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We're Number #3: A History Of The Number Three Promotions 1985 to ???

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Those original MLW episodes are going up on their YouTube right now, for those interested. Definitely trying hard to be ECW, and getting only part of the way there, but it's fun (and I'm finding it nice to have new to me wrestling from that period I'm very nostalgic for to check out).

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On 7/20/2020 at 1:08 PM, Laz said:

The original MLW suffered from the same things the current MLW suffers from, though not to the same extent: the inability to create stars or highlight names better than other companies.

MLW gave us Raven and Punk...at the same time as ROH and TNA, with ROH doing it the best and TNA having greater exposure. MLW tried so, so hard to capture the ECW audience, but didn't have the same "let's break the mold" attitude that Heyman-protege Gabe Sabolsky had.

The shows where Gary Hart were involved, though, are great. I remember there being a really killer LowKi/Homicide program made even better by Hart's involvement.

Or MLW 2003 would just do ridiculously counter-productive stuff, like bring Samoa Joe in while he is building buzz as ROH Champion, but have him wrestle under his real name of Joe Seanoa, because...

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I'm not sure it was a good idea to bring Joe in at that time. But it was just an undercard match on an otherwise strong show.

The only flaw I think MLW 1.0 had was they spent too much money without having a sugar daddy. 

Look at War Games 2003 for an example.

 

They do the double cage setup. 

 

Booked in addition to Corino, Simon Diamond and CW Anderson. Had Barry Windham, who I imagine didn't work cheap. 

Then you have Terry Funk, Sabu, Sandman and Dr.Death.

The undercard had Vampiro, CM Punk, Samoa Joe and Mike Awesome. 

Add in building rental and other odds and ins. There is no way the show madr money, considering they didn't have much income. 

To Court Bauer's credit he is more carefully now, focusing on a few established stars and finding unknowns with potential.

 

But any issues MLW had in 2002/2003 were simply growing pains any promotion would have.

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On 7/21/2020 at 7:06 AM, Migs said:

Those original MLW episodes are going up on their YouTube right now, for those interested. Definitely trying hard to be ECW, and getting only part of the way there, but it's fun (and I'm finding it nice to have new to me wrestling from that period I'm very nostalgic for to check out).

I really love the Jerry Lynn vs La Parka match. I would have made Jerry champion, reliable, over, good worker and not overly expensive. I get trying with Kojima, but I think its a mistake giving your belt to someone who answers to a different master.

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I think Terry Funk's asking price was $2,500-$3,000 in 2002/2003. So that's a shitload for one talent on the show unless he was cutting them a deal.

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52 minutes ago, Mad Dog said:

I think Terry Funk's asking price was $2,500-$3,000 in 2002/2003. So that's a shitload for one talent on the show unless he was cutting them a deal.

And I don't think Sabu, Doc, Corino and Awesome were much cheaper. Barry Windham never took indy bookings, so he might be more. 

The card was loaded with guys who could carry smaller shows.

I forgot that Jamal/Umaga was on here too.

This is not mentioning lesser names at the time. 

But Court was learning. Heck the whole thing got him a job in WWE. So he made his money back eventually.

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I would think WCCW never could be considered ahead of the AWA, as Verne was still drawing solid and sometimes very good houses in 1985, along with expanded syndication, toys and VHS releases.  WCCW ran the Von Erichs vs. Dynamic Duo for a full year, booking it so often that the Apter mags openly mocked them for the stale booking.   AWA was trying to expand, booking in New Jersey and elsewhere, even bringing in a separate mini roster of talent to serve as the Pro Wrestling USA crew that the AWA crew could mingle with on "joint" shows.  (Tonga Kid, Kendo Nagasaki, Zulu, Youngbloods, Alaskans, etc). Fritz didn't want to leave Texas, so the shows mostly stayed in spot towns and Dallas. 

The AWA fell off a cliff in April of 86....but Kerry's accident is one month later.  Before the end of 86, WCCW is using Black Bart as the "World Champ", while the AWA had drastically nearing retirement Bockwinkel.  The UWF had cleaned out the WCCW roster. 

The AWA had a brief resurgence in early 87, while WCCW had more Von Erichs dying and ended the year with Fritz VE's heart attack.  Both promotions were pretty much on life support by the end of 87.  

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