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bradhindsight

The Greatest Wrestler Ever Project: Postscript

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25 minutes ago, Grimmas said:

How do you put a criteria on judging a subjective medium?

 

You say, this is a project meant to be about ring work not promos & drawing. 

Edit

Of course, if the intent is to include that extra outside of the ring stuff, thats perfectly fine too! I just think that it should be made clear. 

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40 minutes ago, Matt D said:

http://segundacaida.blogspot.com/2019/09/new-footage-friday-master-list.html

Look at what we've watched for the last couple of years.

And I mean, come on... an Andre the Giant/Terry Rudge tag match from 76 just popped up YESTERDAY.

Ah thanks, just what I'm looking for.

@Shrike02 It's about time I checked out OJ's catch thread!

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My personal feeling is that no one should be arguing for William Muldoon unless we magically get twenty matches of his through the power of time travel. It should be based on footage, what you see with your own eyes, not hearsay and rep. But that's just me.

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1 hour ago, elliott said:

 

You say, this is a project meant to be about ring work not promos & drawing. 

Edit

Of course, if the intent is to include that extra outside of the ring stuff, thats perfectly fine too! I just think that it should be made clear. 

Gotcha, something to consider. Hard to think about, do you include promos? Do you include aesthetics? To me, someone being a real life asshole makes it hard for me to like, so is that part of it?

I get you though, I would say it's focused on footage. Some kind of wording on that work?

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1 hour ago, Pterois said:

The Big Boss Man was quite popular in 2016. Knowing the members of the board, I expect him to drop out next time because of his gimmick.

Doubtful, i've been in watch parties of old PPVs with a bunch of folks who are younger than the average here and as ACAB as it gets...and they were really impressed with Bossman's work.

@Grimmas the Sasha comment wasn't meant as a dunk, just pointing out how much more appreciated women's wrestling is among the wider fandom since 2014.  When i bring up GWE with my Twitter mutuals they're always shocked at the low number of women in the final results.

And what i was getting at with the other part is that i see the Trish/Lita generation kinda falling off as a result of the quality of work being so much higher now - some folks went to bat HARD for Trish before, and i suspect a lot of that was due to a lack of other choices in the mainstream US women's scene.  That's no longer a problem...

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2 hours ago, Grimmas said:

Gotcha, something to consider. Hard to think about, do you include promos? Do you include aesthetics? To me, someone being a real life asshole makes it hard for me to like, so is that part of it?

I get you though, I would say it's focused on footage. Some kind of wording on that work?

 

I would prefer we didn't include skits and promos and stuff personally. The wrestling part is the universal language. I can look at the ring work from Lou Thesz to Kiyoshi Tamura to Negro Casas to Abdullah the Butcher and compare it to each other. I can tell you what I like best and what I think is best and why I think it contributes to wrestler X being great. When we start adding skits & promos, thats when it gets confusing. Ted Dibiase might do a great skit or Jake Roberts a great promo, but I don't know how to compare it to a Kenta Kobashi match. I feel different about ringside managerial work though because what Jim Cornette or Jimmy Hart was doing at ringside was very much part of the matches. But I just don't know what to do with the skits and interviews. Dibiase kicking the basketball away is closer to an SNL skit than a wrestling match. 

I'd say the being a real life asshole is kinda up to you. My hope would be that people focus on the ring work in the discussions. If the real life assholishness affects them as a worker, then its worth spending time discussing. I don't keep up with the backstage and real lives of wrestlers to know anything besides the obvious ones. So this won't really be a problem for me. But I understand if others feel differently. I'd let people choose their own adventure when it comes to that sort of thing. 

I also agree with Matt D that people shouldn't be voting for Muldoon or Frank Gotch or El Santo because we can't see the matches. There's a list that those guys belong on and we can do that list if people want. But I thought the point of the smarkschoice poll and GWE was to vote on in ring performances. So in terms of wording I would call it GWE but have it explained that its a ranking of the greatest in ring performers based on existing footage. 

