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Kurt Angle


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(If anyone can't be arsed reading this, skip through to the bottom, where there is a question. Thoughts on this post, are welcomed :))

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I'm sure pretty much everyone reading this will know about Angle's past in amatuer wrestling, but to what extent, I don't know. Anyway, here is the list of his accomplishments:

Pennsylvania State Wrestling Champion (1987)

Clarion University Freshman of the Year (1988)

2-time NCAA Champion

Espoir World Cup second Place (1989)

Yasar Dogu Tournament second Place (1989)

Canadian Cup Championship Winner (1990)

Pretty impressive right? Not only all that, but Kurt Angle is the only American to win an Olympic gold medal at that weight in freestyle wrestling, and he did it all with a "Broken freakin' neck"

 

Noe of that really matters to us pro wrestling fans however, so anyway. After the Olympics, Kurt became a TV personality, on Pittsburgh TV, presenting his own TV programme, 'The Angle On Sports'. It wasn't a success however, so Kurt turned to proffessional wrestling, where he started to get trained by Dory Funk Jr. and Dr. Tom Pritchard. Between the two of them, they have trained stars such as Paul London, Edge, Christian, Val Venis, Matt and Jeff hardy, Steve Corino, Christopher Daniels, TAKA Michinoku, and Jun Akiyama, so combined with Kurt's natural athelitcism, it's obvious they were onto a winner. After a short while, Kurt debuted in Power pro Wrestling, where he went on to have a feud with Steve Bradley. Bradley himself was nothing special, and apart from winning a few minor league titles, has done nothing in the buisness. The feud was rated by PWI, as the 'Underrated Feud of The Year', which said a lot about Angle so early on in his career.

 

On the 14th of November 1999, at WWF Survivor Series, Kurt made his full debut for them, going againgst Shawn Stasiak, who had also been in Power Pro Wrestling, before being called up as Meat, and then later changing to his real name, Stasiak. This first win, was one of many as he was undefeated up until he fought Tazz at Royal Rumble 2000. The loss in a tag match, with Steve Blackman, didn't count according to Angle, as it was Blackman who was pinned. Angle also tried to cover up his loss to Tazz (Which was a very enjoyable match in my opinion, and a feud that was well built up.) as he lost to an illegal choke, ie the Tazzmission, yet his first loss that Angle counted was againgst The Rock on an episode of SmackDown!. Losing to a real main eventer didn't harm Angle though, as Rocky, by this point in his career was a 3 time World Champion (Feel free to correct me on this), and had won his first title in 1998, so he really was at the top of the WWF at that time.

 

On Febuary the 8th 2000, Kurt Angle won his first Championship, the European title, againgst Val Venis. Although Val is not up to much now, apart from putting on good matches and being massively overlooked, back then he was a really credible midcarder. Whilst Val has ever been good enough to main event WrestleMania (Which I suppose is debatable), this win meant something for Kurt. It was his first success, but later on in the month, there would be more for him. He won the Intercontinental Title from Chris Jericho, at No Way Out. The match was what you would expect from the 2. Chris jericho is a bit sloppy in the ring now, but back then, you would be hard pressed to find smoeone as talented in the ring, even though he was passed his prime of the late 90's. After this match, Kurt combined the titles and became the first Eurocontinental Champion, well excpet for D-Lo Brown.........but he doesn't count ;)

 

Kurt's first WrestleMania appaearance was on April 2nd, againgst Chris Benoit and ex-Champion Chris Jericho. The match itself is absolutely brillaint. Can't say enough for it really. It's better than Triple H vs Chris Benoit vs Shawn Michaels, and Samoa Joe vs AJ Styles vs Christopher Daniels, which are two of the best triple threat matches I ahve ever seen. I can't say I prefer it to Low Ki vs Bryan Danielson vs Christopher Daniels, but it is brillaint anyway.

