View Full Version : Team Spirit

05-25-03, 09:19 AM
(FADEIN: GUNS in his San Antonio ranch, wearing a Battle of the Belts T-shirt.)

GUNS: So our road trip to Virginia has come and gone, and now it's time for Chad Merritt's little ego trip called Battle of the Belts - mixed and matched tag teams fighting for the eventual right to get into a battle royal to be the #1 contender. (Chuckles.) #1 contender to what? The 1988 Heavyweight Championship of the World battle between Bugbrain and the Living Psycho? Some prize.

My teammates may be slightly disappointed to hear this, but I've said from the moment I walked through these doors that the CSWA World Heavyweight title is about as valuable to me as an ice cube in Alaska, but there are others on my team - whether they be Shane Southern or "Mr. CSWA" himself, who are DYING to get that belt strapped around their waist. Southern's never climbed that mountain, so he has an excuse. But, Troy, you've been handed that belt on a silver platter before - you know firsthand how worthless it is - so your desire to get the belt is nothing short of pure ego. You need the belt, no matter how worthless it truly is, to build your sense of self-worth, because deep down underneath it all, you know you're not HALF as popular with the mainstream media as you pretend to be, you know that Britney and Christina and the Olsen Twins wouldn't so much as give you the time of day if they saw you at an A-list Hollywood party, unless they were asking you to park their car. You're a fraud, Troy Windham, which means you have a lot in common with the CSWA World Heavyweight title.

Finally, my other partner is a true old friend - Tom Adler. (Smiles.) Adler saw how popular this whole faction thing was becoming so he dusted off some low midcarder from the past, paired him with the human bump machine Nathan Storm, got Maxwell Diamond out of mothballs, and tried to get a little piece of the pie. Not as dramatic as the formation of the Intruders, to be sure, but I'll give you points for effort anyway, Tom. You've had a couple of chances to win the World title, Tom, and whether voluntarily or not, you've come up short. I don't know how much the belt itself means to you, Tom, but I know damn well how much it means to you for your peers and your public to think you're the best.

All three of you would like nothing better than to win and advance to that battle royal, but I'm dealing with a quandry here. You see, in order for that to happen - in order for you to reach your goals, then Eddie Mayfield and Craig Miles have to lose their titles. And I'm not prepared to let that happen.

Shane Southern - before Virginia Beach, I told you that I would make sure you were torn apart, and you were. You got beaten down, battered, and in the end, you were tossed into the third row. And that was just a warmup. You had your chance to be on the right side of this war, Shane, and you passed it up.

Tom Adler - you want to be the best, but those days are long gone, my friend. You and I have gone around the block enough times that there's not much mystery left, but Eddie and Craig - they like the idea of beating you and making you suffer. That's fine by me. When they're working you over at Battle of the Belts, Tom, don't be looking my way for the hot tag.

And then there's Troy. I've been waiting to get back into the ring with you for a long time, son. Don't think that the minor technicality of us being on the same team is going to help you.

On paper, it looked so good, didn't it? A Dream Team - Shane Southern, Troy Windham, Tom Adler, and GUNS. How could they lose? Well, Merritt may have stacked the deck, but now I've evened the playing field a bit. Now it's 5 on 3, whether Merritt likes it or not. There's no mystery - you don't have to guess who the mole is - I'm standing right in front of you.

05-25-03, 02:04 PM
Ya know, GUNS, I could come out here and deny everything you've said, but, what would be the point?

Whether you and I were partners, as we've been in the past, or opponents, as we've been in the past, you and I have always pretty much said things exactly how we saw 'em.

So, when I say something to ya, I think you know me well enough to know I'm not BSing you or anybody else.

Whether we were getting along at any given moment or not, I think it's safe to say that we've always had mutual respect for each other.

But, frankly, I decided a while ago that no matter what we do in this or any other match, that there are certain people who are never gonna respect either one of us. And, from my perspective, I think there are six of those certain people in the ring along with us in this match... INCLUDING your would be partners on the other side of the ring.

