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  02-15-2007, 08:21 AM
 
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Is it just me, or does anyone else notice that the pro wrestling industry, (specifically WWE and TNA) is facing a serious challenge from the worlds two biggest MMA organizations, the UFC and PRIDE FC?

For years pro wrestling has held the # 4 or 5 position in "popularity" with the sports fan, with Football, Baseball, Basketball, and even Hockey holding higher status than that of pro-wrestling. Now, Pro-Wrestling must fight to maintain whatever (subjective) position that it currently holds.

The sport of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is growing exponentially, and the two organizations leading this growth are the UFC, a U.S. based MMA entity, and the Japan based PRIDE organization. As most MMA fans know the UFC began in 1993, with "UFC 1: The Beggining", which Royce Gracie won, the event was billed as a "No Rules", "anything goes" sport/tournament that was designed to find out which fight dicipline (Karate, Kung Fu, Pancrase, Boxing, and others) was truly the "best". After 3 years of modest success, and after being banned in the U.S. in 1997, because it was "too barbaric". The UFC would re-surfface in 2001, with new standardized rules, the UFC was once again allowed to hold fight cards throughout the U.S.

PRIDE FC was founded in 1997 by Dream Stage Entertainment or DSE. Prides' inaugural event was held in the Tokyo Dome on 10-11-97 and drew an estimated 47,000 fans as well as the attention of the Japanese mass media. The Main Event for the show was Nobuhiko Takada VS. the Graicie Champion, Rickson Gracie, wich Gracie would win. The overwhelming success of that event would become the launching pad for the promotions enormous success (which it enjoys to this day) in Japan and subsequently the entire world.

Today, both the UFC as well as PRIDE FC have grown into the two premiere MMA organzations, each with the abilty to bost largly loyal fan bases, as well as giving each orgnizations top fighters the type of reverance and noteriety that was once only reserved for athletes in the "mainstream" sports.

UFC TOP most well known fighters:

Chuck Liddell (Light Heavyweight Champ)

Tim Sylvia (Heavyweight Champ)

Matt Hughes

Tito Ortiz

Randy Couture

Rich Franklin

Georges St. Pierre (Welterweight Champ)

Royce Gracie

Tank Abbott

...to name a few


Pride Top Fighters:

Fedor Emelianeko (Heavyweight Champ)

Wanderlei Silva (Middleweight Champ)

Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

Ricardo Arona

Kazushi Sakuraba

Kevin Randleman

Murilo Bustamante


and others...





It's because of these fighters as well as the ever evolving "fresh" alternative the MMA gives it's fans/consumers that I feel the pro-wrestling is in danger of losing its grip on its fan base. I did see the 2 hour show called "This is TNA" on Spike TV the other night and while I did come away impressed with the fast-paced action and athleticism of lots of the younger wrestlers, TNA better becarful that it doesn't eventually morph itself into the late 1990's version of WCW. As we all remember, Eric Bischoff intially started with older WWE talent cast-offs, and gradually began mixing in the younger high-flying talent, thus inadvertently causing the younger talent to become cannon fodder for the older guys, who to this day refuse to give up their "spot" and put a young guy over.

The WWE is also in danger, as it has rested far too long on its laurels. Sure they got rid of the Hogans, Savages, Nashes, and Halls, but they have only replaced those talents of 10-20 yrs ago with veteran talent of 10 years ago, I mean, DX was "cooler" 10 years ago no? It's kind of pathetic that Vince would allow a 10 yr. old and played out gimmic like DX to dominate his airwaves. Shawn Michaels has himself become the very thing that he, HHH, and even Shane Douglas accussed Hogan, Flair, and others of doing, or being, and that is older talent that won't allow for the younger talent to get over.

The only thing that occurrs with that kind of unwillingness to step down from the lime-light is that pro-wrestling isn't allowed to evolve with new and
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  #2  
  02-15-2007, 08:38 AM
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I Got no problems with that. i dont even like wrestling but i know like 99% of people here do though. But i love MMA Pride, k1, UFC.
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  #3  
  02-15-2007, 08:43 AM
 
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TNA is a little better than WWE in some aspects, less drama.... but lately it's becoming equal with the drama.
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  #4  
  02-15-2007, 08:52 AM
 
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I wasn't bashing MMA, as a matter of fact, I love it, it's the evolution of sports. I believe that so much so, that ESPN and fox sports will eventually have no other choice but to cover the sport on a regular basis, and give it the respect it deserves.

That said, I also love pro-wrestling, and it's because I love it that I criticize it. Unless serious changes are made, pro-wrestling as a whole may eventually suffer irreparable damage.
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  #5  
  02-15-2007, 10:38 AM
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I think they all appeal to different folks. Some like the fiction and presentation of wrestling (like me), others just want to watch some non-fiction buttkicking.

