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  1. JerryvonKramer

    The Hall of JTTS

    lulz, you're quite the HB Jim mark aren't you!
  2. JerryvonKramer

    The Hall of JTTS

    True but their push was aborted pretty quickly. Uncle Elmer was basically immobile, Cousin Luke couldn't wrestle his way out a paper bag and HB Jim, well, he was just HB Jim. After the loss to Piper/ Orton/ Ventura, Elmer jobbed to Bundy before leaving the promotion. I don't think Cousin Luke ever even got a singles match. And after that Hillybilly Jim was just a massive jobber. He routinely put people like Big John Studd and Bundy over.
  3. JerryvonKramer

    The Hall of JTTS

    No offence, but I've been rewatching the old SNMEs from that era and there's no way in hell those guys were upper-midcarders in that time. They even had the retired Jesse Ventura go over them in one match.
  4. JerryvonKramer

    Fact or a myth?

    I still don't see a heel winning a big tournament at Wrestlemania...heels NEVER won to end PPVs at this time period. So was the plan Dibiase vs. Hogan for WM5 then? Both DiBiase, HTM, and others have confirmed that DiBiase was going to win the title. I would surmise that DiBiase v Hogan was planned for WM V, and that the Hogan v DiBiase storyline would have revolved around Hogan regaining the WWF title from a greedy champion, who would have likely cheated his way through a year long reign. DiBiase was easily one of the most over heels in the business, he would have got through the WMIV tournament by cheating and bribing as much as he could, the place would have almost exploded and the gate for Hogan or Savage to beat him at Summerslam would have been unreal.
  5. JerryvonKramer

    The Hall of JTTS

    For those of you that don't know, a JTTS ("jobber to the stars") is a wrestler who is one notch above a total jobber but a notch below the lower mid-card stars. They'd typically be used as semi-legitimate opponents in order to get new stars over. The rule of thumb is: they'd beat a jobber but lose to pretty much anyone else. Unlike jobbers, who are generally rookies or career no-hopers, JTTSs are often guys with well-established and decorated pasts. Often (but not always), a wrestler would become a JTTS late on in his career, when he was well past his peak and "on the way out". Your typical JTTS would be in his late 40s and approaching retirement age. However, in some cases, they can also be failed singles wrestlers whose careers have stagnated or who have suffered from a big de-push. In this thread, I would like to induct a number of JTTS. I will get the ball rolling with a few and then the rest of you can add subsequent entrants (as well as whatever comments you may have). So with out further ado, let me induct the first member of the Hall of JTTS.... Koko B. Ware That's right, it's WWE Hall of Famer, Koko B. Ware. Now Koko debuted in the WWF in 1986 where he was immediately over with the fans. Despite this, for whatever reason, he was never pushed and found himself in the JTTS role for the next six years. Koko is your archetypal JTTS, he made jobbing to the stars an artform. "Gentleman" Jerry Valiant A ha! That collective "WHO?" was almost deafening. Now this guy was brought into the WWF in the late 70s to replace the retiring Jimmy Valiant as one half of the famous Valiant Brothers. He teamed up with Johnny with whom he won the World Tag Titles in 1979. By 1980 the Valiants were split up and Jerry Valiant became a big-time JTTS. He appears on SNME #2 where he is defeated in a 6-second squash match to Uncle Elmer. Which reminds me ... The Hillbillies Now I don't know what Vince's obsession with trying to get these guys over was in the mid-80s, but all three of them -- that's Hillbilly Jim, Unlce Elmer and Cousin Luke -- were appalling wrestlers. Apart from that squash match against Valiant and having his wedding featured on SNME, Elmer mostly jobbed to other big men like King Kong Bundy and Adrian Adonis before retiring in 1986. Cousin Luke only ever really took part in 6 man tag-matches (which they usually lost) and disappeared around 1986 as well. Hillbilly Jim stuck around for a bit longer to do the occasional job but he moved backstage in the late 80s. The Bolsheviks / Boris Zhukov Now Nokolai Volkoff was a fairly well-established mid-carder in the mid-80s. He'd formed a successful tag team with the Iron Sheik with whom he won the tag titles at Wrestlemania I and still got the odd victory in singles competition. However, in 1987, Sheiky baby was fired for his drug problems, so the WWF brought the AWFUL Boris Zhukov to replace him, and thus were born The Bolsheviks, who I don't think ever won a match in their entire run. Despite being on the roster, they frequently didn't make it onto PPV cards, and when they did -- at WM VI -- they lost to the Hart Foundation in 19 seconds. After they split in 1990, Zhukov became the very definition of a JTTS jobbing to anyone and everyone before retiring in 1992. Volkoff would return much later in 1995 as part of Ted DiBiase's Million Dollar Corporation, where he was humiliated by DiBiase and made to wear cent signs on his pants. He was mostly used as a JTTS during this time. Colonel Mustafa After a couple of years in the wrestling wilderness, the WWF came calling for the Sheik again in 1991 to take part in a rather distasteful angle in which he -- a Iranian -- was meant to portray an Iraqi symapthizer, blissfully overlooking the obvious differences between Iranians and Iraqis (Iranians are not even Arabs) and the fact that the two countries had been at bloody war for much of the 80s. Anyway, Mustafa was part of the "Triangle of Terror" with Gen. Adnan and Sgt. Slaughter and, really, was only brought in to work one match at the main event of Summerslam '91. After that feud was over, Slaughter turned face and Adnan left the promotion leaving Sheik in no-mans land, badly out of shape, and trapped in the horrible Col. Mustafa gimmick. He stuck around well into 1992, and the former World and Tag Team champ jobbed to people like Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Sid, The Undertaker, and Bossman. Virgil Virgil came to the WWF, as we all know, as Ted DiBiase's bodyguard. He got his big break in 1991 but after winning the Million Dollar Title from DiBiase and despite him being extremely over, his limited ability meant there wasn't anywhere for him to go. So the WWF aborted his push and quickly jobbed the Million Dollar Title back to DiBiase. Virgil became the JTTS's JTTS. From his embarassing loss at Summerslam '92 when Nailz literally murdered him, I don't think he ever won another match. His career after it on Obsessed with Wrestling makes for sorry reading: That's a sorry sorry list of jobs right there. "El Matador" Tito Santana After Strike Force split, Santana was a bit directionless. So the former IC and Tag champ was repackaged in a vaguely insulting stereotypical matador gimmick and swiftly joined the JTTS ranks. In 1991 and 1992 he frequently tagged with Virgil in a team known to smarks the world over as "The Jobber Conncetion". Santana jobbed to everyone from The Barbarian and The Warlord to The Mountie before escaping for ECW at the end of 1992. The Bezerker It's ... The Bezerker! In this memorably silly gimmick, John Nord would toss jobbers out of the ring and wait for a count out victory. I don't think he ever won a "proper" match. He jobbed to up and coming faces of the time including The British Bulldog, Tatanka and the post-Demolition pineapple version of Crush. I'll leave it there for now. Feel free to add your own entries.
  6. JerryvonKramer