And, no, I'm not out here looking to stir up s#!t between you and the rest of the Intruders. If you wanna chuck this match to save their title, go right ahead. I don't really care.

But, somewhere along the way I'd be asking myself if I were still Greensboro Champion, would THEY be doing the same for ME? Consider for a second how you lost that belt and maybe ask it again.

In any case, like I said, what opportunity you chuck away for whatever reasons is up to you. Do I care? No. I don't want the Tag Team Titles and I don't like Southern and Windham enough to care if they do either.

A possible World Title Shot? Like you've already said, I have two of 'em in the last three events. If the World Title were my main objective, I would have walked out with it at On Time... period.

Do I have the desire to be the World Champion again? Sure. I won't come out here and insult you or anybody else by suggesting that I don't.

But, if we're shooting straight here, you can chew on this a bit.

I've beaten two of the four men wrestling in the World Title picture at BotB in the last couple of months, including the current and previous World Champion.

I haven't lost a one-on-one match in OVER a year no matter what bull s#!t match Merritt's put me in or who it's been against... INCLUDING Miles. And I don't see another individual in this whole freakin' think that can say the same thing.

You say my days of being the best are behind me? Pal, I -AM- the best.. and I've proven it. What IS behind me is the need to cater to Merritt's whims to get a couple of bumps in the buy rate.

I am in this match for one reason, and one reason only. Because I was assigned to it.

I will walk into BotB with a belt around my waist. And, my only motivation is making sure I walk out the same way. Beyond that? Who does and doesn't win these matches and that battle royal is irrelavent.

Simply put, the day I need to win one of Merritt's gimmic matches to prove I'm better than somebody else and get a title shot if I want one is the day I retire. Period.


05-25-03, 08:27 PM
Tommy, it's good to know that we're on the same page.

I look at this opportunity in a slightly different perspective. You talk about me tossing away an opportunity in order to save Eddie and Craig's titles. An opportunity for what? I stopped wrestling for the thrill of victory a long time ago, Tom - years of putting up with the BS around here will do that to a man. Wins and losses come and go, Tom - three seconds of glory or three seconds of agony, and then another day comes and you've gotta back it up all over again.

I don't want the CSWA World Heavyweight title - I've climbed to that perch. You still haven't, but I'm sure you can figure out for yourself that the air smells pretty bad up there. I've been there, I've done that, I don't need to go back to stroke my ego. So, the opportunity to get my hand raised by a skinny little man in a striped shirt so I can go onto a battle royal to earn a shot at a belt I don't care about - it doesn't really whet my appetite.

But, on the other hand, Tom - if we're talking about an opportunity to stand two feet away from Troy Windham - a man who has proven that he can run his mouth but hasn't proven that he can back it up, now that's something I can sink my teeth into. If we're talking about an opportunity to stand side by side with Shane Southern, a man who made the poor decision to turn down an invitation to join the Intruders, and ask him if he enjoyed his one-way ticket to the third row - that's something I can sink my teeth into.

But, more importantly, the opportunity to deny the hopes and dreams of the CSWA's best and brightest - that's an opportunity I'm looking forward to. See, Troy Windham's on a quest - a quest to step into the ring with his brother/cousin/uncle/who-gives-a-damn for the 800th episode of the Windham Family Circus. It's amazing that a man who thinks himself so in tune with pop culture could be so out of touch as to think that ANYBODY is looking forward to that soap opera playing out again. Troy would give his right arm for a shot at the World title, a shot to wrestle Mark to settle the debate over who is the Best Windham - which is similar to arguing over which is the best form of cancer - at the end of the day, you're better off without any of them.

Shane Southern's on a quest, too, to walk the path of the straight and narrow - to prove that a good man with strong values CAN succeed in the CSWA cesspool - to prove that good can triumph over evil, that virtue can triumph over corruption, and that the CSWA really is worth fighting for. But that's not the truth, and the very fact that he has to wrestle at Battle of the Belts with men like me and you as his partners should pretty much put the writing on the wall for him. But he doesn't see it - he doesn't see that Troy Windham would stab him in the back in a heartbeat to get that World title shot. Me? I'm telling him upfront what he can expect from me.

