What If… Part 4 by Tony Kegger Featuring THE INFAMOUS JCITY™
What If…Part 4 by Tony Kegger
Featuring THE INFAMOUS JCITY™
[Editors Note: Sorry Shane, but due to the success of our partnership on the last edition of "What If" I have once again joined Tony Kegger as he takes a look at moments in WWE history and wonders what would have happened if that moment had never existed. My writing will be bolded (except for the actual "What If" questions) and Tony's will be in plain text. Enjoy.]
What if WCW was never sold to Vince McMahon?
After WCW lost the Monday Night Wars to the WWF, they started losing ratings, losing money, and eventually AOL Time Warner, who owned WCW, decided to sell the company. The man they sold it to was none other than Vince McMahon, for a reported price of $3 million. The WWF were able to eliminate their only main competition and were able to acquire many of the former WCW Superstars. What if WCW didn’t go out of business or at least sold the company to someone other than McMahon? Would they still be around today? Would Hulk Hogan have ever returned to the WWE? What about Ric Flair? Let’s assume that all of the WCW Superstars never left WCW and stayed with the company until they retired. We would have never got to see Hulk Hogan vs. The Rock at Wrestlemania 18. We would have never gotten to see Ric Flair vs. Shawn Michaels at Wrestlemania 24. Booker T might not be a Smackdown announcer right now. It also means we would have never seen the Invasion storyline, but I didn’t witness it as it happened so I won’t go into that. Maybe WCW’s existence wouldn’t affect the WWE much. After all, TNA is basically WCW 2.0 with Eric Bischoff and Hulk Hogan and the WWE is killing them in the ratings. However, I can’t help but wonder if things would be any different right now if WCW was never sold.
I fucking miss WCW. While I was mostly a WWF fan, I vividly remember most of my friends turning their back on the WWF and jumping on the WCW bandwagon. They were drawn in by the NWO and the likes of Bill Goldberg and justifiable so. WCW was fucking awesome while WWF featured the likes of Aldo Montoya, Savio Vega, Doink The Clown and other lame ass gimmick wrestlers. Sure WCW had their fair share of stupid gimmick wrestlers, but they ushered in realism to wrestling which is still felt today. Look around, there are almost no gimmick wrestlers anymore. Everyone is portrayed as a real person with a first and last name. There’s no clowns, no plumbers, no leprechauns, well there’s still a leprechaun, but I digress. Anyways, WCW made WWF step the fuck up in ways that they probably would have never done if they weren’t getting absolutely smashed in the ratings. For 82 weeks WCW owned WWF in every aspect of the game and it got to a point where if WWF didn’t turn things around they would have been forced to shut down. A good “What If” would be, what if WCW kept winning the ratings war against WWF, would the WWE even exist today? But yea, back to WCW, without WCW there would have never been a WWF Attitude Era. Stone Cold would have stayed a Ringmaster. Triple H and Shawn Michaels would have never told anyone to suck their dicks and Rocky Maivia would have been futured endeavored within his first year in the company. WCW made WWF great. Even when WWF started pulling ahead in the ratings, WCW was still the home to some of the world’s top quality wrestlers. Unlike my bandwagon hopping friends, I enjoyed WCW ever since my dad found WCW’s Saturday Night on TBS back when Rick Rude and Big Van Vader where serious threats to Sting’s World title, so it was a major disappointment when I found out that Vince McMahon had purchased WCW. How did I find out? Just like everybody else, by watching WCW Nitro and WWF Monday Night RAW simultaneous to each other like I always did back in those days.
I remember the second to last Nitro leaving me confused because the announcers kept saying that the next Nitro broadcast would be their season finale. Season finale? But wrestling doesn’t have seasons I thought to myself. The last Nitro was shocking to say the least. Out of all the things that could have happened, I never in a million years would have thought that I would see Vince McMahon claim ownership of WCW. I quickly flipped the channel to Monday Night RAW and sure enough Vince was bragging about buying the competition and just like that the epic Monday Night War was over. Vince had won. WCW fans had no more reasons to watch wrestling so they abandoned our chosen genre of entertainment and seeked out MMA action. One thing that disappointed me was when Shane McMahon said he was the one that bought WCW and I thought that they would still run WCW as a separate entity, but boy was I ever wrong. I still think that WWF should have scraped Smackdown and had WCW in that timeslot instead so when they ended up having brand interactions it would have been way more epic. Can you imagine WWE vs WCW video games today? Oh well. I did however enjoy the Invasion angle. While it wasn’t as great as it could have been had all of WCW’s established stars debuted at the same time, it did provide alot of memorable moments.
