Happy President's Day to all those celebrating it and a pleasant Monday to everybody else. Here's a quick, Monday blog...
Good night of TV at our home Sunday night with WWE's Elimination Chamber PPV followed by HBO's 'Luck' and the season premier of 'Eastbound and Down.'
The Raw Chamber match kicking off the PPV surprised me and in a good way. I was anxious to see the presentation and didn't have to wait long. Seems as if CM Punk and Chris Jericho still have unfinished business or so Jericho strongly feels. I hope that these two get to display their skills on the big stage.
Thought the Beth Phoenix vs. Tamina Snuka bout was one of the better Diva bouts that I've seen in a while. Beth is positioned well as WWE Divas Champion while no Diva that I can recall has improved more rapidly than Tamina. We get lots of emails regarding a potential Beth vs. Kharma bout. I hope that one happens.
Santino Marella seemed to be the standout at the end of the Smackdown Elimination Chamber match while watching from my La-Z-Boy. Santino is entertaining and has been around long enough that he has developed a following as evidenced by the reaction that he received from the live audience in Milwaukee. I'll be anxious to see how Santino's role on the PPV will be addressed on Smackdown.
I still vividly remember calling Santino's Intercontinental Title victory a few years ago in Milan, Italy that I promptly dubbed the "Milan Miracle." The post match celebration at the hotel was also memorable and it was a 'miracle' that I made my plane to London.
Big Show getting double suplexed on the steel floor was impactful...no pun intended. No way that move can't hurt....for days. Also, I enjoyed Show's angry entry into Daniel Bryan's 'secure' pod. (Please don't take that sentence out of context.)
Nice to see U.S. Champion Jack Swagger and Justin Gabriel get some face time on PPV albeit in an abbreviated fashion. Speaking of Swagger, I chatted with Swagger's Dad Thursday night in Norman at the OU vs. Oklahoma State wrestling duel. Nice man. I told him that his son doesn't have a clue as to how strong that he truly is. Dad agreed saying the U.S. Champion has been that way his entire life.
BTW...both Chamber matches going over 30 minutes each, if I recall accurately, is a daunting challenge inside an extremely non, talent friendly environment. Kudos to all the men that endured it.
John Cena is freakishly strong in case no one has noticed. Cena making his gym available to FCW talents is damn admirable. I'm a big proponent that the WWE DEvelopmental Program continue to expand on how their athletes are trained including increased strength and conditioning work.
Cena's dropping of Kane off the top of the ambulance was scary and definitive.
In my experience, matches like the Ambulance Match are challenging for broadcasters to call because there are essentially no near falls.
If you haven't watched 'Luck' on HBO I suggest that you try and catch up as the first 4 episodes have delivered amazingly well. Great storylines, compelling characters, and a simple albeit multiple layered premise featuring an outstanding cast. The backdrop is about horse racing but it's about much more than that. Check it out.
Kenny Powers is back and that's reason enough to watch HBO's 'Eastbound and Down.' This season Kenny is trying to jumpstart his baseball career via playing in the minors in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina filling the role of 'closer.' He's still insecure, egocentric and full of BS. But Kenny is still Kenny and one of the most entertaining characters on TV.
Over the years, I've met and worked with several Kenny Powers types in the wrestling biz. 'Eastbound and Down' could be just as easily about territory wrestling as it is about baseball.
If you're a Boston Celtic fan or have access to the Boston Celtic Radio Network, check their game Wednesday night out as the men in green come to OKC to take on the Thunder. I'm joining @SeanGrandePBP for some commentary during the contest.
Q..."Would you consider broadcasting elsewhere fulltime?" Can't think of realistically where that would be so the answer is no. Certainly not in wrestling.
Q..."What's the best way to appraise classic, wrestling trading cards?" I'd suggest going online and seeing what they are selling for as whatever the market will bear will establish at least an approximate value. Same goes for any type of memorabilia. It's worth what you can get for it.
Q..."Any more Legends of Wrestling shows going to be taped?" I'd assume that would be a yes as I have not heard of Legends going away and it seems to be one of WWE's most popular shows airing now on WWE On Demand. It certainly seems like it would fit nicely on the upcoming WWE Network.
Q..."Any suggestions on how to use JR's BBQ Sauces indoors?" This question came from a Canadian fan, for the record, who's dealing with cold weather. Answer is absolutely. One can use their oven for baking with BBQ, the broiler for same plus a great way to cook it low and slow is to utilize one's crockpot. The crockpot method of preparing brisket and pulled pork is popular and easy to do. Simply cooking burgers in a cast iron skillet basted with JR's BBQ can be any easier.
Q..."Will WWE capitalize on the 'Twitter War' between @CMPunk and singer Chris Brown? I'd suggest that would be a classic, Gorilla Monsoon reply of "HIGHLY UNLIKELY." Chris Brown couldn't be melted and poured on the WWE Champion plus I've never heard of Brown physically engaging any male.
Q..."Does a PG TV rating such as WWE utilizes adversely affect the quality of the product?" NO. The number of established, main event level talents who are embroiled in clearly constructed, personal issues has more of a bearing on a broadcast than the TV rating. TV14, in other words , doesn't guarantee success.
I'm still awaiting my Wrestlemania AXXESS schedule and will share the info with you when I get it. If you're coming to AXXESS, remember that JR's products will be for sale at the WWE Merchandise Stand there.
It's hard to believe that on this date, February 20, in 1989 I was in Chicago calling the Ric Flair vs. Ricky Steamboat NWA Title bout at the UIC Pavilion. This match stands the test of time quite easily and is one of the most memorable bouts that I've ever been a part of in my career. I have always gotten lots of props for my work on that match but the credit has to go to Flair and the Dragon. Nonetheless that bout started a series of three matches with the two, WWE Hall of Famers that I loved being a part of in WCW in 1989.
Should be a memorable night on RAW from Minneapolis, former home of Verne Gagne's AWA, as the Undertaker is slated to be on RAW LIVE in the arena tonight. Undertaker is THE MAN in WWE and "The Streak' has been a huge part of WrestleMania that unfortunately will some day come to an end. Perhaps it's at that time when some will look back upon Taker's accomplishments at the biggest event in the business in awe knowing that those milestones will never be approached.
Get ready for Wrestlemania parties, tailgate outings, unique gift ideas, and simple, every day use of our family of delicious products by going to: http://www.wweshop.com/Category/JimRoss.
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Enjoy your day and thanks for stopping by. You're personally invited to follow us on Twitter @JRsBBQ.