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Old 09-07-2014, 01:01 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Analyze This: Placing ECW in history

The monday night wars were mostly about WCW and WWF with wrestlers jumping between the two making themselves valuable. Meanwhile, a promotion named ECW was too in the fray but it was mostly losing the talent without gaining any from WCW/WWF.

Did you or anyone at any point of time consider ECW as a potential contender to become THE wrestling promotion? Leaving out the genius of Heyman's booking or edgy storyline, was ECW ever taken seriously by the general fan? For example, was Raven's nest imitated and admired like say DX or nWo or was it merely at Aces and 8's level? To place it in today's context, was ECW more TNAish or ROHish?
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Old 09-07-2014, 01:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Taking ECW seriously

If I'm not mistaken, Vince was helping fund ecw and in return taking a few wrestlers here and there. So there was no way for them to become THE promotion. I loved ecw but it was more of a niche company at the time anyway.
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Old 09-07-2014, 01:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Taking ECW seriously

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phillies3:16 View Post
If I'm not mistaken, Vince was helping fund ecw and in return taking a few wrestlers here and there. So there was no way for them to become THE promotion. I loved ecw but it was more of a niche company at the time anyway.
That's always been a myth that Heyman shot down on his documentary.


The deal was that Vince wanted Too Cold Scorpio. Not a problem, except Heyman was getting money from Tommy Boy Records by promoting one of their groups, who did Scorpio's entrance music. Heyman didn't want to lose out on that money, so Vince offered to pay the company whatever Tommy Boy was paying them, as well as send wrestlers in return for guys like Scorpio & Funk. Wasn't no extra money, ECW was getting the same from the day they began using Scorpio, except from a different party.




On topic, it's hard to say because ECW wasn't as well known, during the "glory days". So, by the time it went national, everything that made it stand out was done.

As far as Raven's Nest, for example, being admired on a certain level, it was an imitation of what was done in the territories but, IMO, was well received enough to the point that both WCW & TNA ran the same angle back a few years later. Wasn't admired on a DX or nWo level because it wasn't as popular or known to the wrestling public but appreciated and respected enough that it gave Raven something to do in other companies. Definitely on a higher level than Aces & 8s.

If anything, ECW was more ROHish. I say that because of the emphasis on young, fresh talent, with an inclusion of a few name talents that helped build it up. Look back at the early days of ECW, with Don Muraco, Tito Santana and Ivan Koloff, to name a few. Compare that to ROH, with Abdullah The Butcher, Dusty Rhodes and Terry Funk. It was never about them but always about the "newer" guys.
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Old 09-07-2014, 04:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Placing ECW in history

I never understood why they never put buy-outs on wrestler's contracts. Literally all the name talent bar Dreamer was snapped up, it could have allowed for continuity and/or got them sone extra dough.

If someone like an Austin or a Jericho or a Foley who could make it at the top level walks in, they could have got fair whack from them.
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Old 09-07-2014, 04:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Placing ECW in history

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Originally Posted by theidealstranger View Post
ECW was too in the fray but it was mostly losing the talent without gaining any from WCW/WWF.
Noooo, that's not how it went down at all. Often times WWF or WCW talent would be traded to ECW and repackaged. Most of the home-grown ECW guys stayed with ECW until they realized that they were on a sinking ship.

ECW could have been big in my opinion. People did take them seriously, not like how people look at TNA or even ROH today. Heyman's excuse is "too small to be big, too big to be small." That doesn't make sense from a business stand-point, there's no such thing as "too big to be small." In that position you maximize your output and begin a slow expansion. He tried to grow too fast and ended up catching the bastard end of contract negotiations. Had he just sat back and let WCW/WWF beat each other into oblivion instead of trying to force his company into the fray, ECW would absolutely still be around today.
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Old 09-07-2014, 04:58 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Placing ECW in history

Just did a podcast on ECW that talked a lot of these issues, funnily enough (in my sig, if interested), but I actually think the 'too big to be small, too small to be big' is actually on the money. The entire nature of the product was targeting the disillusioned, mature, smarter wrestling fan that cared more about the artistic use than what would draw money. "Wrestling for adults", as it was designed at its creative peak in 95-96, was a concept that was no longer original in 1998. By 1999-2000 and their entire quest to be bigger, They were too big to just be an Indy company or regional because the business was ballooning in popularity, but they weren't big enough to keep up with operating costs or holding major league talent for any length of time.

Artistically shitloads was taken, but the Nest/nWo comparison is a massive stretch. Their influence was obvious in spotlighting guys the big two companies could turn too in order to get that next edge up on the other, and the different turns WWF and WCW took from where thing were in 95, to just two short years later.
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Old 09-07-2014, 05:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Placing ECW in history

If ECW hadn't shut down in 01, I seriously believe they'd be a real threat to WWF/E with WCW out of the way.

With all the new indy talent on the rise at the time, ECW could've evolved and truly push the WWE.

Fix their finances, and they'd be gold.
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Old 09-07-2014, 06:18 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Placing ECW in history

ECW was more like prime ROH than TNA.

I never thought ECW would be #1 but I did think they would take over WCW's #2 spot once they got the TNN deal in the summer of 1999.
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Old 09-07-2014, 07:17 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Placing ECW in history

Quote:
Originally Posted by luminaire View Post
Noooo, that's not how it went down at all. Often times WWF or WCW talent would be traded to ECW and repackaged. Most of the home-grown ECW guys stayed with ECW until they realized that they were on a sinking ship.

ECW could have been big in my opinion. People did take them seriously, not like how people look at TNA or even ROH today. Heyman's excuse is "too small to be big, too big to be small." That doesn't make sense from a business stand-point, there's no such thing as "too big to be small." In that position you maximize your output and begin a slow expansion. He tried to grow too fast and ended up catching the bastard end of contract negotiations. Had he just sat back and let WCW/WWF beat each other into oblivion instead of trying to force his company into the fray, ECW would absolutely still be around today.
Had he done that, what separates him from the dozens of other promoters that tried & failed?


"Too big to be small" makes perfect sense. Obviously small, in terms of finances but big in regards to having global popularity, PPV, syndication in the biggest markets and a reputation for putting on some of the best cards in America at the time.


If you don't capitalize on that, you're still fucked because for the competition to beat each other won't stop them from snatching up a Raven, a Sabu, a Shane Douglas, a Mick Foley, a Sandman, a Benoit, pretty much everybody that made you stand out in the first place. Only possible way to prevent that would be to force growth and that obviously didn't work.


It's like public access TV vs. HBO & Showtime. Being small and not having the funds ain't going to stop your competition from raiding you. Life for them will go on at your expense. And the result would be going out of business a lot sooner.


I don't see how waiting would help ECW at all. You saying they could have lasted longer without PPV or TV? I'd love to see how, considering they were on life support for the entire time, including the 4 years before PPV, including when they only aired on Sportschannel and including when they were actually making money. Pulling in X amount of dollars means nothing when it takes more than that to keep a certain talent.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:07 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Analyze This: Placing ECW in history

You can't say "If it weren't for the finances..." finances play a huge part in running a business. and ECW didn't have the option of just having WCW and WWF beat one another up and pick up the scraps. ECW was for the most part underground, the world was a different place. I was big into wrestling and the tape trading scene and that's how word of ECW spread mainly. I was 16 in 1995 when I heard about a relatively new promotion that was more adult oriented than WWF and WCW, real life storylines and characters. It really did change the game so it's contributions to what wrestling has become cant be understated but it was never serious competition for either organization.
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