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Everything posted by ethantyler

  1. ethantyler

    Hall of Fame Deep Dive: Miscellaneous

    Strongest section the ballot. Massive backlog that is very reminiscent of Mexico a few years back. George Kidd Billy Joyce Dominic DeNucci Spiros Arion Ricki Starr Jose Tarres Jackie Pallo Kendo Nagasaki L'Ange Blanc Big Daddy I voted for the top 3 this year. I voted for the top 4 last year. I can see myself voting for up to 6 in any given future year. George Kidd was the best of his weight division, influenced a plethora of future smaller guys, and was a mainstream star in Scotland (approx. 10% of the UK's total population is here - 5 million people). Dave thinks he's a no brainer; I can't go that far because we don't have enough attendance data on him - a common frustration for the UK candidates. Major TV star? Yes. Mainstream? Yes. Put butts on seats? I think so? Billy Joyce was also the best of his weight division - heavyweights. He's the missing link between HOFers Bert Assirati & Billy Robinson. Considered by the latter, and Karl Gotch, to be the best pure wrestler of his generation. No question about the in-ring ability or historical significance. Not a TV star because he was for the purist - a "real" wrestler. That raises questions about drawing power, but he was a 6x heavyweight champ so he must've drawn reasonably well. Lack of attendance data means, again, that we're left guessing here. Dominic DeNucci drew HOF calibre numbers in Australia from 1964-66, 1968, and 1970. 1964-66 specifically, you have an 18 month-ish stretch were he could be considered the top draw in the business worldwide. Between those years, Australia was drawing thousands (up to 9,000) on a weekly basis. That made it the hottest promotion in the world with the best pay. Jim Barnett, one of the promoters along with Johnny Doyle (who retired in 1967), confirmed that his number 1 guy was Dominic DeNucci. That covers a lot of names. No question in my mind he is a HOF level draw. No question he's historically significant (biggest star Australia ever had in the TV era). Questions over longevity are valid. He had 2.5 years that could be considered HOF level. Normally, I don't vote for guys with less than 3 years as a top 10 draw. I make an exception to the No.1 draw. He seems to have been the No.1 draw. So, he has my vote. Much stronger candidate than most think. Arion is interesting. Seems to be a top-5 all time draw in Greece, but that's mostly tours so longevity questions are valid. In Australia, Barnett said he was his no.2 guy but the data shows he really only drew in towns with big Greek populations. Did not have universal drawing power - big problem. Longevity? You're talking maybe 3 total HOF level years. Work was fine. Clearly historically significant for Greece. Overall, not good enough for this year. Might be for future years. Ricki Starr is hampered significantly by the lack of attendance data for his run in the UK & Europe as a whole. This guy had a great act, was a legit great wrestler, and drew big time. He was a beast in NY, very strong in LA, 4 unbeaten years in the UK, and seemed popular whenever he went into continental Europe too. My gut says HOFer but man, that lack of attendance data. I want objective confirmation of what I think I can see here. Phil Lions has made a strong case for Tarres. I won't step over his great work but suffice to say this guy was The guy in Spain and has the attendance data to put him into HOF level talk. I need more time to dig deeper, but in future I can absolutely see myself voting for him. 7-10 are a step below for me and I could change my mind on them in any given year. Pallo was a major TV star, but his historical significance was mixed & work was average. Nagasaki is a personal favorite, but that alone is never going to be enough. L'Ange Blanc was a big deal for 2 years but, as I said before, less than 3 years is good enough only if you're in contention to be the no.1 guy in the world. He wasn't. Big Daddy was The guy in his era, major TV star, BUT this was during a time when ticket sales had collapsed (coinciding with the rise of Big Daddy btw), he sucked in-ring and his historical significance is clearly more negative than positive. He seems to get more support from clueless American reporters then he does British historians - Dave has confirmed this to me. Barring an incredibly weak ballot, I'm never voting for him. Negative historical significance + terrible in-ring = tough road ahead. I should disclose that I'm a UK guy. This section interests me more than the rest even though I do study the business worldwide and try to continue learning about, well, everything pro-wrestling.
  2. ethantyler

