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1 hour ago, gmoney said:

Coming off of a pretty injury heavy 98. He was fucked by then. If you look at him in 98, he's got bags under the bags under his eyes. 

True, I have also been watching ECW from the beginning on the Network (also by coincidence currently into September 1999) and was amazed by how good Shane Douglas looked (shape wise) in 1997/98 then suffered the elbow injury and was pretty much downhill from there.

Douglas has always fascinated me, I do think he could have been a big star but for some reason never really just worked whenever he left ECW, whether that was due to the other promotions not using him properly or him (or possibly a combination of both) I do not know.

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12 hours ago, Abe_Knuckleball_Schwartz said:

True, I have also been watching ECW from the beginning on the Network (also by coincidence currently into September 1999) and was amazed by how good Shane Douglas looked (shape wise) in 1997/98 then suffered the elbow injury and was pretty much downhill from there.

Douglas has always fascinated me, I do think he could have been a big star but for some reason never really just worked whenever he left ECW, whether that was due to the other promotions not using him properly or him (or possibly a combination of both) I do not know.

I think bad timing has a lot of do with it also. Not the only reason to be fair.

The WWF in 1995 didn’t know how to book to his strengths to get the most out of him.

If he signed for them in 1997 then its a different story.  

 

 

Edited by RancidPunx
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59 minutes ago, Abe_Knuckleball_Schwartz said:

The change of gimmick by Russo did them no favours either.

Soon as Russo took over he pulled Benoit away from the group, he was the main one people cared about at the time. 

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21 hours ago, sivy said:

Soon as Russo took over he pulled Benoit away from the group, he was the main one people cared about at the time. 

And it’s remarkable that Russo thought so highly of Benoit that he booked him to win the US title at Starrcade merely to drop it the very next night.

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23 hours ago, Abe_Knuckleball_Schwartz said:

True, I have also been watching ECW from the beginning on the Network (also by coincidence currently into September 1999) and was amazed by how good Shane Douglas looked (shape wise) in 1997/98 then suffered the elbow injury and was pretty much downhill from there.

Douglas has always fascinated me, I do think he could have been a big star but for some reason never really just worked whenever he left ECW, whether that was due to the other promotions not using him properly or him (or possibly a combination of both) I do not know.

Surely a key factor is that he was Shane Douglas?

He wasn't as bad as some people make out, but also nowhere near as good as he presented himself as. Wrestlers are pretty sensitive creatures too. If you try and make your name by tearing down the biggest stars in the industry then you can't really be surprised if they jump on the chance to make you look like a cunt. He seemed to take himself super serious too, which was just asking for trouble with the Kliq in those days. 

Plus he suffered from the same thing a lot of ex-ECW guys did. He was protected by Heyman's booking to a level that other promotions wouldn't (or couldn't) match. Taz was another one, but he quickly accepted it and played the game. Douglas just seemed to spit the dummy and blame everybody else. Like he'll complain about politics but then openly admit that he was threatening to stretch Michaels legitimately when he got him in the ring. Maybe not the most smartest move politically is it?

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20 hours ago, unfitfinlay said:

Surely a key factor is that he was Shane Douglas?

He wasn't as bad as some people make out, but also nowhere near as good as he presented himself as. Wrestlers are pretty sensitive creatures too. If you try and make your name by tearing down the biggest stars in the industry then you can't really be surprised if they jump on the chance to make you look like a cunt. He seemed to take himself super serious too, which was just asking for trouble with the Kliq in those days. 

Plus he suffered from the same thing a lot of ex-ECW guys did. He was protected by Heyman's booking to a level that other promotions wouldn't (or couldn't) match. Taz was another one, but he quickly accepted it and played the game. Douglas just seemed to spit the dummy and blame everybody else. Like he'll complain about politics but then openly admit that he was threatening to stretch Michaels legitimately when he got him in the ring. Maybe not the most smartest move politically is it?

