Straight Shooting - Issue #92
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Since 1997 - The Standard Bearer For Wrestling Columns
by Fritz Capp
October 20, 2000
Over the years I have found that people who want attention tend to take out scathing columns trashing me or what I recently wrote about all in the hopes to get some free press. In the old days I would get sucked into the myriad of e-mails and columns going for the juggler and basically taking this people apart. Ah, such go the days of having fun.
Once again someone is trying to do the very thing that I mentioned above, and that is trying their best to get whatever press they can off of my name. Well, I am in a generous mood so I will give him his five minutes of fame.
In my last column I spoke on how someone used a memorial show report to take a shot at NWA-Jersey. Now this person is now claiming that it was a tongue-in-cheek comment and should have been taken as such. He then goes on to defend his friend and put me "in my place".
The person I speak of is Phil Varlese, owner and co-host of The Wrestling Guys radio show. Now Phil and I have been friends for quite some time. In fact, his radio show wouldn't have attained it heights (someone even stole his shows name) if it wasn't for two people, myself and Dennis Coralluzo. Even though I do not like being associated with Dennis in any way, I have always been one to give the devil his due and in this instance it is warranted.
Now far be it from me to tell people who they should have for friends. That is each person's individual choice. But I see that it could be the catalyst for this recent tirade against me.
In Phil's latest column, located at http://www.wrestlingguys.com/, Phil not only starts off by doing a cheap ripoff of my column's name but then proceeds to go over what I wrote point by point. Of course he doesn't mention that he called me on the phone (at Dennis's request he said) to see if my column was a shoot or just something to obtain heat. But then again why would he, it would discredit half of what he wrote. Of course he tries to out me as being the webmaster of NWA-Jersey, something that is basically common knowledge considering the updates on the site usually bear my name. I am sorry to tell Phil that he doesn't have the old "who actually owns ECWWrestling.com" scenario going on here. You cannot out what is not being hidden.
Now I'm not going to get into the ever growing number of money that was reportedly raised at Podzilla. This is not about that. Any money is a good thing and should be treated as such. It is a shame that this even started off of something that was as worthwhile a cause as this. In fact, here is an exact cut and paste of a letter I sent to another of the shows organizers in response to an e-mail I received :
From: Fritz Capp
To: JASON PHARO <**********@*******.***>
Date: Thursday, October 19, 2000 11:39 AM
Subject: Re: PODZILLA PALOOZA
I am glad the show came off as good as it did. I just think Phil, no matter what the reason was, should and could have saved the cheap shots at Gino and NWA Jersey for another time. A memorial card review was not that time or place for such childishness. It showed a compete lack of professionalism and in a small way tarnished what all of you were trying to accomplish. While it is sad to think that someone tried to disrupt the show, it is even sadder to think that someone would use that vehicle to take a cheap and unwarranted shot at a rival promoter.
I commend you on your efforts and I am sure the family appreciates all you have done.
I still stand by that comment. This was not the time nor place to either take a shot or do a tongue-in-cheek joke about a rival promoter. Especially when it is someone that the person who is writing the piece does not particularly care for. People can spin what they write all they want to, but the facts of the matter stand crystal clear. Phil Varlese, for whatever reason, took and cheap shot at NWA-Jersey at an inappropriate time. Especially considering he is about to restart his radio show next week. Now there is a perfect vehicle to do a rant on Gino Moore or NWA-Jersey. NOT IN THE MEMORIAL SHOW RESULTS! A little decorum and discretion should/could have been used. If nothing else, just in memory of what the card was meant to be for.
Phil goes on to say that there were a couple of NWA-Jersey workers at the show. Well since I may know a bit more of the goings on at NWA-Jersey than most, I can say that no one was at the show representing NWA-Jersey. In fact, who can say who works for who since the myriad of promotions that run in the NJ area all swap talent between each other. Is there such a thing as a set locker room in any Jersey based promotion? For the most part though, the wrestlers that are usually at the NWA-Jersey shows also work for Big Buc Productions which is Donnie B.'s organization and were probably representing Big Buc at the show.
