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  1. #1
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    The Lords of Pain World Heavyweight Championship - 2004-2011


    Welcome to another meeting of the Lords of Pain World Heavyweight Championship committee. We left you last time with Triple H as champion in his fourth reign, making him the first person to hold the LoP title more than three times since Bret Hart reached his 4th and 5th reigns in 1997. But there’s no denying it, we’ve had a bit of a torrid time getting through the Attitude Era, with the uncertain Japanese situation not helping matters either. Joining me as we’ve traversed that difficult circumstances have been Mizfan, Mazza, Uncle Joe, and LWO4Life.

    Still, we’re into a very different era now and maybe things will calm down for us when we get going. Our first order of business today comes in late November 2004. There’s a double fall in a triple threat match between Triple H, Benoit and Edge. Hunter isn’t involved in the decision as champion. Benoit makes Edge tap while he has his shoulders down.

    The WWE’s solution is to hold up the belt. We can follow their lead. Alternatively, we can say that Hunter retains the belt as this is what we’ve done in the past in matches that end in a draw. That has the value of being more consistent than WWE, though it does allow Hunter to carry on when he’s got the least claim to have won the match. There’s also a case there for recognising one or the other of the two ‘winners’, if you think a submission or a pinfall might take priority over the other. Do you think the tap, or the fall, takes precedence over the other, or comes before the other? The way I see it there are four possible options here and working our way through this mess and deciding what the title situation is has to be our first order of business.

    In the case of a singles draw, the title definitely goes back to the champion, but this feels like a different situation.

    In life, you've got to have principles, something to hang your morality hat on, or else you're just some filthy scouser, or some jag that roots for Tottenham. I say this to mean that with whatever little power I possess, I have to find a way to fuck over Trips whenever the opportunity arises. So, I say fuck it, let's recognize one of those other dweebs, even if that brings us dangerously close to an Edge title reign.

    I don’t think there’s a clear solution other than taking the title away and starting again, sadly. I’m somewhat over the title being vacate but this seems like a highly legitimate option in this case.

    In a way, Benoit and Edg e are both winners and Triple H is the obvious loser. I don't think it's fair to go with either Benoit or Edge since there's no clear winner between them, so I'll vote to hold the title up as well in this case.

    I think it is a clear case of holding up the title. Yeah, I am really taking bias out here. Hunter lost. The other two also lost but they also won.

    Why we should strip Triple H is simple. Throughout the Reign of Terror, Triple H has been one of the most corrupt champions in history. His seeming partnership with Eric Bischoff has allowed him to abuse power that's even too much for a champion. I was always against giving world title recognition to the Raw title, and I'm all in favor of stripping Raw of the title.

    Now Rosie Perez taught me that "sometimes when you win, you really lose, and sometimes when you lose, you really win, and sometimes when you win or lose, you actually tie, and sometimes when you tie, you actually win or lose" but I didn't really understand it because I was staring at her rack. Where was I? Ah yes. Vacate.

    The verdict is unanimous to vacate the LoP heavyweight championship


    With that decision to vacate, we need to appoint a match as our next title match. If you’ll consult your binder, you’ll see that there are only four matches that fulfil our criteria in a timely fashion in this instance. Hiroyoshi Tenzan features in two of them, against Kensuke Sasaki for the IWGP and Toshiaki Kawada for the Triple Crown title. There's also a fatal four-way from Armageddon in the WWE, and an RoH title match between Samoa Joe and CM Punk. So, what have you got?

    This is actually a pretty good series of choices to be able to pick from.

    None of these are bad choices, in my humble opinion, but we've had the good fortune to step into one of the greatest feuds of the last 20 years. Punk and Samoa Joe get my vote wholeheartedly here!

    I think we have to go Christmas on the blue brand. I do suspect Ring of Honor may win out here though. It is tempting for sure.

    Oh man, of these, give me Punk/Joe. RoH is everything a great wrestling organization is supposed to be. And Joe and Punk are leading the charge. They've truly earned the right to fight over the world title. These two plus RoH is everything wrestling should be!

    It’s great on paper, but I’m honestly not sure I buy RoH as a legit world title at this point in time. Sure, it’s on the list and all, but I’m just not convinced it belongs in the discussion. I hate to go back to the WWE after they’ve just messed us around and I hate the idea of a fatal-four way being used in this kind of a way, but I think I’ve got to go for the WWE title match and vote with Mazza.

