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Solie's Tuesday Morning Report: EXTRA!

Friday Morning Edition

Best of Seven Finale to be Re-Fought at the Bash

Bret Hart attacks Booker T and causes a DQ

An Interview with Scott Teal: Part 4

Conducted by Jeremy Hartley for TWC Online
Transcribed by Earl Oliver


Volume 3, Issue 324 - June 12, 1998
A message from Ervin Griffin

"Hello. As you know, the Junkyard Dog was killed in an automobile accident recently. For those of you that would like to know more about JYD's career, e-mail me for an article given to me from David Woods via the African American Student Network. My e-mail is griffiev@hotmail.com


News from Bob Ryder

RIC FLAIR ON THE WAY BACK?

Several websites, and hotline reports are speculating that Ric Flair will be returning to WCW in the near future. The unconfirmed reports speculate that Flair may appear at the July 6 NITRO, possibly joining the Wolfpack.

WCW recently put Flair merchandise on sale on the WCW website, but cautioned fans not to "read anything into this".


An Interview with Scott Teal

Conducted by Jeremy Hartley for TWC Online
Transcribed by Earl Oliver

Here is the final installment a four part interview with the publisher of the "What Ever Happened Too..." newsletter. He is also a former wrestling photographer and publicist. Scott has devoted his publication, and his web site to the history of Pro-Wrestling with a special emphasis on the oral tradition. His web site is a must-see for anyone on the Internet who is interested in the "Old Days" of wrestling.

Jeremy Hartley: You know, the more intelligent you are, the more you can see a storyline, and the more you can see angles coming, and the more you can work them. You mentioned the territories, and I have seen your share of when the NWA Champion would go into the territories. Those must have been some really classic matches just because the Champions had to be on their game all the time and so did the wrestlers, and the fans as well. I can recall some matches I've seen with Harley Race - would you say that he was one of the better workers...

Scott Teal: Well, you put me on the spot there...he was definitely a big part of wrestling history, but back then you had many many guys who were great workers and great wrestlers both. It would be really hard for me to sit down and say, you know, Jack Brisco was a much better World Champion then Harley Race. You know, it was a different time frame, a different era. I don't know, you even go back to Lou Thesz. Thesz was great with what he did - today, you know, he wouldn't get over for anything because people just aren't educated to what he did. But what he did, he did the best. Buddy Rogers, now there's a good case of somebody that really couldn't wrestle all that well. I guess back them they would have referred to him as the Hulk Hogan of that era...and I'm not knocking Hulk because what he does is great, he's a great showman, but Buddy Rogers couldn't wrestle a lick, but boy, he could pack 'em into the arenas and that's the name of the game. So I guess I'd be hard pressed to say who would be the best. I have had situations in the past where people have asked me things like that, or "what match do you think was the best match of all time?" - I think it depends on where you grow up. The matches that I saw that stand out in my mind, if I had to pick one, would be Jack Brisco against Dory Funk, Jr. I probably saw them wrestle maybe 13-14 times, an hour to ninty minutes apiece. Two scientific wrestlers, no gimmicks, no brawling, just scientific wrestling. And they had the people on their feet, in an hour match, people were on their feet 45-50 minutes. And I would take that as probably the greatest match ever, but then again, I never saw the matches up in Portland, Oregon or the matches in New York back then. That's just something that depends on the person.

Jeremy Hartley: You know it's funny, I have this big pile of tapes of interviews I'm going to be putting together for this show, and I have to ask, what do you do when your conducting an interview - and people have a tendancy to just ramble on, to things as organized as you do...?

Scott Teal: Well, you'll probably find out when you try to organize aome of this stuff I've been talking about (Editor's Note: Tell me about it..!) I've mentioned in my newsletters several times that the interviews I print aren't exactly verbatum. It is exactly what they said. What I end up doing is, doing the interview, and after I type it up onto the computer, when I'm finished...I'll have generally 20-30 questions that I maybe didn't know anything about and I think, "Well I should have asked this..." or "I should have asked that..." So I'll end up calling them back. At that point you have two separate interviews. I end up taking it all, and I put it in a timeline. From the time you read the first paragraph it's just like the guy started from his childhood, when he was born and talked through to where he is at today. Of course, the interviews don't work that way, but I do it because it gives people a little better idea of a guys life rather then jumping from 1952 to 1980 then back to the 1940's up to the '90's. You know you really can't get a good feel for their life. This more the way I do it to put things into perspective.

