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   Sun, March 28, 2004



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Chaos created with draft lottery
By TIM BAINES - Ottawa Sun


Imagine, if you will, Marian Hossa suddenly being forced to leave the Senators and join the Maple Leafs in the middle of a season. In response, the Senators snag Eddie Belfour from Toronto. So much for a goaltending dilemma in Ottawa.

How about Barry Bonds being uprooted from the San Francisco Giants, and told he had to join the New York Yankees juggernaut? The Giants respond by grabbing Alex Rodriguez.

That's just the kind of chaos WWE boss Vince McMahon was trying to create with his Draft Lottery Monday night on RAW.

And chaos it was. Back and forth they went ... Shelton Benjamin, Nidia, Rhyno, Tajiri, Edge and Paul Heyman to RAW, Rene Dupree, Mark Jindrak, Triple H, Rob Van Dam, Theodore Long and Spike Dudley to Smackdown!

Heyman, the former Smackdown! GM, quit. Then there were trades. Unhappy Triple H was peddled back to RAW in exchange for The Dudley Boyz and Booker T. And Rico and Miss Jackie went to Smackdown! for A-Train and Chuck Palumbo.

So Jindrak was split from Garrison Cade, Dupree left La Resistance and Benjamin left behind Charlie Haas.

Yep, it was chaos.

Okay, okay ... so this is only the Barnum and Bailey world of wrestling ... where what seems to be real really isn't.

But this gimmick really gave RAW some electricity. I'm the first one to jump on WWE for some of its lame-brained ideas, but this one was a winner.

I think they could have taken it further and maybe they still will. How about Evolution declaring themselves free agents, then causing havoc on both shows for a couple of weeks?

Let's hope we see more "trading" and more "drafts."

- Kurt Angle, needing a break from wrestling, was named the new Smackdown! GM.

- Edge returned to RAW with a bang, spearing GM Eric Bischoff. Edge told wwe.com: "The neck feels awesome." And about his latest injury, tendon and ligament damage to his left foot, Edge said: "My toes look like Grimace from McDonald's. I had five Grimaces on the end of my foot."

- Ron Simmons (Farooq), a former CFLer with the Ottawa Rough Riders, was released by WWE.

- Sting has returned to NWA: TNA and will be the special enforcer in a match between A.J. Styles, Abyss, Raven and Ron Killings in Wednesday's pay-per-view.

- Sex, Lies and Headlocks is probably a story WWE officials would rather not have you read. Written by ESPN: The Magazine's Shaun Assel and wrestling columnist Mike Mooneham, an editor with the Charleston Post and Courier, this book asks questions and answers plenty more. From the WWE's infamous steroid trial to feces placed on former WWF diva Sunny's plate, there is plenty of juice here. There's plenty here on the rise and fall of WCW. You don't have to be a pencil-neck geek to enjoy this. The book doesn't bodyslam the world of pro wrestling as much as it takes you behind the scenes for a blow-by-blow account.

- Hopefully we'll get some kind of announcement soon on the location of Summer Slam. Toronto, which will host Smackdown! on June 1, is said to be in the running. But you've got to think that holding a major TV show doesn't bode well toward hosting a pay-per-view two months later.

- Spent last week in Florida and it made me realize how much I appreciate TSN. Was floored to find out that the local cable system in Sarasota didn't carry Spike TV, which meant not getting a chance to see RAW that night.


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