"Straight Shooting"
by: Fritz Capp

Straight Shooting
by : Fritz Capp
August 15, 1999

Before I get started I just want to say thanks to Steve Appenrodt of "The Booking Sheet" for taking a chance on this column. Believe me, it will make people write.

Is anyone else sick and tired of the Terri Runnels/Meat angle? I mean come on, it basically makes me want to puke. My guess is this is something that Terri cooked up to get under Dustin's skin. It really has no value what-so-ever. I hope they kill it soon.

Raven is bing quoted lately as saying that he wants to work for Paul Heyman and ECW again. Can you blame him? Paul Heyman allowed Scott Levy a lot of creative control over the Raven character when he was in ECW and he was a top draw. In WCW he keeps getting shoved into stupid story lines that never show what Raven can really do or what he is really about. If WCW isn't going to use him, let him go back to ECW. Heyman could really use him right now to help with his new venture.

Chris Jericho made his debut this past Monday night and swerved me completely when he went heel. I have to say that Jericho's debut was great and if he does get a program with Rocky he will get the instant notoriety someone of his caliber deserves. It is being reported that the WWF had talked to Kid Rock about appearing with Jericho but it seems that WCW now has Kid Rock under some sort of contract so at the last minute the WWF had to rewrite Jericho's entrance into the WWF. When is WCW going to realize that it takes good consistent story lines to boost the ratings, not one shot appearances from musicians. If you think I'm just trashing WCW your wrong. I'm paraphrasing Sting from his recent column in TV Guide. Now write him and tell him that he's nothing but a WWF mark because that is exactly what a lot of you would have written me just then.

WCW is finally showing one of their best workers some respect. Chris Benoit defeated Diamond Dallas Page at Road Wild to retain the US Belt. Some are reporting that David Flair was stripped because Ric no-showed Nitro. How about David Flair lost the belt because he had no business having it in the first place. Some people were crying that it was the same thing as Shane McMahon having the European Title. How is that? WCW's United States Championship is equivalent to the WWF's Intercontinental Title. It is the second highest belt for single's competition in the organization. When Shane held the European Title I'm not even sure it was equal to WCW's TV title in my book. It was a belt that was created to help put the WWF over while they were touring Europe. Everyone has seen how much credibility the European title has so to even compare the two straps shows some peoples ignorance. It is also being reported that since the workers in WCW saw Jericho's debut on Monday Night RAW a lot of them are upset that they didn't jump to the WWF when they had the chance considering the push that the WWF gives to ex-WCW employees right out of the gate. (Paul Wight, Sean Waltman, Chris Jericho) This could also have led to WCW allowing Benoit to retain the title, albeit for the wrong reason if this is the case. Chris Benoit is truly one of WCW's front runners for their real Millennium Man, if they were only smart enough to realize it. Maybe allowing him to hold the belt for awhile and giving him some good programs with some of their better talent will allow them to finally see this.

We are being treated to another Hulk Hogan retirement rumor, but this time it could be true. Hogan's knees are banged up and the aging wrestler may be feeling the sands of time starting to tick down on his illustrious career. Like him or not, Hogan is the reason that wrestling is at the pinnacle of success it is at today. Without Hogan wrestling never would have received the mainstream notice that it now receives. I know a lot of you will disagree with me but then again most of you are under the age 25 so you wouldn't know anyway. While I would like to see Hogan retire along with the rest of you because his politics always seems to hold the younger guys back because the show has to revolve around him and his friends at the same time it is sad to see the first mainstream media wrestlers career coming to an end. We are seeing the end of an era, an era that took professional wrestling out of the smoke filled auditoriums and onto the big stage of television and pay-per-view. No one in professional wrestling could ever market himself or remake himself over and over again like Hulk Hogan. This has nothing to do with merchandise sales. This has to do with the ability to constantly find a way to make people want to see what you are going to do next and that is something that Hogan has consistently done over the years. Heel or face Hogan got over. He put both wrestling federations on top while with the respective companies. My guess is Hogan is going to have one more short run while once again donning the red and the yellow and hand pick who he will pass his torch onto, like Andre did for him at Wrestlemania 3. My guess is....Goldberg.

And with that I'm outta here until next week...remember wrestling is nothing more than what it appears to be.

Fritz Capp is the editor of Pro Wrestling's Between The Sheets - for comments or opposing viewpoints please e-mail to Fritz Capp

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