And that leaves you and me, Tom - quite frankly, I don't have anything personal against you - there's enough water under that bridge to flood the entire East Coast, but since you and I had our wars I think it's safe to say that we've each made a whole slew of new enemies. But the fact remains, Tom, that if you succeed at Battle of the Belts - you keep the hopes and dreams of Troy Windham and Shane Southern alive, and I can't allow that to happen. Fate stuck you on the wrong team, Tom, which means at the end of the day, either a British Lord, a walking miracle, or more likely - one of the two men who have a cool techno voice screaming "INTRUDER ALERT!" before their theme music plays - will be wearing your belt. I would say I'm sorry if this comes as a disappointment to you, but I think we'd both know I'd be lying.

You ask if Eddie and Craig would do the same for me and you point to how I lost the Greensboro title. I suppose if the Greensboro title meant something to me, I'd be asking myself the same question.

The fact remains, Tom, that there are two ways it can play out at Battle of the Belts. Either I succeed the first time around, our team goes down in defeat, and everybody lives unhappily ever after.

Or, the three of you unite to keep me at bay and overcome the odds, and we all advance to the battle royal together. Well, then, the bad news is that Eddie and Craig will no longer have the privilege of calling themselves the World Tag Team champions. The good news is that I get a chance for instant revenge.

I get two chances to succeed, Tom, which means that Shane, Troy, and even you - get two chances to fail. I'll take those odds any day of the week.

Opportunity knocks twice for me at Battle of the Belts, Tom, and like it or not, one way or the other, I'll be there to answer the door.

05-25-03, 10:30 PM
Fate is a pretty ugly b!tch whose head I've thrown a bag over and screwed more than once in my life, GUNS.

But, it wasn't Fate that stuck me on this team, it was Merritt. Why? Who knows.

Maybe he knows there's nobody else in this place who can go in there and do the job.

Maybe he knows that I oughta be the one fighting Eli for the number one contenders slot instead of a man I made tap out to start a three month long winless skid.

But, since we all know that Merritt do damn near anything to try to pull Hornet out of this funk EXCEPT let me wrestle the soon to be crowned world champ, that wasn't an option.

Maybe he's paying me a complement. Maybe he thinks I'm the only man alive who can save the bobsy twins from defeat when you turn it into a five on three.

Or, maybe Eric was WRIGHT the first time when he said nobody has come even close to beating me for this (holding up the Presidential title belt) in over a year and a seven on one Adler Hatefest is a pretty good way to rectify that.

Who knows. And, if I actually cared why I might give it some serious thought.

I don't.

Let me just correct a few things I think you're mistaken about.

First, I've already been the CSWA World Champion. In fact, as you know better than anybody, I've held every World Title ever represented within these hallowed halls. Except the Unified World Title, of course. If that's what you were referring to, whatever. It's not like the CSWA has been Unified with anything in about fifty years. So, from my perspective a couple of bucks worth of engraving isn't worth making an issue over.

Second, I've heard your two scenerios on how this can play out. And, they're certainly two I've considered as possibilities.

On the other hand, GUNS, you've known me long enough to know that I've pretty much made a career out of creating scenerios where none exist.

When it comes to Tom Adler, GUNS, there are ALWAYS options. Don't ever forget that.


05-26-03, 11:52 AM

I'm not going to deny that you're the wild card in this scenario. There are those who defend the CSWA, there are those who have the goal of destroying it, but Tom Adler stands on his own side. Pretty much always has. More often than not, that side has been the winning side - but the bottom line, Tom, is that you've made a living for yourself here by staying under the radar, holding a championship that half the locker room probably doesn't even remember exists.

