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JvK books WWF in 1983


JerryvonKramer
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I was getting the itch to bust out Total Extreme Wrestling 2013 again, and I thought it might be interesting to document my progress on it. In this first post I'll just be setting the scene and laying out some initial plans.

 

Here's the scenario ...

 

jvk.png

 

So what has old Vince Sr. left us?

 

Faces:

 

faces.png

 

Heels:

 

heels.png

 

Non-wrestlers:

 

out_of_ring.png

 

Current Champs:

 

backlund.png

 

pedro.png

 

strongbow.png

 

Using a combination of top research, guesswork and pure fantasy based on what was already in there, I've also drafted a schedule for the year:

 

shedule.png

 

Policy on Storylines

 

There will be no more than 4 storylines in place at any given time. Typically there will be: one main event feud, one IC-level feud, and one tag-team-title feud, with the possibility of an optional fourth feud for someone like Andre. There will never be a fifth storyline.

 

Pushes

 

There will be no more than six pushed acts at any given time:

 

World champ

Number 1 contender

IC champ

Number 1 contender for IC belt

Tag-champs

Number 1 contenders for tag titles

 

Everyone else in the promotion is playing a supporting role to one of these six acts. No one else gets angles or mic time apart from these guys and their managers.

 

JvK's booking formula

 

As a student of Vince McMahon Sr., I know that these North-East-audience types need to be conditioned. They are used to it. Everyone needs a formula. However, I can't just re-use Vince Sr's formulas. The game is changing and so a new formula -- the JvK formula -- is required.

 

Booking of the champion

 

Vince Sr would always bring in a heel challenger, and they'd get 3 matches at MSG: DQ, countout, clean pinfall loss.

 

Well Vince Jr has decided he's going to be introducing his Wrestlemania concept 2 years early, and not only that, he's introducing the Royal Rumble, Summerslam and Survivor Series too. And so this changes the booking cycle.

 

I have no "philosophy" of booking the champ as of yet. I need to figure out who the champ will be first. For the time being, I will stick with Vince Sr's formula with Backlund defending against various heels.

 

House Shows

 

Running at least 3-4 house shows every month. For these house shows, there will be a clear and unchanging structure. Deviations from this basic structure will be at an absolute minimum:

 

Match 1: JTTS over jobber, 6-8 mins. This will be a routine win for a JTTS so he has some "meaning" next time he faces a star.

 

Match 2: Star over JTTS, 8-10 mins. This will be a win for a face or heel getting pushed over an established JTTS.

 

INTERVIEW 5-7 mins. This will be an interview with a maineventer, IC guy or tag-team.

 

Match 3: Tag team match, 12-15 mins. This will either by the tag champs defending their titles or the number 1 challengers going over. Belt will typically only change hands on one of the four big shows.

 

Match 4: SPECIAL ATTRACTION, 10-20 mins. This will be some point of interest. An Andre handicap match, a Bruno appearance, a battle royale, a 6-man, or maybe a gimmick match of some sort.

 

ANGLE 5-7 mins. Either another interview or an angle. Typically this could be a setup for one of the next two matches.

 

Match 5: IC title match, 10-15 mins. This will be either an IC title defense or else the number 1 challenger going over.

 

Match 6: World title match, 20-25 mins. This will be either a world title defense or else the number 1 challenger going over.

 

Supercards

 

The Royal Rumble and Surivor Series cards will be devoted to their respective gimmick matches. Winner of the Rumble gets a special cup (and $10,000!). Wrestlemania and Summerslam will be booked as follows:

 

Match 1: JTTS vs. JTTS, 10 mins. Two JTTSes thrown together for an opener. Crowd feel it is "special" cos these guys wouldn't usually tussle.

 

Match 2: Star vs. star, 15 mins. Two guys who aren't doing anything else have a match for no reason. The crowd lap this up excited to see big names in action.

 

INTERVIEW 5-7 mins. This will be an interview with a maineventer, IC guy or tag-team.

 

Match 3: Tag-team title match, 20 mins. Champs vs. number 1 challengers.

 

Match 4: SPECIAL ATTRACTION

 

Match 5: IC title. 20 mins. Champ vs. number 1 challenger.

 

INTERVIEW before final bout, 6-7 mins.

 

Match 6: World title. 25-30 mins. Champ vs. number 1 challenger.

 

TV shows

 

Match 1: Opener, 5 mins. JTTS over jobber. Bog-standard low level win for a JTTS.

 

TALK SHOW SEGMENT, 15-20 mins. Every episode will feature with a long talk show skit presented by someone like a Roddy Piper (or similar). Many angles will start here.

 

Match 2: Star over jobber, 8 mins. Longer showcase for a pushed talent.

 

Match 3: Star over JTTS, 15 mins. Competitive match with star coming out on top.

 

Assessment of roster

 

Main event / IC: Backlund, Andre, Pedro and Jimmy Snuka form the core of the babyface side of things. The top heels are Don Muraco, George Steele, Masked Superstar and Billy Graham.

 

Upper midcard: Ivan Koloff can fill in as a perennial heel challenger for the world title, as can The Iron Sheik. The Samoans have been mainstays of the tag divisions and Chief Jay Strongbow, currently tag champ with his "brother", for some reason remains popular in the North East. Big John Studd is a servicable heel. Tito Santana is a good hand. Tony Atlas and Rocky Johnson form a popular tag team. Mil Mascaras can be a special attraction for the right crowd.

 

Rest of the card: There are guys who can fill out any number of roles here. Ivan Putski's days of use are on the wane, but he's still over. Mr Fuji can get heat. Tony Garea is on the downslide of his career, but he can still tag with just about anyone. SD Jones is a solid hand who can put heels over and is still popular with crowds. Pat Patterson, although now getting very old, can still work a good gimmick match.

 

Relations with other companies

 

Vince Jr is dead set against rejoining the NWA, but he has not yet declared war on anyone. His father is still around and he can rely on some good will for the time being. With working agreements in place with virtually every promotion in the world, at least initially I hope to make use of talent trades using Andre as a bargaining chip if necessary. Through this, I should be able to book practically any worker in the world for a spot show.

 

Priorities

 

Looking at the roster, I have set myself some aims and objectives:

 

1. Sign some new tag teams. The tag ranks look especially weak with an aging Strongbow and "Jules", both terrible workers, as the current champs. These guys need to lose the belts as soon as possible. Strongbow will be relegated to JTTS duty until he retires. Jules will be fired. Ideally, I want young and fresh tag teams, one heel team, one face team. I will have to scour the available talent to find people. The Samoans can stick around for a while to help put over the new face team, and Atlas and Johnson can do the same for the heel team. Looking at available talent on the roster, Curt Hennig might be paired with someone. As might Tito Santana. Eddie Gilbert at 21 is just a bit too young to be put in that spot for the time being.

 

Possible targets: Dynamite Kid, Bobby Eaton, the Von Erichs, Terry Gordy.

 

Short-term plan: Probably put the belts on Atlas and Johnson as a placeholder. There is no way they can stay with Strongbow. Samoans can go over on first MSG card. Atlas and Johnson can win belts at The Rumble and defend against Samoans for a while. Build a new heel team to go over at Wrestlemania. Build a new face team to go over them at Summerslam.