 

Valid points and like I said in my original post I don’t know if was down to other promotion using him incorrectly or if it was down to Douglas himself.

With ECW he came across as the big fish in a small pond type and gave the impression that he could have gone on to be a big (or bigger) star and you might be right that is how Heyman portrayed him and not just him alone on the ECW roster.

Douglas has spent a number of years criticising everyone but himself and comes across as a little bitter in certain aspects but like one of the previous posts, I cannot but help wonder if it was just a case of  a fair bit of bad timing and maybe he had reason to be upset with things panned out.

He had to leave in 1991 due to family issues on the back of a fairly decent Royal Rumble push that year, which must have been a blow, not only to loose a family member but in hindsight, knowing how much the WWF pushed smaller guys just 18 months later and from that perspective can understand where the bitterness comes from.

When he went back to the WWF in 1995. He butted heads with the kliq, which was pretty much career suicide at that time, as you said. He was also lumbered with a poor gimmick, in an era that everyone seem to have to have a gimmick. However, if he had of gone to the WWF in 1997 would it have been a different story? Daft job Gimmicks portrayals at that time were pretty much out and they would have probably gone with something akin to the Franchise Gimmick, which I believe would have worked in the WWF mid 1997. Plus three members of the Kliq had gone at that point and HBK / Bret Hart were involved and the heat backstage on the pair of them them may have allowed Douglas to have just simply just got on with it.

Appreciate it is all "what if's" and maybe it does just simply come down to the fact that it was just Shane Douglas and he wasn't as good as what he believed himself to be.

 

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30 minutes ago, Abe_Knuckleball_Schwartz said:

Daft job Gimmicks portrayals at that time were pretty much out and they would have probably gone with something akin to the Franchise Gimmick, which I believe would have worked in the WWF mid 1997. 

I'm not quite so sure. Watching ECW back recently it became clear to me just how much he relied on establishing himself against people who weren't in the company like Flair etc. I don't think they'd let him do that in the WWF. Also he's believable as a franchise player in ECW because he had a reasonable shout at being the best 'wrestler' in the company,  he couldn't really hold a candle to Bret, Shawn, Austin, Owen, even Davey.

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1 hour ago, gmoney said:

I'm not quite so sure. Watching ECW back recently it became clear to me just how much he relied on establishing himself against people who weren't in the company like Flair etc. I don't think they'd let him do that in the WWF. Also he's believable as a franchise player in ECW because he had a reasonable shout at being the best 'wrestler' in the company,  he couldn't really hold a candle to Bret, Shawn, Austin, Owen, even Davey.

Yep.

It's easy to say "If they let him be 'The Franchise', he'd have got over" because it's one of those gimmicks that requires a big push and being protected. That was one thing in ECW but the WWF had far better options in '97. Why hire Douglas, portray him as the best wrestler in the world, and let him be controversial on the microphone when you could just do that with one of the guys already on the roster? It was the same in WCW (to take this back on topic) they let him CALL himself the Franchise and do the gimmick without the push, and it died on it's arse.

That's the thing with Douglas. He really had fuck all else. He can moan about Dean Douglas being shit but it's not like he was blowing anybody away with his in-ring performances. Most people had shit gimmicks back then and still had at least some memorable matches. Douglas though? Aside from the one where he lost the IC Title, nope.

Regarding the discussion of WCW's fake barbed wire on the last page: Anybody remember when they gave Duggan a rubber 2 x 4? It was so bad that he couldn't even lift the thing without it bending. I'm sure David Flair was using a rubber crowbar at one point as well.

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15 hours ago, Abe_Knuckleball_Schwartz said:

Appreciate it is all "what if's" and maybe it does just simply come down to the fact that it was just Shane Douglas and he wasn't as good as what he believed himself to be.

 

If ifs and buts were candy and nuts then we'd all have a merry Christmas 

 

OT: I was a huge fan of Douglas in 1992/3 WCW but think he was on the decline after that, his promos in ECW were groundbreaking at the time but hurt him professionally later on and with hindsight haven't aged particularly well. 

