Top 10 Comic Based Movies I’d Like To See…

Right now it seems that the biggest craze for movies is superheroes and especially Marvel heroes. So far we’ve had The X-Men, Spiderman, The Avengers, The Fantastic Four, Daredevil, Iron Man, Captain America, Blade, Ghost Rider, The Hulk and most recently Guardians of the Galaxy. Also movies starring The Black Widow, Ant Man and Dr. Strange are reportedly in the works. Netflix is planning on a Daredevil series and I’ve heard talk of Power Man and Iron Fist also being possibilities down the line. And “Agents of Shield” is currently a network series as well. DC Comics has also had success with Superman, Batman and on the CW Network, Arrow, while also producing movies, with slightly less success about Catwoman and Green Lantern. With all of these spandex clad heroes and villians popping up everywhere, it seems that the mainsteam world has finally realized what I learned almost forty years ago…. that the best and most interesting characters to be found, from any medium, are those from the world of comic books. They’re not just for kids anymore.

And with all that in mind, I’ve decided to do a list. With apologies to David Letterman for stealing his bit, it’s a “Top Ten List”. I would like to see more comic book based movies be made. And here are the characters, from the literally hundreds of thousands of comic book characters out there, that I would like to see featured. So here we go.

Top Ten Comic Book Based Movies I’d Like To See…

10. The Champions: Combining the Avengers (Black Widow) with the X-Men (Angel, Iceman) and the supernatural (Ghost Rider). Throw in a Greek god (Hercules) and a powerful, yet naive mutant (Darkstar) and anything is possible.

9. The Daughters of The Dragon: Two long time Marvel comic characters – an ex-NYPD cop with a bionic arm (Misty Knight) and her best friend, a true Samauri in every sense of the word (Coleen Wing). They investigate things (Nightwing Restorations is the name of their operation), they have ties to the superhero clique (Misty is the long-time girlfriend of Iron Fist), and they kick ass. What more could anyone want?

8. Dr. Doom: The son of a witch, the King and Ruler of Latveria, possibly the most intelligent man on the planet, equally adapt in both science and magic, and considered evil, but with a strong sense of honor as well. He’s one of the strongest anti-heroes ever created and with his long history, as both villian and hero, there is so much story here. Throw in the Fantastic Four, Mephisto, The Red Skull, etc… whoever you want and there is a story to be told.

7. The Suicide Squad: They have appeared in the series “Arrow”, but that just barely scratches the surface of the potential of this group. Amanda Waller, the leader (who should be portrayed as fat as she was originally and not as she is on TV now), is such a great character. Col. Rick Flagg and his guilt-based sense of responsibility. And the fluid membership where anyone and everyone is a possibility. So much to do here that would work well on the big screen. Think “The Expendables” but with more sizzle, flash and balls to the wall.

6. Birds of Prey: I know it was a TV series, but the combination of the former Batgirl turned paralyzed computer-whiz group leader of characters such as Power Girl, The Black Canary, the new Batgirl, etc. It works in so many ways and could be a huge success for the DC Movie Universe.

5. The Defenders: I’m not a big fan of the original group of Defenders, which consisted of Dr. Strange, The Hulk, The Submariner and The Silver Surfer, but some of the later additions who became part of the non-group really made it into a unique and powerful combination of heroes. Picture this: The Sorcerer Supreme of Earth, Dr. Strange. His fiance, a powerful mage in her own right, Clea. The billionaire turned villian turned hero, Kyle Richmond aka “Nighthawk”. Former model Patsy Walker, aka “The Hellcat”. Norse godess and death maiden, “Valkyrie”. The eighty-year old man trapped in the body of a demon, Isaac Christians aka “The Gargoyle”. The telepathic, self-proclaimed godess of the mind, “Moondragon”. The “Son of Satan” Damion Hellstrom. Nowhere else will you find such a unique and eclectic group, united not in a formal manner, but only by the bonds of friendship and respect. As Guardians of the Galaxy has shown, weird works and with the Defenders, weird is definitely what you would get.

4. Magneto: He survived the concentration camps of Nazi Germany. He’s been both a hero and a villian. He’s a mass murderer, but his main goal is the safety and protection of his people, mutants. He has connections to both the X-Men (as friend and foe) and the Avengers (his children, The Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver are both members of that elite grouping.) He was once a Nazi hunter, working for the Government. And he’s been public enemy # 1. So many ways to go and so many stories to tell as one of the most complex characters in comic history. I don’t think it’s a question of if, but instead when. The sooner, the better.

3. Avengers West: This is a no-brainer to be sure. The Avengers has become the most successful comic-book movie in history and most likely, Avengers 2 will be just as, if not more successful. So why not expand on the franchise and create another team. Just as they did in the comics, have Hawkeye and War Machine (James Rhodes from the Iron Man movies) shipped out to California and thus, another team (and more movies) are born. This would allow characters like Mockingbird (who will be soon appearing in the “Agent of Shield” series, Tigra, Wonder Man, The Living Lightning, Spider Woman, The Shroud, Moon Knight, etc to all be used and developed. It would be a great move and realy just dot the “I’s” and cross the “t’s” for The Avengers as the top comic-movie franchise of all time.

2. Druid: A relatively obscure character in the Marvel Universe, but he’s been around since the mid-fifties, a creation of Stan Lee almost ten years before the Fantastic Four, X-Men or Spider Man came into existence. He’s known as the “Master of the Unknown” and is a mystic, a telepath, a hypnotist and can create illusions. He’s been a member of The Avengers and spent several years “lost in time and space”. He’s cold and slightly arrogant, with an ego and slightly twisted sense of right and wrong. There’s so many ways to take and use this character. He’s one of my favorite characters to write about and use in fan fiction stories and he would make a great movie character as well. He’s been around for almost sixty years, but so much of his past and history is shrouded in mystery, the story could go anywhere… and probably would.

1. Alpha Flight: Canada’s version of the Avengers. The patriotic, government sponsered leader, James Hudson, aka “Vindicator”. His wife, Heather, who’s the heart and soul of the team. The man turned beast, Walter Langowski, aka “Sasquatch”. The doctor turned mage, the man known as “Shaman” and his protege of a sort, the goddess “Snowbird”. The super-speedster twins, “Northstar” and “Aurora”. One is gay and the older suffers from multiple-personality disorder. The tiny yet potent warrior, “Puck”. Throw in characters like “The Purple Girl”, “Madison Jeffries”, “Marina” and “Manekin” and it’s a movie that has to be made. Add in the politician Gary Cody and the overzealous military dictator, General Clark. And even a Wolverine / Weapon X cameo if desired. It’s everything that the Avengers has, but even better. It’s a no brainer and really needs to be made.

And there you go. My lists and ideas for future comic-based movies. What do you think? Any ideas or suggestions of any other comics turned movies you’d like to see? Thoughts and comments welcome.



Sweepstakes Thoughts – Unconstitutional?

Sometimes, I feel like I’m beating a dead horse here, but someone has to keep calling the District Attorney, Kristy Newton and her police-state “Hoke and Scotland County Joint Gaming Task Force” out and it seems as if I’ve been elected. Because of the actions of Mrs. Newton and the coalition that she helped to create, over a hundred plus people lost their jobs. Over twenty plus businesses were forced to close. Hundreds of thousands of dollars that were invested in starting and developing these businesses by business owners trying to invest in this county and community were essentially thrown away and wasted as the businesses were not allowed to continue. And money from customers, potentially hundreds of thousands more dollars, that could be coming into the community and local businesses, has been thrown away as well.

Sweepstakes is nothing new in Scotland County and there has always been a love / hate relationship between the Sweepstakes businesses and the local government. The local governments love the large amount of money and revenue that the Sweepstakes businesses bring them, charging excessive fees for business licenses and local licenses that would only cost a fraction of the amount for any other kind of business. But at the same time, the local government leaders hate the Sweepstakes because they’re considered “low-brow”, “seedy”, “gambling” and “attract a bad crowd”.

By the way, in the almost four months we were open at the Sweepstakes where I was working, we never had a single incident or problem that required law enforcement. Not a single problem. And I never heard of any other Sweepstakes place here in Laurinburg having any kind of problems, with the sole exception of a guy who was arrested for indecent exposure. By comparison, when I worked at a local convenient store, just a few hundred yards away from where the Sweepstakes business was located, there were incidents almost every day and I witnessed more bare flesh exposed in an average week than one would find at a strip club. So which one is attracting the bad crowd and would be considered more “low-brow” and “seedy”? Yet, I don’t see anyone trying to close the convenient stores. By the way, the convenient stores sell alcohol and tobacco products, which cause far more damage to the family unit than video sweepstakes can ever be claimed too. And they also sell Lottery tickets. That’s gambling too, right?

But as I was saying, Sweepstakes businesses are nothing new to Scotland County. We had several businesses in operation a couple of years ago and our District Attorney, following the example that was prevalent across North Carolina, used her authority to order the local law enforcement to close the businesses. But there was a slight catch to all of that. Some of the businesses had taken a look at the NC laws pertaining to video sweepstakes and altered the software used in the machines. They were using pre-reveal software that, based on the NC Statues as written, was acceptable and legal. So an arrest was made, machines were confiscated and the matter went to court.

