Alberto Del Rio: Money in the Bank winner, WWE Champion, and not buying into him at all.

Okay so Alberto Del Rio was brought in and has been with the company for almost a year.  He won the Royal Rumble and came up short of winning the belt at Mania.  He was denied again when he lost to Christian at Extreme Rules.  He won Money in the Bank and cashed in at Summerslam and is now the WWE Champion.  You buying this guy as a legit champion? No?  Good because neither am I.

Ever since John Bradshaw Layfield was pushed in singles after his APA days were over, he was pushed all the way past the mid-card and to the world title picture,  I’ve never understood what jackass in management thinks doing this is a good idea.  I remember with JBL beating Eddie Guerrero for the belt, all I could think was “I knew Eddie would lose the belt some time, but it had to be this guy that did it?” And yeah I know Del Rio won Money in the Bank and any guy that’s gotten their hands on that case has cashed in and won the belt. But not all of them were exactly gems and if you need an example, I got two words for you: Jack Swagger.

Seriously, when Swagger was the world champ, it was boring as hell and when he cashed in, all anyone could think was “They let Edge lose to Jericho at Mania so that this jackass could win the belt?”  You had to have this guy try and still look like a credible champ against Rey Mysterio and Big Show and it just didn’t work. When he finally lost the belt, you could just tell that WWE Creative was thinking “What the hell were we thinking?” They probably had to get the belt off of him thinking that if they didn’t, Vinny Mac was gonna have their legs broken.

In other examples, you had CM Punk’s first cashing in which wasn’t a bad deal, but the problem is he never lost the belt. He had to “give it up” because Randy Orton and Legacy laid his ass out.  And then in the case of The Miz, problem there is that yeah he won the belt and it helped elevate the guy but you didn’t see him beat guys on his own or at least credible ones.  And of course there was when Ken Anderson/Kennedy won it but because of injury, never got to cash it in and Edge took it from him.

The thing that I don’t get is that everybody seems to call Del Rio some kind of mat technician.  Last I saw, this guy was nowhere close to the caliber of guys like Dean Malenko, Chris Benoit or Kurt Angle.  Yeah, he has a cross armbar submission, so what? You get a guy like Daniel Bryan/Bryan Danielson and I guarantee that the guy could do that hold with his eyes closed. Then there’s his “Personal Ring Announcer” and that is something that has never caught my eye or made me interested in a wrestler. I always thought any guy or guys that did that was just plain stupid.  All it is really is nothing more than a living prop and nothing more.

Then you have tonight and the alleged “Raw Super Show” which leaves the question that if they’re doing this, then why have a brand extension anymore but that’s a topic for another time. This was the first of the Raw Super Shows and yet, the champ was nowhere to be found. I already read what it said in that he was renewing his work visa. You know if you got the guy with the belt, you’d think you would have him do it a lot sooner than tonight. I mean you had Smackdown’s world champ on the show, you might as well have the other one. All it’s doing is leaving you to wonder if the WWE really has any faith in this guy as champ or if they just see him the same way that we see Alberto Del Rio: A transitional champion.

In short, Alberto Del Rio only has a couple moves in him, has the gimmick of being a cocky, rich guy complete with promos that we’ve all seen one too many times. In terms of his ring skills, all that I’ve seen is a cross armbar and enziguri and nothing else. I wouldn’t be surprised if John Cena walks out with the belt at Night of Champions and neither should anybody else because at this rate, I see Alberto Del Rio’s reign as WWE Champion being less memorable than Jack Swagger’s as World Champion……But you already knew that.

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“Bow Down to the Prince, Fools!” Interview with Prince Nana

What is up, People? Sean Williams, “The Shark of Wrestling” coming at you. This week I had the privilege and honor to interview a man of royalty who has managed many names including one of the most dominant up and comers in Ring Of Honor in Tomasso Ciampa. He is the leader and ruler of the Embassy and the crown prince of ROH. I’m speaking of course of Prince Nana.  Here is how it went down:

THE SHARK: First question I want to ask you refers to the new ownership and new deal for Ring of Honor with Sinclair Broadcasting.  What was your reaction when you first the news regarding ROH’s new ownership?