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Appreciate the interaction guys and all valid points.

13 hours ago, unfitfinlay said:

Regarding the discussion of WCW's fake barbed wire on the last page: Anybody remember when they gave Duggan a rubber 2 x 4? It was so bad that he couldn't even lift the thing without it bending.

I have never heard that before?! 

Was it during the Team Canada stint?

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Posted (edited)

I think Douglas was fairly solid in the ring in the early to mid 90s but he was never anywhere near as good as he thought he was. With hindsight I think any rep he had as some top in ring performer came mostly from his brief run in WCW in 92/93. But he benefitted massively from being paired with Steamboat almost the entire time he was there and wrestling Austin and Pillman, who were absolutely on fire at the time, for most of his stay there. It sounds harsh but you could’ve slotted a Tom Zenk or even Bagwell into his spot and got the same result. Brad Armstrong would’ve been even better. He had some alright matches as TV champ in ECW but nothing spectacular. And the Pitbull 2 match at Barely Legal in 97 was fucking dire and almost killed the card dead for me when I first saw it.

If he was signed by the WWF in 97 instead of 95 he most likely wouldn’t have been put in a baby blue singlet and saddled with a shite gimmick but his run wouldn’t have gone any better because there were so many better options on the roster at that time. He’d have got lost in the shuffle quick. They had Bret, Shawn, Undertaker, Austin, Sid, Vader, Mankind dominating the title picture. And even the IC title, they had Owen, Triple H, Rocky, Bulldog, Goldust and so on as options. Where would the old ‘Franchise’ have fit in? He’d have probably ended up facing Wildman Marc Mero and Flash Funk in opening matches at best. Or doing 4 minutes with Rockabilly on the Free For All every other month.

I just don’t see it with him. His matches weren’t anything special, his look wasn’t anything special, he can talk a bit but most of his schtick was just swearing and slagging off names from other promotions. Neither of which would fly on WWF TV even back then. And by 97, he was about to hit his run of injuries anyway so, even if they gave him a big push for some reason, it wouldn’t have lasted long.

He’s full of shit in interviews as well. I saw one a while back and he saying he knew after the rotten Dean Douglas run in 95 that he’d never work for Vince McMahon again. But then a few minutes later he was on about when Benoit, Guerrero, Malenko and Saturn jumped to the WWF, and how he was meant to come with them but they stitched him up and went without him or something. All cloak and dagger. They probably did, to be fair. I’m guessing the WWF weren’t that interested in him coming back in 2000 so told the soon to be Radicalz to just fob him off. But it was one of a few contradictions I’ve heard off him over the years. ‘I never would’ve gone back after 95’…few minutes later ‘so I was meant to be the leader of the Radicalz in 2000’. Which is it?

Last thing, and I know I’m rambling. I’ve seen a couple of times now, people mentioning that Triple H stole Douglas’ whole gimmick or some shite? What’s that about? Is it the ‘Game’ nickname vs the ‘Franchise’? The word ‘triple’ in Triple H vs Shane’s ‘Triple Threat’? Having long blonde hair? What’s the link? 

Edited by wandshogun09
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31 minutes ago, wandshogun09 said:

Last thing, and I know I’m rambling. I’ve seen a couple of times now, people mentioning that Triple H stole Douglas’ whole gimmick or some shite? What’s that about? Is it the ‘Game’ nickname vs the ‘Franchise’? The word ‘triple’ in Triple H vs Shane’s ‘Triple Threat’? Having long blonde hair? What’s the link? 

Gimmick is probably pushing it somewhat, but Triple H’s initial look after turning heel in 1999 was similar to that of Douglas in ECW in 1998. The paddy-cap, the jean-shorts- both guys wore them, but that was the era of guys in black jeans and black tees, it’s not like they were the only two. It’s just an excuse for him to have a moan about the Kliq some more 

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Edited by WyattSheepMask
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