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By Mike Johnson on 2020-09-12 10:00:00

Who is Sabu pointing to when he does his trademark gesture? I figured it was to his uncle (R.I.P. the Sheik), but he did it long before his untimely passing.

It's partially a tribute to the Original Sheik, but when he began performing, the storyline reason for Sabu pointing was that he was savage that was amazed by the lights above the ring.

What makes a gimmick successful?

If a gimmick gets over and sells tickets/PPVs/merchandise, it's a success in my eyes, even if diehard fans hate it.

Why did the original ECW never put the world title on RVD?

The plan was always to give Van Dam a big chase for the ECW World title, but ECW held out waiting for the company to get a national timeslot, hoping it would spark their product. Unfortunately, right after ECW shot a big angle between RVD and then-World champion Mike Awesome, Van Dam went down with an injury and Awesome quickly departed the company. By the time Van Dam returned, he and ECW had squabbles over financial issues and that was the beginning of the end.  He did get it in the WWE version.

Why isn't Memphis Wrestling on the WWE Network by now?  What is the mystery answer?

The mystery of the Memphis Wrestling library ownership is one that likely has several answers. WMC in Memphis is likely the owner of much of the library that ran on their channel, although whether that footage was even archived is unknown. It wasn't customary for a lot of older tapes to be kept; in fact, they were often re-used during that time period due to financial costcutting. Some of the library may have been lost in the red tape that saw the company sold to investors named "The Selkers" which ended up as a major mess in court.   Jerry Jarrett told me in an interview once that he doesn't believe he retained ownership after he sold the promotion to the Selkers.  There has never been a successful attempt to track down exactly what is out there and unite it under one owner (although at one point, Jerry Lawler had been trying to do so), so when you see footage popping up under WWE auspices, they either made a deal for that specific footage or it's footage that ended up in another library that they acquired, like the Lawler-Curt Hennig AWA title switch.  It'll likely never all be united under one owner.  My guess is if and when it pops up on the Network, it will be in edited form.

I read on your history column that Hogan fought as the Hulk Machine in the mid 80's. Why was this? Wasnt he WWE Champion and Hulkamania running wild at the time?  Who were the other Machines beyond Andre?

Yes, but he worked a few tag matches as "Hulk Machine" playing off the Machines tag team as a house show gimmick. They never hid it was Hogan. Roddy Piper did some house shows as the "Piper Machine" and George Steele was "The Animal Machine."  The Super Machine was Bill Eadie.  Big Machine was Blackjack Mulligan.

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