If anyone is interest, here is how the match went down. First fall: Benoit pinned Jericho following a diving headbutt to win the Intercontinental Championship (7.55) : Second fall: Jericho pinned Benoit with a Lionsault to win the European Championship (13.35))

 

By this time, Kurt Angle was gaining some serious momentum. As a former European, and Intercontinental Champion, the fans knew what to expect from Angle when it came to wrestling, and it helped him a lot. On the mic Kurt played a goofy character, who preached on how he was better than crowd, but not in a way that made you despised him. While he was talking down on the fans, I know I, and I'm sure others, could have a laugh about what he was saying, and it makes that type of character so good. WWE could really use something liek that now, with Kennedy, or Carlito even.

 

After winning the IC and European Titles, it was obvious WWE had big things planned for him, and it showed as he was rewarded with his first feud with a genuine main eventer, in Triple H. As good as Venis, benoit, and Jericho were, they were at that time far away from being at the top level, unlike Triple H, who was a former Intercontinental Champion, former European Champion, for King Of The Ring, and most importantly, for WWF Champion. This feud really showed the fans Angle was a true main eventer, and boy that feud was fun as hell. A brillaintly portrayed love triangle, which started off with Triple H and Stephanie as heel, but by the end, it was Triple H who was face, because Angle being that goofy heel, was so easy to hate. The fans were on Triple H's side, which is a great quality for anyone to have. Awesome feud.

 

On June 25th 2000, at the then annual King Of The Ring Tournemant, Kurt Angle finally got his big chance. Like past winners, Bret Hart, Owen Hart, Hunter Hearst Helmsley, 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin, and so on, Angle needed this final push to really propel him for the main event.

On PPV, Kurt Angle beat Chris Jericho, Crash Holly, and then Rikishi, who he himself, had got through Chris Benoit and Val Venis to be in the finals. Kurt Beat Rikishi, and was crowned King Of The Ring 2000

 

At No Mercy 2000 on October 22nd, Kurt Angle reached the pinnacle of pro wrestling, by beating The Rock, with the help of brother Eric Angle, to lift the WWF Title for the first time in his career. A greatmatch, with a dodgy ending but this was it for kurt. He had become number 1 in all of wrestling, thanks to some great booking, and natural mic skills, and wrestling ability. Later on at Survivor Series, Angle beat The UNdertaker, who is a true legend of our 'sport' and that win helped Angle massively. I'm not a huge 'Taker fan anymore, but you will be hard pressed to find a more regular main eventer, in this buisness. He has beat them all from Hulk hogan, to Steve Austin. If anyone can put a wrestler over, it's 'Taker. it's a pity he so rarely does though. Then at Armageddon, we had the 6 man Elimination Chamber. i remember this being on Channel 4, and man, I was so looking forward to it. At that time I wanted Triple H to win I think, but what a match it was. With Rikishi's big bump, and the wrestlers on the top of the cage, mcMahon trying to stop it, brilliant wrestling, it was awesome. Probably one of my top 10 matches of all time, and Kurt won. You had 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin, who is the man really only second to Hulk hogan in this buisness. Brillaintly performer, and amjor draw. Triple H, who I love. No-one can touch him to me, just fantastic. Taker and Rikishi, who both served a purpose in this match, and although I'm not big fans of both, they have been in some good angles in the past. Rikishi running down Austin was good, but spiralled out of control then, which was a bit dodgy. Taker is a real main eventer, and althoguh he wasn't much of a force around this period, his legacy is set in stone. And then you have The Rock. He has it all. the look mic skills, can wrestle, was always over, and is a draw.

You will rarely find 4 better characters, and Kurt beating them all, was brilliant.

 

It's just a shame Angle lost the title to the Rock, who he beat in the first place for it, 4 months prior to their match. Still a great match, and by this time, Kurt's position was already set. the loss dind't really affect him.

 

By this time, Kurt was set into a feud with Chris Benoit , which lead to a great match at WrestleMania 17 (Which is one of the greatest PPV's put on ever). Angle won by cheating, and seeing as the feud was pretty heated, it was announced they would have a rematch at Backlash in an Ultimate Submissions. 2 great technical workers, and although benoit was a bit out of his prime back then, he was still awesome, and so was Kurt. It was the right stipulation, for a cracking match. Pity Benoit won :P Angle wanted revenge and ended up getting his wishes, which were a 2/3 Falls match at Judegment Day. I can't put into words how good these 3 matches were to be honest. This was my personally favourie really though. Good stipulation, and the workrate is something every wrestler should hope for. it's a shame all their matches have been massively overlooked. i'm sure if you had the exact same wrestlers, but it was SamoaJjoe or Ric Flair, they would of got more praise from guys like Meltzer, but it wasn't the case. To me, there have been very few better series' of matches. Flair/Steaboat being one, and probably Samoa Joe/CM Punk, and possibly another, but I can't think of it at the moment.