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Promos and character work on the apron during matches - or jawing to the crowd during an entrance before matches - are part and parcel of judging wrestlers. This isn't a match ranking project. So I take a contrary view to Elliott's position. Certain guys climb my personal rankings because of this. It's like the cherry on top of a sundae. Two guys that come to mind in particular for this are Roddy Piper and Ken Patera; they get bonus points for how entertaining they are. It's a value-added product. Likewise, the tremendous entertainment value of Million Dollar Man or Mr. Perfect promo segments are too good to ignore.

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I don't think character work on the apron should be discounted at all. I just recently did a deep dive on a match that I consider an all time great and pointed to Giant Baba's apron work as one of the many things that made the match great. Nor do I think jawing at the crowd during an entrance should be discounted. Now, if wrestler X was terrible as a performer but was really awesome at jawing with the crowd on the way to the ring, I doubt anyone would be lobbying them as an all time great based on yelling at the crowd while walking towards the ring. But anyway thats part of the performance and I don't think it should be discounted. I specifically mentioned ringside managerial work as something to consider. All that is is jawing with the fans :)

Its the interviews and skits that are happening outside of the matches that I'm less interested in and don't really know what to do with. Dusty's Hard Times promo is awesome, but I'm not sure how I incorporate Dusty's talking with Negro Casas' wrestling in a list and rank them against each other. It seems like I should be judging Dusty as an in ring performer with Casas as an in ring performer, no? 

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Character work obviously counts.

Promos to me only count in a very specific way. If someone can cut a promo and then take whatever they did and carry it forward into the ring, the element of them carrying it forward into the ring counts. If Rick Rude cuts a promo on the crowd, gets heat, and then taps into that heat further through his ring work, that's an element I'd focus on, not the promo but the taking it forward. If Arn says he's going to take out someone's leg in a promo and then goes and targets the leg, priming the fans for it and then paying it off, the way he used that promo as a tool within the match itself matters.

So you incorporate it in so much as THEY incorporated in into the actual match successfully. No more, no less.

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That's fair I don't think there's much disagreement here to be honest. I will say some of the best promo work will establish a character or gimmick very well and then will carry over in the ring in both obvious and not-so-obvious ways.  If it's a great heel promo it can just accentuate or stoke the viewing audience's desire to see the heel get his comeuppance. For example, anyone with half a brain should realize Mr. Perfect is not throwing a football to himself; he's a fraud. So unless you're just a lifelong heel fan you should just want even more to see Hennig lose to the babyface and drop the IC title. 

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1 hour ago, funkdoc said:

Doubtful, i've been in watch parties of old PPVs with a bunch of folks who are younger than the average here and as ACAB as it gets...and they were really impressed with Bossman's work.

@Grimmas the Sasha comment wasn't meant as a dunk, just pointing out how much more appreciated women's wrestling is among the wider fandom since 2014.  When i bring up GWE with my Twitter mutuals they're always shocked at the low number of women in the final results.

And what i was getting at with the other part is that i see the Trish/Lita generation kinda falling off as a result of the quality of work being so much higher now - some folks went to bat HARD for Trish before, and i suspect a lot of that was due to a lack of other choices in the mainstream US women's scene.  That's no longer a problem...

Oh yeah, I agree and I love to see it. I know women get mistreated and under rated in all of society for basically ever, but one of the great embarrassments of 2021 GWE has how poorly they were treated by the voters.

Looking at it, Trish will probably make my list. Sadly I only had about 5 women in 2016, I am considering around 40ish now.

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31 minutes ago, Shrike02 said:

That's fair I don't think there's much disagreement here to be honest. I will say some of the best promo work will establish a character or gimmick very well and then will carry over in the ring in both obvious and not-so-obvious ways.  If it's a great heel promo it can just accentuate or stoke the viewing audience's desire to see the heel get his comeuppance. For example, anyone with half a brain should realize Mr. Perfect is not throwing a football to himself; he's a fraud. So unless you're just a lifelong heel fan you should just want even more to see Hennig lose to the babyface and drop the IC title. 

Kind of, sort of? Like, that's half the battle. The other half would be how Hennig then translated that into his in-ring work. You could argue that all of the big bumping and stooging for guys like Tornado or Warrior in 90 was a sign that he wasn't actually the guy throwing the football and he got heat that way. "If he was Perfect, why would he be flipping around the ring when he got clotheslined," etc. But that feels a little like a stretch to me. You could make the argument, but it's not an incredibly compelling argument to me. I think he could lean into that more, and I think he did so, a little bit in his 00s WWE run when they played up that he was a fraud or washed up a bit more and that carried through a bit more in his ringwork since he was lower on the card and losing a lot more?