“And what happened in court”, you ask. “Based upon the FORGOING FINDINGS OF FACT, the court concludes as a matter of law: That the “Blue Diamond pre-reveal Sweepstakes system” is not in violation of NCGS 814.306.4.” That’s right. The software being used was found to be in compliance with the law, the Sweepstakes owner, Robert Outlaw, was found “Not Guilty” and the machines that had been confiscated were ordered to be returned.

After this decision was announced, Mr. Outlaw reopened his businesses. Several others also came to Scotland County, invested their money into the community by taking buildings that had been empty and were falling apart and fixing them up, refurnishing them and turning them into workable businesses, providing jobs and revenue for the community. There were a few naysayers as expected who preferred to see empty buildings and people out of work rather than allow grown adults the chance to make their own decisions and have some entertainment and something to do, but for the most part, everyone seemed to be satisfied. Except for our District Attorney, Kristy Newton.

Even though the matter had already been decided in a court of law, she took it upon herself to form the “Hoke and Scotland County Joint Gaming Task Force” and to make it her goal to rid the area under her authority of the dreaded “Internet Sweepstakes”. By the way, I find it interesting that Mrs. Newton and her associates were so adament about how illegal and wrong these businesses are, yet they had been found to be in compliance with the law by the courts and also, there are several Internet Sweepstakes businesses operating in Raleigh, the capital city of our great state, and they have yet to have any kind of problems or complaints from law enforcement or government officials. So it’s allowed in Raleigh, where the laws are made, but not in Scotland County? Another question that should be investigated.

In June, the Task Force, headed by Mrs. Newton, put out notices to all of the Sweepstakes businesses in Scotland County, forcing the businesses to either close down and shut their doors or else face legal battles. One business owner, Robert Outlaw, decided to defy the threats and remained open. After all, his business was already determined to be legal and in compliance with the law by the courts.

But that didn’t matter to Mrs. Newton and the members of her Task Force. On July 1, 2014, law enforcement officers raided and shut down the Carolina Cyber Center. owned by Mr. Outlaw. Computers and gaming equipement were confiscated and removed from the business. So despite it already being a matter of record that the equipment used by this business was legal, the officers confiscated (I would call it “stole”) the machines and closed the business.

Isn’t there a little thing in the Constitution about charging a person with the same crime more than once? I think it’s in the Bill of Rights and called Article [V] – Amendment 5 (Rights of Persons). It says, “nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb”. So by coming in and charging Mr. Outlaw with the same charges, the “Task Force” is clearly in violation of that particular Article. But the Task Force and the District Attorney found a nice little way to get around that little technicality. They confiscated the machines and closed the business, but haven’t pressed any charges. Very clever (and sneaky). But then there is this, also found in the Bill of Rights.

Article [IV] (Amendment 4 – Search and Seizure)
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

And this as well. Article [VI] (Amendment 6 – Rights of Accused in Criminal Prosecutions)
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

So what we have here is the District Attorney and the officers, under her direction, conducting a raid of questionable legality, illegal seizure of property since the material seized was already found to be in compliance with the law by the courts, and a denial of rights to fight against this injustice by not bringing charges and allowing Mr. Outlaw and the other Sweepstakes owners their day in court and a chance to confront their accusers in a speedy and public trial.

I’ve always thought that law enforcement officials and especially elected officials like the District Attorney were supposed to follow the order of the law and follow the Constitution, but that doesn’t seem to be the case here. Mrs. Newton is playing games and hoping that people will forget about the jobs she cost us and the businesses she has cost Scotland County. She would probably say that she was “just doing her job”, but her job is to follow the laws, even the ones she doesn’t agree with or like (like the pre-reveal software being legal and in compliance), and give the Sweepstakes owners their day in court in front of a judge where both parties can argue their cases and see what happens. If she can’t do that, she should step aside and resign and let someone competent take over the job.

Think about it!

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News: August 15, 2014

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News
August 15, 2014
Doug Maynard

And it go like this right here. I hate rap! Rap is crap! Yeah, I’m missing Curt Hennig and the infamous West Texas Rednecks. Their song, “I Hate Rap (Rap Is Crap)” has been in my head all day for some reason. WCW really dropped the ball with that storyline. It could have been big time money. RIP Curt Hennig and Bobby Duncum Jr. And a shout out to Barry and Kendall Windham. And yeah, rap really is crap. Just saying.

I’m Doug and welcome to a new edition of pro wrestling’s most eclectic column, the somewhat sporadic, but always eclectic “Tossing Salt – Worldwide News!”. Yes, I know it’s been a while and I’ve been a total slack-ass, but I have a good excuse. Come by the house sometime and I’ll fix you a bowl of chili and we’ll discuss it. I make some killer chili. It’s good!

As for today, we’re going to make it short and sweet (yeah, right!). I have a few predictions about the biggest wrestling event of the summer, SummerSlam 2014, coming this Sunday night from Los Angeles, CA. I have a few questions from the old mailbag that will be answered. And I’ve got a few random thoughts about a few current happenings in the world’s greatest sport since dwarf tossing. So let’s can the chit-chat and let’s do this.

Thoughts And Stuff…

The word is that Kurt Angle is trying to petition himself for a limited return to the WWE. I’m not sure if I like the idea or not. Kurt is a great wrestler and could be a valuable addition, even on a limited basis, to the WWE roster. But on the other hand, and it sounds odd for me to be saying this since I tend to prefer the older stars over the newer ones, having Angle back would take away TV and exposure from guys like Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, Dolph, Zack, Swagger, Ziggler, Wyatt. And unlike Chris Jericho or RVD, who don’t seem to mind (and in Jericho’s case, thrive) on putting the next generation over, I just don’t see Angle being quite as agreeable. As a trainer or agent, I’d have no objections, but if he’s part of the active roster, I just think WWE would be better served investing in other people instead. Angle as a trainer on “Tough Enough” would be great to see though.

TNA has been moved by Spike TV to Wednesday nights starting next week. So instead of having to face the challenge of the NFL and (possibly) Smackdown (if the rumors are true), Impact will go against the power of Duck Dynasty instead. Maybe it’s just me, but if I’m choosing between Dixie Carter or Phil & Uncle Sy, it’s not even a close decision. Another nail in the coffin for TNA. The days are getting shorter and the future looks bleak. Has Spike TV renewed Impact yet? I don’t think so.

Alberto Del Rio is gone from the WWE for allegedly slapping a member of the WWE’s social media staff. It’s not really a surprise that Del Rio was terminated. After all, he’s allegedly been unhappy with WWE for a while and was planning on leaving when his contract expired anyhow. It’s a shame, but he wasn’t really being used much lately anyhow except to put other guys over in “Beat The Clock” challenges and he’ll be better off (and probably happier) working back in Mexico where he dominated for years as Dos Caras Jr. Del Rio fired. Ricardo Rodriguez terminated. Rey Mysterio is being contractually held hostage and allegedly wants to leave the company. Vickie Guerrero is gone as well. Me thinks that someone in power doesn’t like latinos in the WWE. Hey El Torito, hold on to your tail. You could be next!

The Hardy Boys versus Team 3-D on Impact! last night? All that was missing was a run-in by Edge and Christian and things would have been perfect.

I actually enoyed the Hogan “birthday celebration” this past Monday on RAW. Did anyone else notice that Paul “Mr. Wonderful” Orndorff almost started laughing and actually cracked a smile when Brock Lesnar called Hulk Hogan “Grandpa”. That was funny and the camera was quick to move away from the smirking man with the killer mustache. It was also funny to see Scott Hall move behind “Mean Gene” when Brock climbed into the ring. A good segment and everyone sold the tension and danger of Brock quite well. Wouldn’t mind seeing a Brock Lesnar – Kevin Nash face-off at some point. It won’t happen because Kevin would probably tear his quad, but still…

One thing that didn’t look right though was Ric Flair and Roddy Piper standing in the ring next to Hogan, Hall and Nash. The nWo in the ring with Piper and Flair? Flair was Flair, happy, smiling and clapping. Hasn’t he ever heard of selling? But Piper showed some obvious tension on his face for the whole segment. But then again, Piper always looks tense. Maybe he needs some Exlax or more ruffage in his diet? Who can say for sure.

If Dolph doesn’t win the Intercontinental Championship on Sunday night, I think a good move for him (for the time being) would be to enter the tag team ranks. Since they’re already a team of sorts in their attempts to take over the JBL & Cole show, how about Dolph and Zack Ryder as a tag team challenging the Usos for the tag team gold. It’d be a damn good match and could steal the show at any WWE event. I’d love to see it.

I realized something the other day. The Accolade, used as a finisher by Rusev, is the exact same finisher that was used by Scott Steiner, except for he called it the “Steiner Recliner”. Wouldn’t it be cool to see Scotty Steiner come out on RAW one night and cut a promo, as only Steiner can do, accusing Rusev of “stealing his move”. Rusev takes offense, of course and comes out to challenge the former multi-time WCW Champion. It wouldn’t be pretty, but it would make for great crash-TV and a match of epic, stiff proportions. Rusev versus Scott Steiner. Admit it! You’d like to see it happen too.

RAW will be in Las Vegas this coming up Monday night. That brings to mind a few names that I would love to see show up on Monday night at RAW to make cameo appearances, most likely with Adam Rose and his group of misfits. How about The Godfather? How about Disco Inferno? How about Rico? All three live in Vegas and all three would be great fits to come out strutting, dancing and chillaxin’ with the Exotic Express. Make it happen, Vince!