    The worst match is actually the IWGP match, and that match was still at least above average. I think I'm going to go off the strength of Samoa Joe and how amazing he was in his prime, so I'll take CM punk vs Samoa Joe. I can't remember if this is the match that Joe wins or they wrestle to a draw, but if Joe wins there is a small chance that we might be actually able to get Necro Butcher as a world LOP uncircumcised champion of the world, and nothing's makes me smile more ... Well that and MILF anal gangbang porn. Sue me; I saw it in Steve browser when I went to go visit him in Texas.

    Vote is 3-2 to recognise Samoa Joe vs CM Punk as an LoP title match


    This decision has a huge advantage because up against some of the shit we’ve let through this seems to be pretty uncontroversial, and we’re able to restore some semblance of order to the LoP title in the first decade of the new millennium. It’s a long time before we’re called to do anything again, and we’re actually going to leap forward 3 ˝ years to the summer of 2008 for our next bit of work. I think I know how this will go but let’s just confirm, because we’ve had an easy time of it lately.

    Nigel McGuinness defends the LoP and RoH world titles against Adam Pearce – who is currently recognised as the NWA World Champion and is therefore someone we could also potentially consider a champion. Page wins the match via DQ. McGuinness technically has champion’s advantage here for our belt and for the sake of consistency we can recognise that, but you can also say that Adam Pearce won the match and is the champion, or you can say that a champion vs champion match is a special affair and McGuinness didn’t unambiguously retain the belt. I mean, I think this is open and closed personally, but as I say let’s see how it goes.

    Not too much to discuss here, I don't see any reason to change horses midstream. McGuinness got us here, let's stick with him.

    Even though it's champion vs. champion, I think McGuinness has the champions advantage, and therefore is still the champion. The LoP title to me is like the Lineal boxing championship, you have to beat the man in the ring by pin or submission. Therefore, I'd say it stays in RoH.

    Nige retains. As you were.

    Adam Pearce is a boring jag, so let's just go ahead and keep the title on Mr. hepatitis. Sorry, that was a little too low, even for someone as fucked up as I.

    Vote is Unanimous that Nigel McGuinness retains the LoP World heavyweight title


    As I say, a fairly uncontroversial decision that time, which allows us to carry on with the Ring of Honor title. Jerry Lynn takes it from McGuinness briefly before Austin Aries holds it for a second time, Tyler Black holds the belt before we end up on Roderick Strong in 2010. After beating black, though, he then doesn’t defend the RoH belt within the required 50 days, which means we need to find an LoP title defence that isn’t an RoH defence if he is to continue. We only have a small group of options to choose from, two on Ring of Honor TV (against Austin Aries and a Holiday Gauntlet match) and two in Pro Wrestling NOAH against Shuhei Taniguchi and Masao Inoue.

    Oh god we got the most vanilla being since bean to win our title and … what have we done?!

    Certainly, Austin Aries is a valid defense in my book! I can't honestly say I'm familiar enough with the others, but I'm guessing that will get us over the hump.

    Is none an option here?

    Always is in these situations.

    Then big time pass from me. Vacate time.

    I would vote the Masao Inoue. I'm not going to lie; I mark out for world champions who actually defend the belt against international competition. I think Masao Inoue is a worthy challenger who deserves a shot at the title.

    Only one way to decide this...

    *Pulls out shoe

    What match will come out of this bad boy?

    * Looks at paper

    My vote goes to the Inoue match.

    And I’m only going for the Aries bout, which sadly leaves everything short.

    No match has a majority and so Strong is stripped of the title

    After six years in RoH, two matches each got only two votes and we’re left to pick a new champion. Given the time we are looking, they are all American as the Japanese calendar steers away from their main titles at this point. I don’t know if this is the best batch to choose from, but we obviously don’t really have any say in that. Two of these matches come from WWE Survivor Series, with Kane vs Edge and Orton vs Barrett with Cena as the referee both on the slate. But there's also an Impact heavyweight title match between Jeff Hardy and the massive Matt Morgan, as well as Roderick Strong vs Christopher Daniels for the RoH Belt at 'Fate of an Angel II', not to mention an NWA defence by Adam Pearce rounding things out.


    I've seen Unc refer to a bad batch of choices as a "murder's row", and if he's not saying it this time I am! The NWA very much is making up the numbers at this point in history, and there's no way I'm sending the title to that Hogan/Bischoff mess in TNA. And there's no way I'm sending the title to Smackdown to be lodged in the baffling Paul Bearer kidnapping angle. So that leaves Raw or back to ROH. Personally, I think the later stages of the Nexus storyline are better than the narrative holds, but there are still some clear flaws there and I'd hate for our lineage to get convoluted again. Hell, it's not perfect but just send it back to ROH, it'll be better off there!