Phil then goes on to defend Dennis as far as things that I said are concerned. While Phil does his best to discredit what I wrote this piece of his column only shows that he is basically repeating what Dennis has told him, nothing more. While Phil "claims" that what I wrote is only my "opinion", he writes this assuming that what Dennis told him is the absolute truth, without any investigation of his own. Unlike Phil, I have not only talked to NWA-Jersey management, but also NWA management and other people that were involved with Dennis back when he was running NWA-NJ. I have never been one to just take one person's word on any given situation as there is always more to the story than just what one person will tell you. It would be in Phil's best interest to not just take the word of one person in the future, but to dig a little deeper to find out the real facts.
And there are your five minutes of fame Phil. I hope you get out of what you are looking for.
Now let's go onto another subject that is near and dear to my heart. The earth shattering news that Tod Gordon was going to spill onto the wrestling community that would shake the very foundation of the industry. Tod is going to...are you ready.....I hope your sitting down......run a wrestling fantasy camp sometime next year. (I will wait why all of you catch your collective breath) Ok, now that you are all over the complete and utter shock of that earth shattering news I have to really say that the mark that has been putting out this information and building it up as a "must read" newsbyte is really showing just how far he'll bend over. I mean, to bill this as something that will "shake the wrestling industry" is ludicrous at best. This is not something new to the industry, nor is it something that will change the face of pro wrestling forever. It is a fantasy camp, nothing more, nothing less. Now while it could be cool if your into fantasy camps, it does not merit a two week buildup. This news is akin to WCW shutting down their show for a week and then coming back on air with nothing new to offer. A big buildup for no payoff. But that is to be expected considering the company this "reporter" keeps. It is usually about the hype with no substance following it, pretty much like the promotion he currently works for.
Speaking of all hype and no substance ECW recently canceling it's two shows on October 27 and 28th leaves a lot of room for questions doesn't it? I mean, Paul can't still be telling the guys that he cannot get the Canadian money converted to U.S. currency can he? Wasn't that the excuse for the last show cancellations? That he couldn't get the money converted (although that only take about one hour to accomplish) so he couldn't pay them and that's why he was canceling the shows? I haven't heard of ECW being in a foreign country lately so that cannot be it. Geez, why is there no "earth shattering" news coming out telling everyone what is going on behind the scenes at ECW with this problem? In fact, you do not hear one thing coming out about their financial problems coming from "Mr. Internet Reporter" do you? Funny how that always seems to be the case isn't it? I guess when all you have to live for is the dollar that's what happens. It's a shame that there are still people waiting for merchandise that they ordered over a year ago from this guy. But if you take $20.00 here and $20.00 there it adds up after awhile. Just how many times can you sell a shirt you never plan to send out? The really funny thing about this is that this "person" didn't just rip off what he terms "marks" but also promoters who ordered different merchandise for their kids and relatives. Talk about being stupid.
Someone is referring to the recent reports of the WWF buying WCW as possibly being labeled a monopoly. How is that? With well over 200 wrestling promotions in the United States alone, all with the availability of television and all other media outlets how could Vince be said to hold a "monopoly" on the industry if he does purchase WCW? It is not like Vince is killing the independent scene with this purchase. The indy promoters I know do a good enough job of that on their own for the most part. Is it Vince's fault that most independent wrestling promotions do not have enough business sense to join together under one banner to compete? Is it Vince's fault that most promoters today lack the business savvy to make themselves a viable product? Is it Vince's fault that most promotions lack the knowledge on how to effectively market their product to their core audience? The answers to all of the above is no, it is not Vince's fault at all. Vince McMahon runs the WWF "as" a business, not like he is "in" the business. There is huge difference in idealogy. There is also a huge difference in why some promotions will grow to unfathomable heights and others will only draw 98 paid to a show. To be honest I wish Vince would purchase ECW also, that would put it out of it's misery. Then Heyman could go and do what he does best and that is use the mind that the good lord gave him for booking shows and writing story lines while his guys could actually go to work for someone who would pay them consistently and on time. While there may be a myriad of laws that will be used to possibly stop the sale of WCW to the WWF if in fact it goes that far, the reality of the situation is that Vince should be able to purchase the company if he wants to. Wouldn't it be nice to see something that resembles something you may want to watch under the call letters of WCW?
And with that I am outta here. Remember wrestling is nothing more than it appears to be but also remember a quote from James Billington, "Intellectual and cultural freedom is the most important single precondition for the breakdown of the kinds of tyrannical and totalitarian systems that periodically threaten us."
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