    Hall of Fame Deep Dive: Japan

    2nd strongest section on the ballot: Kazuchika Okada Akira Taue Kota Ibushi Tetsuya Naito Yoshiaki Fujiwara Cima Kyoko Inoue Tomohiro Ishii Hayabusa Naomichi Marufuji I think my top 4 will all, at some point, get inducted. I voted for Okada & Taue this year, but Ibushi was my no.11 pick. 5-10 are more borderline and I don't see myself voting for them anytime soon. Every single one of them are easy inductees into the "hall of very good" but not "hall of fame". Fujiwara has historical significance and in-ring ability on his side but is clearly below the Takada & Maeda's of the world. Cima is Mr Dragon Gate when they were doing good business but that's not enough for me. Kyoko Inoue is a clear step below my girl Hokuto, Toyota, etc. Ishii's a step below Okada, Ibushi, Naito. Hayabusa's historical significance case isn't strong enough. Marufuji is a personal favorite, not a HOFer. A general point about getting in based on in-ring ability alone: extremely difficult. Borderline impossible. You have to be THE best wrestler of your generation for me to vote for you without any drawing power, longevity on top, & historical significance. See The Steiners, who I did vote for, as an example (best full time tag team in the world from 90-94, probably the best for the 90s as a whole). Ishii isn't the best wrestler of his generation in my view. Ditto Fujiwara for his generation.
  3. ethantyler

    Hall of Fame Deep Dive: Modern Performers

    The weakest section on the ballot in my view, which is a reflection of WWE dominance over the past 20 years. I don't buy the "lower the standards for the modern group because business has changed" line. John Cena recently returned and was clearly a draw based on ticket sales. Business hasn't changed to the point where obvious HOF draws are not identifiable. The problem is simply that the modern group doesn't have many, if any, HOF level stars. Lower the standards to accommodate lower caliber candidates? Don't think so. Rick & Scott Steiner Bill Goldberg Sgt. Slaughter Junkyard Dog CM Punk Charlotte Flair Paul Orndorff Rick Martel Edge Randy Orton Top 5 are all good overall candidates, but with obvious weak points. Steiners, who I have voted this year, don't tick the drawing power or longevity on top boxes. Goldberg has longevity on top problems. Slaughter is tainted by his complete flop of a run in the AWA - it raises questions about how much of a draw he was in the early 80s vs the card as a whole. JYD has longevity & historical significance issues. Punk needs more time to see what impact he has in AEW. The rest aren't close to my overall top 10 and I could move them around depending on my mood, the day, etc. I will say that Charlotte will, always, get a big tick in the historical significance box and that Martel is underrated as a whole. He's remembered as an entertaining mid-cafd heel but the dude was primarily responsible for the big numbers in Canada during his AWA title run, which was the last hurrah before the AWA went to downhill quickly (contrary to popular belief, it didn't happen the minute Hogan left). Not saying he's HOF level, just underrated. In general.
  4. ethantyler

    2021 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    I can state categorically that the primary reason voters don't go for JYD has little do with Dave and more to do with his obvious drawbacks as a candidate. Longevity on top is a problem. His limited appeal (take away the African-American fans in Louisiana and we're not talking about JYD as a candidate at all) is a problem. We have precedent for this point by the way: Danno O'Mahony, the biggest draw of 1935, is never getting into the HOF because takeaway the Boston Irish and he's not a draw at all. His average, at best, in-ring ability is a problem. His mixed historical significance is a problem. No-brainer means no big question marks, should obviously be in. Like Okada. JYD isn't a no-brainer. Dave's influence on voters is exaggerated. He's extremely pro-Ishii - but Ishii struggles on the ballot. He's more pro-George Kidd than I am, in fact he thinks Kidd is a no-brainer 2nd best candidate of them all, and Kidd struggles on the ballot. He's equally anti-Sputnik Monroe as me, yet Monroe gets plenty of votes. He's anti-Don Owen, not as much as I am, but Owen gets plenty of votes. Putting all the blame on Dave for the struggles of a candidate is an easy copout. Evidence doesn't back it up. I say all this as someone who likes JYD - might vote for him one year, but not this time. Ballot is too strong.
  5. ethantyler

