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 The Next Phenom

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Dr. Oznog
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PostSubject: The Next Phenom   Sat Apr 25, 2009 11:39 pm

Not the next Undertaker, but the next guy who will be given the monster push by WWE, the very special push that creates very special stars. With whispers of Undertaker contemplating retirement, it seems an appropriate time to wonder who'll take the Phenom mantle. Andre the Giant was probably the first Phenom. Even in his latter days in the WWE he was treated as a Living Legend, despite his limited mobility. In the days when Giants in wrestling were rare, not the norm, Andre was a star attraction. Andre rarely lost and if he did it was normally not a clean finish. Another important part of Andre's star aura was that few wrestlers could actually do any damage to him. He no sold a lot of offence, something which the Undertaker has utilised as part of his gimmick since it started. He sells more now than he used to, but that indestructible presence has always been protected.

The push The Undertaker received upon arriving in WWE was unlike any other in wrestling up to that point. Booked as a unstoppable, supernatural force, Taker's western style Undertaker gimmick got over very quickly and Taker was booked against the Ultimate Warrior, Randy Savage and top star Hulk Hogan while he was admittedly out of his depth as a performer. The strength of the gimmick and the heavy push he received helped to cover his inexperience on so large a stage though and it was only just over a year before Undertaker defeated Hogan to win his first WWE title. For someone who's only notable achievements in wrestling up to that point has been a USWA World Title win over Jerry Lawler in the rapidly declining Memphis territory and a tag team with Dan Spivey in WCW, the change was nothing short of incredible. In only one year, WWE and Mark Calaway created arguably the best, most profitable character they ever would(and some say ever will). Some will say Austin and Hogan made more money, or were bigger stars, but when you take into account Taker has been there almost 20 years, without leaving, as a top star, while Austin got about 5 years at the top and Hogan had 7 (not counting WCW).

There has been some attempts to create new stars very quickly, some have arguably been successful, others not so.

Brock Lesnar is a good example of how to create a star quickly, only 4 months after his debut Lesnar defeated The Rock at Summerslam to become the youngest ever WWE Title holder at 25. Lesnar was cheered against the face Rock at this point, many fans had begun to voice their displeasure over what they deemed to be Rock 'selling out' and focusing on his film career more than wrestling. Lesnar wasn't TOTALLY over at this point, but after a cracking Hell in a Cell with the Undertaker, Lesnar's place in the main event was cemented. One place Lesnar and Taker differed though was their commitment to wrestling and WWE in particular. Lesnar, burned out by the travel schedule and frustrated with the direction of his push (Bob Holly anyone?) decided to end his WWE career to pursue a lost cause, trying his hand at the NFL. Whoever gets the next big push must be someone WWE can trust to be around in 10 years time.

Kane is a difficult one. Kane was introduced as Undertaker's storyline brother, misfigured in a fire supposedly set by Undertaker. For a 14 year old, that's an awesome storyline. I admit to being a huge Kane mark when he first appeared in WWE. Like his faux bro, he had spent a few years treading water (Isaac Yankem DDS, Fake Diesel), only to be suddenly thrust into the main event prematurely, but with the comfort of a hot storyline and being booked strongly over more experienced, established talent. Then he lost to The Undertaker at Wrestlemania XIV, then the inferno match, then he lost Paul Bearer, then he lost the burns that supposedly covered his body as he began to wear attire which showed no damage to him, then he lost his voice box, then he lost his monster aura in the Katie Vick fiasco, then he lost his mask and his hair, revealing no facial damage and then finally he lost his marbles. It seems that Kane has been losing for years now, as his character has been stripped and revamped and stripped again of everything that made it work and has left him a shell of his former self. Now Kane's career can be compared to that of Andre's, who spent the latter part of his career playing a jobber to stars like Warrior, Savage and Jake Roberts.

