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Inside The Magazine Volume #40: The Wrestler April ’96

DiBiase tries to avoid being a bust as a manager in the WWF. All the top stars in WCW can’t get along. Diesel might have crossed the wrong guy in the WWF. Diamond Dallas Page was one fear and it has to do with his past as a manager.

YOUR LETTERS

A couple of fans congratulate the magazine for running thirty years. Andy from South Carolina considers The Giant to be one of the most awesome men he’s ever seen. That’s due to Giant’s recent match with Randy Savage on WCW Nitro. Giant has the rightful claim of being the uncrowned WCW World Champion. Giant doesn’t show any intimidation towards Hogan, which Vader had showed a little bit of. Giant is going to be a force to deal with for the next several years.

Harry from Las Vegas was going to throw his magazines and tapes into the closet and end his wrestling fandom until he turned on Nitro and saw Disco Inferno. He thinks fans should take Inferno seriously since Mikey Whipwreck and Barry Horowitz weren’t taken seriously and they’ve both had recent success. Harry credits Inferno for having the funniest ring entrance and perhaps Inferno is the uncrowned WCW World Champion.

Bruce from Orlando thinks the Steiner Brothers have been smart to not compete in WCW or WWF recently. Steiner’s need to get healthy and wrestling in ECW is perfect for them considering the lesser schedule and traveling demands. When they return to the national stage they will be healthy and ready to win titles.

Tara from Harrisburg was glad to see that Jeff Jarrett was gone from the WWF due to creative differences. Now that Jarrett is back in the WWF, she hopes that Jarrett messes with the wrong guy in the WWF. She suggests a guy like Ahmed Johnson to make sure that Jarrett’s latest run in the WWF ends quickly.

WHAT’S HAPPENING: written by: Bill Apter

Ric Flair won his eleventh WCW World Championship at Starrcade ’95 after winning a triple threat match involving Lex Luger and Sting by count-out. Flair went on to defeat Randy Savage with help from Jimmy Hart and the Horsemen. Flair managed to do this despite getting busted open by Savage.

Apter was surprised to see Madusa appear on the December 18th edition of Nitro to insult the WWF and drop the WWF Women’s Championship in the trash. Madusa had grown displeased with the lack of promotion for women’s wrestling in the WWF. A WWF official said that a match between Blayze and Aja Kong was being set for the 1996 Royal Rumble prior to the incident.

Luna Vachon has been issuing a challenge for Madd Maxxine, but has been ignored on every attempt. Luna doesn’t know if Maxxine has the guts to wrestle her. According to Apter, Maxxine will consider the challenge.

Apter isn’t sure if he agrees with the direction that Diesel is taking his career after losing the WWF World Championship to Bret Hart at the Survivor Series. Apter thinks that Hart needs to be vert careful the next time he wrestles Diesel.

Ted DiBiase has found someone to carry the Million Dollar Championship in “The Ring Master” Steve Austin, who will be using the Million Dollar Dream as his finishing hold. DiBiase is also trying to get a tag team title match for Psycho Sid and The Kid.

Buddy Landell isn’t embarrassed that he submitted to WWF World Champion Bret Hart on December 18th considering Hart is one the best wrestlers ever. Skip is the Pennsylvania Championship Wrestling United States Champion and Fatu is chasing him for the title.

Stu Hart recently celebrated his 80th birthday and 60th year in professional wrestling. There was a show to honor the celebration and featured both WCW and WWF wrestlers competing on the same show. A rundown of the show and results can be found HERE.

Sabu returned to ECW after having been gone for a year after having a falling out with management. Sabu defeated Hack Myers in his return match at November To Remember. Sabu is said to be happy to be back in ECW after failing to reach an agreement with WCW.

The Nasty Boys are expected to feud with Public Enemy in early 1996. They are looking forward to finally having a challenge in WCW.

NO HOLDS BARRED: written by: David Rosenbaum

The main focus of the column to start is that the UFC could be banned from all 50 states and David suggests that the UFC goes to Cleveland Municipal Stadium, the home of the former Cleveland Browns. Apparently, being banned doesn’t scare UFC owners as that could increase their interest amongst consumers. Dan Severn is quoted as saying that professional wrestling isn’t tamer than UFC. In fact, it could be worse since foreign objects and interference regularly occur. With UFC, you know what’s happening, but that’s not the case with professional wrestling.