Jeremy Hartley: So we've been talking about your "What Ever Happened Too..." newsletter. What's the timeline on that now?

Scott Teal: I'd like it to be every other month but it works out to once every two-to-three months now. About four-to-six issues a year. Each issue now is 50 pages - it's real small print, there's no wasted space, no advertising, I know this sounds like a plug but what I want to say is that I want to give the people as much as I can for their money. You know, this isn't a business for me, I make very little money. I've got a full-time job - I could work a few hours overtime a week and make a lot more. But I enjoy doing it so it generally works out to be about every two-and-a-half to three months. We're trying to get the next one out so that the time frame from the time I mailed the last one will be two months.

Jeremy Hartley: You know, as you said, interviews don't always go the way we want because something just popped into my mind. You did a story that I have yet to read, but you did a whole issue...is it in the next issue or in the last one... about the Carnival wrestlers...

Scott Teal: Yes...

Jeremy Hartley: ...and you also did something about the wrestling bears?

Scott Teal: I never really did get to the wrestling bears. I said I was going to try to in the next issue and didn't. I will in the future. What I'm trying to do is get the boys to tell the story as they remember it about the wrestling bears. There's some funny stories. The Carnivals is an ongoing thing, it started in the last issue, actually the past two issues, and most people don't realize it but professional wrestling started in the carnivals where people would go up to the Carnival and challenge a wrestler. And a lot of that, believe it or not was a work just like it is in professional wrestling today.

Jeremy Hartley: Sure, and that;'s where the art of hooking came from.

Scott Teal: Yes it was. I just talked to a guy named Dick Cardin, I did a big interview with him for my next issue and he was one of the great hookers up in the Seatle area. It's a fascinating subject. If you're interested in pro-wrestling, the subject of "AT Shows" which stands for Athletic Shows and the Carnivals is just a fascinating subject.

Jeremy Hartley: So if anybody out there wants to read about this kind of stuff you've got one article on your web page about it, "Taking On All Comers".

Scott Teal: Right, that's a brief overview by one of the fellows that writes for me, a historian named Mark Hewitt. He did quite a bit of research and wrote that article. It's a good overview of how the Carnival Athletic Shows worked.

Jeremy Hartley: Right, and for anyone whose wondering, I don't believe in giving out URL's because a lot of times they get so jumbled in the translation, however, I have a links list, so if you're listening to the show and you think, "Oh, I want to click over to Scott's web page..." just click on the "What Ever Happened to..." on this week's show and it will be right there for you. You've got a lot of interesting links, you've done a lot of research, it looks like to get the fans some very informative wrestling stuff. You know you see "exclusive links" on a lot of web sites and you click on them and most of them are down or they don't give you...

Scott Teal: Or they take you somewhere else...

Jeremy Hartley: Yeah, exactly...and they don't give you much but you seem to have scouted the web...

Scott Teal: I try, every once in a while I'll go through and find the good stuff, you know, that's out there. You know I could have a page with probably 3000 links on it of wrestling stuff...

Jeremy Hartley: (laughs)

Scott Teal: ...but there's so much stuff that's repeated so I limit it to the one that I really feel are worthy of being read because there's so much junk out there, like I said that's just copied or repeated from somewhere else. I appreciate the nice comments you made...

Jeremy Hartley: Hey, no problem. I'm one who looks for wrestling history and your site I keep cooming back too. As a matter of fact, any time you put a new update I'm probably one of the first people to email saying, "Wow! Great..."