 

2. Transform IC division. The IC division looks stagnant. Pedro has had the belt for over a year. And Don Muraco is still his only notable challenger. These guys are too old and I want to phase them out. I want good workers here. Ideally I want a dynamic in-ring performer who can work with anyone, whether face or heel.

 

Possible targets: Rick Martel, Tully Blanchard, Greg Valentine, Dick Murdoch.

 

3. Find a good colour commentator. Currently All-Star Wrestling and Challenge both have a three-man team of Gorilla, Vince and Lord Alfred in the booth. I don't want Lord Alfred commentating, he can fill in as an interviewer for the time being. And I don't like the idea of Vince and Gorilla being together.

 

Vince will present All-Star (the A-show) and live events. Gorilla will present Challenge (B-show). Need colour men for both.

 

One option is to put "myself" on commentary, but I'd rather stay behind the scenes.

 

4. Find a great talker to present talk show segment. I could use one of the three wise men for this -- possibly Lou Albano -- but this could also be a good spot for Jesse Ventura or Roddy Piper, who might also double as the colour man. Will see who is available.

 

However, all of a sudden I like the idea of all THREE wise men hosting this talk show.

 

5. Eventually transition out of Backlund as champ. It's in the back of my mind, but not figured out a way to do this yet.

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Plans for everyone on the existing roster

 

Afa - will use to put over the new champs in the short term, long term I want the Samoans gone.

 

Alexis Smirnoff - Him and Ivan Koloff have just come off a run tagging in Georgia, but I think I have more use for Ivan as a singles guy. I might keep him around for a month or so to take pins if I need a heel tagteam. Likely to be cut.

 

Andre - his main use will be to trade with other promoters so I can have a revolving door of top talent to challenge for titles.

 

Arnold Skaaland - completely useless guy who I have no use for, but I'm worried firing him will get heat with Vince or Vince Sr. He can do what he did in real life, manage Backlund but not actually do anything.

 

Baron Mikel Scicluna - he's retired and is working as a road agent. I might get him to put the tights back on one or two times as a JTTS.

 

Big John Studd - no long term plans. He can put a few faces over on his way out.

 

Bob Backlund - Secretly, I want him gone, but I need to get a replacement as champ in -- but big stars don't grow on trees and such a replacement will need some building up. Backlund has very good in-ring skills and is over in the core towns. Will do for now.

 

Bob Bradley - heel pure jobber

 

B. Brian Blair - face JTTS

 

Bruno Sammartino - currently working as a road agent, but his overness means I will almost certainly be getting him to work as a special attraction when Andre is not around.

 

Buddy Rogers - has a contract in which he can only work as a manager. Sorry HHH, I have no real use for him. Maybe a Rogers vs. Bruno rematch if his contract will allow it. He is 60 though. Currently managing Jimmy Snuka.

 

Butcher Vachon - heel JTTS

 

Charlie Fulton - heel pure jobber

 

Chief Jay Strongbow - as soon as he's lost the tag titles, face JTTS

 

Curt Hennig - he's only 24, but I might use him in the newly pushed tag team. Will have to see who else I can get.

 

Dan Davis - cut

 

Dave Hebner - ref at Boston Garden

 

David Sammartino - kept around only not to piss off Bruno, will not be part of the regular crew. Lanny Poffo in WCW treatment.

 

Dick Kroll - ref at MSG

 

Dick Woehrle - ref at Spectrum and for TV tapings

 

Don Muraco - short-term he can challenge Pedro for the IC title, but long-term I want him gone.

 

Eddie Gilbert - face JTTS

 

Frankie Williams - face pure jobber

 

Freddie Blassie - manager, possibly will host or co-host talk show segment

 

George Scott - will keep him on as a road agent

 

George Steele - I have no use for Steele at all. He can put Andre over in a few comedy matches and then get gone

 

Gorilla Monsoon - announcer on the B-show

 

Howard Finkel - ring announer

 

Invader #1 - weird that he's on the roster. Heel JTTS. Can tag with Bob Bradley if required.

 

Iron Mike Sharpe - heel JTTS

 

Israel Maria - heel pure jobber

 

Ivan Koloff - can have shots at MSG and Philly against Backlund. Possibly also against Pedro at IC level. But Ivan is 40 here. I MIGHT stick him in a tag team with Iron Sheik and put the straps on them as a much better version of the Volkoff / Sheik pairing. Blassie will manage.

 

Ivan Putski - no real use for him at this point. Face JTTS, if he performs badly: fired.

 

Jimmy Snuka - He's as over as Backlund, but I'm not sure if he needs the belt. I have to do something with Snuka.

 

Joey Marella - second string ref for undercard matches. Mainly kept around to appease Gorilla.

 

Johnny Rivera - will mainly be used on heel tagteam JTTS duty paired with Jose Luis.

 

Johnny Rodz - heel JTTS

 

Jose Luis Rivera - paired with Johnny as heel JTTS team

 

Jules Strongbow - fired as soon as he's dropped the tag belt, will have him kayfabe injured in the match

 

Lord Alfred Hayes - interview duty

 

Lou Albano - strong contender to host the talk show segment. Currently managing Samoans.

 

Masked Superstar - placeholder challenger for Backlund, but "without storyline"

 

Mil Mascaras - third string "special attraction" behind Andre and Snuka. No actually very over and will let his contract expire.

 

Mr Fuji - currently tagging with Tiger Chung Lee. Will keep him there at the moment as stopgap heel challengers "without storyline".

 

Pat Patterson - since Ray Stevens is on the roster, I am considering a "one last run" angle for the two of them as the legendary Blonde Bombers. Need to see how the whole roster is looking before I decide on whether it should be as faces or heels.

 

Pedro Morales - very stale act at this point and needs to go. But don't see any natural candidates to take the IC belt from him on the roster. Top priority to bring in a technical heel who can take it from him.

 

Ray Stevens - see Patterson.

 

Rene Goulet - heel JTTS

 

Rocky Johnson - will be in the tag mix with Tony Atlas, but I don't see them as long-term solutions. Possible plan is to have these win the straps at Royal Rumble and then drop them to Patterson and Stevens at Wrestlemania. However, I think a better way round might be for Patterson and Stevens to go over the Strongbows at the Rumble and then have Johnson and Atlas get the big win at Mania. Let's see...

 

SD Jones - face JTTS

 

Sika - see Afa

 

Superstar Billy Graham - of zero use to me in the ring, but he's over ... THAT'S IT!! He can present the talk show segment! I just need to come up with a name for it. Suggestions on a postcard please. "Superstar's Supershow"? Something better than that.

 

Swede Hanson - immediate release, cut.

 

The Grand Wizard of Wrestling - currently managing Don Muraco.

 

The Iron Sheik - looking more likely I'll pair him with Ivan Koloff for a tag run. But Backlund also needs challengers and if I'm running with this Patterson and Stevens angle -- maybe Sheik and Koloff don't challenge for the Atlas and Johnson's straps until Summerslam.

 

Tiger Conway Jr. - face JTTS

 

Tiger Chung Lee - for now tagging with Fuji, long-term: cut.