    List the Head Bookers plus Dates

    One guy I forgot about is Kip Allen Frey who was responsible for most of the awesome in WCW 1992. When did Kevin Sullivan have the book? I imagine it was around 1995 when the Dungeon of Doom angle was in full swing, no? RE: Vince, I've always been quite interested to know how involved he is with individual angles and things like that. I've been watching the old SNMEs and it's difficult not to think what must have been going through his mind as he's calling the action.
  7. JerryvonKramer

    Well Known Wrestlers Without Well Known Matches?

    Now DiBiase has always been my all time favourite wrestler, so I need to stick up for him a bit here. For much of his WWF tenure, he was carrying people like Hogan and Warrior to half-decent, watchable matches rather than wrestling ***** classics. But he did have some very solid ****+ matches. I've picked out 3 of his best: 1. March 7, 1988, SNME, Ted DiBiase vs. Randy Savage - they must have wrestled each other about 100 times in 1988 and every match at least a **** affair. One that stands out is the cage match where an idiot from the crowd hated DiBiase so much he leaped onto the cage and tried to hit Virgil!! However, I've gone for one of their electric SNME matches. 2. April 24, 1990 - Prime Time, Ted DiBiase vs. Shawn Michaels (found on WWF's Hottest Matches VHS) Can't find it online unfortunately, HBK was still with the Rockers but was testing the waters in singles competition. This match is excellent until the screwy finish. Ted brings out the best in the young Michaels, and they put on a wrestling clinic. Really really good stuff in an era when matches of this calibre were a rarity in WWF. 3. April 27, 1991 - SNME Ted DiBiase vs. Bret Hart A terrific match which has everything but a decent finish. This is what was teased at the terrific end to the Survivor Series '90 match (Million Dollar Team vs. Dusty Rhodes's team). Like with Shawn, Vince is testing Bret out against a real world class heel to see how he might get over as a main eventer. Scott Keith gave it ****. Just shows what happens when you put two great workers in a ring together. I'll also give a mention to DiBiase's 10 minute challenge match with a green-as-hell Dustin Rhodes.
  8. JerryvonKramer