As for the initial “What If”, I believe that if WCW was never sold to Vince McMahon and AOL Time Warner weren’t so against wrestling, that WCW would still be alive today. They would have discovered some new talent WWE would have never thought of signing and some of those guys might have ended up in WWE at some point in their careers. Also, WWE wrestlers might have gone to WCW. Imagine watching Nitro and The Rock shows up and cuts an epic promo against Vince McMahon and the way WWE handles business. Not saying that it would have happened, but the option would have been there. If WCW was still around there would be no such thing as TNA since Jeff Jarrett would have ended up either being a 20 time WCW World Champion or a backstage agent. WWE would have never went the PG route and if they still did then the product would still be better since the competition would have brought out the best in the wrestlers, writers, management, so on and so forth. If WCW was still around wrestling would still be considered cool among douchy hipster types as it continued to be a pop culture staple. Also, fuck the popular IWC opinion that WCW sucked. Those motherfuckers wouldn’t know entertainment if a Hollywood movie set fell on top of their motherfucking heads or they bumped into Adam Sandler in an alley shooting fireworks out of his ass. I will always remember all the epic moments that company provided me as a fan and all the fun moments it forced out of the WWF. RIP WCW. *Pours out a little liquor*
Anyways, back to you Tony…
What if The Rock stayed away from Hollywood?
I started watching the WWF right around Wrestlemania 15. Right away, my favorite WWF Superstar was The Rock. Then around 2001 or 2002, I stopped watching the WWF/E. I can’t remember the exact reason I stopped watching, but The Rock’s lack of appearances might have been a factor. Right around 2001 is when The Rock stopped being a full-time WWF Superstar and started appearing in movies. The Rock first appeared in The Mummy Returns and then starred in The Scorpion King. I remember The Rock missing a lot time from the WWE for both movies. Without The Rock there all the time, I guess the WWF started getting boring to me. By 2003, I had completely stopped watching the WWE and The Rock finally left the WWE for good to focus on a career in Hollywood. He had a match in 2004 at Wrestlemania 20 and has made a few WWE appearances via satellite during his time away from the WWE, but The Rock’s recent stint with the WWE this year has really been his first return to the WWE since 2003. It’s amazing to see The Rock embarrass the rest of the WWE Superstars on the mic despite being gone for eight years!
I can’t help but think what would have happened if The Rock didn’t become a Hollywood actor. What if The Rock never left the WWE? What if he still made movies, but came back in-between movies like John Cena does? The Rock revealed on facebook in late January 2011 why he left the WWE. The Rock said, “I left the WWE because I had succeeded in accomplishing every goal I set to achieve… I achieved these goals in the WWE at 30 years old and decided then to HUMBLY and QUIETLY step away and retire… and set my sights on another goal… a childhood dream… Hollywood.” According to The Rock, his goals were to become the youngest WWE World Champion, help set box office, attendance, and PPV buy rate records, become “the most entertaining and electrifying performer the WWE had ever seen or will ever see again”, take the brass ring of the WWE “and take it places it had never gone before… to trailblaze… to break new ground… to achieve unprecedented greatness for not only for myself and the fans to enjoy…but for the business of professional wrestling itself and the WWE.” In my opinion, The Rock did accomplish every goal he set for himself. I can see why The Rock felt there was nothing left to accomplish. He was a nine time WWE World Champion. He appeared in several important Wrestlemania events. What was left for him to do for him to prove, he is one of the greatest WWE Superstars of all-time. Despite a relatively short WWE career, The Rock had a hall of fame career. That said, The Rock may have thought there was nothing left for him to accomplish, but there was. If he stayed, he would have been in several great feuds he had never been in before. His feuds with Triple H, Chris Jericho, Stone Cold, Kurt Angle, and Mankind were great. However, if he stayed, we definitely would have already seen John Cena vs. The Rock. We probably would have seen The Rock vs. Shawn Michaels or The Rock vs. Ric Flair. Would we have seen The Rock vs. Randy Orton or The Rock vs. CM Punk or The Rock vs. Rey Mysterio or The Rock vs. Batista or The Rock vs. Edge? I could go on and on and on discussing all of the great feuds The Rock could have had. Those feuds would have been great.