 

Tito Santana - no plans for at the moment, IC-level guy "without a storyline"

 

Tony Atlas - see Rocky Johnson

 

Tony Garea - already transitioning to be a road agent, he can work as a face JTTS in the tag division

 

Vince McMahon - Main commentator

 

Vince McMahon Sr - Senior will take the Jack Tunney role as a the President of the Company. But in the tradition of Willie Ginzenberg, he'll very seldom actually appear on air

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JTTS booking pattern

 

Since I will be booking to my formula, the jobbers and JTTS will be on a set rota.

 

Every week has more or less 3 shows. I'm moving monthly MSG shows to Saturdays week 1, Philly on Saturdays week 2, Boston on Saturdays week 3, often there will be a Supercard or other House Show on Saturdays in week 4. Challenge and All-Star will also both be taped on Saturdays -- and likely in the same venue as the House Show. This will cut down on costs. In fact, I've moved all live shows to Saturdays apart from Wrestlemania, which will be the only Sunday event of the year. So the schedule now looks like this:

 

shedule.png

 

This means that every Saturday there will be three separate shows in the same building: the All-Star taping, the Challenge taping and the House Show.

 

All-Star and Challenge will have exactly the same structure according to the formula.

 

Every TV show therefore requires:

 

2 Jobbers

2 JTTS

2 stars

 

Every House Show requires (at minimum):

 

1 Jobber

2 JTTS

10 stars (assuming Special attraction is a 1 vs 1)

 

This means that in any given week, 6 JTTS will be involved. The pattern will be as follows:

 

All-Star Week 1

 

1. Face JTTS 1 over heel jobber

2. [star showcase]

3. Heel star over Face JTTS 2

 

Challenge Week 1

 

1. Heel JTTS 1 over face jobber

2. [star showcase]

3. Face star over Heel JTTS 2

 

House Show Week 1

 

1. Face JTTS 1 over heel jobber

2. Heel star over face JTTS 3

 

Note that in this example week, Face JTTS 1 has had two victories. This sets him up for job duty next week, and by the same token face JTTSs 2 and 3 get built back up over the next couple of weeks. Like so:

 

All-Star Week 2

 

1. Face JTTS 2 over heel jobber

2. [star showcase]

3. Heel star over Face JTTS 1

 

Challenge Week 2

 

1. Heel JTTS 2 over face jobber

2. [star showcase]

3. Face star over heel JTTS 3

 

House Show Week 2

 

1. Heel JTTS 1 over face jobber

2. Face star over heel JTTS 3

 

All-Star Week 3

 

1. Face JTTS 3 over heel jobber

2. [star showcase]

3. Heel star over Face JTTS 2

 

Challenge Week 3

 

1. Heel JTTS 3 over face jobber

2. [star showcase]

3. Face star over heel JTTS 1

 

House Show Week 3

 

1. Face JTTS 2 over face jobber

2. Heel star over face JTTS 1

 

In essence the face JTTS crew work All-Star and odd-numbered House shows, the heel JTTS crew work Challenge and the even-numbered House shows.

 

Because of this booking pattern, exactly WHO these six are is important. Need three solid JTTS guys on either side to form the core crew.

 

I will make this initial selection now. If any of them start failing, I can scout for other talent.

 

Face JTTS crew:

 

Face JTTS 1 = SD Jones

Face JTTS 2 = Brian Blair

Face JJTS 3 = Eddie Gilbert -- will see how he does, this might be Strongbow's slot after he drops the tag strap

 

Heel JTTS crew:

 

Heel JTTS 1 = Johnny Rodz

Heel JTTS 2 = Butcher Vachon

Heel JTTS 3 = Rene Goulet

 

The heel side is looking a bit stronger than the face side, so I may replace Blair. Let's see how he does though.

 

This means that the remaining JTTS on the roster will all work tags:

 

Bob Bradley and Invader #1

Johnny Riveria and Jose Luis Riveria

Iron Mike Sharpe and Alexis Smirnoff (??)

Tiger Conway Jr and Tony Garea

 

Hmmmmm, at least half of these eight guys are looking for the chop. Yes, I think: Tiger Conway Jr, Alexis Smirnoff, Bob Bradley and Invader #1 ...

 

tumblr_mjmqno1u2q1s2sfl8o1_400.gif

 

No use for those four guys. Not when I have Fuji/Lee and the Samoans around.

 

For the time being Garea can tag with Hennig as a face JTTS team. The Riveras can handle the heel JTTS side of things.

 

Iron Mike Sharpe looks like the odd man out, but I am not a fan of Butcher Vachon and may end up giving that slot to Sharpe. For the time being though ... he'll be on pure jobber duty.

 

This leaves my pure jobbers as:

 

Charlie Fulton (face)

Frankie Williams (face)

Iron Mike Sharpe (heel)

Israel Matia (heel)

 

I'm not familiar with Matia but don't like the idea of him taking up a valuable place on this roster. I am going to see if I can get Mike Jackson to come in. He's currently unemployed.

 

jackson.png

 

I've made him an offer.

 

If he accepts. Matia is history and Fulton can work as the other heel jobber.

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Scouring the unemployed market

 

I don't really want to be sharing wrestlers with other promotions and wherever possible will be tying up exclusive contracts and eventually written deals. The midcard is looking a bit thin, so I want to see who I can pick up on the cheap by seeing who is currently out of work.

 

Let's see what notable names are about ...

 

Dominic Denucci - although Titans legend Dom has just retired, it wouldn't take much for him to don the tights again. I've made him an offer. He's asked for a reduced schedule because of his declining health. Oh look who approves of the idea ...

 

denucci.png

 

I've got to find a role for him. I'm thinking opening match of Wrestlemania ... Dominic vs. The Baron for one last time! Made him an exclusive PPA over.

 

Earl Hebner - better ref than Dave. And the two Dicks aren't getting any younger. Made him an exclusive PPA over.

 

Doug Somers - hmmm, he has heel JTTS written all over him and I'm not overly keen on Rene Goulet. Made him an exclusive PPA over.

 

Gary Michael Capetta - but of course, who else is going to do the intros on the Philly cards? Made him an exclusive PPA over.

 

Haystacks Calhoun -- hmmmm, he's retired and at 48 is old but I'd like to see him in a special attraction, perhaps even tag him up with Andre. Made him an offer for THREE appearances.

 

Jerry Valiant - the tag ranks are looking alright, but Atlas and Johnson will need contenders, especially after I get rid of Tiger Chung Lee and the Samoans. For now I've just shortlisted Jerry -- Johnny V is also available but he's retired and I think injured -- but if I could theoretically get him to wrestle, they could come in and do a job, and know the territory well. Jerry can also transition into a JTTS slot if need be. Low priority acquisition.

 

Killer Kowolski - he's retired, but with a psychology rating of 95 looks like he'd be a terrific road agent, made him an offer to do just that. Also, I could always ask him to step in the ring if things get desperate!

 

Paul Boesch - hmm, he's 70 and I have a lot of road agents and George Scott is around. I won't bother him.

 

Roy Shire - as above, also Shire is a difficult personality and could cause trouble in the locker room.