Let’s do some Q&A…

Question Time…

Michael Sisco: I have a hypothetical question. If the 4-Horseman had never existed, would Arn and/or Tully been world champion at some point?

I don’t think so. Tully wasn’t considered big enough by most standards of the day and even though he had quite a few great matches, he would have been stuck in the secondary champion or top contender slot. And Arn would have been used as the strong guy who could be depended upon for a good match, but otherwise stuck mainly in the tag team ranks in order to help build new stars and keep that division strong, much like Ole Anderson did for most of career.

Charlie Haas: If you had to show one match to somebody that has never really watched pro wrestling, what match would you pick to watch with them?

The Midnight Express w/ Jim Cornette (Stan Lane and Bobby Eaton) versus Ric Flair and Barry Windham (The Horsemen) w/ James J. Dillon from Clash of the Champions 4. Great athletes putting on a great match with just enough shenanigans to really add that exclamation point to show what professional wrestling should really be all about. It’s one of my favorite matches of all time and a must-see match for any fans of old-school wrestling.

Terence Butler: Should John Cena have been the one to end “The Streak”? And has it hurt his legacy?

Cena didn’t need to end the streak. His legacy is pretty much strong, safe and secure in the world of sports-entertainment.

Hal Jordan: What are your favorite AWA memories?

Most people might not know or remember this, but I used to do recaps of the AWA on ESPN Classics for the PWInsider website so I’ve got a few moments of AWA greatness that stand out in my head. Larry Zbyszko defending the AWA title against Harley Race is one. How about Baron Von Raschke singing “Take Me Out To The Ball Game”. The great Buddy Rose and Doug Somers, managed by Sherri Martel and their battles against The Midnight Rockers. The future “Mr. Perfect” Curt Hennig getting “the world’s greatest advice” from Larry Zbyszko and defeating Nick Bockwinkle to capture the AWA World Championship. Bruiser Brody going nuts and scaring the hell out of everyone. Wrestle-Rock and the Wrestle-Rock rumble. So many things stand out in my mind from those shows. It was quite a time and era.

Jamie Clarke: Now that The Usos have retained the Tag Team Championship against the Wyatt Family for a second time, who do you think will eventually take the belts from them?

Looking at the WWE tag team scene right now, I think that the most likely guys to come in and beat the Usos will most likely be Dustin and Cody, aka Goldust and Stardust. Actualy, I’d like to see Heath Slater and Justin Gabriel team back up and have a shot, but I don’t think that’ll happen. Dolph and Zack Ryder would be a good team too, but that’s even less likely. Yeah, I think I’ll go with the Dusty Duo.

Iam Djqu: Should Nikita Koloff been the NWA World Champion back in the JCP era??

Looking back, Nikita was a monster in that ring and as tough as they come, but the NWA World Champion? I don’t really think so. I think of the NWA Champion and I think of Ric Flair, Harley Race and Dory Funk, men who could have a good match against anyone and everyone and make even the most incompetent wrestler look like a top star and a million bucks. Nikita wasn’t quite as well rounded and did the power thing, but not much else. He was great at his character and style and while he could have possibly been a transitional champion for a week or so, I can’t picture him as being a successful long-term champion. It just wouldn’t have worked well for that era.

And there you go. Let’s move on once more and it’s time to break out the Sister Cleo outfit and the crystal ball. Or is that Dionne Warwick? Regardless, let’s do this…

WWE SummerSlam Predictions…

WWE World Heavyweight champion John Cena vs. Brock Lesnar with Paul Heyman.

I’ve got to say that I’ve been loving the build for this match and I’m expecting it to be a true slobberknocker in all ways. But who is going to win and walk out of Los Angeles on Sunday night as the WWE World Champion. That’s the question. Everything screams that Brock Lesnar will dominate and win. He’s bigger, stronger, on a roll of epic proportions and just so damn intense, how can you possibly beat this guy? How can even John Cena overcome all the odds and win any kind of match against Brock? Well, it’s pretty simple. He can’t win the match… BUT he won’t lose the title. Here’s how I see it. To win the title, Brock has to beat Cena by pinfall or submission. So they battle, Brock decimates Cena, but goes a bit over the top and strikes a referee. They’re on the outside of the ring and Brock puts Cena through the announce table, but takes too long doing it and they both get counted out. Not sure of the exact scenario, but Brock wins the war, but not the title due to… I’ll say a count-out. Thus the battle and war can continue at the next pay-per-view event as well. As for the title, once Cena is laid out by “The Beast”, what’s to stop a certain Money In The Bank contract holder from cashing in? Hmmmmmm…

WINNER: No Contest (Cena retains the title).

Randy Orton vs. Roman Reigns.

The Apex Predator versus The master of the superman punch. This is another match that should be stiff, brutal and fun to watch. Randy has never been one of my favorite guys, but he can always be counted on to have a good, solid match. He’s earned that spot at the top of the card and rarely disappoints. And Roman is the hot, new thing and is coming along nicely as the (with all apologies to Brock Lesnar), the next big thing. This feud could really have some legs and be stretched out for the nxt few months if played correctly. And I think the best way to do that is have Randy win. So it’s not the popular decision, but it’s what I think will happen. Due to that killer RKO from nowhere, the one-time “Legend Killer” takes the win. And come Monday night on RAW, Roman gets mad and payback. Yep, that sounds like a plan.

Winner: Randy Orton

WWE Divas champion AJ Lee vs. Paige.

Paige is finally starting to show on the main roster what she was showing in NXT, that personality and is developing into quite a character. Her interactions with her “frienemy” have really allowed her to start to shine. And AJ is just as fun and over the top as always. And we all know guys love “crazy chicks”. This should be a good match and fun to watch. Paige will eventually have her day and have the chance to be the Divas Champion. But that being said, this weekend will not be the time or place. I think the era of AJ Lee still has a long ways to go. AJ retains the gold.

Winner and STILL Divas Champion: AJ Lee

Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins – Lumberjack Match

A lumberjack match. Woo-hoo! So at least Zack Ryder, Heath Slater and Justin Gabriel will all get the chance to get a PPV bonus this month. Mark Henry and Christian too (I hope). As for the match itself, why did Ambrose pick a “Lumberjack Match” and not a “MITB Contract On A Pole” match? Maybe it’s just me, but physical wounds heal. Take that title opportunity away and it would hurt Rollins far worse. Regardless of why, it is what it is and the modern day version of “Dick Slater meets Roddy Piper” is going to do what he does. Ambrose wins and hands Seth a major shalacking. I expect that we’ll see Seth later in the night making his impact, but for this match, it’s all Ambrose. ‘Nuff said!

Winner: Dean Ambrose

WWE Intercontinental champ Miz vs. Dolph Ziggler.

Ziggler it seems is always the bridesmaid (or top contender) and never the bride (or champion). I don’t see that changing anytime soon. Ziggler dominates the match, but when that final bell rings, The Miz is still the Intercontinental Champion. Why? Cause he’s the Miz and he’s…. you know the rest.

Winner and STILL Intercontinental Champion: The Miz

Chris Jericho vs. Bray Wyatt

Chris Jericho won the first match at Battleground. Thus, to keep the feud going and not decimate or destroy Bray’s momentum, this one goes to the eater of worlds. Follow the Buzzards. Bray wins!

Winner: Bray Wyatt

Stephanie McMahon vs. Brie Bella.

I’m conflicted on this one. I can’t really see Steph stepping back into the ring after a ten-year hiatus in order to lose. But if Steph wins, what’s left for Brie? If Daniel Bryan was healthy and able to come back to the ring, I could see Steph stealing a win (with the aid of her hubby, HHH), to build towards a mixed-tag match. But Bryan isn’t able to work right now so where are they taking this? What’s next? I’ve heard people speculate about Nikki Bella turning on her sister, but I don’t think that’s going to happen. Why would Nikki allign herself with The Authority when they’re trying to take out her boyfriend, John Cena? I have another theory instead.

Flashback to about two years ago and the Bellas were heels and they were giving a certain WWE Diva a hard time as she exited from the company. That Diva said she’d be back eventually and get some payback. I’ve heard the word “karma” mentioned a few times over the past few months as things have developed between Brie and Stephanie. So we get the match and Brie “beats” Steph. But then Brie gets a big dose of beatdown from a returning “Kharma”, back in the WWE and looking for some payback as Stephanie’s personal bodyguard. It’s just speculation on my part, but it really would be “best for business”. Brie wins the match and afterwards… we’ll see.

Winner: Brie Bella

Flag Match: Jack Swagger vs. Rusev.

It’s the feel good moment of the show as Swagger (due to a distraction by Zeb Colter) captures the flag and wins the match. Thus Swagger (and the fans) win, but Rusev can still make the claim he’s never been “pinned or submitted” and maintain his aura of bad-assity. Yep, that sounds about right. WE THE PEOPLE!

Winner: Jack Swagger

And I guess now it’s time to bring this to an end and put the baby to bed. Questions and comments can be sent to You can also follow me on Twitter at @doug28352 or on Facebook at Thank you so much for reading. I’m Doug and I will see you on the flip side. As the great Baron Von Raschke would say, “Dat is all de’ people need to know!”. Have a good one, support your local Indy wrestling group, and always be a fan.


