Call me crazy, but I like the idea of Ric Flair and Dusty Rhodes opposing each other once again, as long as they let their teams do most of the work in the ring. They have the best mic skills of anyone in WCW. They're fan favorites. They definitely know how to work a crowd, and they certainly understand ring psychology. Let them renew their "personal" feud and teach the younger guys how its done. Look at it this way:
Ric and Dusty can be the managers and create two powerful camps with big men, tag team specialists and cruiserweights.
Ric gets Scott Steiner, Jarrett, Buff, Luger, Animal, Sanders and a couple cruiserweights (Chavo?)
Dusty gets Nash, DDP, Goldberg, Dustin Rhodes, Rick Steiner, Cat and a couple cruiserweights (Jung Dragons?)
If WCW mixes the formula right, you have the ingredients for a classic feud. Just a thought...
The DDT Digest staff has always been right on when it comes to their reports, but this past Monday night had a few exceptions. I agree 100% that the Dustin Rhodes "surprise" was less than spectacular, the emergence of the American Dream was somewhat exciting. Looked like the crowd loved it, but what I don't understand is what kind of production tech fades from a in-ring fight in order to promote the main event??? Then, these same audio-visual morons ended the show as Steiner was still on the ramp. I know that suspense is building, but if they keep ending the show prematurely, people will continue to change the channel over to TNN.
The Dusty Rhodes thing is what saved the "contract signing" thing from being a total bomb. I wasn't overly excited that he showed, but WCW did something right there they went to someone that NO ONE WOULD EXPECT (Dusty the father, not the son). Plus, it gets people talking about WCW without using the word "blows." That's what WCW needs to do, truly surprise the viewer and create a buzz factor that will get people discussing the product at the water cooler the next day at work.
WCW should definitely try to make something out of the Rhodes/Flair situation, but under NO CIRCUMSTANCES should there be ANY heel turns. That's what we WCW viewers expect after all of the Russotastic SwUrVeS that were heaved at us last year. After this dies down, I'd put Dusty back as a commentator. No, seriously. He can't call a match all that well, but no one ever said he was lazy on commentary.
As for fading from a melee to promote a main event, that's vintage WCW right there. With the way the announcers present the product, the feeling is that the only reason why we should watch their shows is for the main event. Perfect examples are during any week between late 1996 and 1998, where we were given awesome midcarder matches, but the entire emphasis of the show (and announcing) was based on the lead angle at the time, the nWo.
Finally, I couldn't tell you why every Nitro recently has been ending five minutes early. Usually it doesn't bother me all that much, but right after the show ended, I turned to TNN and I saw Triple-H begin to beat the stuffing out of Steve Austin during another "contract signing." That's just poor timing and was worthy of being noted.