 

Spiros Arion - hmmm, he's 46 now and retired, but he's over in the territory and could still work and he has had successful runs in the past. I think I'll try to bring him in as a short-term challenger for Backlund. Offered 3-month deal on light schedule.

 

Tor Kamata - another Titans legend, semi-retired. He might make a better partner for Mr. Fuji. Shortlisted, but holding off on offer for now.

 

Toru Tanaka - OR I could bring in Fuji's proper long-term 70s partner. He's 52 and is still fully active. I want to fire Tiger Chung Lee badly, so I've made Tanaka a 6-month offer to work tags with Fuji. He's on a reduced schedule because of his age.

 

And that's it.

 

Pretty slim pickings there. Beyond these guys it was very weak names. Guys like George Wells or Terry Orndorff. Sal Bellomo. No hopers.

 

The roster is feeling very old to me. It looks like I'm going to be forced to try to poach some talent from other promotions ...

 

EDIT: Oh, Arion, Tanaka and Calhoun all said they didn't want to come and feel the WWF are "too small". Really? Well fuck you then.

 

On top of that Vinnie Jr has spoken ...

 

vince.png

 

Wow, ha ha ha, very nasty about David Sammartino -- well no worries boss, I have no plans for the punk kid. And I'd never hire a luchadore anyway! Does this mean I should fire Mil Mascaras?

 

RE-EDIT: Dominic, Capetta, Hebner, Kowolski, Mike Jackson, and Doug Somers have all signed though.

 

Somers takes Goulet's place as a heel JTTS and Goulet becomes a heel pure jobber.

 

Israel Matia - fired

Charlie Fulton - fired

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Week 1 (Jan, Week 1)

 

After all of that, I have now completed my first week of booking. A fairly unremarkable week really. Just need to get these first few out of the way, until I can start bringing in the talent I really want to push.

 

This week's Challenge and All-Star were both the definition of "nothing" shows. I messed up my booking pattern by accidentally putting the star heel over on Challenge and the face over on All-Star. I also realised that firing Charlie Fulton has left me one jobber short. Rene Goulet was also working elsewhere tonight so Iron Mike Sharpe had a lot to do.

 

challenge_1.png

 

allstar1.png

 

I noticed the logo for All-Star there says "All American". I think I'm going to change the name of the show to WWF Superstars. I prefer the idea of that being the A-Show. And AWA also have a show called All-Stars.

 

I ended up just sticking the Three Wise Men on Billy Graham's "Superstar's Supershow" on both TV shows. And looking at it I'm thinking I need an adjustment to the booking pattern:

 

Only Superstars will have the Superstar's Supershow -- it's a nice tie-in with the name and it's the "A show". Challenge will plug the gap by showing video packages and featuring at least one promo.

 

My first MSG card drew only 10,000 people.

 

msg1.png

 

I couldn't resist immediately putting a heel team over the Strongbows and have gone with my plan of Patterson and Stevens going on "one last run":

 

bombersoverstrongbow.png

 

A little worrying that Patterson was tired after a 12 minute match. This run won't be very long.

 

I also tested out Mascaras in the special attraction slot and had him work a 2/3 falls "Lucha Libre Exhibition" with one of the Riverias. It was a disaster:

 

mascaras.png

 

I am close to firing Mascaras. He is bringing no value at all. This is a real under performance.

 

Backlund actually did a good job carrying Afa to a decent match. Captain Lou did well on his promo. But this was a poor show.

 

Storylines

 

My plans are still quite short term at this point. I'm running three stories:

 

1. Blassie pits various guys -- namely Koloff and Iron Sheik -- against Backlund. This is a Vince Sr. style placeholder feud till I figure out what to do about the world title. I will see who else I can bring in who might be managed by Blassie for one shots or two shots. Generally will look for foreigner types. But before then, Backlund will face Sika at the next Philly show.

 

2. Don Muraco tries to win the IC title back from Pedro. Yawn. But until I can get someone like Tully or DiBiase in, the IC title scene is going to be this.

 

3. Then there's this in the tag ranks:

 

bombers.png

 

The basic set-up will be that Patterson and Stevens don't think they are getting the respect they deserve as "legends", and also don't like the attitude that young punks like Tony Atlas have in this day and age.

 

They will cut a few "back in my day" type promos, which will have some subtle but inevitable racial undertones.

 

Atlas and Johnson will fire back with innuendos about Patterson and Stevens's sexuality.

 

I foresee a nasty brawl ending up with a bloody cage match.

 

EDIT: I've moved all events and tapings now to Monday night to avoid clashes with GCW who are annoyingly running all their shows on Saturday. At least this way, I won't have Ivan Koloff and Rene Goulet buggering off when I need them.

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Week 2 (Jan, Week 2)

 

A lot more story this week, as I develop the Blonde Bombers vs. Atlas and Johnson feud. Billy Graham's talk show was given the week off to give it the space. It will be back in week 3.

 

Challenge:

 

challenge_2.png

 

This kickstarted the big feud as Patterson and Stevens come out to celebrate their title wins and given an interview to Lord Alfred.

 

Patterson: Well let me tell you something, your Lordship. Me and this man here. RAY STEVENS. Just two days ago at Madison Square Garden we showed the world that The Blonde Bombers are not only back, we're the new tag team champions.

 

Stevens: Chief Jay Strongbow and that nothing brother of his we no challenge for a team of our calibre. You know up and down the country, you ask anyone, "who are the best tag team who ever lived." You know what they'd say?

 

Lord Alfred: The Fabulous Kangeroos?

 

Patterson: What are you talking about Fabulous Kangeroos?! They'd say Pat Patterson and Ray Stevens! And you know it, you goof.

 

Stevens: Thirty years me and this man been the best tag-team in the world. Up and down the country from San Francisco to Chicago to New York. We're not only the best, we're the greatest team of all times!

 

Patterson: And I think we need to start getting some respect around here. That start's with you idiots here in the crowd! And Tony Atlas! And Rocky Johnson! These guys been in this great sport two minutes and they think they can win world titles. And you people, you idiots, you morons, CHEER that.

 

Stevens: Show us some respect!

 

Later in the show, Atlas and Johnson respond:

 

Lord Alfred: The World Tag Team Champions, Ray Stevens and Pat Patterson, had some coarse words for you earlier. How do you two gentlemen respond?

 

Johnson: Well let me tell you something Alfred, I seen these two guys back in Los Angeles and make no mistak, they can teach you a thing or two about tag-team wrestling. But who are they to say that me and Tony have no respect?

 

Atlas: All we've ever done is pay our dues in this business. It's a slap in the face when a guy like Pat Patterson or a guy like Ray Stevens can say that I have no respect. We respect all the competitors in the WWF, and we respect all of you fans who come here and pay good money to watch us in that ring.

 

Johnson: But I want to make it clear to Mr. Stevens and Mr. Patterson that respect don't mean a damn thing when it comes to me and Tony whooping their behinds for those tag titles. We are in this game to win championships, and ain't no one going to step in our way for that - not even the great Blonde Bombers they selves!

 

Atlas: Right on brother, right on.

 

Superstars:

 

superstars1.png

 

This was a special show because it had a big angle after the third match.

