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Shane Douglas


Grimmas
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Wow! Surprised nobody's made a case for him yet. Let's see -first important point is the solid tag run with Steamboat in '92/93. The ECW stuff from 93-95 was really good in my memory (probably over 10 years since I watched any of it). Liked the September '95 IYH match with Razor. And thought he was fine in ECW in 96-97, a smidgen below his earlier peak. Unfortunately I really can't speak highly of anything after that.

 

Still, enough in those years to be worth some discussion surely?

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I don't feel like Shane Douglas passes the most basic & important question of this entire project: "Is [shane Douglas] one of the top 100 pro-wrestlers of all-time?"

 

In my mind, upon reading that question, my initial thought is "no." He was an OK worker and a decent promo. Neither of which put him in the greatest ever running, in my opinion. Is "just OK" & "decent" (my words) good enough to be in conversation for top 100 greatest. Ever? No, not to me.

 

If I were to go back & watch all of his stuff, is he going to be moving up the list, or am I wasting my time? From the Douglas I have seen, which includes a lot of his ECW run & his Steamboat tags, I feel it would be a waste of time. Is his Dean Douglas run in WWE going to raise his stock that much? Doubtful.

 

A lot of this for me is a gut feeling. If you've seen a lot of a guy (or gal) and ask yourself that initial question, if it's not at least a "maybe" or "I need to see more" that pretty much takes them out of the running for me. Cutting to 100 people is HARD. Sure, when all is said and done, the 90-100 on a personal list might not matter all too much but it will certainly affect an overall PWO list.

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I agree that getting down to 100 is very difficult. I think I asked this last year regarding someone else with a lengthy ECW stint (can't remember who) - generally, does much of the work there hold up?

 

Cue Grimmas and Dylan beating me over the head <_>

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To me? No, not really. I've sort of become desensitized to a lot of the "hardcore" stuff over time & it's very hard, if not impossible, to put myself into the time frame again to appreciate it in the moment. When I was seeing table spots & whatnot as a teenager, it was fresh & new.. it covered up a lot of weakness of a lot of the roster. Rob Van Dam, for example, when I try to watch now, is just all stalling, taunting & setting up the next contrived spot. Be it with a chair, with a table, both, whatever.

 

There are some people in ECW that I think still have value. The likes of someone like Tajiri or 2 Cold Scorpio comes to mind but it's usually because of work they did elsewhere.

 

Another big point to consider is how much innovation factor into how it affects your enjoyment of a worker? Sabu was doing things no one else was doing before others thought of them for a long time. Does that make him be remembered more fondly? Or would that still put him behind the likes of an original Sheik or even Abdullah the Butcher? Ya know? I'm also firmly in the "Abby sucked shit" camp. :lol:

 

It's tough. I loved ECW in the moment but I don't think the majority of it holds up to me now. The bar has been raised for me. I expect more from my pro-wrestling that some hardcore spots can't really give me.

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Come on Parv. If jdw waltzed into this thread and wrote that you'd have a fit.

 

At least tell us what you've watched of Douglas, and workers with whom you'd equate him.

 

More generally, I'd love to hear some discussion about his ECW run. Again, haven't watched it in ages, so not sure how it holds up.

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I've probably got Shane Douglas below Terry Taylor as a worker, and I'm not one of these guys who is particularly high on Taylor.

 

What I will say is that before the final voting I'm going to do an ECW power run mostly for the purposes of Terry Funk, but also so I can think twice about guys on the fringes of my 100 like Mick Foley. I am not against including Douglas (or indeed New Jack) matches in that run, but both of them have very little chance of making the cut.

 

When I have people like Bob Backlund in my 80-100 range, in all seriousness, what chance does someone like Douglas have?

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In 96 I easily take Douglas over Michaels (in pretty much every category, work, character, promos, angles).

 

As far as minor past-his-prime acomplishements, he was the saving grace of awful dance partners in mid 00's, when he got watchable matches out of awful feuds. I should check out his TNA stint one of these days, just to see if there's something there. (answer : no)

 

All in all, Douglas is pretty underrated at this point. Can't wait to listen to Austin's two-part podcast with him too.

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  • 6 years later...

One of the aspects of a project like this is that you can end up going down some pretty random rabbit holes in your watching, and that's exactly what I found myself doing with Shane Douglas of all people. Don't think it's highlighted he's got a case of making a top 100 of all time, but he's had periods - like when he returns from the awful Dean Douglas run to ECW in 96 - when he is a really dynamic performer, but a lot of that comes from his promos and the way he carries himself rather than too much of the in ring.

I find his initial rookie/babyface runs in WWF/WCW to be fine - he's fairly non-descript, but obviously its the Franchise runs in ECW when he is at his best. As Dean Douglas the gimmick is so over powering and 1995 WWF is not an environment creating the conditions for success, but as I say in 96 ECW he is really good, although as time goes on and his body gets more broken down, to me he starts to move further and further down the Triple H/Jeff Jarrett scale in being a guy that was way overpushed as the 'top champion'. As I say, injuries were taking its toll, but as 97 goes on and certainly in 98 he's not very good. He does have a very fun match on his way out with Justin Credible at Cyberslam 99, which is better as he works face and sells for a lot of the match. 

