Ever since I have started writing online it feels like I have always found a time to work in some sort of writing about the Invasion. For those who don't know about the Invasion angle it was a lackluster feud between WCW/ECW alumni and WWF stars coming together for the first time. Though the angle would start like a house of fire it would soon cool down after WWF stars would move to the side of WCW/ECW to add some spice to a weak storyline.
The feud kicked off on May 23, following a major injury to Triple H on Raw the week before and would build to the Invasion PPV two months later. The Invasion show would be replacing the annual Fully Loaded event that had been the annual July event prior. This event would become the most bought PPV event in WWE history not called WrestleMania which is something to write home about when you think about the idea that it only happened once.
There is no doubt that everyone has their take on how the Invasion could've been done better, and that's part of the fun of wrestling asking what if and talking about it. There was more to the story if plans went ahead like they originally set up to, but plans changed. I will say that as far as how things went I think if the WWE did have some bigger names their is no way the show could've been done in July; as they would've needed a lot more build.
Two years ago the landscape of the wrestling world changed forever when one of the biggest names in the industry stepped away and walked out of the biggest company in the US. In January 2014, CM Punk left the WWE and wrestling in general after long standing issues with WWE management. This left most fans puzzled as it was extremely unexpected to see Punk just walk away from the company, and we didn't find anything out until the fall when Punk would appear on Colt Cabana's "Art of Wrestling" podcast.
On the podcast Punk aired all of his grievances with the company and made some eluding to being burnt out from wrestling. Soon after we started hearing about Punk having a desire to break into the octagon with UFC. Even though it seemed like UFC had gotten cold feet or it was just to the point that Punk didn't need to debut in UFC anymore, but he would have his first fight last year. A largely anticipated fight for Punk put on display his inexperience, but there is no disputing the idea that Punk earned everyone's respect for getting the ring.
Now I will not spend a lot of time on this idea, but since Punk left fans have taken up the extremely annoying and bothersome trait of chanting for CM Punk when they are bored. I'm not sure if they did it as they thought Punk would ever return or just to be annoying, but either way it's a pointless chant. I will be the first to tell you that I would love seeing Punk back in a WWE ring as it would be a tremendous help for the company I just don't see it happening though.
Recently, Dave Meltzer spoke about the idea that the WWE maybe interested in bringing Punk back to the company. Well that is all fine and good, but I'm not sure Punk wants to wrestle anymore and I don't mean for just WWE I mean at all. Now it might be a rumor, but why wouldn't the WWE have interest in Punk knowing how much they'd benefit if he did comeback. Do I think he could return? Absolutely as we have seen in recent years with WWE alumni you never know who could comeback. Do I think he will return? Honestly, no I don't because I'm not sure that Punk wants to get in the ring again, but if the WWE wants to prove an old saying right then show that anything truly can happen in the WWE,
Wrestling gives us both great memories and memories we try and forget, but with the amount of moments worth remembering that have happened we are bound to forget some. The same could be said about some talent that were very much underrated during their career or never at the top of a company during a run this unfortunately makes it easier for fans to forget certain talent. I would like to wish a very big Happy Birthday to all who are celebrating their special day today and especially to the one featured below.
Since I began things here on wrestling express a common thing that made us stick out from other sites was the idea of fan interaction. Where I would ask you the reader your opinion on a question and let your answers take the spotlight for a post. Every year I do one big post where I get a group of fans and pose a group of related questions to them that they answer and are posted over the course of a few weeks.
The last couple of years I have made the Polling the Crowd series all about wrestling companies and creative. But this year things are changing as I think something fresh is better and that's why the focus has shifted this year. Instead of focusing on creative and the companies I shift to the social media aspect of things and how that has changed wrestling.
I made this post because I just wanted to make clear that I am not attacking fans or social media I am just documenting the changes. Also I am getting fans opinion on how they view the effect that social media has had on wrestling.