 

atlasangle.png

 

Patterson and Stevens run in and attack Atlas beating him down. Stevens grabs the house mic as Patterson continues to beat on Atlas.

 

Stevens: What did we tell you, BOY, about showing us some respect? Well now old Pat here is going to show you the meaning of respect.

 

Patterson takes off his belt and wraps it around his fist.

 

Stevens: What did you think? That you could just walk in here. Into OUR ring. Into the Blonde Bombers' ring and act like you own the place? Wrong.

 

Patterson whips Atlas with the belt.

 

Stevens: Think again boy!

 

Patterson whips him again.

 

Stevens: You're going to end up like that fat good for nothin' Indian, buried in a heap on the floor tasting your own pain!

 

Rocky Johnson has seen enough and runs in weilding a baseball bat. Patterson and Stevens bail.

 

Philly Spectrum:

 

philly1.png

 

Rocky Johnson cut this promo in the aftermath of the attack on Atlas:

 

Lord Alfred: Rocky Johnson, it is a a sad day here in the WWF. What have you got to say aobut the heinous actions of The Blonde Bombers? Pat Patterson had his belt and he was ... whipping your partner Tony Atlas with it.

 

Johnson: What I saw last night was a travesty. Obviously, Tony can't be with us tonight. He has sustained some serious injuries, but he thanks the fans for their support. And let me tell you two so-called "legends", Ray Stevens and Pat Patterson ... let me tell you this. R - E- S - P - E - C- T. You came out here and you talked about "respect". Well any respect we had for you two is now GONE. You can't just whoop someone like he's a dog. 'specially when that man is my PARTNER, Tony Atlas! You made a big mistake when you two done that. When we've finished with you, that's what's you're going to be ... FINISHED!

 

Also on this card, I tried the old 3 vs. 1 Andre handicap match:

 

andre_handi.png

 

Tiger Chung Lee notably underperformed and I fired him immediately after the show.

 

Here's another little situation to keep tabs on:

 

backlund_selling.png

 

Was it Sika not selling or Backlund? If I see this note crop up too many more times, Backlund might be giving the belt up sooner rather than later.

 

On that score, I made bids for:

 

Rick Martel - didn't come, thinks WWF are "too small"

Jack Brisco - ditto

Ricky Steamboat - didn't want to be tied down to a long contract

Randy Savage - something about breaching an agreement with Mid-South. I think it was my exclusivity terms, will try again.

Jim Cornette - SIGNED!

Tully Blanchard - SIGNED!

Jesse Ventura - SIGNED!

 

And finally ...

 

ted.png

 

Okay, so two great workers in and two great talkers. Ventura and Corny have solved one problem ...

 

commentators.png

 

commentators_ss.png

 

Will have to think about what to do with Tully and Ted ...

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You'd have to be pretty subtle about gay innuendos Parv.


Also I just don't know if I see Cornette coming in 83 nor him being anywhere near ready for that role at that point in his life. A year or better yet 2 years later he could do it but as this point he just had the Memphis run. He simply didn't have the skills to do this yet.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Also, back in the day they would tape 3 episodes of each show in one taping, are you going away from that formula? Will the Supercards be close circuited as PPV wasnt really viable in 1983? Close circuiting all those cards may be a monumental task with all that goes into booking the locations and having the equipment set up.

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Ahead of Week 3, some small tweaks to my formulas:

- TV tapings are now to be on Tuesday nights. Reason? By tripling up on the house show and the two TV tapings, I'm losing some ticket sales. Also, for storyline purposes, the house shows take place on Monday nights, but the TV doesn't go out till Wednesday. So I'd have been taping angles that air after the blow-offs have already taken place. This way, the house show is always on the following Monday.

- The Syndicated Networks have continuously been complaining about low ratings for Superstars. Also, because Challenge is a B-show, it affects popularity ratings a lot less than other shows. My ultimate plan is to replace Challenge with a second A-show, but until that time, I will have to do something.

The old formula of pure jobber and JTTS matches on TV is producing low ratings.

Therefore, a new formula with a TINY bit more star power for Superstars is required.

New formula:

Challenge:

JTTS (Rodz / Somers / over jobber
JTTS over jobber
INTERVIEW
Star over JTTS

Superstars:

Mid-card star over JTTS
Star Tag-team over JTTS Tag-team
SUPERSTAR'S SUPERSHOW
Top star over mid-card star

This should hopefully help boost those declining ratings.

Also, I need to widen the pool of guys a bit more:

Jobbers:

Face:

Frankie Williams
Mike Jackson

Heel:

Rene Goulet
Iron Mike Sharpe

JTTS:

Face:

SD Jones
Eddie Gilbert
Brian Blair
Jules Strongbow
David Sammartino

Face team:
Tony Garea and Curt Hennig


Heel:
Johnny Rodz
Mr. Fuji
Doug Somers

Heel team:
The Riveras

Mid-card stars:

Faces:

Chief Jay Strongbow
Ivan Putski

Jimmy Snuka

Pedro Morales (once he's done with IC scene)

Heels:

Big John Studd
Don Muraco (once he's done with IC scene)

George Steele

Masked Superstar

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Week 3 (Jan, Week 3)

 

Boston Garden house show:

 

boston3.png

 

Not a lot going on for this show. Quick title defense for Stevens and Patterson ahead of the big match with Soul Patrol.

 

Title defenses for Backlund and Pedro.

 

Just two things to note:

 

boston1.png

 

Pedro and Muraco have good chemistry. And I might try to run this match into the ground to get the most out of it.

 

boston2.png

 

The lack of selling note appeared again for a Backlund match. Noticing a trend ...

 

Little angle there with Ivan running in for a heel 2 on 1 beatdown with Blassie barking the orders to set up their Rumble match.

 

Challenge:

 

cha35.png

 

So this was the try out of my updated formula.

 

Rodz vs. Jackson seemed a bit too jobberific for the crowd:

 

cha31.png

 

They were also completely dead for Goulet vs. Gilbert:

 

cha32.png

 

Grand Wizard promo lifted things a bit ...

 

cha33.png

 

But then the main event tanked.

 

cha34.png

 

I think that's pretty much it for Strongbow. He's shown here that he can no longer main event even a B-show. And this is another bad performance from him. He can do a few more jobs on the way out ...

 

Superstars:

 

So the new "more star-studded" Superstars ...

 

ss35.png

 

Again, I used this to push the featured Blonde Bombers vs. Soul Patrol feud, but sadly it doesn't seem to be getting that over. Soul Patrol don't seem that over ...

 

ss31.png

 

Lack of heat is disappointing. Here Patterson and Stevens run in for an instant DQ and another big old heel beatdown:

 

ss32.png

 

Patterson and Stevens run-in and attack Atlas knocking him to the floor with a pair of brass knucks. He's bleeding from the mouth. Stevens has a pair of handcuffs! And what's this? Oh, what a cheap shot, he's suckered Johnson with the knucks and is ... he's handcuffing him to the ropes.

 

Patterson: Rocky Johnson! You want to talk to us about respect? We're about to show you what that means. See this boy here, Tony Atlas? He's about to learn all about respect. Show him Ray!