No doubt there are many in WWE who feel they could assume the role of being the WWE's next Phenom, but Big Show is long past his best, Kane isn't in contention for reasons discussed above and Triple H does not need it, as much as he may want it. Should the next big thing come from developmental? Is there anyone good enough right now? Or is there someone else in wrestling who could jump ship? Does anyone think Abyss could fill the Undertaker's boots? (with a WWE style tweak of his character of course) What kind of gimmick do you think the next Phenom should have? Discussions welcome pirat
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Sun Apr 26, 2009 8:50 am

I think that Undertaker has almost set the bar for the future generations and it will be very hard for anyone to reach it. John Cena is possibly the next phenom, he loves the business so you can be sure he'll be in it for years, possibly decades yet. He rose up the ranks quickly backed by a pretty good gimmick and support from both the backstage and the fans.

I don't like Abyss, I think he's average in the ring and not that good on the mic either, I think he tries to hard to be Mankind and a bit of Kane as well and it just doesn't appeal to me. He basically has to wreck his body to get over and has nothing much more, I would say Kane is better in the ring than Abyss so I would hope not.

I don't think we'll ever see a gimmick like the Undertaker again, certainly not to a main event level I just don't think a gimmick like that brought into the company today would get over, no matter how good the wrestler. If the Undertaker was brough into today I reckon he'd be like the Boogeyman, brought in at Halloween and for special cameos.

If anyone in the company today could get a big push now I reckon it'll be Jack Swagger, he's the right build for WWE, he's good in the ring, he has real wrestling background and WWE seem to like that these days with Lesnar and Lashley being examples. WWE obviously have big plans for him and I reckon will quickly push him given half the chance.
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Sun Apr 26, 2009 8:52 am

Matt morgan is probably the best big guy right now. But he is just a pure athlete so it would be quite hard to get the same kind of monster buzz about him. But if they could write in a lasting gimmick, or maybe even just go with the pure athlete who is a cunt approach, I think he could be a future big stage main eventer. He is only just learning too isnt he? after being american gladiator or somthing? Has alot of potential and it would eliminate the slow big man era thats creeping in now taker is near the end of his career. Also if wwe keep ezekial on the books they could keep him training and have him as another main event bully one day, I mean he's not the best but he is one scary cunt lol. (basicly think wwe need more big guys who are conditioned and look manacing, instead of just big fattys)

I dont really rate abyss as he hasnt really done much to really wow me and obviously his charactor is shite. Maybe I just cant see past the half rip off rubbish charactor he plays but I just have not seen anuthing from him that makes me think, WOW this guy is good.

thatl do for now

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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Sun Apr 26, 2009 8:57 am

If anyone in the company today could get a big push now I reckon it'll be Jack Swagger, he's the right build for WWE, he's good in the ring, he has real wrestling background and WWE seem to like that these days with Lesnar and Lashley being examples. WWE obviously have big plans for him and I reckon will quickly push him given half the chance.


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thats how I see the future though, dont think people will fall in love with the monster types, just need big pure athletes to carry the role

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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Sun Apr 26, 2009 1:49 pm

As crazy as this sounds, The Undertakers lack of talent was probably a huge factor in the character he ended up being, they couldn't push him as anything other than a monster because he was God awful in the ring back in 1990, I don't even think their was one match I really enjoyed with Taker until about 1996
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Sun Apr 26, 2009 9:57 pm

the-gaffer wrote:
As crazy as this sounds, The Undertakers lack of talent was probably a huge factor in the character he ended up being, they couldn't push him as anything other than a monster because he was God awful in the ring back in 1990, I don't even think their was one match I really enjoyed with Taker until about 1996

Probably his match with Bret at the 96 Rumble is the first time he seemed to show any real wrestling, although I did enjoy his match with Jake Roberts at Mania VIII. Didn't help that they stuck him with duds like Giant Gonzalez, Yokozuna, Fake Undertaker and several other wasters. Mankind was such a huge turning point in Taker's career as well, it's a shame that we never got a Mankind V Undertaker Wrestlemania match, could've been good!
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Sun Apr 26, 2009 11:06 pm

I credit Mick Foley with a lot of the improvement Taker made, Mick wasn't the best but he was fairly agile and could bump like crazy and it allowed Undertaker to be a bit more hands on and put on an actual match, I hear you big time though, he did have a lot of duds to contend with
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:57 am

