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SLAM! WRESTLING: "Hardcore" Chris Gramlich From The Extreme
Pondo proud to be 'deathmatch hardcore'
Despite his recent no-show at the September addition of Ring 'n
Ears, MadMan Pondo (Kevin Canady) is developing quite a reputation in the
independent hardcore community. Having wrestled in just about every
American independent league, most notably the IWA -- Ian Rotten's seminal
Hardcore promotion, nd the world famous NWA, which led to a four page spread on
his pet match, (the Four Corners of pain in Pro Wrestling Illustrated),
Pondo is becoming infamous for his style of hardcore. A style that recalls the
likes of Cactus Jack, Sabu, Onita and Terry Funk, the ones willing to put
their health on the lines for the fans enjoyment, the more Japanese than
American style, with every drop of blood spilled, Pondo is fast becoming one of the crown princes of the American death match.
Nov. 2: Full story
A hardcore history with Terry Funk
Terry Funk is a man riddled with contradictions. A polite, soft-spoken,
middle aged Texan, who after thirty years in the wrestling business is
as likely to apologize for cussing or spitting tobacco, as he is liable to
split another wrestler's head open with a broken bottle. Therein lies the
walking-talking paradox that is Terry Funk.
Not only is Funk "middle-aged and crazy" in the ring, outside of the ring
he is as equally unstable as evidenced by his favorite era of wrestling,
one which nearly cost him his life.
Apr. 7: Full story
Snow-blind in Titan Land
There is no disputing the fact that Al Snow is by far one of the most
talented wrestlers in the game today. There is also no disputing the
price this man has paid to get to where he is; the question that somehow
hasn't been answered is that where exactly is he and where the hell is
Vince McMahon taking him?
Vince McMahon and the World Wrestling Federation haven't exactly been
kind to Al Snow. Long time followers will no-doubt remember the Avatar
and other failed martial arts-inspired gimmicks where he was never
allowed to demonstrate his tremendous abilities. Then there was his
tenure as a New Rocker where he got to act like an idiot and job a lot
(not to mention being called a "Rocker"!). These failed gimmicks and lack
of pushes aside, Al Snow was taken for granted by the WWF.
Feb 18: Full column
For those of you who think Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW),
invented Hardcore wrestling, well think again. The NWA had some pretty
Hardcore wrestling with barbwire, cages and dog collars. Ditto with
Calgary Stampede Wrestling. I mean where else could you see the Dynamite
Kid do a diving head-butt twenty feet onto the concrete. Smoky Mountain
Wrestling liked scaffold matches and other violent gimmicks. Japan?
Well, Japan owns the market on viewable physical abuse.
Feb 5: Full column
Sleaze or Entertainment?
Many people in the World of professional wrestling believe that the
World Wrestling Federation is the pinnacle of execution, creativity and
talent. In their love of the WWF they overlook all the glaring problems
of that company and wholeheartedly denounce any and all of the
competition. Sure there are fans of both the WWF and World Championship
Wrestling but for the most part there exists some sort of competition
between fans of either company, who simply cannot enjoy one without
attacking the other.
Jan. 15: Full column
WCW needs fresh ideas, not personal attacks
This past Monday night on Nitro, WCW played it's trump cards. The first
was to spoil the out come of their competitions show and in the process
deride one of the greatest talents modern wrestling has ever seen.
Secondly, they reunited the Outsiders and re-established the elite New
World Order with Hollywood Hogan at the Helm. Obviously neither worked.
Jan. 8: Full column
The Best and Worst of 98'
In a year, which saw the WWF regain its edge, topple WCW's stranglehold
on the Neilson ratings and have a convicted rapist working their biggest
pay-per-view, it's time to examine both the good and the bad. The yin
and the yang, the Stephen and Alec Baldwin, the old Coke and the new
Coke, the face and the heel, the light and the darkness.
Jan. 1: Full column
Nash must end Goldberg's streak
Bill Goldberg has somehow become a legitimate phenomenon in the bizarre
continuum that is World Championship Wrestling. Despite his lack of
experience, non-existent microphone ability and (at best), limited
wrestling skills, he has somehow emerged as the most "over" creation
Eric Bischoff and the WCW has ever conceived. Unfortunately his gimmick
is still the same as it was when he won his first match, a big tough guy
who no-sells moves and has a cool-looking finisher, basically he can't
lose which makes some sort of odd sense considering he can't wrestle.
Dec 17: Full column
TSN has no respect for wrestling fans
Being a fan of wrestling has always come with a price. For the majority
of the eighties and nineties we were viewed as having some sort of
mental deficiency and disrespected for loving wrestling.
In the past couple of years (mainly this one), wrestling has
broken into the mainstream garnering some sort of grudging
respect by its critics.
Dec 10: Full column
ECW in Canada? The time is now!
With the increasing number of Extreme Championship Wrestling superstars
showing up on the WWF and WCW programs the time is
right for Canadian fans to do their part in bringing ECW to Canadian
television. In the last few weeks such former ECW superstars as Bam Bam
Bigelow, The Sandman and most recently the Blue Meanie, have left
"Barbed Wire City" for the more lucrative pastures of Titan and Turnerland
Dec 3: Full column
Introducing...the Puppet World Order
With the number of WO's growing at an alarming rate, just look at the
recently formed Latino World Order and now the emergence of the MWO
(McMahon World Order), it seems only logical that people everywhere will
buckle under there constant barrage. Instead of fighting the trend, fans
should embrace it and help out the various companies (after all ECW had
the Blue World Order), by creating and pitching there own WO's. That's
why the world is now ready for the PWO.
Nov.19: Full column
When Scott (The Raven) Levy first debuted in Extreme Championship
Wrestling (then Eastern Championship Wrestling) some three and a half
years ago - brought in by Stevie Richards (as a childhood rival of Tommy
Dreamer's) - he was an instant success. In the span of weeks he was one
of (if not THE) most hated heels and his ready-made feud with Dreamer
was, is and always will be a Hardcore classic. While his feud with
Dreamer lasted his entire tenure, he faced other challenges and soon
became the ECW World Heavyweight Champion on two separate occasions and
was co-holder of the World Tag Team Championship twice with Stevie
Nov.19: Full column
A myriad of broken thoughts...
When Vince McMahon handed Mick (Mankind, Cactus Jack, Dude Love) Foley,
the newly created Hardcore title two weeks ago, everyone assumed it was a
joke. Here was one of the hardcore greats being handed a broken and
battered title, held together by duct tape and hope, with the word Hardcore
written across, not like a claim but like a lament. Many assumed that this
was Vince's (and the WWF's) way of mocking Mick, instead of honoring him.
Nov.12: Full column
Is hardcore killing ECW?
With few exceptions, fans of ECW (that's Extreme Championship
Wrestling, for those of you who didn't know and if you're Canadian you
probably don't), chant the company's three initials like a mantra. One
would be hard pressed to find a wrestler's name in the mix unless if was in
conjunction with a "F--k him up! F--k him up!" chant or a
"(insert name) is going to kill you" chorus.
Nov. 4: Full column
|Chris Gramlich originally hails from "anywhere he damn well pleases"
(a.k.a. Vancouver, BC). His hobbies include:
wrestling, piercing various body parts, aggressive music, Buffy The Vampire
Slayer, Star Trek related programs, good animation, any all
shark programs, video games, wrestling and walking his dog. Gramlich plays in a
jazz/metal/punk/noise band called Association Area, being previous
associated with bands such as Bad Blood and Tchort.