PRINCE NANA: I was excited. Not many times do people get to be apart of something big in history like I have. From the birth to the sale to the mega corporation Sinclair Broadcast Group.

 THE SHARK: Throughout the years in wrestling, we’ve seen many different managers in pro wrestling. Who were some of your favorites growing up prior to entering the wrestling business?

PRINCE NANA:  Bobby The Brain is defiantly one of the top guys I did enjoy. To be honest with you I wasn’t a big Manager Fan. I started out as a wrestler and eventually tried the management side of this and enjoyed it. Now here I am.

THE SHARK:  We’ve seen Ring of Honor show it believes in certain aspects that companies like TNA and WWE have forgotten such as tag team wrestling and the role of the manager.  We’ve seen a few of them in guys like yourself, Truth Martini, Shane Hagadorn and the late Larry Sweeney. How would you best describe ROH’s stance on the importance of the managerial role and showing it’s still alive and kicking?

PRINCE NANA: Just based on the longevity of Prince Nana in the wrestling business is a testament to what ROH can do for your career. All these new managers have to be grateful that I have paved the way for them to have work.

THE SHARK:  The Embassy has seen many names added to the group. Names such as Jimmy Rave, Necro Butcher, Shawn Davari, Erick Stevens, Bison Smith, all the way up to now with Princess Mia, and Tomasso Ciampa.  Who is somebody whether from Ring of Honor or anywhere else that you yourself would love to add to the Embassy and why?

PRINCE NANA: I’m a big fan of ANX (All Night Express). I would love to manage them and take them to the next level after they prove themselves just a little bit more. Other then that, they are on the money.

THE SHARK:  There have been other names that were associated with the Embassy in Dave Taylor and of course Rhino, whom you had brought out to wrestle Homicide at the “Best in the World” iPPV.  Are they members of the Embassy or were they a trial basis?

PRINCE NANA: They are affiliated and on the payroll with the Embassy on a case by case basis. But you never know, I might decide to bring them in full time in the near future. For now, the focus is my project.

THE SHARK:  You’ve seen your share of both sides in wrestling from being an in-ring competitor to being a manager.  Looking back at when you were starting in wrestling to yourself in the present, would have ever guessed back then that you’d be manager to a long list of wrestlers?  Do you prefer being a manager as opposed to wrestling in the ring or is it the other way around?

PRINCE NANA: I love wrestling. It’s like breathing to me. I wrestled for ten years before I became a manager and I feel lucky to still be able to get in there and kick butt. However, I love making other people stars, so being a manager is fulfilling as well.

THE SHARK:  Over the years, it seems like the line between Face and Heel in wrestling has become blurred. You see the guys who years ago would get heat from the crowd, now getting cheered for by the fans.  Why do you think that is that the crowd who would once boo the bad guys now root for them? Do you believe that to some extent it has become harder over the years to gather heat or that nothing has changed?

PRINCE NANA:  It’s harder now because the business has been so exposed and UFC is around. Fans want to see a fully athletic contest these days. In Pro Wrestling if you wanna be around, you must, must know how to wrestle. Back in the day it was a two way street, you either knew how to wrestle or talk. Now it’s both. But more wrestling skill is a must to be in ROH or The Embassy.

THE SHARK:  Everyone has one match that stands out the most for them or at least a few matches that stand out as an all-time favorite.  What is one match that you watched growing up that is in that category?

PRINCE NANA: You already know. Wrestlemania Eight in Indiana. What a showcase that whole show was. I still think that’s one of the best manias ever cause of Flair vs Savage.

THE SHARK:  Last question I have for you is to the premiere for Ring of Honor currently set for September 24th.  Is there anything you’d like to say to your fans, fools (including the fat one that gives you problems in the crowd) on what they can expect in the future from yourself as well as the Embassy?