    2021 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    I've sent my ballot to Dave. Here it is, with brief justifications, for anyone else interested: I FOLLOWED THE HISTORICAL PERFORMERS ERA CANDIDATES June Byers - the last woman to be a main event draw as a wrestler in North America until the four horsewomen gen (gap of 60ish years). Cowboy Bob Ellis - biggest star, based on drawing power, on this side of the ballot. Big numbers in San Fran, LA, St Louis, the mid-west, and NY. I FOLLOWED THE MODERN PERFORMERS IN U.S/CANADA CANDIDATES Rick & Scott Steiner - best full time tag team in the world from 1990-94. I FOLLOWED WRESTLING IN JAPAN CANDIDATES Kazuchika Okada - I don't need to explain this one. Akira Taue - I cannot, from a historical significance perspective, justify Akiyama being in the hall and Taue being out. I'm a both or neither guy. I FOLLOWED WRESTLING IN MEXICO CANDIDATES Dorrell Dixon - first black wrestler in Lucha, first black wrestler to win major titles in both the US & Mexico, to this day still the most successful black wrestler in Lucha history. Pioneer. Sangre Chicana - This is a vote to save, rather than induct. Seems to be a big draw in the late 70s-mid 80s. Great worker in the 80s. I want an extra year to dig in deeper on him. I FOLLOWED WRESTLING IN EUROPE/AUSTRALIA/NEW ZEALAND/PACIFIC ISLANDS/AFRICA Dominic DeNucci - Biggest TV era star & draw in Australia when that territory was arguably the best in the world (certainly best pay). Has a case for being the no.1 draw worldwide between 1964-66. George Kidd - Mainstream star in the UK; particularly Scotland. Extraordinary longevity on top along with phenomenal in-ring ability. Billy Joyce - the greatest wrestler of his generation according to the likes of Karl Gotch & Billy Robinson. The top UK heavyweight of his era. Missing link between Assirati & Robinson. NON-WRESTLERS Bobby Davis - Managerial pioneer. Start of the lineage that gave us Bobby Heenan, Jim Cornette, and Paul Heyman. 2nd strongest candidate on the ballot after Okada. No-brainer. Morris Sigel - Promoter who monopolized wrestling in Texas for 37 years. Ran big & important shows for decades. Exported HOF level talent. Credited, by his successor Paul Boesch, with inventing both tag team & cage matches. Stanley Weston - another "both or neither" situation for me. Bill Apter is in, then Weston should be too. Dave Brown - arguably the greatest color commentator of all time. Him & Russell were certainly the best team in my view. Ted Turner - historical significance. Without him JCP dies in the 80s, WCW doesn't overtake WWF, you don't get the most successful drawing period in wrestling history (attitude era), etc.
  6. This section of the ballot, by its nature, should always be fairly weak. If it was strong, that would suggest voters had been making a lot of mistakes ever since the HOF started in 1996. In my top 10 below, I'm certain of the top 6 and the rest was on-the-spot rough guesses: June Byers Cowboy Bob Ellis Von Brauners with Saul Weingeroff Rocky Johnson Mr. Wrestling II Mongolian Stomper Johnny Rougeau Enrique Torres Sputnik Monroe Bull Curry I will be voting for June Byers this year, as I did last year. She has the strongest case in this section in terms of historical significance, she main evented, she drew on top, she was equal to Mildred Burke in-ring. I will probably be voting for Cowboy Bob Ellis too. He's the biggest star, in terms of overall drawing power, in this section. The Von Brauners are hurt, in terms of historical significance, by their gimmick. Extraordinary longevity on top for a tag-team though. Rocky Johnson and Wrestling II are hurt by their non-wrestling related activities. The rest aren't really in the close vicinity to making my top 10, but I do have a soft spot for the Stomper in general. A difference maker in smaller territories like Calgary and Kansas, big year in Memphis, great worker, great promo, etc. None of this is enough to make him a HOFer, but is enough to get him in easily at 6 in the list above.
  7. ethantyler