Letter To The Editor – July 21, 2014

Looking at the paper, I see that again Scotland County again has the highest unemployment rate in the state again at 12.7%. Well, I know where a hundred-plus of those jobs vanished to, thanks to District Attorney Kristy Newton and her task force, who demanded that over twenty-one businesses shut down their doors and close due to being illegal.

They claim this, but it seems that they don’t have the fortitude or confidence to back up their demands and claims about the legality of internet sweepstakes in a court room. It’s been almost three weeks now since they raided Robert Outlaw’s business and confiscated the software. So where are the charges? When will Robert and the rest of the sweepstakes owners get their day in court?

If it’s so illegal and bad for everyone, why won’t the District Attorney allow a judge to weigh in and make a call? This newspaper called the Task Force out on their inaction almost two weeks ago and we’re still waiting for a public response.

In the meantime, people who had jobs working at the Sweepstakes are now out of work and struggling to get by and pay their bills. Children are going hungry. Dozens of buildings are sitting empty. And why? Because the District Attorney made a proclamation that she doesn’t seem willing to put up to the test of our legal system and defend in front of a judge.

The DA needs to either put up and be willing to defend her interpretation of the sweepstakes law in court or else shut up, return the equipment they confiscated and issue a public apology so we can go back to our Sweepstakes and business as usual.

Thank you.

-Douglas Maynard

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News: July 18, 2014

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News
July 18, 2014
Doug Maynard
Wow, it’s been a while, hasn’t it?  I’m Doug and welcome back to professional wrestling’s most eclectic column, off and on since 2002.  Yeah, I was pulling a “Punk”, aka on sabbatical. Actually, I was managing an Internet Sweepstakes parlor here in my hometown of Laurinburg, NC until two weeks ago and then we were closed down by the police-state tactics of our local District Attorney, Miss Kristy and her “Task Force”.  And since then, just lots and lots of stupidity, craziness and living in denial.  But that’s now what or why I’m here now.  It’s time to forget about the reality and move into the world of sports-entertainment, aka the world’s greatest sport, professional wrestling.  And I have quite a bit to hit upon so I guess I should can the chit-chat and get to steppin’, right?  Right.  
We’ve got a pay-per view coming up on Sunday night called WWE Battleground 2014.  So that means I’ll be doing that “shades of Sister Cleo” thing we call predictions (complete with a fake Jamacian accent if you’d like!)  I’ve also got that “Fact or Fiction” thing to do, as well as a few questions.  So much to do and so little time.  Let’s start off by clearing the head a bit with that thing we call…
I recently watched, on the Network of course, on their Countdown series, “The Magnificent Managers”.  I’ve always been a big fan of the men and women who stand outside that ring and “guide their clients to greatness”.  It’s something that the WWE and professional wrestling in general has only recently started to bring back with guys like Zeb Colter. Lana and… well, I guess that’s it unless you want to count El Torito or the random “tag team partner at ringside” deal.  But anyhow, the WWE made their list of who they consider to be the “Top 10 Managers” of all time.  Their list, in order from 10 to 1 was:  Sherri Martel, JJ Dillon, Freddie Blassie, Mr. Fugi, Captain Lou Albano, Miss Elizabeth, Jimmy Hart, Paul Heyman, Paul Bearer and Bobby “The Brain” Heenan.
Look at that list?  While I have no objection to Bobby Heenan as the top guy… and I agree that Paul Heyman belongs near the top as well, but the rest?  Oh vey!  I may do a whole column at some point explaining why the WWE’s list is wrong (and why mine is right), but for now, I’m just going to give my list of who I personally feel are the Top Ten Wrestling Managers of all time.  So here we go.  In order, from 10 to 1, my list would be…
10.  Sir Oliver Humperdink / “Number One” Paul Jones (tied).  9. “Classy” Freddie Blassie.  8. “Sensational” Sherri Martel.  7. “Woman” / Jimmy Hart (tied). 6. Captain Lou Albano.  5. Gary Hart. 4. Paul Heyman.  3. James J. Dillon. 2. Jim Cornette.  1. Bobby “The Brain” Heenan.  
Speaking of managers, I’d love to see the newly retired Santino Marella maybe move into a managerial role.  I know he’s primarily a comedy character, but it’d be interesting and fun to see him work a serious role and mentor a couple of the guys who need that little extra something and push.  Have him announce his new role as a manager and coming out with someone like Heath Slater or Justin Gabriel. No one takes them serious at first, but then we see Santino with cheap shots and taking advantage of opponents wrestling his guys.  It would be different and could work to add interest to the product. At least I think it would work.
It was great to see Fit Finlay and Jamie Noble out a couple of weeks ago on RAW as the agents who broke up the fight with Kane versus Roman Reigns. It was even better to see them get physical with Reigns and Jamie get swatted away, while Finlay ate a spear. Maybe it’s crazy, but if I was booking RAW for, I’d have a special “handicap match” by order of The Authority.  Let Roman Reigns face the two men he dared to get physical with a few weeks ago.  Roman versus Fit Finlay and Jamie Noble.  Noble can still go with the best of them as he proved last year by stepping up and facing Daniel Bryan at several house shows.  And the toughness of Finlay is legendary.  It’d make for a fun match, give two legends a chance to strut their stuff, and be just another step in putting Reigns over as one tough SOB.  It’s just a suggestion.
I finally took a moment and started watching the “JBL & Cole” show on YouTube.  It is freakin’ hilarious.  Currently, the main plot, if you want to call it that, centers around JBL and Zeb Colter and their efforts to catch “the bunny”.  Plus Zack Ryder, Alicia Fox, Goldust, Cody Rhodes, Bad News Barrett and Heath Slater as you’ve never seen him before.  If these guys were allowed to show 1/5 this much of their personalities on RAW and Smackdown that they do on this show, they’d all be more over than Cena, Orton and Bray Wyatt combined.  It is that damn good. The WWE needs to move this show to the Network and most importantly, keep their creative teams as far away from this show as possible. If it’s not broke, don’t fix it and this show is probably one of the best things WWE has going today.  Just saying.  Clem Layfield is now one of my biggest heroes.
Looking at the calendar, it looks as if the RAW after SummerSlam will be taking place in Las Vegas, NV.  As soon as I saw that, I realized that there are two residents of Vegas that definitely need to pop up and do a cameo or spot on RAW that night.  One is The Godfather.  It’s not RAW in Vegas unless you have the Godfather and his “Ho’ Train!”.  After all, I know I ain’t the only one and pimping ain’t easy.  The other Vegas resident? How about Glen Gilberti, aka The Disco Inferno.  Even if it’s just a cameo as part of Adam Rose’s group, it needs to be done.  And with the “Best of WCW Monday Nitro” now on The Network, it’d be a great way to plug the show and the Network.  After all, Disco was with WCW from the beginning to the end.  And we all know that it’s your duty to shake your booty, right?  Besides, it’d be fun.
I think it’s time to move on.  Let’s answer some questions.
Mike Martin: I’ll probably regret asking this, but here it goes because I’m bored. If Ric Flair returned to WWE programming with a plan to manage a new Four Horseman stable, who would be your dream four members? Have to be current WWE roster members, no NXT or anything else. But we can pretend current injuries are not an issue. I say Barrett, Ambrose, Sheamus, and Miz.
Using only current WWE Superstars makes it difficult. The Horsemen are the elite, the best of the best and it’s hard to find four current superstars who, in my eyes, would have the credibility, the technique, the “it” to be Horseman material.  But who do I think would make a good grouping for Ric to manage and work with in a modern version of wrestling’s greatest clique?  How about Dean Ambrose as the “Enforcer” of the group.  The technician would be Cesaro.  The power guy and veteran of the group would be Mark Henry.  And to round things out, I’d use Curtis Axel as the fourth guy.  And just for the hell of it, if I could go outside the current WWE roster and have Flair build a group with four guys who are not currently on the roster, I’d have him bring back Drew McIntyre, “The Masterpiece” Chris Masters, Carlito and (current NWA World Champion) Rob Conway.  That grouping would be awesome and dominate the WWE.
Stu Cooper:  If you could make your own legends house cast, what legends would you use? (living)
They have to be living?  Damn, I guess that rules out using the ECW Zombie.  As of right this moment, I would go with Hulk Hogan, Mick Foley, Disco Inferno, Diamond Dallas Page, Juventud Guerrera, Vader, Kevin Sullivan and Ron Simmons.  Subject to change, of course.  And Ashley would have to go, to be replaced by a female wrestling legend. I’d pick either Lisa “Ivory” Moretti or Baby Doll for that role.
Dominic Coleman-Briggs:  What wrestler or wrestlers would you like to sit and watch wrestling with and ask them about things ?
Harley Race, Ole Anderson, Jim Cornette and Paul Heyman (and make sure we have a camera recording every single second of it… lol).  Hey’ I’ve got an idea. How about those four, along with Vince McMahon, Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair and Roddy Piper for the cast of Legends’ House.  Now THAT would be a show worth watching.
Now let’s move on and do that Truth or Dar… I mean “Fact or Fiction” thing.
Wrestling Fact Or Fiction
And as usual when I do this, the questions come from my long time, close, personal friends at  And the answers all come from me (and the voices in my head.  Randy Orton isn’t the only one who gets to claim that trick… lol.
1. You are excited for Sunday’s WWE Battleground PPV.
FACT:  It’s pretty much a stacked show from top to bottom with something for everyone. I think it’s going to be one of the better ones, especially for what should be a B-show.  The talent is there and I’m looking forward to watching and see how it all goes.
2. TNA dropping the Willow character and going back to Jeff Hardy was a wise move.
FACT:  No one cared about “Willow” and it seemed to confuse people more than anything else.  Jeff Hardy should wrestle as Jeff Hardy and that’s that bottom line on that.
3. Despite his pedigree as a great talent thus far in his career, KENTA will not find success in the WWE.
FICTION:  I’ve watched some videos of Kenta in action and if they use him correctly, he has the potential to be big.  I think HHH has noted the mistakes made in the past with stars like Taijari and Kenzo Suzuki and will take care to make sure that the same mistakes are not repeated here.
4. Now that they officially have a debut date on the El Rey Network, (October 8th) you are now excited about the AAA Lucha: Uprising project.
FICTION:  Not really. I’m happy for them and all of that, but I rarely have the time to watch wrestling now and Lucha, while some folks may like it, has never been one of my favorite styles of wrestling.
5. You do not care that the Big Show is about to return to WWE TV.
FACT:  He has come and gone so often that it’s not a big deal anymore. He shows up. He leaves. He knocks someone out.  He cries.  Who cares?
6. Once their current PPV deal is over, TNA would be better off not signing a new deal and focusing on becoming a TV only product.
FICTION:  So long as they are making money on the pay-per-views and can stay in the black, they need to keep doing what they’re doing.  Don’t throw away sources of revenue.  If it changes and they start losing money on the deal, then they should change and consider dropping the events, but only then.
7. The pairing of Paul Heyman and Cesaro has been a bust.
FACT:  I love Paul Heyman and Cesaro is one of my favorite guys to watch, but the combination and team just doesn’t seem to really click.  I think Cesaro is the type of wrestler that would work better with a manager in his corner, but it just doesn’t look like Heyman is the right one.
8. Josh Matthews would be a positive addition to the TNA announce team.
FACT:  Josh is a good announcer and would definitely help improve the TNA product.  Although he’s a smart guy and knows the product, I can’t stand listening to Mike Tenay.  Let’s try the team of Josh and Taz for a while and Mike can move on to a role as a producer and only be used for the big events.  Even a three-man team with Tenay, Taz and Josh would be far better than what they have now.
And now, time to get funky like a monkey and do that prediction thing.  Let’s do it.
WWE Battleground 2014 – Prediction Time…
Fatal 4-Way – WWE World Championship
John Cena vs. Roman Reigns vs. Randy Orton vs. Kane
So we already know that Cena and Brock is penciled in for SummerSlam.  Guess that ruins the fun, right?  But I’m thinking we get a swerve here, especially since John Cena is scheduled to miss quite a few Monday night tapings over the next few weeks due to movie obligations.  So let’s look at the men involved.  I don’t think Cena will retain.  We know it’s not going to be Kane.  So that leaves Reigns and Randy.  If I was booking, I’d go ahead and make that move and put Reigns with the gold.  I’d pull a “Goldberg” and make him Champion.  It’s the right time to just do it.  But since this is the WWE and they probably figure that they can stretch it out and make the fans wait (we see how well that went with Daniel Bryan, right?), I don’t think they have the balls to do it yet.  So go with tried and true and Randy Orton walks out with the belt. Bleh!
Winner and NEW WWE World Champion:  Randy Orton
Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose
This is going to be brutal, stiff and possibly steal the show.  Look for Seth to bail towards the end of the match and run for the hills, thus allowing this to continue for a while longer.  I’ll say that Ambrose wins by count-out and thus, we get to move on to the next chapter, a Lumberjack match on RAW.
Winner (by count-out) – Dean Ambrose
Intercontinental Championship Battle Royal (Bad News Barrett will be in attendance to hand over the title)
Cesaro, Kofi Kingston, Damien Sandow, The Great Khali, Rob Van Dam, Dolph Ziggler, Big E, Ryback, Curtis Axel, Alberto Del Rio, Bo Dallas, Sheamus, Fandango, Sin Cara, Zack Ryder, The Miz, Adam Rose, Diego, R-Truth, Xavier Woods, Heath Slater, Titus O’Neil  
Most of these guys are just filler and we all know this. While I’d love to see a true upset and see Zack Ryder or Heath Slater or even Bo Dallas win the title, it’s not going to happen. I think the strongest men with a chance are Sheamus, Cesaro, Miz or Dolph.  Sheamus already has the U.S. title and even though there has been talk of unifying the belts, I don’t think it’s going to happen here yet. Cesaro is in a sort of limbo due to his relationship with Paul Heyman, so I don’t think the title will go there.  Dolph looks good, but it’s Dolph and the WWE seems to hate to do anything with him.  So I’ll go with Mr. Hollywood. Yeah, why the hell not.  By the way, where is Mark Henry?
Winner and NEW Intercontinental Champion:  The Miz
WWE Divas Championship
AJ Lee vs. Paige
The new friends go at it for the WWE Divas Championship.  AJ is not going to lose this soon.  A good match and AJ retains.
Winner and STILL Champion:  AJ Lee
Two Out Of Three Falls – WWE Tag Team Championship
The Usos vs. The Wyatt Family 
I love the chemistry with these teams and the matches they’ve had thus far have really turned me into Uso fans.  Hard to believe, right?  I think it’s time to bring some gold home to the Wyatt family though.  So let’s say that the Wyatt’s win the first fall by DQ, the Usos win the second fall by pin and in the third and final fall, Harper scores the pin on Jey.
Winners and NEW WWE Tag Team Champions:  The Wyatt Family
Chris Jericho vs. Bray Wyatt
It’s too soon to have a conclusive winner or loser.  Bray loses and he looks weak.  Jericho wins and the feud is over as quickly as it started.  Let’s go for the double-disqualification.  Works for me.
No Contest – Double Disqualification
Rusev vs. Jack Swagger
A few days ago, I would have been saying that Rusev would end up getting the nod, but since the airliner was shot down yesterday in Europe and there is possible Russian involvement, that has all changed. I think Vince and the WWE have learned from the Muhammad Hassan incident a few years ago.  I think the push for Rusev and Lana will either be ended or else they’ll tone down the whole Putin connection.  The WWE doesn’t really have a choice.  So who wins?  Jack Swagger of course. And now, let’s all put our hands on our chest and speak in a loud, clear voice.  WE THE PEOPLE!
Winner:  Jack Swagger
Kick-Off Show
Cameron vs. Naomi 
And this is the match that starts it all.  The one with talent versus the pretty one.  And nobody cares.  I sure don’t.  Hard to believe that Brodus Clay lost his gimmick to these two. Someone better call his mama.  I’ll go for Naomi and hope that this is over quickly.
Winner:  Naomi
And there you go – my predictions for Battleground 2014. And with that, I guess I’m going to close this bad-boy up and call it a day. Thank you for reading.  Questions and comments can be sent to  Hopefully, I’ll be back soon with more wrestling stuff and maybe, if things go as planned, a recap of a live wrestling event taking place tomorrow night in McColl, SC. Will have to wait and see, but I’m hoping that things will work out and I’m able to do that.  
And now, I’m out of here. I’m Doug and I’ll see you on the flip side.  As the great Baron Von Raschke used to say, “dat’ is all de’ people need to know!”.  Later gators!