    A Top 5 Thread

    Now this is a thread I made a couple of weeks ago on a certain other forum where, predictably, it sank without a trace. I thought it might get a different response here... It's always interesting to see what other people's views are on wrestling issues so I thought it would be good to have some sort of reference thread to see where everyone is coming from. The idea for this thread is pretty simple. There are a number of categories for which you should rate your top 5 wrestlers along with a few reasons. The purpose is twofold: 1. to see who the board generally rate as being the best people in those categories, 2. so, in the future, myself and others and go back and check on this thread to see who a certain poster rated in all the categories -- it will give a general impression of who people rate and do not rate. I'm going to rate wrestlers in a few different categories which are each fundamental to what it takes to be a successful wrestler. So here goes: Heat/ Working the Crowd This is a pretty major part of wrestling both in terms of ring psychology and getting over. For a face, it's the ability to get big pops, for a heel, it's the ability to make them boo loudly for you. I think some people -- Sid, Shawn Michaels, HHH, and John Cena spring to mind -- struggle in this category because they have frequently been booed as faces or cheered as heels throughout their careers (that's the *wrong* reaction). I think it's a dying art to be honest. 1. Hulk Hogan -- difficult to argue with that no? His posing as the all-American face, his despicable cowardliness as the heel. I don't think anyone ever did it better. 2. Ted DiBiase -- I don't care what anyone says, but name another heel who could get 100% heat from any crowd without any cheers or anything. He made VIRGIL receive some of the loudest pops in wrestling history -- Virgil's subsequent career should show you where the credit lies. Everything DiBiase does in the ring is designed to make people hate him. Perfection from that point of view. 3. Ravishing Rick Rude -- well what can you say? The gyrating hips, the "rude" trunks, the posing, the kisses: this is what working a crowd is all about. 4. Roddy Piper -- whether face or heel, Piper was a master at this sort of thing. He could really rile a crowd up during a match. 5. The Iron Sheik -- watch the Sheik in any match. He's always taunting the crowd, posing while the opponent is on the mat. He really knew how to work the crowd. Acting/ Mic Work I'm talking promos here. The other side to getting over is building a character and ripping on your opponent. This skill is arguably as important as actual wrestling skills. 1. The Rock -- in particular his AWESOME promos when being interviewed by The Coach or Kevin Kelly. I think The Rock actually transcended wrestling with those amazing rants. 2. Ric Flair -- we've all seen the mid-80s rants while he was with the horsemen, it's the stuff of legend. Flair is a god when it comes to brutally putting down opponents with trash-talk. And some classic one-liners. 3. Stone Cold Steve Austin -- another master. Not just 3:16 but almost every promo he cut afterwards. The first time he did "What?!", for example was an excellent promo. 4. Mick Foley -- underrated I think, Mick could do anything from twisted, psychotic to every day family man. Some of that stuff in the mid-90s was pretty out there for WWF. 5. Ted DiBiase -- you might think I'm overrating him, but I don't think I ever saw Ted deliver a bad promo, his laugh was infectious, when he said he was going to buy something or someone you believed him. Number 6 would probably be Arn Anderson by the way, then HBK. Technical ability Technical wrestling is one facet of what it takes to be a great worker. Smarks and internet fans have a habit of privileging this skill over all the others, probably because they love watching great matches. But there is much more to being a great wrestler than work-rate. 1. Ricky Steamboat -- every. damn. move. is just so crisp and clean with Steamboat. He makes everything done to him look like it HURTS and every move he does is just text book. An amazing talent. 2. Kurt Angle -- I love Angle. I already know a PPV match is going to be at least a *** with him involved, if not a ****. He can do anything: high-flying, mat wrestling and submissions, technical maneuvers. 3. Chris Benoit -- say what you want, the man could work. He was a suplex machine. Pity he was not a lot else. 4. Bret Hart -- not as good as he's made out to be, but still pretty damn good. Always wrestled pretty much the SAME match, but he did it extremely well. 5. Mr. Perfect -- I love watching Hennig's overselling of every move. Slap him in the face and he'll jump over the top rope. He was a great wrestler and the Perfect-plex is one of the best finishing moves ever. Number 6 would be Randy Savage. Psychology This is distinct from both technical ability and working the crowd -- it's about telling a certain story in the ring, about selling the idea that a guy is psyching out his opponent whether by taunting, working on a specific body part, or other means. 1. Ric Flair -- from the "wooo", the classic hand-shake hair trick, the flair-flop, the bailing the ring to break momentum and so on, the beg-off and low-blow: I don't think anyone does ring-psychology better than Naitch. 2. Macho Man Randy Savage -- he does a lot of pointing and taunting. But everything about Savage is a direct challenge to the other guy -- that's what being "macho" is all about. Watch his Wrestlemania 5 match with Hogan, that's psychology. 3. Stone Cold Steve Austin -- Austin was terrific at this. The trash-talking, the two middle fingers, the multiple punches to the head, all awesome ring psychology.. 4. HHH -- this is one thing Trips does very well. If you factor in his ring entrance and everything he makes for an intimidating opponent. 5. The Undertaker -- no matter which era we're talking about, this is a guy whose entire gimmick is about instilling fear into his opponent Big Men There will always be giants and monsters in wrestling -- due to their unique nature, you can't judge them by the same criteria as everyone else, they have their own category. I'm talking about 400lb+ guys here. 1. Big Van Vader -- what other 450lber do you know that can do a moonsault? I think he's severely underrated on the whole. He was genuinely scary, seemed like an insurmountable threat to faces or heels as required, and could work the mic too. 2. Andre the Giant -- he was immobile by the end but his sheer size and gregarious nature made him an instant draw. His work as a heel towards the end with Bobby Heenan is underrated too, despite him being the biggest drawing heel of all time. 3. Yokozuna -- he was grotesquely fat by the end, but when he first entered the WWF he was quite agile for such a big man and you really believed his squash matches against people like Virgil could have been legit. 4. The Big Show -- has never been what he could and perhaps should have been. I'm not sure why, maybe he's never had the right angles, but I tend to see Big Show's career in terms of disappointment. 5. Earthquake -- I think John Tenta is underappreciated. As Earthquake he represented a legitimate upper mid-card threat to people like Hogan. Remember HE'S NOT A FISH, HE'S A MAN! So there are mine; a big ask I know, but let me see yours! EDIT: I realise since writing this that there are in fact two types of "psychology", there's the thing I was on about, which is about psyching out the opponent and "mind games" and then there's what there's "ring psychology" which is about working on a specific body part and telling a story. I'd probably rate that a bit differently, as follows: 1. Arn Anderson 2. Barry Windham 3. Bret Hart 4. Dean Malenko 5. Greg Valentine I think there's a distinct difference between the sort of psychology these guys excel at (storytelling in a match) and the psyche-out stuff that Flair, Macho and HHH do well.
  9. JerryvonKramer