Severn believes UFC gets a lot of negativity because the action happens so quickly. Severn also thinks that the UFC doesn’t get much press because the press is more focused on traditional sports coverage. Severn dismisses the idea of UFC being more violent than football or hockey. Severn smiled at the thought of professional wrestling promoters perhaps trying to ban the sport.

BLINDSIDED: written by: Andy Rodriguez

Recently, Vince McMahon talked about wrestlers being heroes and being seen as bigger than life, but in reality they are human. Andy has an issue with McMahon not addressing how much Vince has made off his wrestlers. This is in relation to Shawn Michaels collapsing on RAW. Andy’s issue appears to be with making athletes larger than life with the intent on profiting of their lives. Andy believes that fans want heroes, and not wrestlers. If they were to fail, they can fall hard. Andy notes that Smoky Mountain Wrestling went out of business because they had hardworking wrestlers and not the major hype that WWF presents on a weekly basis.

THUMBS UP, THUMBS DOWN

Thumbs Up:
Undertaker: Taker has been suffering from an eye injury, but was still able to defeat Mabel in a casket match at In Your House V and is now in line for a match with WWF World Champion Bret Hart at the Royal Rumble.

Johnny B. Badd: Johnny has been a fighting champion as he likes to showcase the WCW Television Championship at every opportunity. Badd recently defended the championship four times at one TV taping, which is more than Hulk Hogan has defended the WCW World Championship in an entire year. Badd is bringing prestige back to the WCW Television Championship.

Tommy Rich: Despite SMW recently closing operations, Tommy Rich still worked hard at the November 25th, 1995 show and was victorious over Brad Armstrong to be the last recognized SMW Heavyweight Champion. Rich liked the idea of being the champion forever, without having to defend the title ever.

Alex Wright: Wright has recently earned victories over VK Wallstreet several times and appears to have adjusted to wrestlers who picked up a scouting report on Wright. Wright has become a far better wrestler compared to last summer.

Thumbs Down:
Taz: Taz has recently turned on ECW and aligned himself with hated referee. Bill Alfonso. According to Taz, Alfonso is the only friend that he needs in ECW.

Jeff Jarrett: Double J has returned to the WWF to brag about his CD getting 500,000 purchases and breaking the award over Ahmed Johnson. Nobody knows why Jarrett insists on being a thug instead of a great professional wrestler.

Madusa: They are not happy with how Madusa jumped ship from WWF to WCW by dropping the WWF Women’s Championship into a garbage can on WCW Nitro. Madusa was thought to have class, but that’s not the case anymore.

Hugh Morris: Morris is currently scouting for the Dungeon of Doom. Morris joining the Dungeon isn’t seen as being a good career decision. Hopefully, Morris finds a way out of the Dungeon before it’s too late.

CORRESPONDENTS REPORTS

Philadelphia, PA: WWF recently had a show at the CoreStates Spectrum that featured WWF World Champion Bret Hart defending against the Undertaker. As expected, the match ended with several wrestlers coming down to the ring and causing a brawl to take place. Hart was declared the winner by disqualification.

Newburgh, NY: Lou Albano reunited with Fatu at a recent Northeast Wrestling show where Fatu took on Abbudah Singh, with Eddie Reality in his corner. Fatu was able to overcome an early onslaught and won the match following a top rope splash.

Philadelphia, PA: ECW recently held a show that featured a match between Public Enemy and the Heavenly Bodies. Late in the match, Grunge earned the victory with a sunset flip on Prichard.

YOU ASKED US

Sunny denies the rumors that she is on the verge of splitting with Chris “Skip” Candido. Instead, Sunny believes that 1996 will be there year to shine and mentions that Candido had recently won the PCW US Championship from Ray Odyssey, which will lead to WWF gold, too. She also declined the fans inquiry of being his manager in four years.

Eddie Guerrero was asked about getting frustrated in WCW after receiving only one title shot opportunity. Guerrero talks about wrestling WCW Television Champion Johnny B. Badd to a draw and how he was a little bummed that Kensuke Sasaki won the WCW United States Championship only because Sasaki doesn’t wrestle often in WCW. Guerrero does like the ides of wrestling against Flair, Hogan or Savage soon.

Michael “VK” Wallstreet does not regret leaving the WWF because he’s currently in the toughest federation, WCW. Wallstreet thinks a tag team with Big Bubba Rogers will bring great results and profitable for both men. He’s proud of beating up Jim Duggan recently and put Duggan down for being a flag-waving worthless human being.