Man, fuck The Rock. He fucking turned his back on all his fans so he can go to Hollywood and play a fairy, A FUCKING FAIRY!!!!!!! Just look at his stupid smile. Ugh. I just want to punch that motherfucker in his face. The Rock ain’t nothing but a sell-out and I hope that John Cena layeths the smacketh down on his candy ass at Wrestlemania 28. When The Rock came back I fucking believed him when he said he wasn’t going to leave us again and what the fuck does this motherfucker do? He turns around and fucking leaves us again!!! Fucking bastard!!! I would personally like to present The Rock with an Oscar; for acting like a bitch. Alot of people praise The Rock for his promos, but to tell you the truth, he was starting to get repetitive as fuck. It’s like he had a string hanging out of his ass and when you pull it he would say his catch phrases. “If you smell what The Rock is cooking”, no, we don’t smell shit because you are not fucking cooking anything. You’re in a wrestling ring not a goddamn kitchen. “It doesn’t matter”, then why are you even wasting your time with it? “I bring it”, you don’t bring shit, but heartbreak and disappointment to all of your fans. I think we were right in 1997 when all we chanted was “Rocky sucks”. The Rock is one selfish bastard. He doesn’t care about his fans, he only cares about money and since his shitty movies pay him more than WWE ever will, he can give a fuck less about us fans and for that The Rock can eat a dick, proverbially speaking of course. If The Rock never went to Hollywood then I probably would have never written that negative rant or have been subjected the most pathetic public display of brown-nosing I have ever seen Vince McMahon participate in also known as Rock’s 2011 birthday celebration episode of RAW. Seriously, what the fuck was that bullshit? There are people on the roster that deserve some type of character progression, but no, The Rock gets a whole show dedicated to him the night after a PPV. I hope it’s worth it when The Rock comes back and builds up his match against John Cena at Wrestlemania, just to end up leaving us again. I will be sure to cheer for Cena during that time. Even though PG has completely ruined his character, I can rest assure that he will never abandon his fans.
Maybe it’s good that The Rock did stay away. The Rock left on top. If he stayed, maybe the fans would have gotten tired of him. Maybe the PG Era would have really ruined his character. Guys like Stone Cold and The Rock can’t do the same things they did in the Attitude Era. This is the PG Era now. Look at the last DX run. It was fun to watch for nostalgic purposes, but they just weren’t as edgy and entertaining as they were in the past. Maybe the PG Era would have ruined The Rock… or maybe not. We are still in the PG Era and when The Rock returned to the WWE this year, he really didn’t seem to be acting that much different than he was eight years ago. Surprisingly, all of his catchphrases are still being used. Maybe The Rock would have survived in the PG Era. It’s too bad The Rock had to leave the WWE because I think the ratings would definitely be higher right now if The Rock was appearing on Monday Night RAW every week.
PG would have definitely hurt The Rock. The only reason he was able to get away with saying some of the stuff he said during his “comeback” was because WWE knew he wouldn’t be there long and I’m sure he told them that he wouldn’t bother coming back if he was going to be censored. I’m also sure that RAW birthday celebration was written into his contract to sweeten the deal for him to “return”. Don’t get me wrong, I used to be a huge Rock fan, but he let me down this year. He lied to me. He betrayed me. He once again turned his back on me. Anyways, if The Rock never went to Hollywood then the above picture wouldn’t be floating around the Internet. What the fuck was he thinking? Dressing like Miley Cyrus? Man, fuck The Rock. GO JOHN CENA!!!!!!!
*Throws The Rock’s DVD and any other Rock memorabilia I own into a raging fire*
Sorry for the rant, I just needed to get that off my chest. Carry on…
What if Chris Jericho didn’t help convince Vince McMahon to book a Money in the Bank match at Wrestlemania 21?