    List the Head Bookers plus Dates

    Does anyone have a list of head bookers for WWF and WCW from say 1980 onwards? Or could someone with that knowledge list them here? I'd really like to see that. Certain changeovers are well documented, like, for example, Dusty Rhodes replacing Ole Anderson as WCW's Headbooker in 1991. But who was head booker between Rhodes and Bischoff? Was it Bill Watts? Who booked WWF in the 80s? Was it just Vince all along? Pat Patterson? I know George Scott was WWF head booker 1984-6. Someone told me it was Pat Patterson then, but I've seen no proof of that. I'm almost positive there was a change of booker around, say, 1992. I've always thought there was a distinct lurch towards WAY more cartoon OTT gimmick stuff around that time. If I'd have to guess, I'd say Patterson was replaced in 1991, but by whom I don't know. I'm sure I've heard Jim Ross say on Legends of Wrestling that he was "given the book" at one point or another too. For WCW, I would say it goes something like: 85-7: Dusty Rhodes 88-9: Jim Herd (??) 90: Ole Anderson 91: Dusty Rhodes 92: Bill Watts again (??) 93-99: Eric Bischoff 99-00: Vince Russo That look about right to you? I'd love to know this stuff for sure with approximate dates.
  10. JerryvonKramer

    Is Barry Windham an all-time great?

    Windham is often touted as one of the most naturally gifted wrestlers ever to step into the ring but he never had that main event run to put him up there -- he wouldn't have even needed a World Title run, just to have realistically been in the picture. If he'd had, say, the career of Ted DiBiase, I'd count him as an all-time great. The problem with Windham is that he always seemed to be an after-thought for the bookers. Look at his biggest shot at the title: at Great American Bash '91. He was basically put in the spot NO ONE wanted to be in on that show, subbing for Flair ("WE WANT FLAIR"). So I'd say he had the talent to be an all-time great, but NWA/ WCW never realised his potential (we don't even need to mention his two horrible WWF stints).
  11. JerryvonKramer

    The "We Watch Shitty Old WCW Shows" Club

    I've been watching old WCW PPVs in order from Superbrawl I (1991) onwards alternating with old SNMEs in order (from #1 in 1985 onwards). I think I qualify to be part of this club.