Scott Teal: (laughs) Yeah, you're pretty good about that...I will say one thing about...you know, you said something about wrestling history. A lot of people today, when you mention wrestling history they sort of shrug and say, "Well, I'm not really interested. People that read the stories on my web page, it's not just history written down in a long, monotonous thing. Most of what I have on there are the stories that were told by the wrestlers themselves. They're funny, great stories...the ribs they pulled on the road on each other, the things that happened behind the scenes, in the dressing room. I've talked with a guy that does publications for Carnivals, he has interviews with the old Carnival workers, not wrestlers but the Carnival people, the "Carnies". I sent him an issue and he doesn't know the first thing about wrestling but he loved it! He just loves it because of the funny stories in it. It sort of gives you a slice of life of what it was like to be a professional wrestler in the old days. So I try to make it a little bit for everybody.

Jeremy Hartley: Well, the thing about the interviews and the stories - name some of the folks that contribute to your publication. You have a whose who list of folks that write memories...and so forth. Name off a few of those...

Scott Teal: Well, most of the one's that do write have been around wrestling for thirty to forty years. The one that I send me things regularly - Tom Burke, Fred Hornby, Don Luce, couple of guys out of the Minniapolis area, George Schire and James Melby. Chuck Thornton down in Atlanta. J. Michael Kenyon, of course you've mentioned him and we've mentioned Mark Hewitt and I've been branching out over the past several months and several of the guys have told me that they're interested in contributing things on a regular basis. I think it was Dick Steinborn really who was the first to do that. He has a column in my newsletter called "The Way I Remember It..." - and he tells the old stories the way he remembers as a wrestler. So I've added about 6 or 7 other wrestlers since then. Dean Silverstone who used to promote up in Seatle, he has a regular column, of course Frankie Cain, Lou Thesz, Killer Karl Kox - that guy knows a funny story about everybody. And Sputnik Monroe the same way. All the boys are contributing, I just call them up and say, "You know, so-and-so died - do you remember anything about him..?" and they tell me the most wonderful or funny stories about these guys.

Jeremy Hartley: Can you tell us about some of the more memorable interviews or stories that you've published in the newsletter?

Scott Teal: I hate to choose because I love them all. I earn something from every one of them. It doesn't matter who it is, if it's some little tidbit or some little story. I did mention Killer Karl Kox, his was just tremendous, I had so much fun because it seemed like every story he told was funny, I sat here and laughed the whole time. Of course Lou Thesz, there are several interviews that he's done. To be honest with you some of the most memorable interviews were with some of the guys who probably weren't as well known, as recognizable as some of the others even though they were big names in their day like Roger Kirby, Dennis Hall, Dr. Ken Ramey, Sputnik Monroe whose in this latest issue. I'd say that they were some of my favorite interviews. Then you have some of the guys that that were workers more into the seventies. One guy I interviewed recently that was really fun to talk to and who I've really developed a good friendship with is Rick Drayson. He lives out in California and he's just a wonderful guy. He enjoys corresponding with people if you ever want to interview or talk to someone whose really a lot of fun to talk with he'd be one to get in touch with. Stu Hart was fun, though it was kind of hard to keep him on the right track as I have mentioned. He's got a great fund of stories about the great shooters. He remembers a lot of the stories about shoots that took place, sort of like the Bret Hart/Shawn Michaels deal. Boy he can tell 'em. Stu still remembers a lot of that stuff...

Jeremy Hartley is a longtime friend of Solie's and a regular contributer to the newsletter. His "EYE on Wrestling" columns can be found in the "Articles" section of the web site. His previous interviews with Bob Blackburn, Lou Thesz, Bob Ryder and Buddy Landel are currently to be found in the "Interviews" section.


Thunder Report

Thunder is live from the Marine Midland Arena in Buffalo, NY - we see the nWo Hogan faction with a bevy of young ladies seated in a section to themselves. Tony tells us that the PR department's important announcement has been postponed for some reason. We go to a replay of the incident at the end of Nitro involving Diamond Dallas Page. He seems about to accept the offer of membership in nWo Wolfpack when Hogan and Rodman blindside him with chair shots.

