my opinion the WWF can easily get back to having the best talent in the world all they have to do is not restrict their talent. Hurricane if you ever saw him in WCW you know this guy is simply one of the bests. The WWF has done a great job of making us forget that. STOP THAT! There is now a rumor that the WWF is now on a search for big guys with muscle and whether or not they can wrestle is no big deal. Yes it is a big deal. Diehard fans are now spending their money to see their local indy promotion more often because they know the show is going to be great and for less money. I am not saying that the WWF needs to grab all of these guys that I have mentioned but a guy like Doug Williams would be amazing in the WWF. He is arguably the most technical wrestler in the world and he is 6 foot 3 and 245 pounds and has a body on him which is what the WWF needs and wants but they need to stop restricting their talent and they need to open up their program and their roster and remind us that they have the best wrestlers in the world. Paul London, Eddie Guerrero, Kurt Angle, Chris Jericho, Shawn Michaels, Christian, Chris Benoit, Randy Orton. The talent is there they just need to keep trimming the useless and let the talent speak for itself!

Trivia:

Its Trivia time! Remember if you think you know the answer please send it with your feedback to thebigtimboski@hotmail.com Here is last column’s question, the answer and our “Medium TimBoski’s” for the week!

Who was ROH’s first champion?

The Answer was Low-Ki!

Our Medium TimBoski’s are: Accident, DJ Strong, J. Mitch, Norris, Phil Snyder, Gary Zeilosko, and Lionheart! Congratulations!

We are now about a week from Survivor Series so here is some Survivor Series Trivia!

Who defeated Shawn Michaels at the 1996 Survivor Series to become WWF Champion? Good Luck!

Well that about does it for this week’s show! I hope you all enjoyed it. Remember send your trivia answers along with your feedback please to thebigtimboski@hotmail.com and until next time LATER!

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