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  #6  
  02-15-2007, 01:22 PM
 
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I haven't watched wrestling in about 20 years, minus the WWF Wrestlemania dvds that came out a few years back.I've been an MMA fan since the first UFC tapes showed up at my hometown video store in the early 90's.I was a hardcore boxing fan, but MMA is just so much more than the rest put together.It truly is the evolution.To each his own, I've been a fan of both in my lifetime.
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  #7  
  02-16-2007, 01:08 AM
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I m getting into Mtv new wrestling federation. WWE is horrible these days. They have managed to do the same to ECW too....

UFC matches crack me up . Everytime I tune in. It looks like a gay honeymoon. rotflmao!
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  #8  
  02-16-2007, 07:05 AM
 
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I think in your old age grandma you have UFC and Wrestling confused lol.Gay honeymoon would be more similar to Roided-out, over-tanned, over-oiled, giant guys in banana hammocks grinding on each other.That is more akin to wrestling than UFC. Although the Ultimate Warrior would be awesome to watch run into the Octagon.


On a serious note, I stopped watching wrestling when it turned overly-dramatic and soap opera-like.The focus shifted from the characters the wrestlers played, and the related feuds, etc, to more of a focus on the cheesetacular drama and BS.And dear god did it get stale and predictable, more so than it had ever been.It wore on my nerves quick and I lost any and all interest in watching what I described in the first paragraph.
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  #9  
  02-16-2007, 08:12 AM
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Flies ? No flies. Flies hurt the sh-itman
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  #10  
  02-16-2007, 08:29 AM
 
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I cheated and watched about 30minutes of that the other day.SWEET cheese!
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  #11  
  02-16-2007, 10:10 AM
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i watch hogan knows best. does that count as wrestling? lol
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  #12  
  02-16-2007, 10:34 AM
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I also haven't watched wrestling since the early 90s. I'm a big MMA (UFC & Pride) fan.
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  #13  
  02-22-2007, 08:12 AM
 
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I always thought MMA and Pro Wrestling are apples and oranges. In Japan the MMA has been around in some form or another for over 20 years. You are not going to have confusion in the market because by now people know the difference between WWE and UFC. UFC will always be what is sanctioned fighting. WWE goes under the umbrella of sports entertainment. Even though at times it's neither sports or entertaining. You are definitely not going to confuse Pro Wrestling with Amatuer Wrestling so I don't see how UFC would ever be confused with WWE.
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  #14  
  02-26-2007, 05:55 AM
 
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by WEW3

I always thought MMA and Pro Wrestling are apples and oranges. In Japan the MMA has been around in some form or another for over 20 years. You are not going to have confusion in the market because by now people know the difference between WWE and UFC. UFC will always be what is sanctioned fighting. WWE goes under the umbrella of sports entertainment. Even though at times it's neither sports or entertaining. You are definitely not going to confuse Pro Wrestling with Amatuer Wrestling so I don't see how UFC would ever be confused with WWE.
I wasn't implying that one wound confuse Pro-Wrestling with the sport of MMA. What I'm saying is that with both the WWE and TNA seemingly unable to hold a wrestling fans' attention due to the lack of new or fresh ideas, those same disatisfied and/or jaded wrestling fans will in fact look to other avenues (in this case, MMA) to quench their thirst enjoyment and etertainment.

In short, the WWE is in danger of going stale...TNA is trying to become the "NEW" WCW with a hint of ECW mixed in to it, and that "wrestling" show on MTV, couldn't hold ECWs' "jock strap" on its worst days. That MTV show is perhaps the worst pro-wrestling show ever...yes...even worse than G.L.O.W.
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  #15  
  02-26-2007, 09:00 AM
 
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Speaking for myself, when the WWE sucks I just don't bother with it or anything eles that resembles "wrestling". It doesn't make me want to look for a substitute that isn't close to pro wrestling. I've seen the first UFC shows and other mixed martial arts stuff and when the WWE and pro wrestling in general is gawd awful I've never been wooed by UFC. I don't know when I get jaded I might check out Ring of Honor or OVW or Japanese wrestling which are closer to pro wrestling than UFC, or pop a tape of a show from the past that didn't suck.
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  #16  
  02-26-2007, 11:09 AM
 
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See the sad state that pro-wrestling is in? We, (myself included) are reduced to popping in tapes from 2 decades ago, back when the WWF would properly build a feud between 2 tag teams, or two singles wrestlers which usually culminated in a match of some sort at their signature event "Wrestlemania". Or how about the glory days of the NWA, when the likes of Ric Flair, Sting, Nikita Koloff, Magnum T.A., Dusty Rhodes, The Four Horsemen, or the Road Warriors were all involved in some good storylines, which were only solidified by solid, athletic wrestling...Remember the good ol' days when the NWA trully lived up to it's slogan? "In the NWA, WE Wrestle!"

