Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Wayne's World "Working Together" by Eric Wayne

In the long list of "what's wrong with the business" this has to be mentioned, and it rarely is brought up: working together. Much like the old NWA, there were companies working together across the country with one common objective...to make money. Nowadays, that idea has almost disappeared. Wrestling has become a hobby for 90% of the people involved. What's just as bad is the new idea of territories. Correct me if I'm wrong, but a territory isn't a town of 2000 people where the weekly show draws less than 200. That's what damn near every company wants to be though, a "territory" that runs once a week with 20+ guys on the card drawing on average 100 people! Why? Because working together is something that just doesn't seem feasible.

However not every company has this mindset. On May 8th XOW held a show in which NEW was featured in the main event. It was also a US Jr. Title match which is currently only recognized by NEW. Well, and XOW now that the title has been defended there. Its not often that we see companies working together, instead we see them creating a "war" that is pointless.

On any given Saturday we have more than a dozen promotions running and drawing all around the same number of people. All because this show is 20-30 miles away and everyone wants to run on the weekend. I guess that's the only time people have for their hobbies though. The idea of cross promotion has worked for decades when the world champion would travel across the country, and world, to different companies. But now its a big deal to double shot shows that are 25minutes apart and why? Because it makes the booker's job harder? Because we don't want to help other people succeed? I'm not really sure, maybe its just a case of being selfish or more likely its just unprofessional ism.

Let's look at this: there is enough money between ALL the companies that run on Saturdays and enough days in the week, to run a show in each town on different days of the week. All of a sudden, we have 4 or 5 shows running 5 days a week which means a chance for....more money. Now I know someone is going to say "yeah, that's great but you can't get enough guys to work 5 days a week". Well, sure we can! A core group of 14 guys can alternate through all the towns and the guys that only live close enough to go to that town once a week...well that's the only show you're going to be wrestling on. Now all of a sudden, instead of ALL the shows running on the same two nights we have time to run other towns and create more money for everyone. Its called working together.

Companies in the northeast and Midwest have been doing it the last decade or more and look at the gates they're drawing compared to what's going on down here. They learned a long time ago what nobody down here wants to believe, which is this: we can get rid of the shit and actually make money if we all work together. I mean sure, a lot of the same guys will be on all the shows but that should make everyone else work even harder to step into that spot. Until then that just means more money and a busier schedule for the guys in high demand. I don't know if the idea of working together will ever actually work in the south but if it does, we could actually see the return of something very similar to actual territories. Til next time, train hard and hit even harder!