 

As the InVasion angle came about, with a lot fo WWF talent gone, it was left to Kurt Angle to lead them. On the opposite side, you had Steve Austin who turned on Vince McMahon, to side with his offspring Stephanie (ECW) and Shane (WCW). Although the InVasion angle was pretty much a failure, due to bad, and one sided booking, it wasn't so bad for Angle, who was being illustrated by Vince as the cream of the crop. Although the list of potential leaders for Vince wasn't huge, Angle was still first choice, which is a good thing. Kurt and Austin had a few good matches billed as WWF vs The Alliance. During the period of this feud, Kurt had a lot of success in other areas than Austin. He won the WCW World Heavyweight Title, Hardcore, and United States Championship (I think), so again, Angle came out looking pretty good during the several months of the feud. When the feud was drawing to a close, Angle finally got his win back againgst Austin, and with that, he gained the WWF Title another time.

 

I suppose one downside for this series for Kurt, was turning his back on the WWF, and then realligning with them later on. before Survivor Series, he switched sides, and was on the Aliance team for the Survivor Series match, and then when it came down to The Rock and Austin, he attacked Austin, giving the WWF the win.

 

By this time, the list of credible main eventers was getting smaller and smaller. Austin was now pretty much past it and wasn't drawing in huge crowds anymore. The Rock was still there, as was Triple H albeit out at that time, Taker was past it, so this was Angle's time. With the huge list of awesome contenders before him when he first joined the company, it was much harder to succeed then. With that list getting smaller, surely Angle would dominate?

 

At the Royal Rumble 2002, kurt once again was heavily pushed. Although he didn't win, he got as close as possible (2nd), which is expected as Triple H was returning from a quad injury. No-one could ever of been more over than Triple H at that point, so it was the only choice for the bookers to have him win the match. Kurt Angle coming second was still a semi-victory in that though.

 

However in the next few months, Angle would end up wrestling, and feuding with Edge, who was once him ex-partner with Christian, and I think Rhyno may have been there for a few weeks. Although Edge was a rising star at that point, Kurt Angle was a proven main eventers, and instead of being given the title, and headline matches with the likes of Triple H, he was wrestling Edge. So although it could of been worse, it could of been a lot better. The matches they had were OK, with Angle winning at Backlash, and Edge returning the favour by beating angle in a Hair vs Hair match, and coincidentally one of the greatest skits in all my years of wrestling. Seeing Angle with the ear muffs on, and a dodgy wig, was just pure brillaince. Kurt playing that character was brilliant TV.

 

The next big thing Kurt wa sinvolved with, was the immense series of tag matches, which partnered him with Chris Benoit, who had that quality series of matches before, againgst Eddie and Chavo Guerrero (Los Guerreros), and Rey Mysterio Jr. with Edge. Between the teams, the rivalry wasn't too much, although Kurt always having a problem with benoit, and vice versa, was classic. And when you have 6 guys as good as angle, benoit, Eddie, Shavo, Rey and Edge, you know the matches will be something special, and they were.

 

By this time Angle had been away from the belt for a fair amount of time, but all that changed when he ended up getting a match with The Big Show. The match wasn't really that good, and the finish having Lesnar F-5 Show for the win, didn't help Angle much. It's obvious Angle was playing second fiddle at that point, which was a shame. Angle after this win, joined forces with kurt Angle, and right before Christmas, Angle was joined by two rising stars - Charlie Haas, and Shelton Benjamin.

 

Personally, one of my favourite matches of all time came at Royal Rumble 2003, when Angle faced Chris benoit. their matches before, were always great, but for some reaosn, I really liekd this aswell. both workers had gotten worse over the years, but they put on a brilliant show, that worked in so many different ways. Psychology, selling, workrate, emotion - It had it all.

