Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Hardy Boyz are Back Together...I Think?

Smackdown has been a very different show than RAW lately. With a newly heel CM Punk leading the charge against World Champion Jeff Hardy, who is definitely the most popular guy on the brand. Throw in John Morrison, who's been booked as a new face (which we still can't get used to) who kept on getting the best of Punk up until last night's show. Last week we got a very interesting twist. WWE has been running an angle for awhile where Mr. McMahon isn't happy with the way Teddy Long is running Smackdown, and has put him on probation. Last week when Hardy and Punk had a wild brawl that couldn't be controlled, Vince announced that a special mystery enforcer would be appointed for the match. When match time came around, Matt Hardy's music hit, and he returned to Smackdown from an injury, with the thought being that Jeff was screwed now that his evil brother would be at ringside. As it turned out, after Punk accidentally nailed Matt toward the end of the match, Matt actually counted the 3 count for his brother Jeff to win the match, and then walked off. This week on Smackdown, Matt actually came to the aid of Jeff and Morrison as they were getting beat down by Punk and the Hart Dynasty. As Matt helped up Jeff, it sure looked like Matt would nail Jeff and once again ignite their feud that started at last year's Royal Rumble. That wasn't the case, as Matt helped Jeff up, said some words to him that we couldn't hear, and before we knew it, Teddy Long was announcing next week's main event as the Hart Dynasty and Punk vs. John Morrison and the Hardy's.

So let's stop for a minute, Matt comes out, helps Jeff, says a few words, i guess they were "Hey man, sorry I tried to kill you a few months ago, let's be friends again..." and all was good. Seriously, does anyone else remember that after Matt destroyed Jeff with a chair at the Royal Rumble, it was revealed that Matt was the one who had been attacking Jeff and even ran him off the road in North Carolina. All story of course, but they better have a GREAT explanation as to why Jeff can easily forgive Matt and trust him again. Matt has claimed that there is a great story behind all this complete with explanation, but wow, these 2 had quite a feud, and even a big Wrestlemania match this year, but all was forgiven REAL fast. Hopefully it's not a case of "Matt helps Jeff, Jeff forgives Matt, then a few weeks later, Matt turns on Jeff again, and they feud again." The Hardy vs. Hardy feud has been tried a couple of times now, and it just doesn't work. The idea of a Hardy Boyz reunion tour has spread across the net the past few days, and that is probably the best idea. Matt and Jeff as main eventers on Smackdown against a great heel like Punk and whoever aligns with him is the best bet. The Hardy feud wasn't great this time around either, so we can all just pretend it never happened like they seemingly want us to, and we'll enjoy the Hardy's in the top face position that they do so well in. With Jeff pondering taking time off again, reuniting him with Matt will either help his choice to stay, or give us a main eventer to take Jeff's place if he does decide to take off into the sunset once again.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Remember When...Terry Funk Battled Sabu at Born To Be Wired

Time to bring back the popular "Remember When..." series to Pro Wrestling Roundup. Time to look at some great classic memories from the month of August. In August of 1997, ECW was still running strong and was a major part of the glory years that were the late 90's in wrestling.

At the ECW Arena, a make shift main event was scheduled between ECW Champion Terry Funk and Sabu in a barbed wire match. The match was originally booked as a regular 6 man tag match, but was changed due to injuries and other circumstances. This match really sums up a big part of what's missing in wrestling today - you had Terry Funk who was the legendary icon of ECW and in his mid 50's as ECW Champion taking on Sabu, who was the most innovative guy to come along in years and was a huge part of ECW rising to the popularity it did.

Basically ECW wasn't about good guys vs. bad guys, it was about great talent having great matches. Sure you can say CZW or any of the hardcore promotions, or even TNA could put on a barbed wire match, but in ECW the entire feel was different. A big part of it was that Sabu and Funk could have had a great regular match or any other stipulation match, they were great wrestlers, not just "hardcore guys."  On paper, the match sounds like another good ECW main event from that time, but a couple of occurrences in the match made it one of the most memorable in ECW history.

Early on in the match, Sabu was whipped into the barbed wire and his inner arm was hooked and sliced open by the wire. It was a deep cut, but Sabu being Sabu got some tape from his manager Bill Alfonso, wrapped it up and kept on going. The match was utter brutality right down until the very end when both Sabu and Funk became wrapped together in barbed wire so bad that they couldn't escape, and after Sabu somehow pinned Funk in the tangled mess and won the ECW title, they both had to be cut from the wire to escape.

With the ECW name being insulted by being the equivalent of a minor league for WWE, this match showed the wild, crazy, unpredictable spirit of the REAL ECW.  These days, there is no promotion that is filling the ECW niche. No compelling stories with great workers who can tell a story, pull off great matches, and also have the ability to be put in a crazy barbed wire match and pull off a history making match. Hopefully someday someone will realize that the fans who loved ECW are still out there and still crave this type of promotion that is aimed toward entertainment for adults, and gives fans an option that is NOT TV-PG.