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  1. ethantyler

    'Nature Boy' Buddy Rogers

    George Wagner was a great worker. Gorgeous George was an entertainer. The latter made a lot more money, hence the transition. Putting him in the same category as Rogers, Thesz, Gagne, etc, in terms of in-ring work, is a big mistake. As a passing observation, I'll note that Verne Gagne is the guy people sleep on from the 50s. Can get a good match out of anyone (better than Thesz at this, not quite Rogers level) and has, in my view, the best match from the Chicago archive vs Thesz on 1/25/52. Don't let old Verne from the later years fool you, there's a reason why he's considered the uncrowned NWA champion.
  2. ethantyler

    Akira Hokuto vs. Eddie Guerrero

    Hokuto was repeatedly criticized in the past for her work rate. She'd take it easy on small house shows or whatever. I suspect that is what ohtani's jacket is hinting at (feel free to correct me here). If work rate matters that much to you, then you should dock her points for that - same goes for Misawa and Jumbo at different points of their careers. Now, my 2 Japanese friends assure me that Hokuto is the best promo they've ever heard from Japan. That, combined with the meaningful big matches and natural charisma, puts her comfortably ahead of Eddie. And Toyota when then conversation arises. Work rate be damned.
  3. Mae Weston was arguably Mildred Burke's greatest title rival. These two drew well nationwide, as main eventors, throughout the decade. What makes this particular match special though, is the card that it's a part of: https://www.wrestlingdata.com/index.php?befehl=shows&show=90574 Friday, 1944/12/08 at The Sam Houston Coliseum in Houston, Texas Attendance: 11,000 (sold out) Gate: $20,708,000 (adjusted for inflation: $316,732,389.77) 1) Bobby Managoff defeated Ellis Bashara (16:22 minutes) 2) NWA World Women's Title Match: Mildred Burke (c) defeated Mae Weston (17:25 minutes) 3 World Junior Heavyweight Title Match: LeRoy McGuirk (c) defeated Sockeye McDonald by referee stoppage (due to challengers eye injury) 4 NWA Texas Heavyweight Title Match: Olaf Olson defeated Lou Thesz (c) (8:14 minutes, Thesz suffers fractured shoulder) 5 NWA World Heavyweight Title Match: Bill Longson (c) defeated Lou Plummer in 2/3 falls Promoter: Morris Sigel (on the HOF ballot, no brainer, vote for him) This show was part of the sixth war bond drive to fund WWII. It was sponsored by the Texas Junior Chamber of Commerce with Morris Sigel, the promoter, a member of that group. Admission by war-bond purchase only with a minimum price of $25 - the more you buy, the better the seating. The wrestlers were paid for their expenses only. Members of the marine battalion state guard were ushers at the show. A contingent of wounded veterans from McCloskey hospital were ringside. Film of the show was taken by Universal News. According to the Houston Post, this show was predicted to do an $18m gate from war bond sales. Ends up doing $20,708,000. "The largest wrestling gate in history and the largest crowd ever to see a mat show in Texas." This is backed up by the footage with the commentator repeating the $20m+ number. Adjusted for inflation, we're talking about $316m+. That's why it's one of the most successful and historically significant shows in history. Explaining the success of this show is fairly simple. 1) This was the first war bond drive since the success of the Alliance in Europe - patriotism was running wild. 2) The ad campaign for the bond drive focused on the threat of the Japanese, which coincided with Dec 7th, the day before the show, being the anniversary of Pearl Harbor. 3) As you can see above, this was a Wrestlemania style supercard. Combine all these factors, and you end up with big numbers. The sixth war bond drive as a whole, by the way, generated $21.7 billion - the most successful of them all. Obviously, this show needs a footnote explanation when added to the biggest shows in pro wrestling history list. It is, essentially, a benefit show. But that doesn't mean it should be ignored.
  4. ethantyler

    Comparing Numbers of Shows Per Era

    AWA was originally designed to cooperate with the NWA, but have their own champs/guidleines/etc. As a result, they were treated as friendly competition and nothing more - as evidenced by the fact that AWA folks (Verne, Karbo, etc) frequently attended NWA meetings. Verne also bought a piece of St Louis in 76, which again is evidence that he was never really seen as a rival to be stamped out.
  5. ethantyler

    Roman Reigns vs Kerry Von Erich

    Before the Reigns heel turn, you could've made the case that this was failure vs failure. From Kerry's perspective it's more of a "what could've been" story - yes, he and the rest of the Von Erichs were a big deal for a while but he really should've been so much more and, for reasons that we're all aware of, he wasn't. From Reigns' perspective, if you end his career with that babyface run then he has a strong case for being the biggest flop in pro wrestling history. No one comes close to that level of sustained failure on such a big stage in this business. But, the heel run is good and might save him - ongoing, tbd, etc. For now, I'd go with Reigns. Reserving the right to change my mind if he flops when they turn him face again.
  6. This was on 1947-3-13, not 3-20 as the thread title states. Full card: https://www.wrestlingdata.com/index.php?befehl=shows&show=245971 Date: Thursday, 1947/03/13 Venue: Boston Arena in Boston, Massachusetts Audience: 7.200 1) Brother Jonathan defeated Jack Kelly 2) 2 out of 3 Falls Match Bull Curry vs. Roland Meeker ended without a winner at 1 fall each 3) 2 out of 3 Falls Match Don Lee defeated Wilbur Nead 4) 2 out of 3 Falls NWA World Women's Title Match Mildred Burke (c) defeated Mae Weston by 2 falls to 0
  7. ethantyler