    2021 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    One of the Lucha experts - Matt Farmer, cubsfan, Rob Viper, etc - really needs to make the case for Sangre Chicana. He got knocked off the ballot straight away in 2017, only polled 14% last year when he returned, and probably going to get knocked out again this year. Yet, he was a top guy for ages, drew very well in the late 70s-early 80s, and seemed to have been a great worker in his prime (the match with MS-1 from 83 is 5 stars). I know his work faded as he aged, but is that really the only reason nobody likes him? This is the one candidate that I confess to being, clearly, clueless on. I'm missing something. No idea what it is.
  8. ethantyler

    2021 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    Moolah is viewed far more negatively today. The feedback Dave gets from voters on her is overwhelmingly negative - which is why she hasn't returned. Anyway, see the conversations about Moolah from last year: https://forums.prowrestlingonly.com/topic/52088-2020-wrestling-observer-hall-of-fame/ Summary: she has no case. At all. Never drew. Has zero longevity on top. Not a good worker. Negative historical significance. That's all the categories the candidates are judged on, and she ticks none of them.
  9. ethantyler

    2021 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    A few thoughts on the non-wrestling section since I've managed to narrow it down to 5 names surprisingly easily: Bobby Davis Managerial pioneer. The first successful TV era manager who worked with Buddy Rogers for a huge chunk of his career (including the early 60s when he was the biggest draw in the business), the Graham Brothers when they were hot in New York, Johnny Valentine, and a whole host of other main event talent. He was the first bump taking manager too thanks to his pro wrestling training (had to switch to managing due to an injury. As for his promo ability, look at the talent he represented. Buddy Rogers and the Grahams were great promos by themselves, yet Davis did it for them because he was better. Speaks volumes. Directly inspired Bobby Heenan (who took his first name), and it is not a stretch to say that he is the start of the managerial lineage to the likes of Jimmy Hart, Jim Cornette, Paul Heyman, etc. That style of manager starts with Bobby Davis. Along with Okada, this is the guy I consider to be a no-brainer. For his historical significance alone, he should've been an original inductee. Please vote for him. Dave Brown In the conversation for best color commentator of them all. I certainly consider him & Lance Russell to be the best commentary team of them all. And..that's good enough for me. Morris Sigel The man controlled Texas wrestling for 37 years. He was credited with bringing tag team wrestling to the US (probably from Mexico), inventing an early version of the cage match ("fence match"), and presiding over the rise of blading in pro wrestling (his booker, Doc Sarpolis, apparently invented this). His shows were major - plenty of 10,000+'s in the mix along with historically significant shows (the war bond shows from the 40s, the world title switch from Thesz to Bronko Nagurski in 1939, etc). The stronger promoter on the ballot. I won't say no-brainer, even if I have in the past, but...man. Skipping over this guy for Don Owen, Crockett Jr etc is a big mistake in my humble opinion. Stanley Weston I cannot justify the inclusion of Bill Apter without Stanley Weston. It's both or neither. I personally would've gone with neither but since Apter is already in, I feel obligated to vote for Weston until he's in too. Fairness based on precedent carries a lot of weight with me. Ted Turner Without Ted, JCP dies in the late 80s. Without Ted, WCW died in 2001. Without Ted, WCW doesn't overtake the WWF. Without Ted, we don't get the late 90s boom period - arguably the stronger period in pro wrestling history. His historical significance is too strong for me to ignore. If we have voters who want to know more about some these older candidates (Davis & Sigel in particular), then please ask and I'll do my best to answer the Qs or direct you to someone who can. I'm trying to make sure we don't dismiss candidates out of ignorance and nothing else this year.
  10. ethantyler

