The time to rise has been engaged, you better best rearrange.
Facts are facts, and one undeniable truth is that our economy is, for all intents and purposes, in the shitter. Companies all over the country are playing the "reorganization" card, and it appears that the WWF is about to take its second foray into the world of the cutback. In the past month, WWFE announced that it would be shaking up its internal office structure. The former Titan Sports released nine percent of its workforce and placed even more of its media and branding responsibilites under Shane McMahon's New Media division.. While there is little doubt that monies saved as a result of the move will go to finance WWFE's proposed London office, there is even less doubt that additional cutbacks will be made. However, to Joe Wrasslin' Fan, the next set of changes will be far more apparent.
Jim Ross has said in his weekly Ross Report that the WWF is always looking to "streamline" their talent roster. Funny how this process only rears its head when business is down.
The 'net is running rampant with speculation as to who will be gone when changes are made. Now....my two cents:
Bear in mind, this is my own take on who will be cut. Am I biased? In a word: You betcha!
Steve Blackman: Let me say first. I am a HUUUGE fan of the Lethal Weapon. I like his work, and I might be one of the few "smarts" who say that you don't necessarily have to have great mic skills to be a star. Two words: Nikita Koloff. That being said, I am afraid Blackman's time in New York might be up. He's already been sent to HWA as part of the "Unbooked Veterans Outreach Program," and do you know the worst part? No one seems to notice.
Steven Richards: This guy has the unbelieveable ability to remain injured, rarely wrestle, and yet maintain gainful employment. It's obvious that someone in the WWF office is high on him, and rightfully so. He IS talented, and he IS as healthy as he's ever going to be. The RTC gimmick wound up hurting him in the long run, and no one was as badly hurt by the Kronik experiment/abortion as he was. Unless we see an immediate return to the "Dancin' Stevie" days of yore, I think one Mr. Manna will be coming soon to an armory near you.
Reno: Most people have forgotten that he ever signed. Which is appropriate, because few people knew who he was anyway. FYI: He's in the Heartland Wrestling Association now. Yes, the bald guy with the ponytail.
Essa Rios: Okay, I love this guy. Seriously. Rumor has it he's already been released, but I can't remember seeing anything offical. No matter what anyone says, this guy works his ass off. But, his refusal (?) to learn English will prove his undoing. Wonder what he thinks of Kaientai's "Eeeeeeeevil" gimmick?
Val Venis: A longtime darling of the front office, the Big Valbowski has been working with the development guys while waiting to return to the primary roster. Why do I think he might be cut? Simple. He went out at the wrong time and, with the Alliance storyline going on, his "triumphant return" wasn't too high on the priority list. Unless his return comes soon, and I mean SOON, I wouldn't expect to see him back at all. Damn shame, too. I dug the guy.
The Big Bossman: I was weaned on Crockett, so I'll always have a soft spot for Ray Traylor dating back to his days as Big Bubba Rogers. Injuries and time take their toll, however, so I'm afraid we might've seen the last of Cobb County, Georgia's favorite son.
Mark Jindrak: Jindrak came on early as Sean O'Haire's partner. When O'Haire was teamed with Chuck Palumbo, Jiindrak was left in the lurch and exposed as NOT being worthy of the "future main eventer" reputation the 'net tabbed him with. He's large, he's impressive, sure. But so was El Gigante. Besides, does the name "Jindrak" really scream "MARKETING?"
Bull Buchanan: I really, really, really don't want them to lose this guy. He came so far talentwise in his first year in the WWF that I think he can be something special waaaaaaay down the road. Yes, I realize I'm the only one. The Office sent him "home" to OVW (where he is a huge draw) for a while, but I hope it's only temporary. As for his former partner...
The Go(o)dfather: Get rid of him. Today. Then, open up whatever part of my brain remembers him and remove it.
Now, this is normally where those Internet types start screaming for the head of Billy Gunn. Know what? I hate him, too. But, let's all get used to the fact that he ain't going anywhere anytime soon. The WWF has invested too much money and face time into the lug to just let him go. Vince loves him. JR loves him. Chuck Palumbo should get down on his Kip-Winger-looking hands and knees and worship the ground Rockabilly walks on. Face it, we're stuck with each other.
As for the remainder of the cuts? Sure, you can speculate. You can predict that all the Hakus and Ravens of the world will no longer have a cubbyhole at Titan Towers. And you might be right. Either way, none of this matters because the Impact Players are reuniting and all will soon be right with the world.