Since I played knight in shining armor this weekend, this probably won't be as hefty a news update as the last few have been. Fear not, though: I'll still cover the important stuff from the last few days, be witty and cynical, and of course, play Spot the Classic~! Not many people have been able to guess the classics without cheating (and what's the point of admitting you cheated, especially online? While we're at it, what's the point of cheating online?), but I refuse to dumb them down. I am confident that my readers are well-read and worldly enough to guess them in time. (Hint: they're always in the segment titles.) As always, email me your best guess, and win the admiration of your local coat room attendant if you're right!

So without me being any more of a windbag, here's all the news that's fit to steal, all the dirt that's fit to deal, and all the mud that's fit to sling.

It's Like Rain On Your Wedding Day

Except unlike the lyrics sung by the lovely Miss Morissette, this really was ironic. Kevin Nash, after being sidelined for three months with a bicep injury, finally returned to in-ring competition last night, participating in the ten-man main event on Raw. About ten seconds into his stint in the ring, he went down, clutching his leg and in obvious pain. The match fell apart after that, leading to the obviously improvised finish.

I've seen a lot of people rejoicing in the fact that Nash got injured. They say he's held down his share of talent, played more than his share of political games, and contributed greatly to the death of WCW. All of those accusations are true. But to the people who were actually laughing it up because Nash got hurt, I have only this to say:

Fuck you.

I'm not a fan of Nash's at all, but I will not gloat over the fact that the man got injured. Sure, he's been a politician, and he's done a lot of harm to two federations backstage, and the circumstances surrounding his injury were ironic. But I'm not going to laugh because the man got hurt. That's barbaric. People who are gloating over Nash's injury are no better than the subhuman Philly fans who cheered Michael Irvin's neck injury a few years ago. Stop being "smarks," and stop being such assholes, and realize that Nash suffered a very bad injury that may end his career. You don't have to like him, but you shouldn't laugh at his misfortune, either. I don't want to see anyone get seriously injured in the ring, even someone with the reputation of Nash.

Mini-rant over. According to reports from Birmingham, where Nash was operated on by renowned orthopedist Dr James Andrews, Nash suffered the same injury HHH did: his quadriceps muscle tore away from the bone, and had to be surgically reattached. He's expected to be out at least six months, and considering his age and history of leg injuries, his career has to be in serious doubt at this point. Revoke my Little Smarky card if you must, but I'm going to wish Nash a good recovery, whether or not he's able to resume his wrestling career.

Where this leaves the NWOld is still uncertain. They may need HHH to join their ranks, just to remain viable. When X-Pac is carrying your group, you have some serious problems. When the second most valuable man in your group is a fat, lazy, perennial underachiever, that's another sign of trouble.

Kevin Nash's website has the latest information on his status, for those who are curious.

(Credit: 1wrestling.com)

Ratings? We Don't Have To Show You Any Stinkin' Ratings!

And it's a good thing, because those numbers sure do reek.

Last Thursday's Smackdown, which was a good show, drew a 2.0 rating, its lowest ever. Keep in mind Thursday was the 4th of July, and ratings were down across the board. UPN placed fifth for the night. But a 2.0 is still dismal, holiday or not.

Like Smackdown, Raw's rating was delayed because of the holiday weekend. And like Smackdown, Raw's rating was none too impressive. Raw scored a 3.7 for this past Monday, off hours of 3.4 and 3.9. I would have thought an injury to a lazy main eventer would at least pop a 4.0, but obviously not. The only positive thing to say about Raw's rating is that it is up one-tenth of a point from last week's dismal 3.6.

Vince McMahon is said to be none too patient to turn things around.

(Credit: Wrestlingobserver.com, Nielsen Media Research)

It Almost Put Me To Sleep The First Time

If you missed Raw, or you haven't read JHawk's review of it, check it out. I thought Raw this week was a bit on the bad side of mediocre. To go into a little more detail . . .

-- Eddy vs Booker: Three minutes? Come on. The ending looked like it surprised everyone, including the three men in the ring. 2/10

-- Benoit vs Bubba: This could have been better than it was, especially considering that it was a pretty sizeable turdburger. 2/10

-- Trish/Bradshaw vs Jackie/Harvard: If Jackie is the best Tough Enough can turn out, then the show needs to be cancelled and whoever conceived the idea needs to be beaten with sharp sticks. Take away the cue cards and the tits, and she's completely useless. This was quite probably the worst match of the year. If you stepped away to do anything short of fall over dead, consider yourself lucky. And even death might be preferable to watching this. As hard as Trish, Jazz, and Molly have worked to make the womens' division viable again, all it takes is one non-wrestling bimbo to set it all back and turn all their work to shit. -5/10

-- Flair vs Richards: Talk about one that could have been better. Flair is still good, and Richards is probably better than at least half the people who are higher on the card than he is. So of course, Flair wins a boring three-minute squash. Yawn. 1/10

-- Regal vs Jeff Hardy: Does anyone even care about the European title anymore? Regal's post-match bawling session was more entertaining than the match itself. 2/10

-- Benoit/Eddy/X-Pac/Big Slow/Nash vs Booker/Bubba/Spike/Goldust/RVD: After the Nash injury, the match disintegrated, but it wasn't too bad before then. I hope the finish was an improve, since Booker has no business losing to the NWOld right now. 5/10

Other happenings: Goldust continued the comedy routine, playing Ben Franklin while trying to convince the Dudleyz 2.0 to help him and Booker against the NWOld. They refused, so by WWE Logic, it's obvious why they were teaming with Bookdust in the main event against the NWOld. Booker continued to be booked like an idiot, getting a rollup win against Eddy, jobbing to Big Slow in the main event, and beating up a vendor he mistook for X-Pac. The guy's getting over in spite of all this, but the longer they make him look like a chump, the more the fans will come to see him that way. Tommy Dreamer got a nice "ECW!" chant for mouthing off to Paul Heyman and beating up Brock Lesnar with a kendo stick, but the "Holy shit!" moment went to RVD, who killed Heyman with a modified Van Terminator. He held the chair himself for this one, which is pretty dashed impressive.

