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The Escapist




Vince McMahon currently bestrides the American wrestling market like a President of the United States would bestride a woman not his wife. He is unstoppable, basking in the eternal glory of his victories over his competitors, and all the wrestling fans and everyone who works for him can do is scream out for more.

So the question on my mind is, How will he screw this up?

Let us not forget that he almost died before. Only a series of minor miracles saved him from the financial hell to which he consigned Jim Crockett, Verne Gagne and the other regional promoters in the early-80's. Let us also remember that the current state of American wrestling is the responsibility of one man: Eric Bischoff.

If Bischoff had only booked the right ending to Starrcade '97, WCW would have been able to stay afloat and in competition to McMahon for the next two or three years. ECW's demise can be traced back to one thing: Mike Awesome. When Awesome jumped ship, Heyman gave Tazz, a wrestler under contract to the WWF who was jobbed out to the friggin' announce team, mind you, the World Title. As all this made ECW look completely inferior to both big companies, and Heyman devoted his entire show to airing out his complaints with TNN and wasting Rob Van Dam, Tommy Dreamer, a loyal, talented worker for ECW was awarded the belt. For five minutes. The title was then given to Justin Credible, who killed any prestige it still had. By the time ECW had a quality champion in Jerry Lynn, the company no longer had television exposure, and died a tragic death.

What can we learn about all this? Well that the business genius and killer instinct Vince had ran out in 1999. And that he's headed for a huge downfall.

Where's the evidence of this? Well, has anybody noticed the parables between the WWF now and the various mistakes WCW has made over the years.

First off, every episode of Raw and Smackdown starts off the same as episodes of Nitro: an obscenely large heel faction, most of whom who don't have their own personalities, come out and stand around like jackasses while some executive with minimal interview skills rants for twenty minutes, saying the same exact thing they said last week.

In Greek mythology, Prometheus rebelled against Zeus by giving man fire. In order to punish him, Zeus chained Prometheus to a rock and sent an eagle to eat out his liver for all eternity, much like WCW did with Mike Awesome, much like the WWF did with Booker T. For being the franchise for another promotion. This has marked Booker T for punishment in Vince's eyes, so he will humiliate him for as long as Booker T works for him. Vince will resurrect Booker T's credibility so he can kill it again, because he feels that by humiliating Booker T, he is reliving his glory of destroying WCW over and over again. He'll probably take so much glee in this that he'll fail to notice his company falling to pieces around him.

An untalented big man with a powerbomb (the Undertaker/Kevin Nash) is paired with one of the most talented and charismatic upper card players on the roster (Kane/Sting), and all the focus is put on the untalented member in order to disguise the fact that his partner is way more over than he could ever be.

An over-the-top cocky blonde wrestler who was the Internet favourite (Ric Flair/Chris Jericho), is kept around to job to someone with the initials HHH. Usually, this person is made to look like a total ass, and soon enough, the swell of Internet support is gone. I bet Jericho will be turned heel in order to boost Helmsley's face appeal when he comes back.

Kurt Angle and Goldberg also have a lot in common... okay, they have absolutely nothing in common except for the fact that people who thought WCW could turn around financially looked to Goldberg for salvation, while Angle is whom I'm looking to salvation to keep the WWF from sucking. He's my Olympic hero all right, and he should be yours too.

The Escapist

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