Heenan has his say and then Tony starts to comment on what we just saw when Bischoff interrupts from the sidelines to toot the nWo Hollywood horn. He refers to Liz as the new "Assistant to the President" then turns the mic over to the Giant. The Giant comments on his upcoming match with Sting then starts speculating on who he will pick as his partner after he wins the match. He picks the Disciple and then throws out a challenge to Lex Luger to find a partner and face him and the Disciple this evening. Bischoff then puts in his 2 cents about why there is no PR statement tonight - he says he and his lawyer cancelled it.

Riggs vs. Dean Malenko - Riggs has a slight size advantage here but Malenko counters it effectively with superior mat technique. Lee Marshall refers to Malenko as being "Stone Cold" as he comments on his lack of emotion. Riggs asserts his weight advantage and takes the initiative for a while. He relies on power wrestling, which we know will only get him so far. Still he has a pretty good run until his face runs into the Champ's knee. Malenko goes for the Texas Cloverleaf but Riggs is in the ropes. He escapes and retakes the advantage but then he climbs the corner where he is upset when Malenko falls against the ropes. Riggs injures his knee on the way down and thus us easy pickings for Malenko's finishing move.

As expected, the announcers are talking as if Goldberg has yet to win his 100th match (we know he defeated Raven at a house show - and actually he probably has more then 100 wins under his belt if you count house shows and broadcast appearances).

Chris Jericho is demanding a meeting with JJ Dillon to talk about getting "his belt back..." Cut to commercial.

Kidman (w/Lodi) vs. Juventud Guerrera -if both of these guys weren't so fun to watch this could get tiring. nWo Hollywood gets up and leaves as the match gets underway. In the ring, Juventud is outflying his opponent and knocks him out of the ring. Juvey takes a dive to the outside but Kidman is getting out of the way with an assist from Lodi. Juvey is holding his knee as Kidman continue his attack. Kidman throws his version of the Shooting Star press off the apron. Back in the ring, Kidman applies a reverse chinlock to take a rest. Juvey escapes and manages to turn things around momentarily but then Kidman drops him head-first on the mat to regain the advantage. Now the match see-saws as Guerrera gets his second wind. Both competitors attempt to pin without success. After much back and forth action, Juventud applies his Juvey driver then goes up and hits the 450 splash to get the pin.

Tony calls Lex Luger out for an interview. He reminds us that DDP has been invited to join the Wolf Pack. He derides the Hollywood faction for their inability to have a face-to-face confrontation. We are shown the end of the tag team match last week wherein DDP got the pin over Brian Adams to supposedly win the Tag Team Titles for his team with Luger. Luger then accepts the Giant's challenge and announces Randy Savage as his partner for the match tonight. Cut to commercial.

Eric Bischoff makes an appearance with Bret Hart. They talk about their own recruitement efforts, then Bret reveals that they are courting Chris Benoit to join nWo Hollywood. He, in fact, invites Benoit to join up.

Chris Benoit vs. Booker T (w/Stevie Ray) - Final match in the Best of 7 Series - Benoit pauses briefly by Bischoff and Hart on his way to the ring but doesn't indicate any reaction to their offer. Booker T sends his big brother away from the ring area. Benoit takes the early advantage then maintains it by out-maneuvering his opponent. After several exchanges Booker T surprises him with a round kick and knocks him out to the floor. Back in the ring, Booker T has the advantage momentarily but Benoit applies a Dragon Screw Legwhip to send Booker to the floor. Back in the ring once more, Benoit is stepping up his attack as we cut to commercial.

There's that AWAI Sound commercial with the hearse driver playing "Another One Bites the Dust" again... I only seem to see this one during WCW programming.

Benoit is still in control as we return. Booker is limping on his injured leg. Benoit continues to pound on it. Booker has a lot of resilliance and refuses to be pinned. He manages an inside cradle and almost gets a pin on Benoit. Benoit hangs his opponent up in the corner and attacks the leg again. Benoit applies a reverse Indian Deathlock then adds a rear chinlock/surfboard combo to it but Booker won't give up. He escapes the combination move but Benoit still has the Deathlock as we cut to commercial.