    Ah, sucks we can't have Orton vs Barrett the following night as that's when I believe Miz cashed in his MITB. But it is what it is, says the farmer. Anyhow, we can still go with that boring as match cause the rest of these are garbage.

    I'm sticking to RoH. The company is a pure wrestling hot bed. We put up with a lot from WWE, I'm willing to give RoH a pass this once. Looking at everything else, TNA is a mess, NWA isn't even on the radar, and WWE's shows that we'll be right back here.

    Back to where it belongs for me. The WWE Championship match please.

    I don’t love any of the options here, but I think if I’ve got to go for anything, it’s the Kane and Edge match. I’m too thrown by the presence of Cena in the WWE bout to consider it a clear and fair way to decide a champion.

    Decision is 2-2-1
    Prime Time casts the deciding vote for the WWE Championship match

    With that, we’re back in the WWE, which allows us to….

    Hold up a minute there, Prime. I think we need a minute to discuss the stipulation of this Survivor Series match. If Barrett didn't win, Cena would be fired. Cena was fired. It lasted about 12 seconds. We have way more integrity than that, am I right guys? I therefore present to our esteemed committee that we stick by the stipulation and have John Cena fired and therefore illegible to compete for the LOP Championship again whilst under WWE contract.”

    There you have it, gentlemen – you’ve heard it, so do you vote yes or no on the motion raised by Mazza?

    This is the most chaotic thing that's been suggested so I really love the idea, but it came from Maz so agreeing would feel like sticking a pinecone in my cockhole.

    I vote no. Technically Cena was fired. To me it fulfilled the stipulation. People get fired and rehired every day. And of the list of things that happen in wrestling, this is very minor. I mean look at how many times Ric Flair retired. To me this doesn't mean much.

    Mazza does bring up a good point that the "firing" of Cena was a farce. However, since we at the LOP committee are not tied to any company contractually, I vote we continue to recognize Cena's actions in the ring as legitimate even if we do quietly consider him a freelancer rather than an official WWE contractor.

    Fuck it, I vote yes.

    I’m afraid I’m a no. I take the point that is being made but I’m not sure this is within our remit, and so long as the stipulation is honoured it’s really up to WWE whether they reverse that or not. Besides, this feels like punishing the man for the sins of the company.

    The motion fails by 3 votes to 2

    So, we’re carrying on from Survivor Series, and John Cena’s status is unaffected but I’m sure we’ll still have plenty to do. Being on RoH for so long means we’ve managed to avoid a lot of bullshit through the 2000s decade, but we’re immediately pulled into it being back in the WWE. The night after Orton wins the title, he defends it against Wade Barrett successfully. Immediately following that, The Miz cashes in his Money in the Bank contract and wins the title against an exhausted Orton, who had also been attacked by The Nexus prior to his first defence.

    While we’ve moved with the times a lot as this has gone on, I put it you all that we need to do better than this if our title is to have any meaning. It’s utter nonsense to recognise a world title change on such unequal terms. So, the motion has two parts: first, that we don’t recognise The Miz as champion, and either continue to recognise Randy Orton or remove the title from the WWE for such ridiculousness and hold it up again, even though it’s only been 24 hours; and second, that we disregard any “MITB” style cash-in that occurs after another match that day or mid-match, and an immediate review of any cash-in style title change as a whole panel.

    We keep in line with the Money in the Bank! It's a match and even though it's unequal, there is a legal contract. Look at AJ vs Andy Ruiz, all Eddie Hearns talks about is the contract. Therefore, we must respect the contract and let it slide.

    Fuck MITB. I vote it is simply no sold unless a shot is called in advance (RVD style). So, my vote is Orton is champion still and no shenanigan cash in will be recognised.

    There's no way we live in a (virtual, hypothetical and completely fabricated) world where we have to deal with multiple WCW title reigns, and we will rob the Miz of his shot at our glory. Bad enough he's being shittily booked now, do we want to drive the man to self-inflicted harm? I think not, as we here are progressive, kind and thoughtful.

    As for the Miz, well, I admit I can hardly be completely unbiased in this situation. Still, I think it's fair to vote that the title change is legitimate, we've seen situations in the past where the champion defended more than once in a night and let it slide and I'm inclined to let it go forward here as well. If Miz isn't fit to hold the belt, he won't hold it long then, will he?