Tossing Salt RAW Recap – June 10, 2014

Tossing Salt RAW Recap
June 10, 2014
Doug Maynard

It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve been able to watch a full episode of RAW (or find the time to do any serious writing), but tonight, that all changes. It’s the Tossing Salt “Rambling As I Watch The Show” RAW recap. It’s not just your Mom and Dad’s recap of the longest prime time weekly episodic television series. I’ll recap the show as it goes along, but anything… and I do mean ANYTHING goes. I’m Doug (and you’re not!). Let’s do this…

Starting with the Authority. That means lots of talking. They’re in Minnesota. I wonder if Baron Von Raschke is anywhere in the building. Dat’ is all de’ people need to know! I liked the Baron. I think black is Stephanie’s favorite color. She is almost always wearing it.

Steph is gloating and she plays the “bitch-heel” so well. They have the doctor on video tape. I would rather see Dr. Stevie come out. “I’ll show you! “You’ll see!” They’ve stripped Bryan of the WWE World Championship. NO! NO! NO! (but I actually agree with them – go figure!) I like Steph’s slight little digs at Brie. Brie versus Steph has to happen at some point.

The title is up for grabs at the Money In The Bank ladder match. People will qualify for the match. Del Rio and Randy Orton are already in. I want to see Sting… and The Miz… and The Disco Inferno. Yes, I’m still hoping! And then they move on to The Shield. Adapt or Perish. Seth Rollins adapted and we’re seeing video from last week where he laid the proverbial smackdown on partners Reigns and Ambrose. Reminds me of when Double A turned on Dustin Rhodes. Good memories. Go find it on The Network. HHH makes a match. It’s Ambrose and Reigns versus The Wyatt Family in a six-man tag match. The Shield has to find a third man to be their partner. Okay, blah, blah, blah. I’m getting bored and restless now. HHH has talked too long – time for some action. It’s Sheamus versus Barrett next to quality for the MITB match. Should be good, but I was hoping for Hurricane Helms and Mr. T. Mr. T loves his mama. But the U.S. Champion and the Intercontinental Champion? That’ll work too.