 

Stevens grabs the bloodied head of Atlas and gets him into a bull-dog position. He goes to the top rope and comes off it giving him a super-bull dog. Patterson dives in with a huge knee drop. They take it in turns to slam his head into the mat as Johnson is going livid handcuffed to the ring.

 

Patterson: There's your respect ... boy.

 

----

Sadly, it doesn't seem to be setting things on fire like I'd hoped. Perhaps this booking has been too short-term and both teams needed a longer time to be built up, but I need the belts on Soul Patrol coming out of the Royal Rumble.

 

Billy Graham's Supershow was back.

 

ss33.png

 

A first bit of proper screen-time for Jesse Ventura, Backlund talks about his up-coming Russian Chain match with Ivan Koloff.

 

In a bid to sell more tickets for the Rumble, I put Andre in the main event against George Steele -- which is a huge match to be giving away on TV.

 

ss34.png

 

Since this match went only 8 minutes, it's a bit worrying that Steele was so tired here. He's not long for this company.

 

Royal Rumble:

 

rumble5.png

 

Yes, ironically, Pat Patterson wasn't part of the very first Rumble match.

 

rumble1.png

 

Seems like it was a mistake to run with Masked Superstar rather than Muraco against Pedro here. But then again I can run Muraco vs. Pedro at the next 2-3 house shows.

 

rumble2.png

 

This specially supercard edition of the Billy Graham talk show was a time fill. I cut a number of talent trade deals with the AWA and Mid-Atlantic to bring in a whole bunch of talent to compete in the Rumble. All of them on one-night-only loan deals:

 

Terry Funk

Dory Funk Jr

Mike Rotunda

Kevin Sullivan

Jim Brunzell

Jerry Blackwell

Billy Robinson

 

A few more.

 

This was just a segment to say "hey look, The Funks are here".

 

rumble3.png

 

I put Bob over Ivan in his trademark Russian Chain match, and Bob has the temerity to complain about having to work brawls instead of technical matches. He'll have "more technical" opponents soon enough ...

 

rumble4.png

 

So the culmination of this 3-week storyline was pretty fucking disappointing. This was a brutal cage match which the crowd didn't care for.

 

The Baron has some things to say about my booking:

 

baron.png

 

Since Stevens is in semi-retirement here and Patterson can no longer seem to go, I think this is going to be it for the Bombers. Soul Patrol need some more wins to get more over. The lack of heat for this feud has been concerning.

 

----

 

In the Royal Rumble match itself, Curt Hennig was the number 1 entrant and had an iron man performance, just "one to watch" for the future at this stage, but that's the glimpse of a push for him. Final four were Terry Funk, Iron Sheik, Jimmy Snuka and Andre, with Sheik getting tossed last.

 

And I thought this would be a great time to debut my three new signings:

 

andre_attack.png

 

Yes, I was able to get Savage to sign in the end -- AND Miss Elizabeth.

 

I'm glad at least something went right on this show. The surprise attack on Andre got over well.

 

DiBiase, Tully and Savage are going to be in a stable known as "The Elite". I will try to get in Arn from Mid-South as well.

 

Basic plan would be:

 

World title: DiBiase

IC title: Savage

Tag title: Arn and Tully

 

Long-term with Savage eventually turning face and feuding with DiBiase.

 

First though:

 

DiBiase vs. Backlund

Savage vs. Pedro

Arn and Tully vs. Soul Patrol

 

That is, if I can get Arn.

 

All-in-all though, things haven't been going too well with the existing talent, so I'm hoping this injection of new top talent can get turn around my fortunes.

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Week 4 (Jan, Week 4)

 

Challenge:

 

cha43.png

 

Ran a video recap of DiBiase, Tully and Savage attacking Andre. Main purpose of this show was to test out Snuka as a good headliner of B-shows. He did very well:

 

cha41.png

 

cha42.png

 

That match might also have saved Ray Stevens his job. I thought he was done, but against the right opponent, seems he can still go. I'll try Patterson against Snuka next time.

 

Superstars:

 

ss46.png

 

Big show on which the storyline featuring "The Elite" (DiBiase, Blanchard, Savage) is launched in earnest. The key idea here is to use the incredible popularity of Andre and Bruno as a "rub" to get these guys over as the company's main heels. Working so far.

 

ss41.png

 

Re-building Ivan after his loss to Backlund.

 

ss42.png

 

Finkel: Ladies and gentlemen, it is now time for a very special interview with ... The Living Legend BRUNO SAMMARTINO!

 

Vince: Well, Bruno, how have you been?

 

Bruno: Thank you Vince. And thank you to all of my fans out there, it means so much to me to hear these fans show their appreciation after all these years.

 

Vince: What have you been doing to keep yourself busy these days?

 

Bruno: Well, ya know Vince, I keep myself very active. I still hit that gym two-three hours every day. Some days me and Dominic go down to the lakes and do some fishing ya know.

 

Vince: Do you miss your days in the squared circle?

 

Bruno: Well sometimes Vince, ya know ... a man sustains a lot of injuries in this great sport, and you feel the aches and the strains and, ya know, you think "man, I'm glad I don't have to do that anymore". But then ... then I hear these fans, and I hear how much it means to these people, and YES, I want to do it all over again, Vince.

 

Vince: Do you think there is any possibility of you doing just that?

 

Bruno: Never say never, Vince. But there's also a time when you have to look at the new generation, ya know?

 

Vince: Do you have anything else you want to say to your fans?

 

Bruno: Well only that, ya know Vince, just thank you for everything. I love New York. I love this professional wrestling. I each and every one of these fans lives in my heart forever.

 

ss43.png

 

Just as Bruno is wrapping up, someone sneaks up behind him and chop blocks his leg! It's ... Ted DiBiase! Tully Blanchard and Randy Savage also hit the ring. Vince quickly bails.

 

Tully lays in some cheap stomps. Savage goes up to the top rope as DiBiase and Blanchard hold him prone. Diving elbow drop!!

 

An enraged Dominic Denucci comes out from the back. He tries to chase off DiBiase and Blanchard, but Savage catches him with a double axe-handle from the top. Shot to the gut by DiBiase. Denucci goes down. Bruno is out cold.

 

Now Andre comes out, and he's pissed. The heels bail.

 

ss44.png

 

Soul Patrol continue to under perform. I'm wondering if the problem wasn't so much Patterson and Stevens, but these two.

 

ss45.png

 

Lawler just brought in for a one-shot TV title shot here. He's not that well known in the North East, but I thought he might get a good match out of Backlund. Not bad, but not great either.

 

----------------

 

Forward planning to Wrestlemania

 

Tag titles:

 

Arn Anderson has just signed. Atlas and Johnson have been poor so far, so currently, the plan is to build up Arn and Tully week-by-week on TV and on house shows with win after win. While building up Soul Patrol through title defenses against the Wild Samoans, Patterson and Stevens and whoever else.

 

Arn and Tully come out of WM with the titles.

 

IC title:

 

Pedro vs. Muraco seems like a very stale holding pattern. The ultimate idea is to get the IC title on Savage. However, I have other plans for Savage at Mania.

 

Will keep it on Pedro for the time being. With him vs. Muraco at WM, Pedro wins. Savage to take the title at Summerslam.