INTRODUCING: STEVE CORINO

A car ride with the Heavenly Bodies and Jeff Jarrett on July 21st, 1995 changed the direction of Steve Corino’s four month wrestling career. During the car ride, the three heels talked to Corino about embracing his dark side to get ahead in the business. After losing the PCW Junior Heavyweight Championship, Corino grew frustrated that fans didn’t care about him and the comments from the car ride made a lot of sense. Corino currently works for the ECWA and is part of the group The Lethal Weapons alongside Lance Diamond and Devon Storm.

Corino is planning to wrestle in Japan because he believes the fans would appreciate his skill set more. Corino could be a great heel in a few years and in a decade or two a wrestler may look to Corino for advice on their career.

Q&A: JEFF JARRETT

Jarrett says that four months ago in Nashville he got very angry with people trying to ruin a special night for him. On that night, Jarrett performed and a lot of people claimed that Jarrett had lip synched the song. Jeff wonders what proof there was to suggest such thing. Jarrett denies the claim that the Roadie would have sang the song saying that Roadie couldn’t do anything right and actually cost him the WWF Intercontinental Championship.

During his time away, Jarrett did a lot of thinking and realized that he couldn’t be both a singer and a wrestler. That led to Jarrett settling on being a wrestler. That decision was helped by seeing Jesse James Armstrong competing in the USWA and beating on Jarrett’s good friend, Eddie Marlin. Jarrett returned to defend the family honor and doesn’t identify as being a WWF wrestler, because he never left the USWA. Jarrett notes that wrestling in MSG had been a dream, but his heart has always been with the USWA.

Jeff also says that his father, Jerry Jarrett, taught him how to sing and credits with hearing Jerry sing in the shower as to how Jeff became a singer. Jarrett knows his value and he knew the WWF promoters would beg for him to return and not care about the Roadie. After all, the Roadie is just a helping hand. Jarrett assures everyone that the Roadie’s days in USWA and WWF are over with. Jarrett’s goal is to be seen as the best wrestler to ever compete in the squared circle.

Jarrett enjoyed smashing his award over Ahmed Johnson’s head and he’s not too concerned about Johnson because Jarrett doesn’t consider Johnson to be all that smart.

X-RAY: JERRY LAWLER

Capt. Lou Albano: Albano remembers ten years ago when Lawler could backup his talk pretty well in the ring. Now, Lawler talks too much and can’t back it up like he once could. Albano thinks Lawler would be better off forgetting about Bret Hart.

Killer Kowalski: Kowalski thinks Lawler is one of the best rulebreakers going due to his ability to frustrate fans and opposing wrestlers. Lawler is good at cheating behind the referee’s back, too. Killer would like to see Lawler not be so loyal to the Memphis fans.

Dory Funk Jr.: Dory believes that the constant travel between the USWA and the WWF may have caught up to Lawler. Dory has seen a few of Lawler’s matches on tape from 1995 and thinks people shouldn’t be tricked into thinking Lawler can’t go anymore.

Fabulous Moolah: Lawler is a smooth talker, but that’s not good enough for the ring. Moolah thinks Lawler needs to go back to using the piledriver and fist drop. She believes that Lawler still has a few good years left.

Lou Thesz: Thesz is annoyed that Lawler hasn’t been more successful in the WWF. Lawler should be using his time as a commentator to scout his opponents. Thesz believes Lawler could be the WWF Intercontinental Champion because Lawler beat Ramon last spring in the USWA.

Lance Russell: Lance has a little bit of a bias towards Lawler since they have worked closely together in the USWA. Russell has never seen anyone as passionate as Lawler is and Jerry certainly deserves the title of the “King”.

IF DIBIASE FAILS WITH KID… HE’S A MILLION DOLLAR BUST! written by: Steve Anderson

Ted DiBiase’s Million Dollar Corporation has not lived up to expectations since the formation of the group. Whether it be in singles matches or in tag matches, the Million Dollar Corporation hasn’t been very successful. The group hasn’t been able to win championships and has led to dissension and major stars quitting or being fired. DiBiase’s creditability amongst rulebreakers didn’t exist as nobody wanted to get near DiBiase in fear that they’d suffer a long losing streak. The babyface wrestlers treated the group as a joke, as well.