I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news for you. It took six months, but the BNB character is really catching on with the fans. Barrett is a heel, but the fans love to play sing-a-long with Barrett. Sheamus needs to turn heel because he’s boring as a face. He’s become a generic jar of mayo. Just saying. I love the thing that Barrett does with the cape / cloak. He reminds me of “The Masterpiece” Chris Masters. I wish Chris was back in the WWE. He will be eventually, but I just hope it’s sooner rather than later. Carlito too.
I like the way these two work stiff and lay the punches in. Barrett especially, but Sheamus too would have been really good back in the old-school territory days. They have that look and style that would have gone over really well back then. Barrett versus Blackjack Mulligan for example… mat classic magic.

Barrett tried an elbow off the second rope. Randy Savage is watching and shaking his head in shame. That did NOT look good. Stick with the brawling fellas. Big guys like these should not be leaving the mat very often and trying the flying stuff. Even though Larry Zbyszko would disagree, stick with the power moves and the clotheslines. Sheamus kicked out of “Wasteland”? Damn! Why does reversing the elbow pad make it more dangerous and effective for Barrett? I guess we’ll never know. Sheamus with the Brogue Kick from nowhere to get the win. A good match that had Sheamus snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. Well done, Mr. Mayo. Well done!

The Wyatts are here and they talk about urges. I know all about urges. They talk about The Shield. Bray says that he’s “reborn” and the Shield will “burn” for their urges. He didn’t sing tonight. I’m a sad panda now. Good to see Harper talking sometimes now. He’s going to be a big break-out star. The next Bruiser Brody, in a modern day, PC, 2014 version of course. The man has skills. Rowan too, but he hasn’t been featured or given the chance quite as often. Bray will be big. Harper will be big. Rowan will be big. It’s just a matter of when and where and against who. Hey WWE, they’re here!

It’s Lana.I wish it was Nanitchka. She’s got Stacy Keibler legs. I love these Putin versus Obama comparisons. I just wonder if her comments towards our “leader”, calling him a “girly-man”, are not just Vince and Linda McMahon’s (both confirmed Republicans) way of taking shots at Obama? Hmmmmm. Lana gets all political and the 1980’s call. They want their gimmick back. This would be a great angle for Nikolai Volkoff or even Ivan Koloff to make a cameo shot. Rusev is big, but the gimmick is just too gimmicky for me. Just saying.

Woo Woo Woo! You know it! It’s a Zack Ryder appearance. I’m happy! Too bad he’s going to get squashed! He didn’t even get an introduction. My, how the mighty have fallen. Zack didn’t even get a single… okay, he got a few punches and some knees in as offense. And then, just like that, it’s over. That just sucks! Doesn’t matter though. We still love ya, Zack. Woo Woo Woo – you know it! Where is Lex Luger and the “American Express” when you need them.

Michael Cole is talking to Seth Rollins later tonight. And the Network – it’s then, now and forever… just like lovin’ from Sunny. That stuff NEVER goes away. (I’m joking – don’t sue me!) I wonder is she’s adopted any babies or had any altercations in a parking lot lately? We’ve got Rybaxel in the house and they’re taking on Goldust and R-Truth. What’s up! Cody is picking partners for his brother and watching from the back. How about Barry Windham or Arn Anderson as Goldy’s partner? They worked so well together in the past. I think Booker T might be available. Now can you dig that, SUCKA!

Maybe it’s just me, but they (Rybaxel and Goldust) seem to be moving in second or third gear tonight. Rybaxel wins and the match never even seemed to get moving or go anywhere. We have Layla in the back. She’s talking junk. It’s Summer Rae time and she give Layla a “make-over” and a thrashing of sorts. I’m not going to say what the final image of Layla reminds me of, but if you look at any cheezy XXX movie involving multiple men and one woman, I think you’ve seen that image before. Disgusting!! Poor Layla. I guess she’s the new Vickie. EXCUSE ME!

It’s time for 3MB and they’re talking. Well, not for long. Here comes The Shield, or at least 2/3 of them. Reigns and Ambrose are coming down and they’re not happy. 3MB attack. Where is Hornswoggle. Ambrose is on fire and Drew even looked good for a second. Didn’t last long though. Heath is the smart one – never thought I’d be saying that. Reigns with a spear. Thank you for coming, Heath. First it was ass-whooping and now it’s promo time. Ambrose talks about how the Shield dominated and was untouchable, but they had a cancer named Seth Rollins. Ambrose gets graphic in his description of what he wants to do to Rollins. Seth is watching in the back and doesn’t look impressed. Reigns looks as if he enjoyed Ambrose’s promo a bit. Nice smile. I just realized that Seth is wearing a suit. I guess that’s part of the adapt routine. Reigns is coming after Triple H and they’re going to have their own game of “Thrones”. Okay, nice cultural reference there. Good promo by The Shield. Ambrose still reminds me of a younger Roddy Piper. Later tonight, Seth talks and The Shield fights The Wyatt Family.

Legends’ House – the season finale is this week. I have to admit it. I’m hooked and I hope that the next few seasons are just as good. But get rid of Ashley. Use a woman wrestler / Diva legend instead. I say Ivory, but I’d settle for Lita, Molly, Jazz, Madusa, Jacqueline, etc. too…

Here come the Usos. I think they need to have a dance-off against Too Cool. They’re against Fandango and his partner. Layla looks rough and she’s not really in a dancing mood. I wonder why? Heh! Heh! And check out Damien Sandow with his crazy dancing routine. He’s doing this way too well. He’s going to be doing this again… and again… and again. I can see Ron Simmons now. “DAMN!”. Did JBL really do a Rikki Starr reference? Cool Beans! Sandow is the next Santino… poor guy! “Let’s go Sandow” chant. I love these crowds! The Usos win the match, but Sandow stole the show. Layla checks on Fandango outside the ring. Forget what I said earlier. I want a dance-off with Too Cool taking on Fandango and Sandow. With Ernest Miller, Alex Wright and Rico as the judges. Disco Inferno as the MC and Three Count as themselves… just because.

Popeye’s Fried Chicken is the new 1-800-Dial-ATT of 2014 wrestling programs. It’s Xavier Woods taking on Bo Dallas. I guess Woods will learn to “Bo-lieve!” Hard to believe that he and Bray Wyatt are brothers. I’ve also heard that his daddy has connections with the IRS and that his grandpa was a bad-ass cowboy. Bo tells Daniel Bryan that he can come back stronger than ever… if he just “Bo-lieves!” You know what would make a great tag team? Bo and Ted DiBiase Jr. It just seems like a natural combination. I hate to say it (no, I don’t), but Woods sucks! Bo Dallas wins. Bo-lieve in the Bo! I wonder how Bo would look with a black cowboy hat and a black glove on his hand? RVD versus Cesaro is coming up in a qualifying match for the MITB. I think I’ll go for the Paul Heyman guy. I like swingers.

Just a quick thought here. They need to have two Money-In-The-Bank matches. One to determine the new WWE World Champion and one to be more traditional and give someone that contract where they can cash in at any time over the next year. Two matches with two big winners. Of course, that would take the top ten – fourteen guys out of the running for matches and the rest of the card would have to be filled up with undercard talent and people who don’t usually get PPV matches or TV time. What a shame that would be… NOT! Give them a chance to show that they’re still here and to attempt to steal the show. I think it would prove to be even a better show that way and an event to be remembered, better than the average pay-per-view. These guys are on the payroll and are “WWE Superstars”. Let them show the world why. Just saying. Now, back to the show.

It’s Paul Heyman. Did you know that his client, Brock Lesnar, broke the Undertaker’s streak at Wrestlemania XXX? I love it when he does this. Paul puts over Brock big time. Is this foreshadowing? Paul teases a Brock return and time for a Wrestlemania Victory party. Great swerve as he builds up Brock and introduces Cesaro. Paul Heyman is de’ man! It’s Cesaro versus RVD for a shot at MITB. I like this match, but they’ve done it far too many times recently. Should have switched it up with the match earlier and had RVD versus Sheamus and Barrett versus Cesaro. That would be more interesting to me and doesn’t Barrett owe Cesaro and Heyman a reciept for walking out on him a few weeks ago? Just saying… I love how Cesaro just seems to pull those forearm uppercuts from out of nowhere. This guy is going to be a big time star for a long, long time. Cesaro with the win. He’s moving on. So if it comes down to Cesaro or Brock at the MITB ladder match – who will Heyman choose?

Randy Orton is tweeting. He’s on vacation. Nice pic of Randy laying out in the sun. He’s an ass, but damn if he ain’t a sexy man! HHH predicts the end of The Shield after the handicap match against The Wyatts tonight. Reigns called Rollins scum and Ambrose was fired up as well. Seth Rollins is talking to Michael Cole next. I guess “Piper’s Pit” wasn’t available. Or “The Cutting Edge”. Or “The Peep Show”. Or “Miz TV”. How about “A Flair For The Gold”. Ric got approved by the doctors and he’ll be back soon. Wooooooooooo! And thus, Michael Cole as the interviewer it is. Where oh where is Mean Gene when you need him?