Best Fueds in WWF/E history:

Jimmy Snuka VS. Don Murraco

Jimmy Snuka VS. Roddy Piper

Hulk Hogan VS. Paul Orndorff

Jake Robberts VS. Ricky Steamboat

Randy Savage VS. Ricky Steamboat (Particpated in the "greatest match" I've ever seen at WM III)

The British Bulldogs VS. The Hart Foundation

Steve Austin VS. Brett Hart

Shawn Michaels VS. Brett Hart (The "Screw Job" in Montreal will never be forgotten.)


NWA best fueds:

Ric Flair VS. Sting

Ric Flair VS. Ricky Steamboat (see match at Chi-Town Rumble '89 or their 2 out of 3 falls match at Clash of Champions VI)

Nikita Koloff VS. Magnum T.A.

Tully Blanchard VS. Magnum T.A.

Ric Flair VS. Dusty Rhodes

Road Warriors VS. Midnight Express

Rock & Roll Express VS. Midnight Express


Seee...Wrestlings' glory is in it's past, and if we want anything like that back, we're goona have to pop in old tapes...Lord knows Vince doesn't care about wrestlings' past (unless it makes him money. Boy, those who have WWE 24/7 sure are lucky.

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  #17  
  02-27-2007, 09:48 AM
 
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I definitely agree that WWE has been gererally stagnant over the last three years. Of course there have been a few really good matches here and there but nothing consistently strong for awhile.

One thing I currently like is that WWE is not changing titles every other week like they used to. I'm really surprised how long some of the title reigns have been lately especially on the Smackdown end. That's reminiscent of the 80s.

I try not to look at the past end of wrestling with rose-colored glasses either. You had ten minute restholds, an abundance of squash matches and generally less athlethic wrestlers then now. The Great Krappy aside. I thought the personalites of the performers were stronger in the past. That's a big issue for me since looking at Dusty Rhodes might not be pleasant, you knew he could walk the walk and talk the talk. I thought the Honky Tonk Man was crap then and I think he's a bigger jerk now. The WWE does seem more focused now with Mania around the corner and there shows are improving IMO.

You are definitely right about the time that was spent in building feuds. I believe the last time this was done really well was the build up to last year's Wrestlemania match with Mikie James and Trish Stratus. They milked the build up for that feud for months before it peaked at Mania.

Okay fun time now as I do enjoy reminiscing about the wrestling past.

Best feud in WWF/WWE history has to be Austin vs McMahon. It wasn't a wrestling masterpiece, but I think it drew the most money at the time.

I did like the whole feud with Muraco/Snuka. From the begining with Snuka diving over the ropes to the floor on Muraco, to the climactic cage match.

Snuka/Piper-I liked the start of the feud with the coconut on the Pit, but another problem with the 80s was how some stars like Piper didn't do "jobs". Same reason we didn't have a classic Hogan/Piper feud as neither guy wanted to do "jobs".

Hogan/Orndorff-Great set up and great match at The Big Event, but IMO Hulk should have dropped the gold to Mr. Wonderful.

I have no issues with Jake Roberts/Rick Steamboat beause Jake was one helluva talker and the matches were always solid.

I was always disappointed with the lack of follow through with a Savage/Steamboat rematch at Wrestlemania 4. I still believed when Steamboat/Savage took place at WM3. I was winded after watching that match.

I'd also like to give a shout out to the Muraco/Steamboat feud which I also enjoyed.

While I enjoyed the Bulldogs/Hart Foundation feud, I wasn't as big a fan as I could have been because I always felt the Killer Bees were being passed over.

Steve Austin vs Bret Hart-Austin never got his win over the Hitman. I know everyone always remembers the WM 13 match but check out their Survivor Series 96 match as there was more actual wrestling in that match.

HBK vs Bret-I thought then and I still think now the Survivor Series match was not that great for obvious reasons. I liked their match better at Survivor Series 92.

I liked Flair/Luger feud, but it sucked how Luger never got a title win over Flair in his prime. I know that sounds ridiculous now, but they made us wanting Luger to be World champ by beating Flair. I felt cheated out of that one. I'll just say Flair vs anyone rocked. He could have an entertaining match with a broomstick.

I was more of a fan with Rock N Roll vs Midnights since everyone had to get squashed by Road Warriors. The workrate of the athletes were off the charts in those days. Little trivia, Ricky Morton was a heavy smoker, but he still could do one hour matches.

The UWF was the greatest 60 minutes on tv. I'll stand by that one, sorry we're out of time

I loved the Hennig/Bockwinkle feud in the AWA. I wish WWE would release the 60 min match they had in Las Vegas. The rumour was that there was supposed to be a 7 match series between the two after the decision at Superclash 2 was to hold up the AWA Title, but Bockwinkle pretty much retired after that match and the series never happened.

I just loved the pe
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