 

At WrestleMania XIX came another semi-dissapointment for Angle however, as he ost the title to the prodigy that was Brock Lesnar. It wasn't all bad news for Angle though as during thismatch, he became the first person to kick out of an F-5 (I think), which at that time was something special. Another fantastic match, between two equally fantastic wrestlers. Very few matches are as good as some Kurt Angle had in 2003, which says a lot about him as a worker. After winning a Triple Threat, Kurt became a 4 time WWE Champion, and although it wasn't long before he lost it again, he did lose it in style - a thrilling match with Lesnar once again, in an Iron Man on SmackDown!.

 

At Royal Rumble 2005, Kurt Angle got another shot the WWE Title, going up againgst the then Champion JBL and The Big Show. The match itself was pretty bad I must admit,though it did involve some nice stunts particularly with the rail barrier, Unfortunatly for Kurt, he lost to JBL's Clothesline From Hell, but that wasn't the end of the Royal Rumble for the Olympic Hero. In a backstage skit, Kurt Angle stole Nunzio's Rumble placement, which meant Angle was now in the main event of the night. Half-ish way through, Kurt was on fire until he finally got eliminated by a Shawn Michaels Sweet Chin music, which sent Angle over the top rope. Angle retaliated by throwing Michaels himself out , and locking in an Ankle Lock on the steel steps, right after he attacked Michaels with those same steps. In the next couple of weeks, the feud escalated, until both workers were going to RAW and SmackDown!, to attack the other. On RAW Michaels challenged Angle to a match at WrestleMania, which Angle later accepted. After that, Angle promised to accomplish everything Michaels had done in 16 years, in 4 weeks, which involved him beating down Michaels former tag partner, who returned for two matches, Marty Jannetty. Then on April 3rd, at the Staples Centre, in front of 20,193 fans, 'The Heartbreak Kid' Shawn Michaels would face off againgst 'The Olympic Hero' Kurt Angle, in a true dream match. The match itself isn't really my cup of tea, although I did really enjoy it. I simply find it overrated, although in a lot of the match it's fantastic. Back and forth action, psychology, and some awesome bumps make this one of the best matches in WrestleMania history. It's scary to think of how good this match would of been if both of the workers had been in their prime. Michaels' back had taken so much damage he was told to retire, yet years later he is still putting on good atches. Angle's problems are well known, and I don't really want to dwell on them really. Really good match, that ended in Kurt making Michaels tap out to the Ankle Lock

 

Then we have what I consider to eb Angle's worst feud in his career. on one hand you have his classics with Triple H, and even his part in the InVasion storyline, and then you have the horrible feud with Booker T, and how he wanted beastlity sex with the foul Sharmell, Booker T's wife. I'm not that critical of WWE's booking team, even though he put out some awful stuff, I don't like to have much of a go, unlike some people, but whoever thought this up deserves to be shot. horrendous feud, which went on far too long. It wasn't even believable wither. She's horrible looking and we're expected to believe Kurt wanted her that much, he would rape her? People will talk about the Katie Vick storyline, or Mae Young giving birth to a hand as the worst feuds ever in WWF. This was barely better. In the ring, it wasn't much cop either. Booker is massively overrated, and Angle could just carry him to a decent match.

 

Since he was the second draft to RAW, sometime in June, it was inevitable Kurt would relight his feud with Shawn Michaels. After a little build up, they met again, in another, truelly great match (Although worse than any of the Benoit/Angle matches), which Shawn won. After this their rivalry fizzled out, until RAW Homecoming came aorund, were as the WWE wanted one classic on the show, they booked a 3 match between the two, which to me, was the biggest let down. nothing wrong with it, though Iron Man matches are rarely pulled off well. this always seemed to be waiting for a spot, where you would get a winner, and it was effected by that. probably the worst match of the 3 (WrestleMania, then Vengeance, then Homecoming).