    We’ve only actually had the title change hands in this kind of match once, and that was when Mr Fuji challenged Hogan. A very different situation from someone sneaking up on our champion like this. In fact, we’ve got way more precedent for interfering in these kinds of situations than we have in letting them fly. Obviously, my vote is clear because it’s my motion, but I thought it better to say that out loud.

    But I'm ok with ignoring MITB cash ins after this one. Pinky swear we could.

    First vote is to recognise Miz as champion by 3-2
    Second vote is to ban/review MITB changes by 3-2


    We find ourselves in a strange position, as a swing vote on the board means that The Miz is champion… but the main motion regarding MITB has passed, and so no one else will be able to ‘cash in’ on a vulnerable champion again, and all non-opportunistic MITB cash-ins must be reviewed automatically as well. So, The Miz is the champion, and since Maz’s motion didn’t pass Cena takes the belt off him at Extreme Rules 2011, before losing it in July of that year to CM Punk. At this point the WWE title picture gets murky. The question is, when Punk leaves the WWE the day after his title win, do we continue to recognise him as champion (a la our decision regarding Flair in 1991) or vacate the title (in the manner of Bret 1997). To put this as simply as I can – does CM Punk keep the LoP world heavyweight title, or not?

    Of course Punk keeps it! Secretly I've waited for this. To me if your title doesn't have these controversies, then you aren't a true world title. The world title should be so desired that you get controversies like this. The linage of the goes with the person who won the title in a match. In this case Punk had the title, he put it in the freezer for a week and he's the champ. Just like Ric with the NWA title, you can leave with the belt and you are the champ. It's why Vince screwed Bret before Bret left, because the linage of the title should always matter!

    Well that's a tough one... I feel as though in spirit we've always tried to follow the wrestler instead of any particular company, and Punk did make it clear he was intending to continue defending the title outside of WWE. Not to mention this is the hottest thing in wrestling in at least a decade! I vote we let it ride with Punk, at least for now!

    Let's strip that bastard. And let's take the belt off Punk while we at it.

    Punk has 50 days to defend like everyone else. I say he goes into SummerSlam as LOP Champion.

    Yes, I think I concur with the majority here. I think we’d only be hurting the belt not to recognise this as an ongoing reign here.

    Vote is 4-1 to recognise CM Punk as champion

    This takes us up until at least Summerslam, where he beats Cena and ADR cashes in after Kevin Nash attacks Punk. But of course, based on what I’m now calling ‘The Miz Rule’, we disregard the change to Del Rio and automatically continue with Punk. That means we need to find a defence in the next 50 days. Here are the options. Against Cena on RAW one week, against The Miz the following week, against R-Truth the week after that, the match with Triple H from Night of Champions, against Del Rio on the 26th of September, and then finally the triple threat hell in a cell match from the PPV of the same name.

    Wow, we got to keep Miz but boot Del Rio. That couldn't have possibly turned out better! Although now we have to think about sinking the title back into the absolute mess that the WWE title picture has become.

    Speaking of which, I don’t really like any of these options. It’s going to be a big fat no from me.

    I'm voting CM Punk vs Del Rio one on one. Let's settle this. Who is champ? Best way to do it is through a one on one match.

    All of the above.

    I decline to accept Del Rio as a valid challenger at this time, and Triple H is already past regular competition, so he doesn't register either. Begrudgingly, I'll recognize the Miz singles match and the Del Rio singles match.

    As much as I want to vote when he fought the Miz, I think I'm going to go with Cena on Monday night raw.

    Vote is to recognise CM Punk vs Alberto Del Rio from RAW as an LoP title defence


    Following his win on RAW, CM Punk continues to hold the title. We do, though, have another fifty-day window in which we’ve got to find a valid defence if Punk is going to retain our title. Do any of the following televised matches do the job for you? There's a Battle Royal from Smackdown, along with singles matches against Miz, Christian, and "The World's Strongest Man", Mark Henry.

    These are actually four choices that range from decent (Miz) to good (Christian) to very good (Henry). I'm going to have to vote for the hall of pain here though.

    Just the one?

    Well since you've brought it up, I'd also vote for the Christian match, as I remember being fond of that one quite a bit.

    Great. Who else?

    All the singles matches.

    Maz sticking to policy there. Gentlemen?

    Ah heck, yes to all. He's made it this far, hasn't he? Let the poor guy have his title reign.

    Honestly, none of these matches do the trick. But if I had to choose one, the match against the Miz. It's in Mexico so it has an international feel, Miz is a former champion therefore a worthy challenger, and it's a Raw, which is the main show. I think Punk is the uncrowned WWE champion at this time and he's a worthy LoP champion who is defending the title in Mexico!