I like reading books written by WWE Superstars, but you already knew that (if you didn’t already know that, read part three of this series). One of the most recent books I read was Chris Jericho’s Undisputed. Like seemingly all WWE books, Jericho revealed an interesting nugget that I never knew about that discussed the debut of the Money In The Bank Match. The Money In The Bank Match is basically a ladder match featuring several superstars trying to climb a ladder to grab a briefcase above the ring. Inside the briefcase is a contract that guarantees a WWE World Championship match at any time, for one year. According to Jericho, Vince McMahon decided to not feature the Money In The Bank Match at Wrestlemania 21 as originally planned. Jericho said that McMahon decided instead there was going to be a Triple Threat Submission Match between Jericho, Edge, and Chris Benoit. Jericho didn’t like McMahon’s change of plans. Jericho wrote, “I hated the idea as I thought… that the Money In The Bank was much more exciting and better for all involved. The rest of the guys agreed and we scheduled a meeting with Vince and Stephanie to convince them to stick with the MITB; to their credit they heard us out and agreed. Everyone was glad they did, because the match was a staggering spectacle that came close to stealing the show.” The match featured Jericho, Edge, Benoit, Shelton Benjamin, Christian and Kane. There have been many more MITB matches since then, but many people believe that the Wrestlemania 21 match was the best MITB match so far.
I’m aware that Jericho has taken credit for creating the Money In The Bank concept on television, but I thought that was kayfabe. If he was never interested in stepping foot in a WWE ring ever again then I hope that they would hire him as a creative writer if he was interested in a non-wrestling position with the company. I love the MITB match. So many memorable moments have resulted because of that match. While I still think that having two MITB winners a year is over doing it and that this match should have stayed a Wrestlemania exclusive, I will never complain about good quality ladder matches and MITB has provided some of the best ladder match moments known to man.
What if Jericho didn’t help schedule a meeting with the McMahons? What if the match stayed as a three-way submission match? First of all, the match would have probably been won by Jericho or Benoit because according to Jericho, Edge didn’t have a submission hold. What would have happened to Edge? Edge was the one who won the MITB match at Wrestlemania 21 and he later won his first WWE Championship after he cashed in his contract. No MITB match at Wrestlemania 21 means no contract for Edge, so when would we have seen Edge win the championship? I’m sure we would have seen a MITB match eventually, but what if McMahon never revisited the concept? It seems like a long shot because it was a really good idea, but it’s possible I guess. CM Punk won the World Heavyweight Championship twice because of MITB and the only reason he regained his title for a third time was because Jeff Hardy was leaving the company. Would CM Punk be a former World Champion right now if MITB didn’t exist? How about The Miz or Jack Swagger? Their only World Championship reigns have come via the Money in The Bank Match. Would either of them be calling themselves a former champion without MITB? Assuming MITB would have made its debut at Wrestlemania 22, the person who would have suffered the most as a result of there not being a MITB match at Wrestlemania 21 was Edge. Like I said, without the MITB match, Edge doesn’t become WWE Champion at the 2006 New Year’s Resolution Pay Per View. He also likely loses the submission match scheduled for Wrestlemania 21 because he didn’t have a submission hold. The MITB match was the official start of Edge’s hall of fame push. I assume he would have had won multiple titles without the MITB match, but we’ll never know for sure. It’s a good thing Jericho helped book the MITB match at Wrestlemania 21. Edge’s career might have turned out differently if he didn’t.
You’re so right. MITB made Edge into a bonafide main eventer, but at the same time matches like the MITB match shortened his career. Without MITB CM Punk would still be lingering in the mid-card and his current heel persona would have never had the chance to flourish. Punk was getting extremely boring as a face and winning his second MITB changed his career for the better. My favorite MITB winners were Edge and RVD. That was an awesome time to be a WWE fan. I really miss those pre-PG days. Anyways, without Money In The Bank, Wrestlemania 21-26 would have sucked, with Shawn Michael matches being the only exception.
I hope you enjoyed part four. I might write a part five in the near future, but if not, I hope you liked this “What If” series.
This has been a great series and I thank you for bringing it over to this site. If you don’t continue the series and want a break from booking things then I think a good column idea would be “The Keg Stand” where you stand on your soapbox and rant and rave about whatever you want. In your case there will be no soapbox, just me holding you upside down as you chug away at the proverbial keg. Just an idea I wanted to throw out there just in case you wanted to try something different.