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  1. #1
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    History spotlight #3 Corner to Corner 02/04/02

    Originally posted by Stan Grubb, 2nd April 2002

    Wrestlers always end up on a positive or negative end of the spectrum when they are put into a large roster. Sometimes, they go from the independents where they are huge stars, to being just another name on the card in the bigger promotion. Other times, they go from being mediocre at best in the indies to being a larger than life superstar. It never ceases to amaze us just how quickly that image is created, either way.

    Hello again and WELCOME BACK to Corner to Corner. After a week break, I am happy to be back and ready to sound off on some more wrestling topics. I hope those of you who read my column on a weekly basis, continue to enjoy Corner to Corner as I enjoy writing it.

    Last week was a special look at the open letter from the WWFE. While I could go on and on about that, I think we tackled that one right out of the gate. So this week, we get to look at something that should be discussed just the same. While the comparison here is that of apples and oranges, I think the importance is there just the same.

    Just recently, we were treated to the all important brand extension draft. Many of us sat around and predicted just who would go where. Finally, we got our answers. The Rock went to Smackdown as the number one draft pick. The Undertaker went to Raw as the number two draft pick. It seemed that in the draft itself, we were treated to a different perspective of our beloved sport. We got a chance to watch the owners pick wrestlers. TNN and UPN got their very own rosters for their very own shows. What does this all mean?

    UPN, a network television station, is available to about 87% of America. People in that lower 13% will more than likely not see The Rock, Hulk Hogan, or Diamond Dallas Page again. That is a damn shame. What did any of those guys do to deserve being put on the side?

    TNN, The National Network, is available to approximately 80% of America. The 20% that misses out is partially made up for by that 7% greater coverage on UPN. So the 13% yet again, misses out. Now people who donít get TNN, wonít see Steve Austin, The n.W.o, Kane, and Rob Van Dam ever again. Now I have to ask the same question I asked of the Smackdown/UPN regime. What is the reason for such an awkward extension?

    Now, percentage wise, weíre talking about 3-5% of the viewers who are truly missing out. The remaining 8-10% should be considered those either cannot afford cable or chose not to have it. So, what weíre really talking here is 3-5%. That looks pretty small right?

    Well, if you go down to the basics, it does appear rather small. Out of every hundred people who have cable, three of them donít get UPN. Raise that up to out of every thousand, and now 30 people donít get it. Ten thousand and now 300 people donít. At a million people, 30,000 people miss their opportunities to catch WWF Smackdown. 30,000 people are a lot of people. Thatís the equivalent to a pay per view audience!

    So right there, we see a problem that seems to grow exponentially when we start crunching numbers. Thatís just considering the fan base. We havenít even truly scratched the surface of the wrestlers themselves.

    So, while it took place, we also watched as wrestlersí stock rose and fell. Wrestlers like Test and Booker T got a much needed boost while others like The Rock and Chris Jericho saw their values seemingly drop. Under normal circumstances, an extension would be a symbol of successful business. As we all know right now, business is not booming. Itís mildly disheartening to see this take place, but what can we do?

    The Rock, Hulk Hogan, and Chris Jericho are now in a position where their stock has lowered in value because their exposure has lowered. Their televised appearances are less, and soon their pay per view appearances are going to eventually decrease.

    Meanwhile, wrestlers like Steve Austin, Kevin Nash, The Undertaker, and Rob Van Dam are now the top dogs, so to speak. Their TV time has decreased, but their exposure will remain the same due to them remaining on the WWF flagship program.

    According to press releases and transcripts of conference calls, this brand extension is now going to begin production of more pay per views to suit the extension. More, more, moreÖ It seems like weíre not being told something, doesnít it?

    From the looks of it, weíre being lead astray, YET AGAIN. Wrestlers now being shifted around, the supposed trades, and even pay per view increases. Wouldnít we need to see these two entities become individual successes first? It just strikes me as odd that these plans are laid out for something that hasnít been set into full swing just yet.

    For one, we have two tag teams together right now. The Hardyz and Suck and Chuck are the only remaining tag teams left in the WWFE world. Raw has the Hardyz while Smackdown has Suck and Chuck. I am not saying that the tag team scene was terrific before, but at least there was some variety. Edge and Christian split, The Dudleyz seemed dormant at best, and the APA was pretty much just filler for each show, but they were all teams.

    Another thing, what is the deal with the championship divisions being represented on each roster? Is it really that hard to consider revising the title structure? Would bringing back WCW be such a bad thing at this point? The Intercontinental Title seems to be the major title on the Raw roster while the Cruiserweight Title seems to be the major title on Smackdownís roster. Raw has the European as well as itís secondary followed by the Hardcore title for the undercard. The tag team titles are on the Smackdown roster as is the Cruiserweight title. There are no other tag teams on the roster for Suck and Chuck to consider challengers, so does that mean weíre doomed to see them as champions for longer?

    I think it is a fair assumption to make when I say that this extension clearly has itís flaws. Itís one columnistís opinion, however, and should only be taken as such. Yes, the extension has increasing potential to be something truly spectacular, but I feel todayís fan just isnít patient enough to endure a building process. We want it and we want it now.

    I guess weíre going to have to wait and see, but for now, patience will have to do.

    Damn you Vince, damn you for making me watch more and more.

    Thanks again for reading everyone! Next week, I intend on having a format change and increasing the coverage of Corner to Corner. Any suggestions are welcome.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  2. #2
    Member #25 SirSam's Avatar
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    This guy still even writes for us up on the main page from time to time!

    How funny that the more things move and change the more problems stay the same.

  3. #3
    The Brain
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    What strikes me most is bemoaning the fact that wrestlers like the Rock and Hogan won't have enough exposure, when nowadays some wrestlers are so overexposed at times we are begging to see less of them!

  4. #4
    Member #25 SirSam's Avatar
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    Less exposure is one of the big privileges that part timers get over full timers, means that when they do show up it feels far more special.

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