King Sexton wrote:
Matt morgan is probably the best big guy right now. But he is just a pure athlete so it would be quite hard to get the same kind of monster buzz about him. But if they could write in a lasting gimmick, or maybe even just go with the pure athlete who is a cunt approach, I think he could be a future big stage main eventer. He is only just learning too isnt he? after being american gladiator or somthing? Has alot of potential and it would eliminate the slow big man era thats creeping in now taker is near the end of his career.
If Matt Morgan is the best big guy right now, then the wrestling business is in a really bad way. He is very agile and athletic for a big guy, granted. However his actual performances are really quite poor, and considering he's been wrestling for a good few years now, I'd have expected some improvement. Don't even think WWE would do anything with him either, they introduced him twice, both with pretty shitty gimmicks, so would probably do the same again if he returned.

Best big man right now? Probably Takeshi Morishima, although as a Jap, he wouldn't be given a phenom type push and would at best be made the new generations Yokozuna. Best big American? Hernandez maybe, although he doesn't really work well outside of a tag situation. Bison Smith perhaps then?
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Mon Apr 27, 2009 12:05 pm

fucking hell, hernandez is amazing. how longs he had that world title shot case, do they have a plan for him or are they just waiting for an age?

unless of course he "sacrifices" his title shot to get a title shot Rolling Eyes

if 3 other guys feature in the sacrifice match, then its a bit of a sign they dont really care about him surely?

fuck me i bet jeff himself will be in the match, egotistical anus with his picture on the ring apron lol (we know you founded tna now zip it)

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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Mon Apr 27, 2009 12:16 pm

Well Hernandez has only really had the case for 4 months, although it does seem a lot longer than that. I can't really see him winning the title anyway, he's good as the big guy that gets the hot tag and destroys everyone, but the few singles matches I've seen him in, he hasn't looked particularly good.

If he does sacrifice his shot, for a shot in the 4-way then that's just completely idiotic, and about what you'd expect. Jarrett might be in the match, or they may be holding his shot off for a month or two, got a feeling he's taking the title in the King of the Mountain match at Slammiversary
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Mon Apr 27, 2009 12:21 pm

was just thinking though, he could sacrifice the whole company, which would lead to angle putting somthing big on the line.

Wouldnt mind if jarrett said he will sacrifice ownership to beat mick, then lose out.

another thing though, if he was vince everyone would be going mental at how he's making himself always look like the good guy and winning matches. He needs to tone it down a bit or turn heel or people may get bored of him

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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Mon Apr 27, 2009 12:25 pm

I think he has given the strap to Mick Foley to justify yet another reign from old Double J, to be honest, I'm past caring now, the only thing that annoyed me was this entire angle was supposed to get the the younger guys more over, its failed miserably, however whatever way they go about salvaging it then thats going to have to be good enough
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Mon Apr 27, 2009 2:34 pm

Phenom wise then it’s difficult to see someone else who could carry the same type of mantle for the length of time that Taker has.
Lesnar was the obvious candidate, coming in and swiftly becoming champ but his then sudden departure to follow his dream of American Football made it harder for others to follow with such a monster push. Now Vince will be wary that anyone he gives a monster push will end up headlining a rival company within a year so is more likely to take it slower in the build up.
Like Leak mentioned, Swagger is the guy that looks most likely to be a big future star and one that could quite easily step up sooner rather than later.
Whilst in OVW/FCW he went on a 60+ match undefeated streak and that continued into ECW for several months until eventually losing to Finlay.
His match recently v Cena showed his wrestling ability. Rumour wise there was the notion that Vince wasn’t keen on Swagger’s match v Finlay and pulled Swagger from the Mania card as a result as he felt Swagger was still too green.
Not seen his match up yet from Backlash v Christian but generally Christian doesn’t do bad matches. And he’s getting a good run of bouts v experienced guys too so that will all help in his own ring skills. After him then I’d go for Mr Perfect’s kid Joe who’s currently in FCW but due a push onto the TV screens soon.
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Mon Apr 27, 2009 4:04 pm

I really enjoyed the ECW title match last night, both of them work well together, looking for a new Phenom is just too hard, if these forums where all available to us 20 years ago how many people would have said big Mean Mark would go on to untold success and become one of the most iconic figures in Pro Wrestling history.

