Once upon a time, I used to love wrestling. I didn’t care how fake it was. All I knew is that the storylines were intriguing, the characters were larger than life, and the action was riveting. Even if the outcomes were predetermined, the way that we got there was always amazing to watch. These athletes did amazing things, and put their bodies through a lot of pain, just to put on a show for us. Eventually, I grew tired of the gimmicks. Too many stupid tricks to distract referees, too many repeated storylines, and too many idiotic characters pushed me away. I haven’t looked back since. Until the recent passing of Macho Man.
It started with an article by Bill Simmons. I read and enjoyed the piece. Then I went back and clicked some of the Youtube links. That lead to me going through related videos. I found myself not caring so much about old match highlights, but more about the interviews. That’s where the wrestlers let their characters develop. That’s where the real buildup to any match came from. It got the crowd in the arena hyped it. It had teenage kids like me running around all over the place repeating their silly catchphrases. And now it has me thinking. Why can’t real sports take a page from the world of wrestling?
Typically, a pregame interview will be full of cliches. Guys will avoid saying any bulletin board material like the plague. It’s repetitive and boring. It’s not worth listening, repeating, or remembering. Why does it have to be this way? For the athletes, the games are serious things. The sport is their life. But for us, it’s about entertainment. Sure, we get fully invested and live and die with the team. But ultimately, the results on the ice don’t affect our lives that much. We watch because it’s thrilling. So why can’t we add some fuel to the fire. Picture this:
Random sideline reporter: So, Mike, what’s the gameplan tonight?
Mike Richards (grabs the mic, looks at the crowd, skates to center ice): Phil-A-Del-Phiaaaaaaaa. Is this reporter serious? Who doesn’t know our damn game plan? We’re going to put the Devils through the wall, that’s what we’re gonna do. (Points at Kovalchuk). You can line your pads with all the money in your fat contract, but you know that won’t stop me from dropping a flying elbow from the bench. And you, Marty. You can stand on your feet, you can get in the butterfly, or you can lean on your cane…whatever you do, we’re gonna light you up like a fresh baked Krispy Kreme donut sign. And when the clock strikes zero, you can all hop on the loser train back to….(pauses, let’s the crowd chant his name) New…ark!
(Tosses mic back to reporter) Here, hold onto that for me sweetcheeks. I have a gameplan for the postgame party too. I think you know what that means.
The possibilities for this are endless. Different guys on different nights. Skits. Monologues, dialogues. Don’t tell me that at least one guy on every team wouldn’t love to be part of something like this. Jeremy Roenick would probably have his own custom made microphone. Like the idea, hate it? Comment please!
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Tags: Bill Simmons Espn.com Flyers Ilya Kovalchuk Interview Macho Man Martin Brodeur Mike Richards New Jersey Devils NHL Philadelphia Flyers Pregame Interview Rasslin Sideline Interview Wrestling Wwf Wwf Attitude