I know this is a rare article but it is something that cried out to be done. The fans wanted it, the wrestling industry wanted it, so who am I to deny it. It was destined to happen and now it has. So without any further ado I bring to you:
The First Annual All-PWBTS Team Awards
At quarterback - leading the sport of professional wrestling into the new millennium - Steve Austin
Steve Austin has come into his own as far as being the most recognizable figure in pro wrestling today and that does not seem to be letting up anytime soon. With his brash over the edge persona Austin is the one who will lead the sport into the year 2000.
At running back - able to bring in the hard yardage when needed - Mick Foley
Mick has always been known to take the bumps that make the crowd react and that was evident in 1998. Not only can he take the bumps but he is without a doubt one of the best at working the mic. To have Mick on your team is a guarantee at filling the arena seats.
At blocking back - able to hit them hard and open up the running lanes - Chris Benoit
Chris is a seldom used commodity in this sport and that is a shame. Chris is capable of carrying the ball the distance but his coaches are not confident enough in themselves to allow him to have the chance to prove to them what we already know. At wide receiver - able to catch the ball and then run with it - Rocky Miavia
The Rock proved in 1998 that he can put the crowd in whatever mood he wants them in, a valuable commodity in this industry today. The Rock's mic work is impeccable and his in ring ability is the stuff that legends are made from.
At wide receiver - able to go down field and score the winning points - Chris Jericho
Chris is another wrestling personality that is not used to his potential. While it is true that he has received a few pushes while he has had his tenure in WCW it is nothing as to what Chris is capable of. Liked in and out of the squared circle, Chris will take whatever promotion he ends up with to new heights.
At wide receiver - the go to guy in WCW when all else fails - Hulk Hogan
Like it or not Hogan helped catapult WCW into it's current status and will continue to be their go to guy for a few years to come. Like him or not Hogan is still "the man" in WCW.
At wide receiver - can catch the ball when in heavy traffic and can be counted on to hold on - Bill Goldberg
While many (including myself) have said that Goldberg did not deserve the push he received you cannot take way the fact that Bill held onto the ball and carried WCW through some of it's most trying times as of late. Goldberg will be a force to be reckoned with in this sport for years to come.
At tight end - the most all purpose do or die wrestling personality ever - Tommy Dreamer
Tommy Dreamer if nothing else is one thing...hardcore. But there is so much more to Dreamer than taking bumps. He is also one of the most loyal people in the industry. Dreamer can get a crowd excited when it is flat and still leave them in awe at some of the things he does. Dreamer will put his body on the line each and every night for ECW. If every federation could have a locker room full of Dreamer's there is no telling where this sport would skyrocket to.
At center - the one you can count on to never mishandle the ball - Jim Ross
While Jim is not a wrestler one thing is for sure, Jim Ross is one of the most charismatic personalities in professional wrestling today. That became evident when he had to take a leave of absence in late 1998 due to medical problems. Hopefully he will be back in the announcing booth soon. We all miss him.
At right guard - able to protect the quarterback and deliver the big blocks - Kevin Nash
Kevin has a way about him that can get the crowd up when the are not into what is happening in the arena that night. Strong mic skills are needed into today's wrestling and that is the one thing that Kevin has.
At left guard - able to take a defender off his feet with one shot - Ken Shamrock
Shamrock has got to be one of the loosest cannons in the WWF's arsenal but also one of the most lethal. His UFC background combined with his violent outbreaks makes him a perfect offensive machine.
At right tackle - with the ability to wow a crowd with his skills - Konnan
Konnan came into his own in WCW in 1998. While being a legend in Mexico it wasn't until he joined the Red and Black Attack of the nWo that Konnan was allowed to shine. While still not main event status Konnan showed that he is a force to be dealt with in the ring.
At right guard - the offensive team leader and the legend - Ric Flair
What is there to say about Ric Flair that hasn't been said before. He is old school and will protect the sport that he loves with all the life that is left with him. Ric can incite a riot at the arena if he wants to and although his ring skills are waning he can still work a crowd better than almost anyone.
At nose tackle - the true center of any defensive stand - The Undertaker
While not the caliber of personality he once was due to stupid and mundane story lines he is now laden with The Undertaker is still a force to be reckoned with. Take away the Gothic storyline and put him in the ring and The Undertaker will still pack a house. Hopefully the WWF will stop working for UT's comic book and get him back to what he does best, and that is beat the hell out of any and all opponents.
At defensive tackle - able to put on a bull rush at whoever is in his way - Taz
One thing has to be said about this man, no one wants to be on his bad side. While most people seem to find themselves on the business end of this shotgun one thing is true, Taz will decimate you if given half a chance and usually does.
At defensive tackle - able to go through the line with ease - Kane
Kane is one thing, a monster waiting for his chance to take you out. His in ring skills are improving as was shown in 1998 and I am sure they will continue to improve in 1999. I wouldn't be surprised to see some gold around his waist in the near future.
At defensive end - able to get around the line and take it to the opposing QB - Billy Gunn
Billy Gunn really surprised many in 1998. He did this by showing everyone that he not only processes great mic skills but that he can also work outside of tag team wrestling. A force to be reckoned with Billy Gunn should hold some single's gold in 1999.
At defensive end - most likely to be double teamed because of his attitude - Road Dog
The other half of the New Age Outlaws shores up the line opposite his tag team partner. Road Dog is by far one of the most over personalities in the WWF and he is also showing as his tag team partner is that he can take it and give it in singles competition. Another one that McMahon can bank on in 1999.