It's been a while since the last fan interaction post and though this one took a few weeks to get together I finally am sharing it with all of you. Any wrestling fan knows that their are differences between announcers that cover the action and not by title but also just in the way that some call the action in general. Over the last few weeks I have asked a question to a random group of fans and here are their responses:
Question: In wrestling there different types of announcers. Do you prefer the sports entertainment or pure wrestling announcers? And who is your favorite
DWIWrestling Podcast: I would have to say I prefer the entertainment announcer over just the pure wrestling announcer and as far as favorites go he would have to be Bobby the brain Heenan and as far as play-by-play most definitely JR.
Anthony Walker: I would say I prefer Pure Wrestling Announcers and my favorite announcer is by far Jim Ross.
New Blood Rising Podcast: Lance Russell from Memphis Wrestling. I'm a huge fan of the way he called matches and action with such a sports broadcast authenticity. Not to mention, his voice is right up there with Solie and he dressed as snazzy and cool as anyone you'd think of calling sports or wrestling in the 70's. Heck during the famous Empty Arena Match (https://youtu.be/-B9dPlev9Lc ) between an irate and insane Terry Funk and Jerry Lawler, he quickly has to discard a lit cigarette when he finds out they're live and on the air. Here's a link to that match. With no crowd, Russell has to be selling the action to us, the audience. Russell was also great at promos with faces and heels. I'd dare say even more than Mean Gene, Russell would do a great job of standing up to heels and carrying wrestlers with otherwise awkward promo skills. There's just an authenticity to how he'd call the action. It's not like he was Mike Tenay in knowing holds or moves but you still got what he was saying as a fan watching the broadcast. Take the Tupelo Concession Brawl of '79 (youtu.be/xTndTO1tqVk ) where the match descends into sheer chaos and again it's Russell who describes the action as if it's a total shoot. It's not to be contrarian for the sake of it but Lance Russell ways stands out to me as a commentator who just could communicate pro wrestling to any level of fan watching the product. Years ago I went into more depth about Lance Russell in article I wrote for Bleacher Report. Here's the link to that piece: https://www.google.com/amp/s/syndication.bleacherreport.com/amp/1326770.amp.html …
Seth Burns: In my opinion pure wrestling announcers are a better way to go, especially when a major spot happens a pure wrestling announcer can make it seem more magical. And my favorite would have to be Joey Styles, yes JR is the greatest, but to me Styles doesn't get the credit he deserves.
Through The Ropes: For me, the perfect commentary for a match or a card is a two man team, or an occasional three man team. For it to entertain me, It must include a dry wit like a Gorilla Monsoon or a Jim Ross, who knows what they are talking about in the ring, yet has a subtle sense of humour. Alongside him would be a Jerry Lawler, Bobby Heenan, or a Jesse Ventura, the annoying partner who always cheers for the one that everyone hates, Its a simple formula yet one that works all the time and a successful one. As for my favourites, I loved Mike Tenay & Taz, except for the babbling of football and baseball at times..... , and I like Josh Mathews, despite the hate he receives, I find that he is knowledgeable of the holds and moves, aswell as injecting some humour and the excitable nature when a big move takes place, so that's my picks of the modern era. As for the past, There were many great teams, so I've got to break it down. Of the 80's, it'd be Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse Ventura or Bobby Heenan, I liked either, both did a great job in my opinion. For the 90's, without doubt Jim Ross and Jerry 'The King' Lawler, Their chemistry was unbelievable, with JR's great play by play and King's great banter, plus both were excitable, so what's not to like? At times I have enjoyed the occasional guest commentator who has jelled well with the announcers, for example, 'Superstar' Billy Graham, Mr Perfect, and both Randy Savage and Roddy Piper in particular. Then for the 00's, I liked Don West and Mike Tenay, and JR and Lawler, But I didn't mind the Michael Cole and Taz team during the early Smackdown years.
More from those featured above:
The concept of this series is to highlight important events in the history of pro-wrestling. Which also include celebrating the birthdays of both some of wrestling's most influential and forgotten stars. I always enjoy giving the history of wrestling the spotlight and giving those who don't always get a chance to shine their moment in the sun.