Now Then, Their Colloquy At An End, They Went Their Ways

As quickly as he had returned to WWE, Vince Russo is gone again.

Jerry Jarrett is reporting that Russo has signed a deal to work for NWA: TNA. It has been rumored that Russo was giving a few ideas to friend Jarrett for a while. Now, his advice will be official, as Russo has been added to the creative team. His agreement with WWE was apparently verbal, which left him free to negotiate elsewhere. Good or bad, NWA: TNA did get more interesting.

For his part, Russo said the X Division is the most exciting thing he's seen in years. That's significant, considering Russo was never a fan of the in-ring product, preferring storylines and "crash TV." Jerry Jarrett has said Russo will not have significant power in the promotion, though he did say he thought of Russo as a success. Jarrett did not supply the number of his crack dealer, and I think that would have been my next question after he said something like that. What money-making angles did Russo come up with? How did hot-shotting the titles all the time help anything? Were three-minute matches packed with run-ins good for the business? Of course, it was WCW's monolithic corporate management that was entirely to blame for the company's downfall. Sure, Jerry. Russo's crackpot ideas, insistence on putting himself over, and doing downright stupid things like turning Goldberg heel had nothing to do with it.

Some people deserve the fate they get, folks.

(Credit: Wrestlingobserver.com. 1wrestling.com)

Captain America Would Have Sent A Memo

The fallout from the Kevin Nash injury debacle continues.

According to Nash, he was never informed by Brian Gerwetz that he was going to wrestle Monday night. Gerwetz heads up the Raw writing team, and is the de facto head of the show. He is now drawing serious heat for this incident. Keep in mind that Steve Austin walked off of Raw because he hadn't been told in advance what his role was going to be. Gerwetz doesn't seem to be too communicative to his upper-card talent. In fact, Gerwetz is frequently seen backstage reading comic books.

There is a growing feeling among the WWE braintrust that spearheading Raw is just beyond Gerwetz's abilities. After the Austin situation, the Nash fiasco, and the shitty nature of the show since the split, I think it's easily time to call the Gerwetz era a failure, sack him, and move on.

I do have to wonder, though, exactly when Nash found out he was going to get in the ring. If he was told not long before the main event, then that's ridiculous, and Gerwetz is an ass with no respect for the wrestlers. But since most of the talen arrives several hours early, if Nash was told before the show went on the air, I think that's plenty of time to loosen up and get ready for a match. Since Nash wasn't injured doing an actual wrestling move, of course, the point may well be moot.

(Credit: Rajahwwf.com)

I'm Drowning, Someone Throw Me An Anchor

In his desperation to turn around flagging ratings and lousy live gates, Vince McMahon is jonesing for Goldberg. WWE management has told Goldberg's agent that Vince is willing to clear his schedule and meet personally with Goldberg anywhere to bring him into the WWE fold. However, Goldberg's people just don't seem too interested in talking to WWE, even if they'd be talking to Vince McMahon himself. It was believed that Vince Russo's involvement was a stumbling block, but since he's gone to the NWA, that block has been removed.

Maybe Goldberg doesn't want to wrestle, at least not in WWE, and despite his obvious desperation, Vince McMahon might want to learn to take a hint.

(Credit: Rajah WWF.com)

Bet He's Glad He Didn't Cut Health Care Funding

Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura remains hospitalized with a blood clot in his lung. Ventura is listed in stable condition at North Memorial Medical Center in Robinsdale, Minnesota. Doctors are continuing to test Ventura and make sure the blood clot dissolves. Ventura is in full control of his faculties and has not surrendered his authority as governor at any point during his hospital stay.

(Credit: PWTorch.com)

This Title Means A Lot To Me, But I'm Due On The Set Tomorrow

The Rock conducted an interview with WWE.com before last night's Smackdown taping. Some highlights from the rather brief interview:

-- Rock is happy with the box-office performance of "The Scorpion King," and thinks being called the next Ah-nult is very flattering.

-- Rock said he cut the promo on Austin after Austin left Raw to get everyone back into the game. He said everyone was down, but they needed to get back on the treadmill and keep going. Rock maintains that he is friends with Austin, and was surprised and saddened by his sudden departure.

-- Winning the WWE title a seventh time would be very important to Rocky.

Considering that he's going back to the movies after Summerslam, and won't return to the active roster until sometime next year, Rock is the last person they should put the belt on. Sure, he's incredibly popular, and he always will be, but if he's only going to be active in WWE about half the year from here on out, I don't see the intelligence of rewarding a part-timer with the World title. I like Rock and all, but unless he's going to wrestle full-time, I don't think he should have the belt.

(Credit: PWTorch.com, wwe.com)


And thus concludes another news update for me. For your news fix the rest of the week, look for Byron Vester and Dames to hook you up on either side of the weekend. As for me, I'll be back tomorrow with my typically excellent Smackdown report. A bientot.

Dr. Tom