At inside linebacker - the power of this unit - Perry Saturn
Saturn is by far one of the most talented wrestlers in WCW that is not used except for opening or mid card level matches. WCW has yet to even realize what this man can do. If they would allow Saturn 1/4 of the latitude that ECW did it would elevate him to main event status in a very short period of time.
At inside linebacker - the speed of this unit - Billy Kidman
While small on stature he is long on heart and ability. Kidman can mat wrestle and also fly with the best. While his mic skills are still suspect you can always count on Kidman to put on a wrestling clinic if paired with an opponent of similar skills that can keep up with him.
At outside linebacker - able to push it to the next level - Dallas Page
While most of the hype surrounding DDP is now in the past DDP can still give you a match that you will talk about. His is ring skills are still where they were a year and you can expect to see a lot of DDP in 1999.
At outside linebacker - able to elevate his game to the next level whenever needed - Hunter Hearst Helmsley
Helmsley by far is one of the top workers in his field as far as getting over with the crowd is concerned. He carried DeGeneration X when Michaels had to leave due to injury. He can also battle it out with anyone and give a great performance. His mic skills have improved greatly and can be a main eventer in any promotion.
At cornerback - with speed to burn and agility to match - Rey Mysterio Jr.
Rey is one thing if nothing else...one of the top echelon as far as workrate is concerned. Rey will dazzle you with moves that defy comprehension. He is also very resilient and can go the distance in matches that would wear out most in this sport.
At cornerback - lightning quick and ability that doesn't stop - Juventud Guerrera
Juvi is another one in the Mysterio caliber of wrestlers. His matched are a thing of beauty to the wrestling purists and will sacrifice anything for the sport as was shown when he willingly lost his mask at the request of Eric Bischoff. (Although he did bitch about it beforehand)
At free safety - will sacrifice anything to do what is needed - Al Snow
Al Snow has come a long way in this sport. Saddled with gimmick after gimmick that didn't work throughout his career Al's current gimmick was created in ECW and was so well received that the WWF just had to have "head". Leader of the notorious "Job Squad" Al's career should really take off in 1999. (That is if the booking committee in the WWF are smart)
At strong safety - the ability to take a match and make it great - Dean Malenko
Dean is much like the perverbial workhorse in the ring, never being satisfied with a mediocre performance. His lack of mic skills is the only thing that hurts Dean's persona. But if you want a clinic in pro wrestling, Dean Malenko is the one anyone would turn to for that caliber of match.
Special teams nominee's:
D'Lo Brown - D'Lo is far and away one of the most underrated workers in the industry.
Val Venis - Able to take it to anyone and the women love him.
Gangrel - The Vampire Warrior seems to have found a permanent coffin in the WWF.
Edge - Outstanding worker, has the tools to be main event caliber.
Disco Inferno - Most don't like him but you cannot deny his ability.
Justin Credible - A flop in the WWF he has been reborn in ECW.
And now, introducing the Coach of the All-PWBTS team, he is the man who has brought professional wrestling to new heights on more than one occasion and is instrumental in being the reason that pro wrestling is where it is today, he retook pro wrestling by storm in 1998 by giving his company a rebirth with a new insight and definitely a new attitude,
Vincent K. McMahon Jr.
Un-official All-PWBTS Award Nominations:
"I Want My Money Back" Award goes to Dennis Coralluzo for actually thinking that Tod Gordon would be a draw for his company.
"The Paul Heyman Spin Doctor" Award goes to Bob Ryder who worked his readers throughout 1998 by leading them to believe his site of 1wrestling.com was an unbiased news site when in actuality it was a perverbial board run by ECW and WCW due to the amount of crap Ryder's site spewed for those promotions.
"If You Could Only See Me Now" Award goes out to James Fullington (Sandman) who left ECW as a top draw to become lost in WCW as Raven's brother only being seen periodically in out of the ring skits.
"Can I Have Some Cheese To Go With My Whine" Award goes to Bret Hart who's documentary "Wrestling With Shadows" started out as what could have been a great show but ended up doing nothing but crying about the evil Vince McMahon.
"Now You See Me, Now You Don't Again For Another Extended Period Of Time" Award goes to the one and only Sting who is seen less on WCW television than Chris Jericho during a WCW contract dispute.
"Eric Bischoff I Did Not Lie" Award goes to Dave Scherer who was involved in an ECW work of Internet wrestling fans. Dave claims of ‘exposing" the work is ludicrous as it was an integral part to actually getting him involved.
"Your Not Worth Of My Time But I Always Go To Your Site And I Ask About You Frequently" Award goes out to Mark Madden who while in Baltimore made it a point to go around to certain people telling them how much he doesn't like one Fritz Capp thus starting a conversation about someone he supposedly doesn't waste his time on thinking about.
"Dave Scherer I Am Above You All" Award goes out to the WWF for not making themselves accessible to reporters and also to some wrestling magazines. I'll bet they weren't like that when WCW was beating them in the ratings.
"There Is Nothing Wrong With ECW, It is Still Exactly The Same As It Has Always Been But I Am Making A Few Changes " Award goes out to Paul Heyman who finally saw that his company was going down the toilet and is now back to booking the shows instead of involving himself in every facet of the promotion.
I hope you all enjoyed this years All-PWBTS Awards...see you next year!
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