Benoit is on the mat as we return and Booker T appears to be making a comeback until he gets caught in a series of German suplexes. Booker is out on the mat again as Benoit flies off the top and executes his headbutt. Benoit is showing some frustration but ploughs ahead. As the referee is pushing Benoit away, Bret Hart runs up with a chair and whacks Booker with it!! He urges Benoit to take the pin but Benoit doesn't want to win that way. Benoit hesitates as Nick Patrick applies a ten count - then he stops the count and tells Patrick what happened. Booker T wins by disqualification and thus is the #1 contender for the TV belt at the PPV on Sunday. Cut to commercial.

JJ Dillon is on the ramp with Tony and Dean Malenko. He wants to review the tape of what just happened but first the Cruiserweight Champ wants to make a statement. He hands the Title belt to Dillon and says he wants to get a shot at Jericho - he's confident that he can win the belt back anytime. Jericho shows up expecting to have the belt handed to him but it is not to be. Dillon orders a match for this Sunday to settle the controversey. Jericho throws a fit. Then his father (Hockey great, Ted Irvine) shows up and tells him to quit whining and take the match. "If you want the belt, get into the ring and face Dean Malenko..." he concludes by saying, "...until you beat Malenko in the ring you will never, ever be the a real Champion." Great theater! Cut to commercial.

Konnan vs. Scott Putz (ski) - Putski is such a dud. I didn't think anybody could impress me less then Jim Powers - but this guy's got him beat. His dad must have disowned him by now. Konnan basically takes him apart and wins it with the Tequilla Sunrise submission. Cut to commercial.

Saturn vs. Glacier - Glacier follows Saturn into the ring and hits him hard before the bell rings. Raven heads for the ring as Glacier continues his attack. He has the riot squad in tow. Saturn eventually slips in a belly-to-back suplex to turn the tables. He applies an STF then lets it go to put his foot in his opponent's face. Now it is all Saturn until Glacier manages to throw a boot of his own to Saturns head. The match see-saws as the two men trade martial arts blows. Lodi gets on the apron only to be Cryonic Kicked off by Glacier. Lodi has done his job and distracted Glacier so that Saturn can get in a side kick of his own and take the pin. Raven enters the ring with his riot squad and invites Kanyon to come on down but there is no response. He then says he is firing the riot squad and kicks each as he and Saturn apply their finishing moves. Except the first guard hangs back and takes off his helmet - it's Kanyon. He pancakes Raven and then runs for his life as the Flock swarms.

JJ Dillon is with Tony. He wants to talk to Booker T about the outcome of the the series. Booker comes down and reveals that he doesn't want to take the win. Dillon throws out the decision and declares that the final series match will take place at the Bash - then the winner will face Finley the same night. Booker agrees but his brother thinks its a crock. They move off to discuss it as we cut to commercial.

Th nWo Hollywood music plays as we return. Bischoff and Liz come down the ramp to make an announcement. He invites Liz to comment on Randy Savage. She claims to have always been his "crutch" and states that she is the reason that he is Randy Savage. She then refers to Bischoff as "the real Macho Man".

The announcers discuss the situation then show video from Nitro of the confrontation between Piper and Savage then the defection of Liz and her kiss with Bischoff. Savage says he is over Liz then punches Piper who comes back and lays Savage out.

Lex Luger/Randy Savage vs. Giant/Disciple - there isn't much time for this match since it's already five minuts past the hour. All four go at it from the opening bell until Savage suckers the Giant into accidently clotheslining his partner. Bischoff and LiZ appear and taunts Savage so that he leaves the ring. Luger is left alone to face his opponents while Savage takes off after Bischoff. Of course Bret hart and Hogan show up and attack Savage while the Giant and Disciple take Luger out. The Giant joins the attack on Savage and they are punking him as we fade to black...

Well, Sunday should be interesting. I'll be on hand with my exclusive, interactive coverage so don't miss it!! See you then...

At least that's the way I see it...

Earl Oliver
Editor, Solie's Wrestling Newsletter


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