The less said about the second WCW run, where his matches are generally dreadful, and while his promo delivery can still be decent he's in a series of terrible feuds and angles. although as are most people in the company at that point. Post WCW, there's not too much there either, one of his best runs is actually backstage interviewer in TNA, but not sure that qualifies as much of a case for this particular project... I even watched some of his XPW run where he is both the booker and champion. Again, it's not like Rob Black's XPW is an environment that creates the conditions for success, but that's again where the Triple H/Jarrett comps come in, where his act of trying to still be the dominant champion when he just shouldn't be wrestling in that way - being aware of your limitations so you can accentuate the positives is something I look for - and makes it very depressing to watch, given he was a guy that made his name railing on the older guys to move aside. 

So no, no case for me, but an interesting rabbit hole I went down nonetheless. 

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Great analysis. I have Douglas penciled in as someone to look at as a "possibly" but your post really echoes a lot of my thoughts on him. I have been a bit higher on his rookie era but some of it falls flat too. I was really enjoying digging into the Hollywood Blonds feud with him and Steamboat for a while there. He won't be a high priority for my GWE viewing but I won't rule him out 100% at this point.

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I really like the stuff with Steamboat. I think it is pretty underrated actually, and Shane has his moments in ECW, but injuries caught up with him sometime between 96 and 97 and he's just a different guy at that point.

I'm with Clayton, I made a list last year of people I'm considering and he's on it, but it's a rather big list, and I don't think he sniffs the top 100, but I'm not ruling it out. 

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  • 1 month later...

I followed Shane growing up, and as a clean cut babyface he was fine (although the fans changed and booed him) but not as good as people like Santana, Martel, Morton, Steamboat, or even Zenk. 

As an obsessed ECW fan, I never bought into him being The Franchise, not with Sabu, Taz, RVD, and others on that roster. Raven, Tommy Dreamer, Sandman, New Jack, Foley, etc had better character work. Guys like Too Cold, Dean, Eddy, Benoit, Jericho, all outclassed Shane.

I wasn't excited about his matches. He was pretentious- like Triple H and FTR- to showcase "real wrestling" but he wasn't as good as he thought he was. Or maybe he could have been, but just needed some better opponents or maybe not be on drugs all the time. Really fell off the cliff after his ECW peak. Intelligent guy in real life.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Everything written above makes sense to me, and yet on my utterly chaotic current worksheet he's #45. That's far more of an indication of how much more work I want to do on all of the nominees than how strongly I feel about him as an all-time great... 

...but I'll share my notes from that worksheet anyway, with self-clarifications in bold. My only real takeaway from looking back here is that I don't feel like dropping him yet with about 4.5 years left on this project. Tell me I have until December 31st, 2026 at 11:59 PM. Please.  

Some observations from disc 1: Disc One Shane...by and large he’s a sympathetic mid-card pretty boy face here. Skilled but hadn’t really found psychology yet.
From a Dynamic Dudes comp, I believe. And I do think any of the backlash that gimmick received had nothing to do with his in-ring skill (or shouldn't have). 

VHS ECW Big Ass Bash; here it’s obvious that in the verbal confrontation with Pillman that both were heat magnet motherfuckers.
I last watched this VHS about two years ago and since had to dump it when I got married with five new kids...the heat he and Pillman generated gives me *chills* thinking about it. I honestly can't remember another back and forth on the mic that gave me the same reaction. 

My current thoughts: C
ritiques of him as the top heel in ECW miss that (on the mic as well as off it) he was everything HHH was *supposed to be* in the WWF at the same time. He's also so much better as a top heel than the heel people focus on as the great creative genius heel from ECW (Raven) that it's not even funny.

I listen to his color commentary on Heatwave 1998 (also on VHS but I kept this one). He puts Taz over while still heeling like a Flair* and not a HHH (who was literally telling the babyfaces he "wasn't putting them over" on the mic around the same time; there's a promo on Raw after one of his matches with Cactus on a PPV in which he says this for reference's sake). 

I also think of the heat he got (Kayfabe out of a legit injury) for what happened to whichever Pitbull he injured and how little HHH got for the same thing with Austin at the Ventura Summerslam. It all comes back to HHH for me and (here I am directly ripping from Dylan's HHH comparison thread which I have ranted about to Daniel Makabe while stoned)...he was indeed far more qualified for HHH-ing than HHH ever managed to be. Did he accomplish more than Hunter, career vs. career...trying to remove all context? I mean, it's not a ridiculous question.   

My next goal is to go through some matches from his different stages, being currently constricted to Dynamic Dudes and ECW only. I'll say this...writing this makes me want to review his case. And with my Joshi/Lucha/WOS obsessions, that's saying a lot. 

*I personally find the Flair obsession fascinating, even if I promise to never make a case that it adds to his case for this list. I won't be arguing Warrior belongs on this list because I used to fall asleep listening to his Anti-Hogan rant...I just like falling asleep with the comfort that I'm not *that* mentally unstable. 

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