PRINCE NANA:  This is gonna be one of the biggest runs in the history of my career at ROH. It’s been over 5 years since we have had a title and I’m confident the fools in the ROH office will finally sign the bigger matches that The Embassy has requested. In due time, the whole wrestling world will realize why we sing “We in da money.” Thanks you fool.

Ring of Honor wrestling will return to TV on September 24th. Check your listings to make sure you’re able to get ROH.  Big thank you to Prince Nana and looking forward to see what he, The Embassy and the rest of ROH bring to TV in September. 

One Hardy down, One to Go

So, in light of Matt Hardy getting arrested for a DWI charge, TNA has dropped the hammer on Matt Hardy and fired him.  Reportedly, TNA has said that he was already under suspension from the company which explains why none of us have seen the guy in a long time.  Well, looks like leaving WWE and joining up with his brother in TNA was well worth it.  I’d say that at least Matt Hardy had accomplished a lot during his tenure in TNA, but he really didn’t. He had a match with Rob Van Dam and a tag match with “Wildcat” Chris Harris against Beer Money.

I’m not saying that this was the cause, but all I’m saying is that ever since he came to TNA, nothing good has happened in terms of anything linked to the Hardy name.  His brother was at one point the world champ and the focal point of the Immortal stable.  They bring his brother in and he comes in like he has some chip on his shoulder and even going as far as to call himself “Cold Blooded” but really his personality that went along with that gimmick was more like a cold dead fish. Plus, the addition of Matt Hardy to Immortal is one of the gripes I’ve had about the group for the last couple of months.  I was the one that said that throwing in Bully Ray and Matt Hardy and Scott Steiner into the group was as if to say any asshole could join Immortal, even the ones that are no damn good.

If you think that I’m going to give TNA any props for dropping the hammer on Matt Hardy and wasting no time in doing it, think again.  I’m not give them props for this considering the fact they’ve yet to do a damn thing with Jeff Hardy. The guy hasn’t been seen since the infamous PPV incident and yet he’s neither been suspended or fired.  So no, I will not give them props but rather I’ll call TNA gutless considering that they’ll fire one Hardy but not the other.  Than again, isn’t it Dixie Carter’s reputation that she’s too timid to fire anybody? I mean hell, Russo is still there and so is Scott Steiner, only God knows why.

The only thing I don’t want to see is Matt Hardy try to cover his tracks and say how everything is fine when clearly things are not. Prior to this, he hadn’t been on TNA Impact for months, the same can be said for his brother.  Rumor is he was claiming it was some kind of illness that was his reason for not being there and yet TNA claims that he’d been suspended.  Well, I guess suspension is one hell of an illness, isn’t it? I heard that if it’s not treated, you can catch a pink slip along with it.

It is sad that two guys that are known as one of the most recognized tag teams in the last 20 years has been reduced to this.  Jeff Hardy has been to court almost as many times as Ric Flair won the world title and it seems like ever since the infamous love triangle incident involving Matt Hardy, Edge and Lita, Matt Hardy has never been able to rebound.  We all know there is no way in hell the WWE is gonna take him back.  He burned the bridge pretty good his last go-round and the longer Jeff Hardy stays out of a wrestling ring, the more it looks like his career is done. So, it seems that Matt now joins his brother on the downward spiral.  The sadder truth is that I don’t think this tragic saga that is the career of both Hardy Boys is over.

Follow-Up on the Kevin Steen interview

If there is anything that I can take in my interview with Kevin Steen, it’s that the title of “Mr Wrestling” that he carries has a whole new meaning in my eyes and it’s not just about his skills and what he can do in the ring. It represents a lot more than just in ring skill and represents a mentality and will that isn’t seen enough in most pro wrestlers these days.

