You know, I have to admit that I really love the world of pro wrestling. Loved it in my teens and 20s, sort of got away from it for a while in the 90s, but came back into it full-force when I fell for my wife, who also happens to be a wrestling nut like me. So you can imagine what a thrill it was switching back and forth from RAW to TNA IMPACT on Monday Night. I would even consider it among the most exciting nights of wrestling I’ve ever witnessed.
Now bear in mind that I’m no TNA fan. I’d watch it occasionally on Thursday evenings while channel-surfing. But when I found out that Hulk Hogan had signed with them, I couldn’t help but want to tune in, just to see what was going to happen. Say what you want about his personal choices in recent years, his wrestling style or his work ethic..but most would admit that it was him who got us to fall in love with wrestling to begin with back in the glory days. So, when I saw him come out on that stage to that huge ovation, it brought back all sorts of generally happy memories for me. During the course of the show, other notables like Ric Flair, Eric Bischoff, Jeff Hardy, and practically the entire old NWO wound up showing up.
While all that was going on, over on RAW Bret “The Hitman” Hart was making his first WWE appearance in 12 years..something that many of us thought we’d never see. The overall show was just OK, but all of the segments featuring Hart and/or Shawn Michaels and/or Vince McMahon were electric, and it made for a very difficult choice as far as what to watch during the course of the long evening.
The title of the blog, of course, refers to the battle between the well-entrenched WWE and the upstart MONDAY NITRO of the WCW under Eric Bischoff in the ’90s. For a while, all of the big stars went over to Nitro, leaving the WWE (or was it still WWF at the time?) languishing for a period of years until they were able to recover enough to buy out and dismantle their nearest competitor. With Hogan and his new team down south, one has to wonder if we’re witnessing history all over again.
On the one hand, I’ve always been a WWE guy, and want to stay with what I’ve always known. On the other hand, TNA is edgier and with a much greater variety of tag teams, female stars, and younger talent that is a lot of fun to watch. It will be very interesting indeed to see how the coming weeks and months play out as the two wrestling companies go head-to-head on Monday nights. All I can say is, thank GOD for DVRs, or just good old-fashioned VCR tapes so you can watch one and check out the other afterwards.
It would seem that my weekly intake of wrestling has doubled now, at least for the time being. At minimum, I’ll be watching the segments featuring Hogan. The WWE had better keep their quality up, because it looks like someone else is serious about taking them down a peg, and the battle can only be good for wrestling fans. We shall see…