Wednesday, November 03, 2004

News from elsewhere

The purges continue at WWE. Today, they dumped Chuck Palumbo, Gail Kim, and Nidia from the roster - all of whom were on Raw but pretty underutilized. Palumbo came from WCW, and made his biggest splash when he was teamed with Billy Gunn in the "gay couple gimmick" they had a couple of years ago as the bleached blonde "Billy and Chuck" tag team. He went on to have a nice Smackdown run as part of the FBI (Full-Blooded Italians) faction with Johnny "the Bull" Stamboli and Nunzio. He, along with A-Train, was "traded" to Raw back in the spring, and never really made an impact there at all. Gail Kim never made much of an impression - she was a fitness model from Toronto of Korean extraction who was gorgeous (I thought) but couldn't really work and generated no crowd heat at all.

Nidia was a bit of a surprise. She was the first female Tough Enough winner (Maven Huffman was the men's winner, and is just getting a face push right now), and only recently got to have a wrestling role on TV. After a post-Tough Enough stint at OVW, Nidia came to WWE as the "girlfriend" of redneck character Jamie Noble (who was dropped over the summer). She had a fun run there, and after they broke up the storyline she was sent to Raw (after an "injury" hiatus that she conveniently returned from with larger breasts afterwards) in the trade storyline along with Palumbo and A-Train. She wrestled as a pretty generic face during her Raw stint, but also never got any real push. But since WWE is re-doing Tough Enough after a year off (as a Smackdown segment), I would think they'd keep her around. Of the six winners so far (two each in the first three seasons), Maven's the only one with a regular wrestling-related role right now. Nidia was cut, neither of the two second season winners are in a wrestling role (Jackie Gayda is a valet for Rico and Charlie Haas on Smackdown, and Linda Miles is back in the minors after a stint as a valet for the Bashams), and the third-season winners are both in OVW - though Johnny Nitro got to be Eric Bischoff's assistant for a while on Raw.

And they're doing Tough Enough again? Why?

I still haven't watched Raw yet this week, but apparently Edge completes his heel turn. Hopefully it'll help - he was just stalling out big-time as a face on Raw. His high-water mark so far has been while working as a heel with Christian (his real-life best friend from childhood), and while working as a face on Smackdown in a program with Kurt Angle. But Kurt makes everybody look good - it's one of the reasons why he's arguably the best wrestler working today.

I'm not enamored with the changes they've been making lately at WWE in general. I still watch it, though. At the rate they're going, though, if I want to see half the wrestlers I'm familiar with I'm going to have to spend more time watching NWA-TNA Impact every Friday. They already have Sabu, Raven, and Jeff Hardy among many.

Tonight after I got home from bowling I taught David to say "Missisagua". Houses are cheap there.

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