Miz isn't necessarily a guy I'd push for this, but there were periods where he was cutting promos about how he was a star and then going way out of his way to avoid punches since he was afraid of losing his moneymaker and that became a narrative device within his matches. That'd be a bit more of what we're talking about here.

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I don't know how many, if any, American women I will have on my list - Sasha and Bayley are the biggest possibilities right now. Aja might be my number one though

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3 minutes ago, MoS said:

I don't know how many, if any, American women I will have on my list - Sasha and Bayley are the biggest possibilities right now. Aja might be my number one though

Mercedes Martinez is going to be really high on my list. Sara Del Rey will be on it. Sasha and Bayley will be, Charlotte too probably. Lacey and Becky are on. Kong, Cheerleader Melissa, Daizee Haze, Nikki Bella, Molly Holly, Shayna Baszler, Athena/Ember Moon, Nicole Matthews, all have shots too. I'll find more in the next five years too. That's just American/Canadian, I have to look at the luchadoras, and joshi is a LOT more.

All I have watched since 2017 is women's wrestling.

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15 minutes ago, Grimmas said:

Mercedes Martinez is going to be really high on my list. Sara Del Rey will be on it. Sasha and Bayley will be, Charlotte too probably. Lacey and Becky are on. Kong, Cheerleader Melissa, Daizee Haze, Nikki Bella, Molly Holly, Shayna Baszler, Athena/Ember Moon, Nicole Matthews, all have shots too. I'll find more in the next five years too. That's just American/Canadian, I have to look at the luchadoras, and joshi is a LOT more.

All I have watched since 2017 is women's wrestling.

Do you have any Serena Deeb recommendations? She's been the AEW women's MVP as far as getting great matches out of completely green talent is concerned and it's made me want to check out more of her work

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5 minutes ago, MoS said:

Do you have any Serena Deeb recommendations? She's been the AEW women's MVP as far as getting great matches out of completely green talent is concerned and it's made me want to check out more of her work

Not yet, she's just been really good but nothing spectacular in SHIMMER so far in my watching. The divas stuff I don't know too well, but I would say Stacey would have answers for you and I don't watch AEW.

She's someone else to maybe consider for the bottom, she's incredibly solid so early on in SHIMMER.

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11 minutes ago, elliott said:

Who is your top rated women's wrestler Grimmas?

Every single time I watch an Akira Hokuto match I walk out thinking she is the greatest wrestler who ever lived. Every single time I watch a Bull Nakano match I walk out thinking she is the greatest wrestler who ever lived. It flips every single time.

Plus you can't discount the longevity and greatest of Jaguar Yokota.

I don't have an answer for you today, hopefully in 5 years I do.

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I will watch every Judy Martin match on tape to justify her on my list again. Baring something amazing I can’t predict (like Sasha having a great five years, sure), I’m probably not going to have anyone who started wrestling after 2010 though.

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2 minutes ago, Matt D said:

I will watch every Judy Martin match on tape to justify her on my list again. Baring something amazing I can’t predict (like Sasha having a great five years, sure), I’m probably not going to have anyone who started wrestling after 2010 though.

Sasha debuted in 2010, so you are free to add her. I can't imagine not having her in my top half, that would be mind boggling to me.

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That was my just-in-case Reigns cut off. I’m tempted to not include anyone who has ever worked a five minute WWE finisher spam “good parts only” main event title match out of spite though. We’ll see how I feel in five years. 

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2 hours ago, Grimmas said:

Every single time I watch an Akira Hokuto match I walk out thinking she is the greatest wrestler who ever lived. Every single time I watch a Bull Nakano match I walk out thinking she is the greatest wrestler who ever lived. It flips every single time.

Plus you can't discount the longevity and greatest of Jaguar Yokota.

I don't have an answer for you today, hopefully in 5 years I do.

 

Hokuto & Bull are my 1 and 2 also. I have Devil Masami right there with them at #3.They're all in my top 15ish probably at this point with Chigusa, Jaguar & Matsumoto not far behind. 

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