I do believe that Matt Morgan has more than enough ability both in the ring and on the stick to be a big name player, he is everything Vince loves in a guy so would be quite shocked if that doesn't happen soon, like Tomko, he is vastly improved from when he was first in WWE
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Mon Apr 27, 2009 5:19 pm

I can see Jack Swagger being the next phenom if he is given the right push.
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Wed Apr 29, 2009 4:04 pm

I was just looking around and remembered a guy who was absolutely huge from a few years ago (not huge as in a big star, just a very tall well built guy)

Ryan Wilson, anyone remember him? played Tyrnt in TNA as well, he is a well put together young guy and is 6"11

I'm not sure how he is on the stick and can't even remember how he is in the ring but if he is even half decent then I would be surprised if he isn't called back up again and given a chance
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Wed Apr 29, 2009 4:40 pm

I don't remember him as Ryan Wilson, but I do have a vague recollection of him as Tyrnt. All I remember is that he was really big, but I don't think he was any good in the ring at all, think there was a lot of botches on his part. Mind you that hasn't stopped a lot of people from going on and having a successful career.
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Wed Apr 29, 2009 5:02 pm

I think Ryan Wilson is his real name, don't know if he wrestled under it

I think with someone that size then their will always be botches if you want him to do stuff that would be more comfortable doing a foot smaller, if their was someone his size going about just now I'd book them like Psycho Sid providing he could talk, thats exactly how I think Matt Morgan should be booked
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Wed Apr 29, 2009 5:57 pm

Sid is Sid though. He couldn't wrestle, he botched moves, he botched promos frequently, but yet everybody marked the fuck out for him. Morgan could do with being booked better I admit, but he just doesn't really seem to have 'it'
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Wed Apr 29, 2009 6:42 pm

I think he could though, I don't really believe that you either have IT or you don't, I believe that all some guys need to do is find that one tweak and it can get them over as long as they have all the ingrediants, I think Morgan does for a big guy!
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Wed Apr 29, 2009 10:48 pm

I think that Tyrnt was before I was really into TNA so I can't say too much about him, but anybody with a good build who is 6' 11" has a fair shot of making it in wrestling!

Ah Sid, one of my favourites, as for him frequently botching promos Gunman, I OBJECT!! Mad he ALWAYS botched promos! Laughing

Gotta agree with you Gaffer, Morgan could be a much bigger player if he was booked like Sid, although it remains to be seen if he could pull it off. One problem I see with 'Phenom' or 'Monster' characters these days though, is the lack of squash matches. Look at Taker, for years all he he did was put jobbers in bodybags, as an 8 year old, I thought that shit was awesome! Another good thing about squash matches was it allowed guys time to get over, time to get a feel for a character before really going full on with it. Many new characters in WWE of old were introduced after weeks of videopackages, then spent a month or two squashing jobbers, getting mannerisms, catchphrases and finishers established before moving onto feuds with established stars. I kinda miss that sort of booking strategy. Don't get me wrong, I don't want to see a return of the days of Smoking Gunns vs. TL Hopper and Who? being consiered a main event (for superstars anyway), but I think one or two squash matches on Impact and RAW could really help get some new talents over, especially if you're trying to get a monster heel over, have him kill Duane Gill and Barry Horowitz!
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:19 pm

I wouldn't mind them using Superstars for occasion squash matches for guys like Morgan, I get what you mean, squash matches are boring as hell when its for no reason but if its to get someone over as a legit badass then they are perfect
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:23 pm

Talking about squashing folk where the fuck is Umaga?
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PostSubject: Re: The Next Phenom   Thu Apr 30, 2009 9:14 am

The problem I see in the comparison between Sid and Morgan, is that before Sid even did anything everyone's reaction was like 'holy shit!' wheras Morgan just doesn't look particularly menacing. Not to say that booking him like Sid wouldn't help mind. I suppose puting him with another big guy like Abyss doesn't really help, and he should be fed normal and small size guys to throw around for a while.

As for squash matches, I don't particularly mind them, and they do use them quite often. The only problem is, that since the Monday Night Wars, fans expect to see proper wrestling and not squashes. If a guy is just jobbing people for more than a couple of weeks, then the fans generally get bored.
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