    2021 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    " To be eligible, a performer must have reached their 35th birthday and completed ten years since their debut as a full-time performer, or be someone who has been a full-time pro wrestler for at least 15 years." Charlotte's 35 and debuted in Dec 2012. That's 9 years, not 10, but whatever - she has no chance on being inducted anyway.
  11. ethantyler

    2021 Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame

    Nintendo, if you could be a good brother and update your OP to include the full ballot please. This is what I got in my inbox: The following candidates will be dropped from next year's ballot unless they are elected in or garner 50% of the vote: Don Owen Sgt. Slaughter Jim Crockett Jr. Enrique Torres Johnny "Wrestling II" Walker I FOLLOWED THE HISTORICAL PERFORMERS ERA CANDIDATES Ole Anderson Bob Armstrong Hollywood Blonds (Buddy Roberts & Jerry Brown w/Sir Oliver Humperdink) Jerry Brisco June Byers Buddy Colt Wild Bull Curry Cowboy Bob Ellis The Fabulous Ones (Stan Lane & Steve Keirn) Pampero Firpo Black Gordman & Great Goliath Archie "Mongolian Stomper" Gouldie Rocky Johnson Sputnik Monroe Blackjack Mulligan Johnny Rougeau Enrique Torres Von Brauners & Saul Weingeroff Johnny "Mr.Wrestling II" Walker I FOLLOWED THE MODERN PERFORMERS IN U.S/CANADA CANDIDATES Tully Blanchard & Arn Anderson w/J.J. Dillon Nikki Bella Junkyard Dog Bill Dundee Edge Charlotte Flair Bill Goldberg Matt & Jeff Hardy Kamala Rick Martel Jon Moxley/Dean Ambrose Paul Orndorff Randy Orton C.M. Punk Seth Rollins Sgt. Slaughter Trish Stratus Rick & Scott Steiner Ultimate Warrior I FOLLOWED WRESTLING IN JAPAN CANDIDATES Cima Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan Yoshiaki Fujiwara Hayabusa Kota Ibushi Kyoko Inoue Tomohiro Ishii Naomichi Marufuji Tetsuya Naito Kazuchika Okada Meiko Satomura Katsuyori Shibata Takashi Sugiura Akira Taue I FOLLOWED WRESTLING IN MEXICO CANDIDATES Los Brazos (Brazo de Oro & Brazo de Plata & El Brazo) Sangre Chicana Psycho Clown Los Hermanos Dinamita (Cien Caras & Mascara Ano 2000 & Universo 2000) Dorrell Dixon Pirata Morgan Mistico/Caristico Octagon La Parka AAA Huracan Ramirez Rito Romero I FOLLOWED WRESTLING IN EUROPE/AUSTRALIA/NEW ZEALAND/PACIFIC ISLANDS/AFRICA Sypros Arion L'Ange Blanc (Francisco Pino) Big Daddy John Da Silva Roger Delaporte & Andre Bollet Dominic DeNucci Billy Joyce George Kidd Killer Karl Kox Kendo Nagasaki Jackie Pallo Rollerball Mark Rocco Johnny Saint Ricki Starr Adrian Street Jose Tarres Otto Wanz NON-WRESTLERS Lord James Blears Dave Brown Bobby Bruns Bob Caudle Jim Crockett Jr. Bobby Davis Joe Higuchi Jim Johnston Takaaki Kidani Larry Matysik Stephanie McMahon James Melby Don Owen Reggie Parks Morris Sigel Tony Schiavone George Scott Mike Tenay Ted Turner Stanley Weston Grand Wizard
  12. 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.
  13. 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.
  14. 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.
  15. 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.
  16. 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.
  17. 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
  18. 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.
  19. 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.
  20. 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.
  21. 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.
  22. 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.
  23. 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.
  24. 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.
  25. 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.