In regards to him saying how he has no desire to go to TNA or WWE and that he’s happy with where he is right now, I admire and respect that a great deal.  A while back I wrote an article talking about the strive to make it to the “Big Leagues’ or making it to the big time.   In his answer about how he’s fine with not getting offers from TNA or WWE and is fine with where he is, it shows that for a man such as Kevin Steen, being able to wrestle in front of crowds, do what he does for the sake of the profession that he carries a passion for in pro wrestling, THAT is making it to the big time. There’s no glitz, glamour, titantrons, pyrotechnics, or guys trying to tell you to call yourself a “Superstar” or an “Entertainer” as opposed to a wrestler.  Kevin Steen is a wrestler plain and simple and it’s what he does and he clearly doesn’t want to label himself as anything else other than what his profession is.  WWE may be trying to hide what they are and/or forget what they are, but Steen is somebody who hasn’t forgotten that he’s a wrestler, nor will he regardless of whatever is offered by either of the two companies.

To me, the name of “Mr Wrestling” represents more than just in ring skill.  It represents somebody whose skills in the ring are only matched by the passion he has for the sport of pro wrestling.  The honor, the discipline, the respect and the very art form of pro wrestling is what he represents when he goes out into the ring to perform in front of people and he does it because he loves the business.  While others have chosen the road most taken and gone to the bigger companies, he stays because he chooses to be himself and to never compromise or sacrifice that.  When looking back at the career of Kevin Steen, he will go down as one of those that neither of the “big league” companies could acquire and from what I’ve seen in my years of watching wrestling, those types of wrestlers always go down as the kind of greatness, of legends.

Interview with “Mr Wrestling” Kevin Steen

This week I have a special treat for you guys.  In my first interview on The Shark Attack, I was privileged to have a chance to interview a man who is gunning for everybody in Ring of Honor and at the “Best in the World” PPV, made his presence known when he delivered a package piledriver to Steve Corino. I’m talking of course about Mr Wrestling himself,  Kevin Steen.

The Shark:  Your feud with El Generico has been considered the best feud of 2010.  The feud lasted nearly one year.  You proved that long rivalries can still work in wrestling, why do you think that they’re not done as often as they are?

KEVIN STEEN:  The feud actually lasted exactly a year. I think all it comes down to is lack of trust in the performers themselves. I know plenty of wrestlers who have great minds and could develop stuff like this but aren’t given the chance. I was lucky enough to work with someone (Adam Pearce) who was open to ideas and was willing to give the guys involved in the feud enough room to make this special. He trusted us.

The Shark:  The feud ended with a non-sanctioned street fight.  Was this the planned finish for the feud and do you feel this was the only way that the feud could end?

KEVIN STEEN: That was the only way, absolutely.

The Shark:  Prior to that feud, you held the tag team titles.  Was there more that you wanted to do in tag team wrestling that you didn’t get to do during that time?

KEVIN STEEN:  I wish our run could have been memorable and it sure as hell wasn’t. The night we won the belts was incredible…and then the next night we were both in singles matches. The next set of shows we didn’t defend them. We had a decent run with the Wolves based on the tag belts but I think we could have done a lot more, for sure.

The Shark:  The fans have been more than vocal in wanting to see Mr Wrestling return to ROH and even after Jim Cornette proclaimed at the Best in the World iPPV that you’re banned from ROH, the fans still remain vocal in wanting you back in ROH. How much does that mean to you?

KEVIN STEEN: It means a lot. I think it’s painfully obvious that ROH needs someone like me there and if they want to stay in denial that’s fine. I won’t be denied though. They have to suffer and I will make them.

The Shark: The piledriver has always been a classic move in wrestling that over the years has had controversy of some kind behind it.  Your variation in the package piledriver is one of the most brutal looking of them all. How did you come up with it?

KEVIN STEEN:  Just trying stuff out on poor souls at the wrestling school I was training at back in 2003. Back then I would spend 4-5 hours a day, 3 times a week in a ring, just wrestling, trying things, training.

The Shark: Over the years, a lot of guys have left ROH and gone elsewhere in guys like Tyler Black, Bryan Danielson, Nigel McGuinness and the Kings of Wrestling who are rumored to be heading to the WWE.  How do you deal with the temptations and offers from the other companies like TNA or WWE?