 

World title:

 

The main plan here is for Blassie to bring in guys I'd acquire through talent trades for 1-shots or 2-shots to keep Backlund's momentum up.

 

He's gone through Ivan Koloff and Iron Sheik already, but they can both have a couple more shots. Will see if I can bring in guys like Abdullah. Whatever heels are out there.

 

Plan for Wrestlemania? Again, the ultimate plan is to get the belt off Backlund and onto DiBiase -- who will eventually then drop it to a turned Savage.

 

But that's a long way off (Ted to win at Summerslam?). I might try to bring in someone like Terry Funk for Backlund at Wrestlemania. Or how about an hour broadway with Dory to send everyone to sleep? ;)

 

The other thing I'm thinking about is maybe turning Backlund heel and have Snuka beat him for it. With Snuka vs. DiBiase at Summerslam. We'll see.

 

Special featured feud:

 

I won't reveal the details of it all yet, but ultimately it should culminate with DiBiase and Savage vs. Bruno and Andre at Wrestlemania in a cage.

 

I haven't decided yet which way to go with that match. Either:

 

1. It's the blow off with the faces finally coming out on top after weeks of being tortured by the dickish heels.

 

or

 

2. The faces put over the heels HUGE and make them "made men" in the promotion.

 

For the long-term I like option 2, but in terms of the angle 1. feels more "right".

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Week 5 (Feb, Week 1)

 

MSG House Show:

 

msg50.png

 

Basically just a placeholder show with not a lot going on. The should be the last house show before the new guys (Ted, Savage etc.) get into the ring.

 

msg51.png

 

Patterson looks like he's truly done. This match was 12 minutes and he was still knackered. Ironically, this was better than their big blow-off match.

 

msg52.png

 

I'm honestly itching to get this IC belt off Pedro. I might just have Savage beat him at a random house show rather than wait for a big event. Savage can still be part of the Bruno angle as IC champ.

 

msg53.png

 

These Backlund matches aren't doing that great either. I mean this will do for a nothing show, but attendance has been going down. Less than 7,000 at MSG is poor.

 

Challenge:

 

cha50.png

 

I'm starting to see the use of a B-show. You can use it to try out different guys without a lot of penalties. Here, I'm testing out Billy Graham in the ring to see if El Borica's idea might fly.

 

cha51.png

 

Visibly tired after 12 minutes isn't a good sign. The match with Backlund would probably be better than this, but probably not good enough. Graham seems best used as the host of the talk show. He's still over, and has good mic skills, but he looks done in the ring.

 

Superstars:

 

ss50.png

 

Ironically, this TV taping drew more people than the last MSG show. This show was mainly about pushing the big storyline with Bruno and the new heel stable "The Elite".

 

ss51.png

 

Graham: Ted DiBiase, the world wants to know, brother, can you explain the heinous actions of you and your associates over the past couple of weeks? First you attack the big man, Andre, at the Royal Rumble, brother. And then, the main man himself, Bruno Sammartino.

 

DiBiase: I want you to listen very carefully to what I'm going to say to you. You see, we here myself, The Macho Man Randy Savage, Tully Blanchard, and our newest arrival, Arn Anderson we, all four of us ...

 

Graham: I'm listenin', brother.

 

DiBiase: We understand what this place is all about. 1979 I came up here. I was a young punk, I was just paying my dues back then. And when I came up here. It was all "Bruno Sammartino this, Andre the Giant that". And everywhere you turn there's a stooge: An Arnold Skaaland here, a Dominic Denucci there. Chief Jay Strongbow Guys who have been here so long they are part of the furniture. I swear I saw Tony Garea's got cobwebs in that big crop of hair he's got!

 

Savage: Oh yeah!!

 

DiBiase: And let me tell you something. Well, Superstar Graham, you know as good as anyone. You drive down that road, you go out there to Texas, to Minnesota, to Florida and down there, they know what REAL wrestling is all about! REAL wrestling. The fans up here, in Madison Square Garden, in Philadelphia, in Boston all across these towns. Wherever you go it's "Bruno Sammartino". And you got this two-bit champion Bob Backlund. Well, they've got this place locked up very well. But I'm going to let you in on a CONSPIRACY, Billy Graham. You go back down through all the record books. Who did Bruno ever beat? Some Greek guy no ones ever heard of? He stayed up here and never faced any of the REAL wrestlers from all over this country because Bruno was scared he was going to be FOUND out.

 

Savage: Oh yeah, you're gonna be found out Sammartino.

 

DiBiase: I want to tell you people here something. See, me, my father was a wrestler. And this man here, Randy Savage, HIS father was a wrestling man. He grew up in wrestling his whole life. And this man here, my good friend, Tully Blanchard, HIS father was a wrestling man. And HE been around wrestling his whole life. And Arn Anderson, he's from one of the proudest wrestling families this country has ever seen! And YOU people here, you New York people, who think you know everything. You know NOTHING. WE are wrestling. Us. Bruno is nothing. You go down to St. Louis, they've never heard of him. You go to Houston, "who's that?" Go to Atlanta. Go to Florida. But go to those places and say "DiBiase". Say "Blanchard". Say "Poffo". Say "ANDERSON". And look at the respect in those people's eyes. You've got a cartoon champion for a CARTOON CITY. And were here to say enough is enough! It's time for you to GROW UP and learn about what wrestling is all about!

 

Savage: Oh yeah! There's something hit the WWF brothers, and it ain't no flash in the pan oh no! Smell that. Smell the air. That's the wind CHANGE, Oh yeah!

 

Anderson: You know, Ted DiBiase, you just about made a grown man cry. And these people here. These people who are booing now and clamouring for their Bruno, one day. ONE DAY, they'll understand exactly what you were talking about. And I've got a message for all you so-called wrestlers who have been hiding up here for so long: reputation don't mean a damn thing when you're getting your bones broken by someone who has a PhD in Pain Studies. You understand? I don't care, how long you've been here. I don't care if all these people cry like the little girls they are, were going to be coming for you. And there ain't nowhere to hide no more!

 

Blanchard: Amen to all of that. But what my esteemed associates forgot to mention is were also here to make this joint a little more classy if you know what I mean. Were going to teach you people something about style and something about the finer things in life. Didn't anyone tell you that its 1983? How about you get with the programme? No one goes to the disco anymore, Tony. And Sinatra ain't cool anymore, Bruno. Its unbelievable the state these people are in. You wouldnt know class if it hit you in the face! So were going to have to do more than hit you in the face.

 

Savage: Oh yeaahhhhhh!

 

Graham: Well, brothers, you cats have said it all, and now everyone, the world, wants to know what Bruno Sammartino is going to say in reply

 

ss52.png

 

Because ratings keep sliding, I'm putting title matches on TV for free with Bob against random opponents. Masked Superstar wasn't doing much so he'd do -- and this is probably Bob's best match since I've been booking.

 

In fact, this was the best show overall since I've been booking and the first not to "lose me popularity" in the Tri-State region.

 

The booking of the Andre and Bruno vs. The Elite feud has been going to plan. DiBiase, Savage, Blanchard and Anderson all have great momentum and not one of them has even had a match yet.