    [1941] Milded Burke vs Patsy Miller

    This is the only footage we have (so far) of the relatively unknown Patsy Miller. She broke into the business in 1940, was billed as the "Texas Cowgirl" from Fort Worth, and that's all I've got. Mildred Burke needs no introduction. All of her footage is valuable and, as expected by those familiar with her, she's a beast. A real athlete who achieved more than she had any right to in that era. This footage was released to theaters on April 3rd, 1941 but the actual date for when the match took place is a little difficult to pin down because these two faced off frequently in early 41. I want to say March 24th, Camden, NJ or March 27th, Washington, D.C. but I could be totally off with both. Anyway, enjoy.
  8. ethantyler

    2020 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    Taue has always been an interesting candidate to me because, on the face of it, proving he's a HOFer isn't that difficult. We know he ticks the historical significance box - they call it the four pillars for a reason. We know proving he, alone, was a real draw is impossible. So it comes down to in-ring ability. Calculate his Observer star rating average in the 90s, minus the matches that included the other pillars, what do you get? And how does it compare to everyone else in that era? An easy way to see if the "you could've put anyone else in his position and they would've done just as well" take has any validity to it. And yes, I know the star rating system isn't exactly objective but you've got start somewhere with this type of comparison. I was tempted to do the analysis myself this year but got too caught up in nerdy Bob Ellis research.
  9. Talk about loaded with star power. We're dealing with 4 top 100 all time guys here in Bruiser, Gagne, Rocca, and Reggie Lisowski (the future Crusher). Rocca is clearly the star of the pack - one of those "entertainers" who would've been hated by the older wrestlers of the time despite clearly being a once in a lifetime talent. Bruiser's one of the biggest draws ever in pro wrestling but is still pretty green here - one of those unique characters that you'd find in the territory days that no longer exist anymore. Gagne ranks up there with Thesz, Rogers, O'Connor as the best in-ring worker of the 50s - underrated today because of how long he stuck around on top. Snyder is probably the strongest candidate to make it on the WOHOF and not get inducted - great worker, consistent top 10 draw, no real weaknesses. This is a fun, interesting, 6 man that's worth watching just to see how all this star power meshes together. The crowd reactions are very revealing too.
  10. ethantyler

    2020 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    The Europe/Aus/Rest of the world section of the ballot is, in my opinion, the most competitive of them all (I voted for 4 guys in that section alone last year). Adding more names would only make it more difficult to get anyone inducted and risks eliminating guys who are deserving, but suffer from lack of voter knowledge. The names on that list, Phil, are likely to fall into this category. As would guys already on the ballot like Billy Joyce. The best UK wrestler of his generation, hugely influential for the likes of Billy Robinson & Karl Gotch, yet polled at 11% because voter awareness of UK wrestling pre-TV exposure is incredibly weak. From that list, L'Ange Blanc would be the strongest candidate for me. I'd suggest gathering support behind 1-2 current candidates and then adding him (or others) to the ballot as the best way of maximizing their chances of actually getting inducted. For what it's worth, my strongest two picks in that section would be Billy Joyce and Dominic DeNucci.
  11. ethantyler

    2020 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    People underestimate just how badly Sarge bombed in the AWA. Check out the attendance/gate figures for yourselves. He didn't draw a dime, which suggests that his "star power" benefited greatly from the stacked WWF cards of the early 80s. Had Backlund stuck around post-title run, I'm pretty sure he would've struggled (even more than he did) to make it into the HOF as well. Also, the fact that he's still in kayfabe mode about serving in Vietnam is a problem for some voters. Bullshitting about stuff like that tends to go down badly.
  12. ethantyler

    2020 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    Or, alternatively, it means that whoever put together that list didn't know as much about wrestling as you think they did. My evidence is short and sweet: no Jim Londos. The greatest draw in pro wrestling history. Credibility = shot out the window. I say this with as much respect as possible, if you managed to find 557 wrestlers ahead of Jim Londos in a "greatest ever" list then you simply don't know enough about pro wrestling.
  13. ethantyler

    2020 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    Oh Reigns will certainly return to the ballot. He won't "get in easily" without an incredibly strong heel run though. According to the promoter himself, Jim Barnett, the top babyface in Australia during that era was Dominic DeNucci, followed by Spyros Arion, and then Mario Milano in 3rd. I'm actually pleased Milano has been knocked off because it may lead to more votes consolidating behind DeNucci, who should've been in ages ago but is hurt by the fact that most voters aren't aware of his success in Australia while being very aware of him being a mid-card tag team guy in the US.
  14. ethantyler

    2020 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    Unless he has a really strong heel run, you're in for a rude awakening in a couple of years.
  15. ethantyler

    2020 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    In a year that was looking like one of the weakest of all time (voting patterns had guys like Don Owen & Sputnik Monroe as favorites to get in), the final inductees have surprised on the upside. Those are 5 good names that are hard to argue against. Its been a good year for the voters. Job well done.