DiBiase took out his checkbook and began to look for someone to turn things around. After a search, DiBiase found the 1-2-3 Kid. Kid had been having temper tantrums and DiBiase saw a wrestler who lacked killer instinct. DiBiase had seen potential in guys like Bam-Bam Bigelow, King Kong Bundy and Tatanka, but none of them panned out. Kid is the youngster, who is hungry for success, that DiBiase has been searching for.

Kid may be the perfect partner for Psycho Sid, which gives the Corporation a mixture of power offense and an aerial attack. DiBiase failed to advance the careers of Bundy and Bigelow, who both were seemingly in line for WWF World Championship matches prior to joining up with DiBiase. DiBiase probably needs Kid more so than Kid needs DiBiase.

DiBiase is relying on Kid to bring him great success and payoff with a massive dividend. However, if Kid isn’t successful, then the only way to describe the Corporation would be with one word. Bust.

CAN’T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG? written by: Dave Rosenbaum

Randy Savage won his first WCW World Championship at World War III 1995 in November, and it should have been the greatest moment of his career. Instead, Savage saw a pissed off Hulk Hogan going after the referee. Savage thinks that everyone is jealous that he won the belt. That includes Hogan, Luger and especially Sting. Savage recalls being hit with a cheap shot by Sting a few weeks later in Charlotte and how nobody helped him at Starrcade when Flair had help from people to win the WCW World Championship. Savage thinks they may have wanted him to lose the championship.

Sting has remained coy on the situation, though Sting doesn’t think anyone has the right to tell him who he can be friends with. Sting doesn’t tell anyone else who to be friends with and the same should apply for him. Sting notes that Hogan use to hangout with Beefcake, and that should speak for itself, really. Sting isn’t against Hogan, and Lex has his own agenda. Sting also believes that Savage should be kissing his feet, because if Luger hadn’t let go of the arm bar, then Savage wouldn’t have won the WCW World Championship.

Luger said that joining the Horsemen was a great choice because it taught him that he comes first and everyone else is a distant second. Luger doesn’t know if Sting would be his friend tomorrow if he were to be the WCW World Champion. Sting turned down a shot against Hogan earlier, and Luger told Sting that was a mistake when he did it.

Hogan doesn’t know who he can trust. Which, has been a regular thing for the past twelve years. Nobody knows who they can trust in WCW.

BLACKBALLED! DIESEL SAID THE WRONG THING TO THE WRONG (Mc)MAN! written by: Bryan Ethier

Diesel had been the WWF World Champion for a year prior to losing to Bret Hart at Survivor Series 1995 in a near 25-minute match. Diesel hesitated on a powerbomb attempt and that allowed Hart to win with an inside cradle. Diesel’s behavior after the match was shocking as Diesel attacked Hart with a few powerbombs before officials broke up the attack. Diesel announced that “Big Daddy Cool” was back. Diesel was not going to be the family friendly, media friendly, wrestler that he had been for the year he was WWF World Champion.

Nobody expected a drastic change in Diesel, and certainly not so quickly. On the RAW after the Survivor Series pay per view, Diesel denounced what Vince McMahon had tried to do. McMahon had tried to make Diesel a nicer guy, and Diesel resented that. According to sources, McMahon was personally offended by such comments. One sources suggested that Diesel should have talked to McMahon privately.

Diesel wanted to be “Big Daddy Cool” and not “Big Daddy Lovable.” Diesel has been held out of immediate rematches with WWF World Champion Bret Hart because of his recent actions. As of press time, Diesel was scheduled for rematches, assuming Diesel had issued an apology. Vince McMahon is proving a point… that he calls the shots in the WWF.

THE FEAR THAT GRIPS “DIAMOND” DALLAS PAGE: written by: Dave Rosenbaum

In 1988, Page managed the AWA World Tag Team Champions Paul Diamond & Pat Tanaka, but deep down inside Page wanted to be a professional wrestler. Page knew he could wrestle and wanted to wrestle because being a wrestler makes you a better manager when that transition occurs.

Page was voted Most Improved by Pro Wrestling Illustrated readers for 1995. Page has noticed that other managers are jealous of his success in the ring because Page took what he wanted. Page use to be on the outside, but now he’s inside. Those managers are jealous, because every manager wants to be a wrestler. Diamond Doll thinks that Page would welcome being attacked by a manager. Page, naturally, denied that allegation. Perhaps Page’s greatest threat to himself is his own paranoia.

What did you think of this magazine? Do you have any memories of this issue or memories of the stories focused on? Leave your thoughts below!

Thanks for reading.

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