Michael Cole talks to Seth Rollins. Seth is in a suit. So long identity and hello Mr. Cookie Cutter Generic Authority Dude. Seth says there is no controversy. Last week wasn’t a big deal. He was doing what was best for his business. He created The Shield and he put them together. He calls Ambrose a lunatic. Reigns is the “golden boy”, but without someone to control his fires, he’s worthless. Rollins takes credit for all of The Shield’s success. Rollins says that he took The Shield to the top. They beat Evolution and he learned something. To be a success, you have to evolve and adapt and that’s what he did. The fans say he “sold out”, but he says he’s “bought in” to the evolution of Seth Rollins. In his eyes, the Shield wasn’t brothers, but instead business partners. He just severed the business relationship. He said “Believe in The Shield”, but he means “believe in Seth Rollins”. Rollins says that he heard what Ambrose said earlier and calls out The Shield. Here comes Ambrose and Reigns. And The Wyatts are in the ring. Harper and Rowan go after Reigns and Ambrose. Bray is here too. It’s a Wyatt riot! And here comes John Cena for the save. The Wyatts flee and I guess Cena is going to be The Shield’s partner tonight. Bleh to that! Makes sense, but I’d rather have seen someone else.. anyone else. How about Diamond Dallas Page? It worked for WCW in 1997… lol.

And look. It’s Paige. She’s so short. I miss AJ Lee. Paige reminds me of Daphney. Alicia Fox is here and she has Aksana with her. Are they a new team? Alicia is really and truly a fox! Alicia is a screamer. Imagine that. I wonder if CM Punk knows? I’ll bet he does. I’m getting bored here. This match is going too longI’d love to see Kharma come storm the ring and trash everyone. Or Lisa Marie Varon, aka Victoria. That’s what the WWE Divas Division needs. They need Victoria. Paige wins with the submission move and Alicia taps. I’m glad that’s over with. So will Alicia throw a tantrum? Aksana checks out her partner and helps “revive” her. And Alicia is up and here we go. Slap-happy and an Aksana beatdown. She steals water and popcorn from a fan and pours it all over Aksana. FOOD FIGHT! Alicia force-feeds some popcorn to Aksana and then smiles that crazy-chick smile. That’s just strange.

Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter didn’t even get an intro. That’s just wrong. And Santino, who I’m sure is illegal, does. What the… ? WE THE PEOPLE! A Funaki reference. Go JBL! Yay! This match shouldn’t take long. Zeb is slapping some sense into Swagger and now I guess it’s time for Santino to pay. Yep, I was right. Swagger killed the cobra! Short and sweet, just as it should be. WE THE PEOPLE! Is this show over yet? So far, it’s been okay, but it’s starting to drag. Three hours is a long, long time.

Goldust is in the back and feeling bad. It’s Cody and he’s got some ideas for a new partner. Cody drops all sorts of hints and I’m thinking Ted DiBiase, who just happened to be Cody’s former partner in Legacy. Or Chris Masters. Who would work better with a star the magnitude of Goldust than a “Masterpiece”. Those are my guesses. HHH and Steph are in the back. Steph is getting peeved at John Cena. It’s Vickie Guerrero and she’s got some champagne. She’s kissing up because there is no more Brad Maddox or Daniel Bryan. She sneezes and spills champagne. Steph tells her to “get out!”.

It’s main event time. Six-man tag action as Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns and John Cena take on The Wyatt Family. Kevin Hart will be on RAW as the “guest star” next week. WHO? Never heard of him. I guess Hugh Jackman is busy. So is Kermit the Frog. I hate to see John Cena involved as the superman coming to the rescue of Reigns and Ambrose, but since it’s against the Wyatt Family and Cena has been feuding with Bray, it makes sense. I don’t have to like it though. You know who would make a great replacement for Seth Rollins in The Shield? John Morrison. Just a thought to throw out there. I’d love to see Reigns and Ambrose give Cena a big time beatdown after the match. It won’t happen, but one can still hope.

Looks like there are a lot of Wyatt Family fans in Minneapolis, but then again, they (along with a few hundred dead people) elected Al Franken as their Senator so what do they know? Follow the Buzzards! It’s OINGO BOINGO from the very beginning. Ambrose is on fire and looking really good here. I could watch The Shield and The Wyatt Family go all day long. What I said earlier about this show being too long. I take that back. Luke Harper has the best facial expressions in wrestling today. You know what would be a great match? Ambrose versus Chris Jericho. WWE needs to make it happen at some point. Bray versus Cesaro would be cool too. There are too many commercials. Where my wrestling at?

We’re back from commercial and has Cena even been in the ring yet aside from the beginnng? I guess they’re protecting him and his eye injury suffered over the weekend, but what’s the point in having a Super-Cena partner if he doesn’t wrestle. He’ll tag in for the “five moves” soon enough. Chants of “Lets Go Cena / Cena sucks!” And now he tags in for the five moves. That ends and we get the Wyatt beat-down. Cena with a “Shades of Ricky Morton” baby-face in peril routine. Bray makes the audience sing for a moment and then it’s back to business. My phone rings too damn much! Doesn’t look like I missed anything of the match though. Damn, Bray is playing rough with Cena. Bray works stiff. I like it! Time for the hot tag to Reigns and it’s SHIELD time. Believe in The Shield… even if it is only 2/3 of them. It’s chaotic OINGO BOINGO time again. Reigns with the spear on Harper for the win. Not too shabby, but they lost me at the end. HHH and Rollins are watching in the back. Cena raises the hands of Reigns and Ambrose and that’s a wrap.

And so it is for me as well. This is the first episode of RAW I’ve managed to watch in several weeks and even though it dragged at a few points, the overall show was pretty decent. Time now to go do my bill-paying job and check in at H&L Sweepstakes, the place I manage and that takes most of my time. Thanks for reading and I’ll be back in a few days with that Wrestling Fact or Fiction thing… and maybe more. We’ll see.

I’m Doug and I’m out of here. Big shout out to BD Productions and their award winning, must-see BDtv – find it on YouTube. Catch you on the flip-side, my peeps. I’m down and I’m gone.