    It’s pretty much moot at this point but I’ll throw my vote in for all the singles matches as well.

    Vote is to recognise the three singles matches as defences



    With that, we’re able to reconnect the title to the WWE title using our existing precedent. CM Punk might well be in for quite a long run, if I’m any good at telling the future. That means we’ll leave this one here for the time being and come back when we’ve got reason to intervene again. Thanks to everyone for their efforts in preparing this column. Before we go, we’ve just got time to summarise the ground we’ve covered on this edition. But take care and we’ll see you all again soon!


    Triple H (4) – September 12th, 2004 – November 29th, 2004
    Vacant – November 29th, 2004 – December 4th, 2004
    Samoa Joe – December 4th, 2004 – December 26th, 2004
    115th Austin Aries – December 26th, 2004 – June 18th, 2005
    CM Punk – June 18th, 2005 – August 12th, 2005
    James Gibson – August 12th, 2005 – September 17th, 2005
    Bryan Danielson – September 17th, 2005 – December 23rd, 2006
    Homicide – December 23rd, 2006 – February 17th, 2007
    120th Takeshi Morishima – February 17th, 2007 – October 6th, 2007
    Nigel McGuinness – October 6th, 2007 – April 3rd, 2009
    Jerry Lynn – April 3rd, 2009 – June 13th, 2009
    Austin Aries (2) – June 13th, 2009 – February 13th, 2010
    Tyler Black – February 13th, 2010 – September 11th, 2010
    125th Roderick Strong – September 11th, 2010 – October 31st, 2010
    Vacant – October 31st, 2010 – November 21st, 2010
    Randy Orton (2) – November 21st, 2010 – November 22nd, 2010
    The Miz – November 22nd, 2010 – May 1st, 2011
    John Cena – May 1st, 2011 – July 17th, 2011
    CM Punk (2) – July 17th, 2011 – ??

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

  2. #2
    LOP's part time glass ceiling DynamiteBillington's Avatar
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    Considering some entries in this series have been approaching 24/7 title levels of changes, this run was fairly solid. 19 changes in 7 years? Not bad, averaging 2.7 changes per year, which includes some inevitable ridiculously short reigns allowing for some pleasingly long reigns.
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  3. #3
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    We're still way better than WWE for the title changes, y'know. The WWE title had five new champions in 1998, we had 2. They had eleven in 1999, we had five. We had one less in 2000, and exactly the same as them in 2001 and 2002. We're doing better than they did on that score by a long way, but at the end of the day you can only work the wrestling landscape as it was.

    Moral of the story? Don't blame us, blame the Attitude Era!

    But yeah, I too am pleased that it calmed down a bit here. I back the reasoning of not voting for RoH but it does turn out to be exactly what we needed.

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

  4. #4
    LOP's part time glass ceiling DynamiteBillington's Avatar
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    I'm just looking forward to when you get right up to date & have to decide if a title match can include a commercial break
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  5. #5
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I guess we'd better hope we're not in WWE by that point, just to take all that nonsense out of it!

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

  6. #6
    Senior Member LWO4Life's Avatar
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    Or should we stay in WWE. Nonsense makes it interesting... LOL... but I do favor long reigns. But I'm happy we added the Punk storyline to this line!
    Last edited by LWO4Life; 08-09-2019 at 01:51 PM.

  7. #7
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    Continues to be one of my favorite pieces of fresh reading material. The fact that Seth Rollins won the championship before John Cena is pretty mind-blowing, regardless of how you frame it! I can't say I'm not a smidge disappointed with the decision to move the championship away from WWE circa late '04/early '05, when the picture was ripe with contenders a grabbing...but disappointment aside, I definitely understand the decision. This is a very fun series to track. Keep it going!

  8. #8
    Member #25 SirSam's Avatar
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    I must say that going with ROH made for quite a boring late 00s, a time that should have been rocking with insanity of mitb cash ins, suspensions for taking illicit drugs, dodgy endings, championship scrambles and also some truly awesome performances from the likes of Randy Orton, Edge and Chris Jericho in particular.

    Good for the 'prestigiousness' of the title and all but certainly missing some fun sauce.

  9. #9
    The Brain
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    Thank god for ROH taking us out of the controversy at last! Though now we're right back in it...

    I still can't believe we got to recognize Miz and boot Del Rio. I wouldn't have even pitched that as a possibility, and yet sometimes dreams come true!

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