 

Since that match, the only real thing Kurt has done that meant anything, ahs been a fairly piss poor feud with joh Cena. I think the booking question comes up again here. instead of treating both with some respect, they have been given the basis of a 1998 feud, with Angle thrown in. Added to that, John Cena gets more in-ring time than he does oon themic, whch is a disaster. I don't care how much anyone likes Cena. putting him in a match, week in, week out, is not going to do anything, when it comes to drawing in fans. Have Angle injure Cena over and over, and then have Cena watch in pain, while Angle destroys wrestlers in less than 5 minutes every time. make Angle do it all in-ring, and have Cena do the work on the mic. Cena doesn't have to look weak while beaing injured either. Angle work on Cena's ankle, then 'smash' it with a chair. then each week, have Angle destroy a face, and Cena beg to fight Angle, only to be held back by road agents.

 

But no. The feud stinks so far.

 

In the ring, Kurt Angle is one of the best ever, from America. I doubt many people will argue that. His matches with Jericho, Chris benoit, aThe Rock and Triple H prove how good he is. OK, so none of the workers he faced are slocuhes, bu it takes 2 to make a fantastic match and Kurt can do that.

On the mic, he is very, very underrated. he can do it all. from playing the goofy heel, to being a vicious b*st*rd, who will rip you apart, with his submission expertise.

 

So what next for Angle? WWE need main eventers, and Angle fits that. Proven on the mic, and even better in the ring. He is so verstalie. After a potential Cena match, give him Triple H again. Have Angle the loveable face, and Triple H going for the title. Fans want to see Angle, and with him not being a Champion for years, him beating Cena would be the right thing to do. It needs to happen WWE. Cena cannot be the Champion for much longer while he is being booed, and who better than Kurt Angle to be World Champion right now? No-one. Oh it's true, it's damn true.

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It IS damn true. Kurt Angle, in my opinion, is the modern day incarnation of Ric Flair (with Christian being the HBK and who could forget good ole Jeff (Hulk) Jarrett (Hogan))

 

KA needs the title, he is great as a face AND heel, something only the Rock can pull off as good. The only problem with Cena losing the title is he would be left meaningless without. RAW needs to look like this

 

KA=face

HHH=Heel

Cena=anti-face/heelish (let him battle rap again)

HBK=Face

 

A long feud with HHH would be great, seeing a feud with two guys who can actually work a damn good match would do loads for WWE.

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Have Angle injure Cena over and over, and then have Cena watch in pain, while Angle destroys wrestlers in less than 5 minutes every time. make Angle do it all in-ring, and have Cena do the work on the mic. Cena doesn't have to look weak while beaing injured either. Angle work on Cena's ankle, then 'smash' it with a chair. then each week, have Angle destroy a face, and Cena beg to fight Angle, only to be held back by road agents.

 

Now there's an idea... and a good one to boot.

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I can see HHH and Big Show having a feud from the past Raws, which i guess is good because it is pushing at least someone new into the higher ranks, and it is keeping Trips off the title challenge. I can see Shawn Michaels and Shelton Benjamin having a feud after what happened on Raw last night with Shelton going heel.

 

 

This can leave Angle still going for the title and maybe winning it quite soon seeing that this will be better for Cena's career at the moment.

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I really don't know what is left for Angle, but him moving to RAW was definately the right option. He was really lost on Smackdown, come on! he was fighting Booker T over him stalking Booker's wife. We could definately see some decent feuds left in Kurt Angle. A HHH feud and future Ric Flair feud would be excellent. Also I would enjoy a feud with Edge and RVD. But I think Kurt has a lot left in him and there are lots of options left for him, but currently he doesn't exactly have many other options other than Cena even though he will never win.
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Supposadly Cena isn't gonna loose the title anytime soon because vince really likes him. They even expect him to hold until after mania.

 

ture.. but Vince changes his mind alot..

 

the original orton title reign was set to go up to mania 21...

Orton was meant to get the title when he faced tista a few weeks back...

The Dudleyz were going to be brought back after WM21 to feud with a new team the shanes (notice the dudleyz never came back and the shanes never debuted)

 

so Vince changes alot.. lets hope he does on this one.. but surely having your face champ booed by all but the 12 year old girl crew Vince will realise something needs changing

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