KEVIN STEEN: I have no offers and that’s perfectly fine. I was very happy in ROH. I’m even going to go as far as saying that I’m the only person in ROH that wanted to stay there forever. Don’t get me wrong, every wrestler in ROH loves it but they all want to get to WWE eventually, or go to Japan or whatever. I don’t. ROH is where I wanted to be, for however long my career was going to last. But instead of embracing that, they have tried to make me out to be a cancer to their company.

The Shark:  Of those guys mentioned above, who is somebody that you would love to have another match with?                                                                                                                  

KEVIN STEEN:  All of them really. Nigel and Tyler, I had great matches against both. Highlights for me when I look back at my career so far, and I’d love to work with them again. And Bryan, I feel I never had the chance to have a true classic like I’m sure we could have and like he’s had with so many opponents before.

The Shark:  Regarding the topic of dream matches, who is somebody either in WWE or in TNA right now that you’d love to have a match with and why?

KEVIN STEEN: I honestly can’t say I have a dream match with anybody on those rosters. But if we talk about retired wrestlers, of course, I’d love to get a chance to wrestle Shawn Michaels or Steve Austin because they, along with Steve Corino, are the guys that I idolized growing up.

The Shark:  The day comes where you return to Ring of Honor, who would be the first guy you’d want to wrestle? Do you want to settle an old score with El Generico or are you done with him?

KEVIN STEEN: If I go back there, I’m taking everyone out.

The Shark:  And last question is for all those who are voicing their opinions on Twitter, demanding your return, what would you like to say to all your supporters who are just screaming for a TV return of Kevin Steen?

KEVIN STEEN: Keep screaming. Scream louder. Disrupt the shows if you have to. They have to suffer.

A big thank you to “Mr Wrestling” Kevin Steen for taking the time for this interview.

Raw Has Come Full Circle…..Back to Mediocrity

I’ve been patient with Raw in a lot of things, particularly in hoping that they’d fix all of Raw’s problems.  However, it seems like tonight’s edition of Raw was all over the place. I’m not gonna cover all of what happened on Raw but just cover the things that stood out the most for me.  Starting first with Triple H’s little addressing about Summerslam and what happened with John Cena, CM Punk and Kevin Nash.  We don’t even get a confrontation between Cena and Triple H.  That part was surprising and then you have Alberto Del Rio come out.

He comes out talking a big game and sporting the WWE Title which has no nameplate on it at the moment, talking about what kind of champion he wants to be, talking about beating up Rey Mysterio despite that we saw this feud on Smackdown already.  I remember when Mania was taking place that I was saying that Alberto Del Rio was not ready for a world title reign.  Looking back at it today, I still believe he’s not ready for it and that him having the belt right now is a mistake.  They’re pushing him all the way to the top just like they did with JBL and I didn’t like that one either.  If anything, all his promo really did was demonstrate the limitations that Del Rio seems to have.

There is so much that I could say about The Miz and his segment where he basically gave Subway a plug.  Is this really what the Miz has come down to? From headlining Wrestlemania to plugging the sponsors in an in-ring segment?  No new feud, no going after a belt or anything. He just plugs Subway and eats a sandwich right in the ring.  Is the WWE punishing the guy? Is this what Vinny Mac had in mind when he said that this guy was the future and had big plans?

As much as I love Kelly Kelly, I think Natalya and Beth Phoenix have it right about the whole “stink face” thing.  Look the only time that move mattered was with Rikishi and at least when it was done back then, it was a fresh idea and it was funny. Now, when I see the Divas doing it or Knockouts, I’m left thinking “I don’t know what the hell to say about this.” However I will say that with Beth Phoenix and Natalya, the Divas of Doom, I’m liking this. I’m liking this story and I like that Natalya and Beth are actually being used and shown as Divas that can actually wrestle.  It should be interesting to see where this one goes.

It was weird for me to see Kofi Kingston and Evan Bourne not on the losing end. Don’t get me wrong because I’m thankful for it.  The Nexus’ new theme music is bullshit. It’s godawful and I don’t like it.  As for would I be for Kofi and Evan getting the tag titles? I’m all for Evan Bourne getting any of the belts at this point. He’s been there long enough and there is a lot more to both him and Kofi Kingston than what the WWE is using them for.  Give these guys their damn chance already.