 

However, this is going to be a tricky balancing act because while they have momentum, none of them are particularly over in the region and that is going to take time to build up. DiBiase is the most over because of his run from 79, but Savage, Anderson and Blanchard are all more or less unknowns in New York. These guys are going to have to steamroller some of the old guard in the run-up to Wrestlemania.

 

--------------

 

Some other strategic thinking

 

The TV networks and PPV carriers have opened up for proposals, but none of them want to talk to me. This is because the WWF is still considered a "regional" company and needs to grow to being "cult" status -- I can do this fairly easily by increasing popularity in New England a bit more. This is just a matter of time since Superstars goes out nationwide. But I'm also running the Boston Gardens once a month which should help too.

 

I am a little worried that Vince is going to fire me though. My approval rating with him has dropped to "Very Low". In my first month, the company LOST $90k. In addition, I somehow failed his goal to stop David Sammartino from gaining popularity. I'm not sure how exactly since I've barely used him. But that's pissed Vince off and I'm treading on ice ...

 

I might find myself booking for Dick the Bruiser's WWA or Central States before long if things don't turn around soon.

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Week 6 (Feb, Week 2)

 

Philly Spectrum House Show:

 

ph60.png

 

Another really shitty crowd at the Spectrum. These house show numbers aren't good. Going to need to depart from the Vince Sr loop I think. The company just isn't doing well enough to run these big venues every week. Less than 50% full at the Spectrum.

 

Note that Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard made their in-ring debuts for me here. More on that in a moment.

 

ph61.png

 

Pedro continues to underperform as IC champ. Just not good enough. I am not sure he can make it all the way to Wrestlemania. Here he is with an opponent against whom he has good chemistry and he still can't get a good match out of it. These semi-main matches are important. This is dragging the whole show rating down.

 

ph62.png

 

Backlund doing a little better, but I'm sick of seeing that no-selling note in his matches. AND in order to grow these matches have to be better on top.

 

Challenge:

 

cha60.png

 

So I'm using this show to push the new heels and get them over with the crowds. The main problem at the moment is that the crowd ONLY care about these guys as far as they care about Andre and Bruno. They don't care about them in their own right. Take a look at the notes on these matches:

 

cha62.png

 

"Completely devoid of heat" means they don't care about Arn at all in his own right. They only care in terms of what's happening to Bruno.

 

cha63.png

 

Same deal. "Non-existent crowd heat".

 

cha64.png

 

And again. Incidentally, Mil Mascaras is very close to being fired:

 

cha61.png

 

He complained about doing this job. I will have members of The Elite go over him clean again and again and then I'll fire him.

 

cha65.png

 

DiBiase is the most over of the four because the New York fans know him a bit more. He also had the luxury of working with Strongbow here, who is a bit more over than the other faces on this card.

 

But it's promising to see him getting a rating like this against an opponent he doesn't click with in his first match.

 

Superstars:

 

ss60.png

 

Once again, this show is carrying the main load for the main feud.

 

ss61.png

 

Soul Patrol just aren't cutting it. Atlas keeps underperforming. This tag scene is dire at the moment.

 

ss62.png

 

Graham: Welcome again ladies and gentlemen to the Superstars Supershow on Superstars! It's my pleasure to introduce to you today, brothers, a man who has achieved legendary status in this great sport we call professional wrestling. The man, the myth: The Nature Boy, Buddy Rogers!

 

Rogers: Thank you Superstar. I'm here today because I have something that I wanted to say. I watched this show last week and saw something that disgusted me to the pit of my stomach. These young punks coming out here. Ted DiBiase running his mouth about things he THINKS he understands, but he doesnt. It was 1963. I was the best wrestler this country had ever seen! I'd taken them all on, all the greats. Lou Thesz, Pat OConnor, Killer Kowalski. I'd seen em all, and I'd beaten them all. And then let me tell you about being a wrestling man, Ted DiBiase, let me tell you about pain Arn Anderson ... I saw this kid come up here. He was younger than you guys are now. An Italian kid. Bruno Sammartino! And of all the guys I ever faced, this one was the greatest of them all. Make no mistake. You're running your mouth about how no one knows the name "Bruno Sammartino". You're wrong. You go to LA, you go to Chicago, you go all the way to Seattle if you want. When Bruno Sammartino beat me for that World title, the WORLD knew about it. Everyone knew that was the man that beat the great Buddy Rogers. And now, I didn't like it at the time. I was eating up inside. But it takes GREATNESS to beat GREATNESS. You said you guys are from wrestling families. Well, Ted, I remember when your old man was up here. He faced that man Bruno many times. And he pushed him close. He died in that ring! And he was a true wrestler. And he'd be ASHAMED to see what you're doing now!

 

DiBiase runs with a pair of brass knucks and storms the set. He goes to attack Rogers.

 

Graham: You ... mani ... no!!!! That's an old man!! NOO!

 

Graham goes to block DiBiase's punch, but Arn Anderson comes flying in with a football tackle. And Tully Blanchard comes from behind the set to hold Graham down. DiBiase lays a punch on Rogers as Savage emerges from behind and scoops Rogers out of his chair. DiBiase performs a fist drop with the brass knucks onto the now bloodied Rogers.

 

Bruno has seen enough and runs in. All four heels clear the set and run away. Bruno arrives but its too late. Buddy Rogers is in a pool of blood on the floor. Billy Graham is still staggering from the ambush.

 

Bruno roars out a cry of pain.

 

Bruno: ARGGHHHHH!!!!!!

 

He is almost in tears at this scene. He lifts up Rogers's head to check to see if hes okay. Medics arrive with a stretcher. Bruno is beside himself.

 

ss63.png

 

Ventura has been sitting in the commentary booth all this time and I thought I'd try him out as a potential WM opponent for Backlund. No chemistry. Pretty disappointed in Bob that he wasn't able to get a better match than this out of Ventura.

 

And then I was hit with a bombshell ....

 

Backlund only has one month remaining on his contract. And ...

 

bobback.png

 

That's right. Bob Backlund. Bob Fucking Backlund is sticking his middle finger up at me. So he's going to jump before he's pushed.

 

This calls for an emergency plan. I had not at all thought about Backlund leaving before we even get to Wrestlemania.

 

I'm not sure what to do. DiBiase isn't ready for the title yet, needs more build.

 

This is a crisis now. Need to *think*. I'm wondering if it might not be unreasonable to put the title back onto Bruno? Someone like Sheik or Koloff as a 1-week transitional champ and back to Bruno?

 

I dunno, Sheik and Koloff have both lost to Backlund twice or more. This is ridiculous. I might have to go back to the market and see about bringing someone in. Dusty? Emergency!!

 

There's another problem too. The company is losing money.

 

costs.png

 

I think the main problem here is running MSG, Philly, and Boston on a monthly loop. The promotion isn't over enough to draw big gates at all three so the crowds are thinning out. Two solutions:

 

1. Run them less frequently

2. Downsize the venue so that it's a 6,000-seater not a 20,000 one.

 

I'm thinking about doing the latter and only running MSG, Spectrum etc. when the expected ticket sales are more than 14,000. Sorry Vince Sr!

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