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Wrestling unpopular opinions

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20 hours ago, Sergio Bellend said:

Seem to remember the Sky guide listing it as WWFE for a while before the official change, but they still called it WWF on air didn’t they?

I thought I had completely imagined this. Thank you!

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[/] Vince drinking water gif.[/]

 

No, i'll attempt to elaborate, but it's unpopular opinion i'm not expecting people to understand what i'm meaning and absolutely not to particularly agree. Broken down, "professional wrestling" implies it is the already existing (legitimate) sport, merely competed at a level in which the competitors are paid for competing in. Professional wrestling isn't wrestling. It evolved from that into a performance based con, into pure performance. It's evolved into this utterly bizarre creature of its own that is a weird and wonderful mixture of so many things rolled into one - it's live action comic book, live action beat 'em up/fighting games, theatre, circus, even magic all blended together. When i say magic, i don't mean supernatural hocus-pocus. I mean magic is an art form, also derived from a performance based con that developed into a pure performance that the audience is willingly in on for the sake of entertainment. Deep down everybody knows magicians aren't actually carrying out supernatural, otherworldly acts. Just like deep down everybody knows a professional wrestling match isn't actually a legitimate sporting contest in which one is attempting to incapacitate or score a victory on their opponent.

Had professional wrestling never been referred to as such (or changed somewhere down the line) we might not/never have the whole silly "dOn'T yOu kNOw iT's faKE!?" nonsense that's forever existed (meh, probably not). That exists because once upon a time it was presented as such and even longer that pretence was attempted to be maintained by those that took part in it as their livelihood. We are so very far past that in this day and age. But it's still referred to as "professional wrestling", a misleading term really, that will still lead to the tired, never-ending "fake" argument. It's so completely it's own animal there is no term for what it really is. Personally, i think i'd have liked perhaps "lucha" to have evolved into the universal term. But it's too ingrained with one particular style/culture that it would never happen. The word derives from the same general meaning as wrestling, but also come to be accepted as "show wrestling", which i guess is about the closest, accurate definition you could give it. Part of the reason i loved the whole concept and presentation of Lucha Underground is it felt like a move in that direction.  I can understand Vince's move to find or create other ways for his professional wrestlers and professional wrestling to be referred to and eventually accepted. Like superstars, sports entertainment, simply WWE rather than World Wrestling Entertainment. But none of them really work or are too vague.

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You can call professional wrestling “performance art” until your blue in the face, and if that’s the hill you want to die on that’s fine, but let’s not pretend that wrestling is anything other than a sleazy, grotty carival show

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If it helps at all in accepting it, you could perhaps bend your mind around the term "professional wrestling" by looking at it as "carrying out a wrestling match in the particular way they've been paid to do," rather than the way they would naturally (ie, with the goal of winning, using whatever moves they found beneficial during combat). A wrestling match to order. Wrestling as they've been hired to. Professional wrestling.

There are also examples in the English language of the word "professional" denoting a difference in the intent of the action, beyond the presence of money. A professional foul in football, for instance.

I'm not saying it's flawless logic by any means, but if you can half squint your brain in one of these directions then it might somewhat put your mind at ease, and spare you the frustration of contesting a term that the industry leader hasn't been able to shake in over two decades of trying.

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It's professional wrestling because they're paid to wrestle, which amateur wrestlers aren't.

I suppose there is a debate over whether it should accurately be termed "wrestling", but I would say that to the vast majority of people, "wrestling" already means WWE, or at least Haystacks and Big Daddy. 

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Especially in this country where amateur wrestling isn't really widespread at all.

I remember the 1996 Atlanta Games and the BBC listings showing wrestling on the schedule. I'm not sure what I expected but remember being struck by how unbelievably shit and boring I thought it was at the time. (It did bring us Kurt Angle eventually though).

Edited by garynysmon

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35 minutes ago, garynysmon said:

Especially in this country where amateur wrestling isn't really widespread at all.

I remember the 1996 Atlanta Games and the BBC listings showing wrestling on the schedule. I'm not sure what I expected but remember being struck by how unbelievably shit and boring I thought it was at the time. (It did bring us Kurt Angle eventually though).

For every match that gives you a highlight reel throw or suplex, there are 99 others that are ground out on technical points sprawled out on the mat for ages. Tweaked freestyle and amateur wrestling can be spectacular, though, with rules adjusted to cut down stalling and extending the time a hold can be counted as countered rather than scored. Olympic can be a slog though. Is it even still an Olympic thing? I'm sure a few years ago there's was minor outrage at wrestling (potentially) losing its place on the Olympic slate (possibly because the Middle Eastern and Slavic countries kept beating the Yanks).

Pro wrestling is as close to wrestling as pro football is to that original sport where a pigskin was kicked across counties for days on end, or, to use a more modern entertainment analogy, as close as a Big Brother is to Coronation Street. The definition of the individual terms used in the phrase itself is irrelevant.

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I remember that, sometime during the mid-2000s, there was a short-lived attempt to have professional, paid Olympic/amateur/Greco-Roman/freestyle wrestling, called, unsurprisingly "Real Pro Wrestling". They had teams of wrestlers, and I think it was done in a seasonal tournament structure. Given the rise of MMA, I guess it made sense at the time, and it did get some plaudits, but it just didn't get the numbers.

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This brings back horrific memories of Inoki trying to legitimise NJPW by having "real" fighters on his big cards. The output of the company (which from a main event perspective was ropey through the 90s anyway) dwindled in the early to mid 00s because of his error in judgement. 

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38 minutes ago, Michael_3165 said:

This brings back horrific memories of Inoki trying to legitimise NJPW by having "real" fighters on his big cards. The output of the company (which from a main event perspective was ropey through the 90s anyway) dwindled in the early to mid 00s because of his error in judgement. 

Yeah, I think it was Lister, Kenny McBride or the much-missed $tew who said on here that it seemed like, every time NJPW seemed to be getting anywhere in terms of booking policy helping generate interest in their product, Inoki would come down from on high and shit the bed by then insisting on shoot-works and real fighters in angles and matches that would destroy the good work previous.

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12 hours ago, Carbomb said:

I remember that, sometime during the mid-2000s, there was a short-lived attempt to have professional, paid Olympic/amateur/Greco-Roman/freestyle wrestling, called, unsurprisingly "Real Pro Wrestling". They had teams of wrestlers, and I think it was done in a seasonal tournament structure. Given the rise of MMA, I guess it made sense at the time, and it did get some plaudits, but it just didn't get the numbers.

Big Mo and Daniel Cormier acting like complete knobs in the promos to be the heels was hilarious.

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