In terms of Kevin Nash and CM Punk, I don’t know if I really want to see this match. I mean when Nash joined in for PWO Wrestlelution, that was different. That was to help Aaron Draven kick the crap out of an obnoxious skinny loudmouth with bad facial hair. The exchange of words between the two, seemed to me like Nash was a bit rusty and that Punk was kinda owning him in that part. Punk should have gone after Del Rio but we all know that John Cena is gonna fight him.

Speaking of John Cena, everytime you get him in a good segment, you get some killer energy on that microphone when he was delivering his promo. I was still sore about not seeing him confront Triple H, but I loved all that he was saying about Del Rio. Basically he was calling him a fluke champion who didn’t deserve the right to be called champion because he hadn’t earned it.  This is the strength of John Cena and a part of me can’t help but wonder what his character could have been in the Attitude Era and without having to please a PG audience. And before anyone says how he can’t wrestle or does only a few moves, so did Hogan, Warrior and Austin and nobody complains about them. Because they were able to deliver in other areas that counted like the microphone.

So it looks like John Cena vs Del Rio is all but official.  Personally I rather see Punk vs Del Rio but it seems the WWE is hellbent on something involving Punk and Nash. Bottom line is come on, WWE was starting to get some sparks going and it looked like things are looking up.  Please WWE, Please Vince and Please Triple H, don’t start getting lazy again and keep up the momentum.   Otherwise, it’s just gonna look like we were better off with Vince.

Shark Lingo: Definitions According to the Shark of Wrestling

I’ve been doing this for 6 months now and I figured that now that I’ve circled the waters enough and now that I’ve gotten accustomed to things, I thought it was time to lay out some definitions of certain things in wrestling, Shark Lingo if you will.  So, here it is to all of you my introduction to the language of the Shark:

Michael Cole: Monkey Cole, The Bowel Movement of Journalism. Jim Ross’s table scraps.

Mark Madden: Super Fatass, The One Man Dry Heave-athon. Drools over Divas and Knockouts because the only girlfriends he’s ever had were with 1-900 for a first name.

Ric Flair: Multi-time champion and payer of Alimony. Bled on the ring more than Foley and Funk in their careers combined.

Eric Bischoff: The IWC’s favorite Bastard.  Hulk Hogan’s personal bell-hop.

Anarchia of Mexican America: Not Homicide

Mexican America: Not LAX.

Jeff Hardy: The Half-Baked Enigma

Mr Anderson/Ken Anderson: The 30 Minutes or Less Champion

Jack Swagger: Kurt Angle with a lisp, hair, and half the ability.

Devon: If Chris Candido was known as “No Gimmicks Needed” in ECW, Devon is more like No Gimmicks Present in TNA

Scott Steiner: When Steroid Muscles meet Flab.

Bully Ray: Half ECW, Half Team 3D, All Boring

Jeff Jarrett: King of the His & Her Mountain

Drew McIntyre: The Chosen One……to be Off Camera and Backstage.

Booker T: At least we know he wrestles better than he can announce.

Josh Matthews: Weekly Victim of Cole/Booker crossfire.

NXT: The new ECW wasn’t this bad. At least we had Tiffany every week.

Raw’s Current Announce Team: 3-Man train wreck with JR muted and Cole has his volume up and obnoxious jackass mode on overdrive.

Don West: If you combined Michael Cole and Mark Madden and the voice of Weezie Jefferson, you get Don West.  But at least he does his job.

Suicide: Character that never took off only because TNA couldn’t make up their mind on who would be him. That and the Impact game sucked ass.

Hulk Hogan: Hogan Knows Best? Not with TNA he doesn’t.

Impact Wrestling: A fine example of when you rename bullshit.

WWE Superstars: It’s no different than NXT with the exception that some kind of wrestling takes place.

Todd Grisham: Vince found Grisham boring, but finds Cole entertaining.  I think Triple H should’ve taken over sooner.

This is just a little taste and trust me that there will be more added on later.