Tossing Salt – Worldwide News: May 21, 2014

Tossing Salt – Worldwide News
May 21, 2014
Doug Maynard
Good afternoon, salutations and all that other stuff.  I’m Doug and after missing a week due to work craziness and life drama out the woo woo woo – you know it, I am back.  My apologies. So how has everyone been?  Is the WWE still here, albeit not worth quite as much on the stock market?  Is TNA still in business?  Is CM Punk still on sabbatical?  Does Batista still suck?  So many questions to answer and I’ll probably ignore every single one of them so I can focus on the important stuff like has Disco Inferno been signed to a WWE Legends Deal yet?  Is JTG still on the main roster?  And what exactly does it take to be a “rosebud” instead of a “lemon drop”?  This is “Tossing Salt – Worldwide News”.  I’m ready to do this so let’s get busy, shall we.  Let’s get the party started with…
RAW Recap (in 500 words or less…)
Bray Wyatt with the sing-a-long and we learn that he had “teacher issues” growing up and admits that he is a necessary evil.  He will be the last man standing against John Cena at “Payback”. Tonight Cena fights Luke Harper.  John Cena plays his games and come to visit, landing an “AA” on Bray before all is sunny in the land of milk and honey and he escapes up the ramp before the “Family” can respond.  Daniel Bryan’s surgery was a success.  Paul Heyman and Cesaro are here and Heyman ridicules and mocks the crowd in his own unique style.  He mentions the end of “The Streak” and gets in a shot at the Queen.  Tonight, it’s Cesaro versus Sheamus.  We get a really good, stiff match that has Cesaro playing off a Heyman distraction for the win.  Sheamus offers a begrudging handshake, but Cesaro blows him off.  It’s “Beat The Clock” as we get matches to determine who gets “Bad News” (literally) at Payback.  Ryback takes on Big E.  Big E wins in a surprisingly decent match.  R-Truth comes out with the Funkadactyls and wants to know “What’s Up?”.  No one seems to care.  It’s Fandango and Layla next and the crowd is fandangoing like there is no tomorrow.  Before we get mixed-tag action, we get Summer Rae.  A kiss for Fandango and a brief brawl with Layla.  No match, but we had a kitten-fight instead.  Daniel Bryan’s music plays, but we get Stephanie McMahon instead.  They censored out the CM Punk chants. Wimps!  She teases stripping Bryan of the title, but says that she wants him next week on RAW to do the right thing because it’s “best for business”.  The Union Jacks are here.  Looks like 3MB to me. We get Rusev and Lana.  Squash by Rusev as he takes out Drew and Jinder before destroying Slater.  Where is Hornswoggle?  The Shield is backstage and talk the talk. Seth fights Batista tonight.  No mistakes for Seth and Batista is going down.  Another “Beat The Clock” match as RVD scores a win over Alberto Del Rio for the best time of the night thus far.  Cena and The Usos talk to Renee backstage.  The Usos have Cena’s back.  They’re in group-silly-mode tonight.  When I say Cena, you say “bleh!”.  Evolution is here and Batista says that he’s going to take out Rollins all by himself.  He’s got this.  It’s time for Batista versus Rollins. HHH is the guest ring announcer.  Orton is the guest time-keeper.  Seth gets the mic and announces Reigns and Ambrose as the guest commentators.  Lots of guests, right?  A good match that eventually breaks down to OINGO BOINGO.  Seth wins by DQ.  Believe in The Shield.  Alicia Fox fights Paige.  Alicia Fox wins and steals Jerry Lawler’s crown.  She’s a happy fox.  A quick Wyatt promo about Cena and the Usos.  Wyatt doesn’t seem impressed.  Another “Beat The Clock” with Mark Henry versus Dolph Ziggler.  Time runs out so the match is a no-contest and RVD will face Bad News Barrett at Payback.  RVD comes out to celebrate, but get some literal “Bad News” as Barrett lays him out from behind and cuts a great crowd-pleasing promo on the fallen former ECW / WWE Champion.  Adam Rose is here.  Party in the house! That bloody lemon drop, Zeb Colter comes out with Jack Swagger to spoil the festivities.  And finally, we get the second coming of Bruiser Brody versus John Cena.  Another great match before reverting to OINGO BOINGO and a DQ win for Cena.  Bray and Sister Abigail take out Cena in the end and Bray sings as Luke counts Cena down for ten.  Follow the Buzzards!
And that is how to recap a three hour wrestling program.  Let’s move on and just see if we can empty the mind of some of these thoughts that keep bouncing around in there.  
Mick Foley is playing games.  He teased a big announcement and then announced that it was time to “rock the fanny pack again” and followed that up by singing Bray Wyatt’s favorite song.  Will “Mankind” or even “Cactus Jack” be a part of the Wyatt Family sometime in the near future?  Lord, I hope not.  I hope that this is all just a typical Foley “look at me” bit to promote an appearance on Duck Dynasty or something like that.  Maybe he has a cameo as a demented, psychotic lunatic in the upcoming “See No Evil II” movie?  Just keep him away from the Wyatts.  That would hurt them far worse than ever help.
Every single time I watch him wrestle and hear him cut a promo, Dean Ambrose reminds me more and more of an old-school Roddy Piper.
Vince McMahon lost an estimated $340 million dollars this past week due to the crash of WWE stock.  Wouldn’t you hate to be a WWE Superstar who’s contract is coming up for renewal soon? I don’t think this would be a great time for anyone to ask for a raise.
I loved JBL’s comparison last week of Adam Rose’s “Exotic Express” to the “Oddities”.  Wouldn’t it be great to have a few former WWE oddities, such as The Boogeyman, George Steele, Kurrgan, the ECW Zombie, Harvey Whippleman, etc, make cameo shots as part of the “Exotic Express” group?
Slam City is actually pretty cute.
Survivor Series this year should be excellent and full of traditional “Survivor Series” style matches.  How about Team Evolution versus Team Shield, Team Heyman versus Team Colter, Team Wyatt versus Team Cena, Team Total Divas versus Team Other Divas and team WWE Superstars versus Team NXT.  Add a WWE World title match and maybe one more match to this and you’ve got a stacked and loaded card.
Poor Natayla.  First she’s the fart-girl and now she’s a bad artist who pouts.  Who did she piss off?
CM Punk announced that he and AJ Lee will be getting married soon.  I guess that guy really does dig crazy chicks.
Former WCW star Alex Wright recently made an appearance at the WWE Performance Center.  That’s just a sign that we are one step closer to seeing my favorite tag team of all time (after the Midnight Express and Kronik), the Boogie Knights, Disco Inferno and Alex Wright, show up on WWE TV. It has to happen.  Actually, a cameo as part of Adam Rose’s entourage would be a perfect spot for the former WCW Tag Team Champions.  
Several names keep popping up as possibilities for the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2015, such as The Rock, Rikishi, Mickie James and Kevin Nash.  Solid names and no real objections here, but I have to ask. What about Randy Savage, Owen Hart, The Anderson Brothers, The Freebirds, Ivan Koloff,  Nikita Koloff, Magnum TA, Ivory, DX (including Chyna), the original nWo (Hall, Nash and Hogan), Stan Stasiak, Gordon Solie, Bob Caudle, Andy Kaufman, Cyndi Lauper and Baby Doll, just to name a few?  Just saying…
Speaking of Baby Doll, she would be a great talent to replace Ashley as part of WWE Legends’ House.  She’s still extremely hot, personable, has great charisma and most importantly, is a legend in her own right.  Nothing against Ashley, but shouldn’t someone who’s part of a reality show about wrestling legends be an actual wrestling legend herself?  I also hope that next season, they provide for a mixture of talents with both male and female participants living in the house and being part of the show. 
And if they don’t like the idea of Baby Doll, then how about Vickie Guerrero?  Excuse me!!  
Let’s move on and tackle a few questions in the old mailbag.  
Question Time…
Ben Valdez:  Do you believe that old school managers such as Jim Cornette, Gary Hart, Bobby Heenan types, should make a mass comeback?  Dutch Mantell has the right idea in the WWE as Zeb Colter.
I agree with you Ben.  Dutch has been doing a great job as Zeb Colter in the WWE and I would love to see the role of manager types increased and brought back to prominence.  There are so many older wrestlers who are out there who are great talkers, such as Christian and William Regal for example, and could do wonders as mentors and managers for some of the talents who are great in the ring, but not so much on the stick.  Mark Henry, Rybaxel, Curt Hawkins, Zack Ryder, Tyson Kidd, Justin Gabriel, etc.  Just imagine the impact these guys could make if they had that extra rub of an established superstar behind them and acting on their behalf.  Some of the best wrestlng feuds of all time were managers and their “families” and “stables” trying to take out certain wrestlers like the Heenan Family versus Hulk Hogan, The Paul Jones army versus Jimmy Valiant, The Dungeon of Doom versus Hogan… okay, forget that last one.  But it provided fresh matches, a story that could evolve and change as needed and never get old, and a chance for wrestlers who wouldn’t otherwise get a push, to get a chance to shine in the spotlight a bit.  There is a place for managers in wrestling that has been long neglected.  It seems that the WWE is coming around with Paul Heyman, Zeb Colter and Lana and I hope that we have even more in the near future.  
Joseph Bowden:  Is Bray Wyatt a future WWE World Heavyweight Champion?
Honestly, I don’t think so.  Bray’s character is not one that lends itself too well to personal appearances and representing the company at major events.  Having Bray as the champion and the “face of the WWE” would make stockholders nervous. He’s just too unconventional for anything long term at the top of the company. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him rewarded at some point as a transitional champion, maybe for a week or so or maybe even a month, but no more than that.  But to be honest, his character is such that he doesn’t need to be champion. He’s already over big time and the belt and being champion, while cool, would actually hurt his character in my opinion more than help.
Fred Tobin:  If Daniel Bryan’s last match was really his last match, how will you remember him?  In your eyes, was he a legitimate World Champion?
From all reports, Bryan’s surgery went well and he will be back competing in the WWE at some point. But if this injury had proven to be career ending, I think I would remember Bryan as an overachiever.  He did and accomplished far more than one would expect from a man of his size and stature.  He’s always been one of the best in-ring performers in the business, dating back to his career as “The American Dragon” Bryan Danielson over in Japan. The man is a phenomenal talent and has so much heart and determination.  He’s proven himself time and time again and if the career was to end today, he’s cemented a legacy that few can match.  And is he a legitimate World Champion?  Absolutely!
James Ryder:  If you had the money, would you buy WWE stock?
Zack Carty:  If you could bring one wrestler back to WWE and one wrestler back to TNA, who would it be?
For the WWE, I’d bring back Carlito (and try to work in a deal for Chris Masters as well).  As for TNA, the person I would bring back to the TNA roster would be Scott Steiner.  Hey, I’m a “Big Poppa Pump” fan.  I admit it and just think of the excitement it would cause in the TNA locker-room.  But if the “Big Bad Booty Daddy” wasn’t an option, my other pick to bring back to TNA would be AJ Styles.  They should never have let him go and right now, in my opinion, TNA needs their heart and soul back.
James Ryder:  Who would win a modern day “Brawl For All”?  Obviously, no stars would be in it.  Comacho could be a contender if he’s 50% as tough as his dad (Haku).
The first step would be to decide what WWE talents would take part in this event if the WWE was to go all stupid and bring it back.  If I recall correctly, there were eight men to start so let’s figure out what eight guys would take part.  Comacho seems like a natural.  I think Titus O’Neill would be in there, as would probably Mark Henry and Big Show.  Jack Swagger seems like he might do well in something like this so I’d include him. William Regal has a legit “shooter” background so I’ll include him if he’s willing.  And to round it out, how about Alberto Del Rio and Drew McIntyre.  They both seem like legit tough guys. I’d love to add Brock Lesnar, but I don’t think he or the WWE would risk another “Dr. Death Steve Williams” situation by having Brock take part.  As for the winner, I just have a gut feeling that Alberto Del Rio would end up as the last man standing and winner.  I may be wrong, but there’s something about the former Dos Caras Jr. that says that if he wanted to, he could kick everyone’s ass.  Just saying.
And what else?  I think that’s it for now.  I’ll be back in a few days with the “Fact or Fiction” column and will take care of the “Who Am I?” question there.  I’m at work right now as I’m writing this and my list of everyone who answered the last “Who Am I?” correctly, as well as my new question, are both sitting on my desk at the house.   Again, my apologies for missing last week and also for the shortness of this column.  Work is keeping me far busier than I expected, but I will get back on track soon enough.  Believe it.
I’m Doug and I’m out of here.  Questions and comments can be sent to Doug28352@yahoo.comor come visit me at Facebook at  Add me as a friend.  Tell me dirty jokes.  You know you want to.
Thanks for reading.  I’m down and I’m gone.