Now, the stakes are raised a little bit, and we're finally going to find out what Tom Adler has left. Oh, I'm sure the wheels are spinning up there, churning out elaborate plots left and right, but at the end of the day, it's frighteningly simple. Chad Merritt's the one pulling the strings, Tom, and you're dancing the same dance as the rest of us. You might think yourself above it all, Tom, but you're not.

You see, Tom, it makes no difference to me who wins that battle royal at the Battle of the Belts, as long as three men don't. Shane Southern, Troy Windham, and GUNS are on that list, Tom - your name isn't. Quite frankly, if you and the odd couple somehow manage to overcome the odds and advance to the battle royal, more power to you. Like I said, Tom, you've been making a living by flying under the radar so far, and I see no reason to change that now. Lay low, stay out of my way, and who knows what good fortune might be bestowed upon you.

After all, Tom, you don't seem to care enough about winning the CSWA World Heavyweight title to make it worth my while to try to stop you. You've had two chances already and come up empty, so there's no skin off my nose if you earn a chance to see strike three.

Southern and Windham are the prime targets, Tom - you're unfortunate enough to be on our team, whether by fate's design or Merritt's. Either way, it's irrelevant. One way or another at Battle of the Belts, I will get what I want - the failure of Troy Windham and Shane Southern. Whether you participate in their failure or benefit from it really makes no difference to me.

Do yourself a favor, Tom - keep flying under the radar, stay out of my way, and who knows - Battle of the Belts may turn out to be a happy day for both of us.

05-26-03, 01:49 PM
Ya see, GUNS, it always seems to come down to this with us... stay out of each others way and we get along fine.

By and large, I don't have a problem with that. You have nothing I want. I have nothing you want. On paper, that makes for a pretty peaceful co-existance.

But things don't always play out in life as they do on paper now do they.

If you think me not having interrest CURRENTLY in being World Champ puts me under the radar, then you've deluded yourself just as much as the dozen or so Windhams running around here that being World Champ is the only thing that matters.

But, I think I know you better than that.

The simple fact is, GUNS, we may be on the same page, but, unfortunately, it's a different book.

And, simply put, my book includes at least TWO champters that start and end with the word "Intruders."

One I've already flipped the page on. And whether it happens at BotB or not, sooner or later that other page is gonna get flipped too.

Now, if you're content to sit back and enjoy the book on tape version of that, then we'll continue to get along fine. If not, then I suggest you worry less about Sir Twang Alot and his pedophile friend and a little more about who's the real threat to whatever agenda your buddies are running.

At any rate, it seems that at least one of us is pretty much destined to be disapointed when this thing is over. Because if you get what you want, I come up with a big ol goose egg on the evening.

And, whether I have designs on winning the World Title in the next few weeks or not, walking out empty handed isn't exactly in my game plan either.

So, if you want the deal, here it is. Stay out of MY way at BotB and we'll BOTH be around to make sure the rejects from a Gidget movie end the night on a sour note. Don't, and you can address getting eliminated early with me in the battle royal.

I don't like Windham and Southern any more than you do, GUNS. I just happen to like losing even less.


05-28-03, 09:36 AM
You see, Tom, that's disappointing. I offer you an olive branch, an open invitation for you to stay out of my way and hope for the best, but you always want to have that last word, don't you, Tom?

Here's the thing - Eddie and Craig, they don't need my help to take you on, Tom. They've got their own agenda when it comes to you, and that's fine - I don't argue with them, because the fact of the matter is that every man, woman, and child in this company is on my hit list at some point. I hadn't made you a particular priority, but they've got your name circled in red, and if they want to take you out at Battle of the Belts, Tom, trust me, you won't be looking to me to bail you out.

But, Tom, there may be a critical point in that match where you pull one of your Magnificent moves out of your ass and fluke Eddie or Craig into a pinning predicament, putting their titles in jeopardy. Well, Tom, if there's anything I can do to stop it, trust me, Tom, I will take that opportunity. If that's a problem for you, I don't give a damn. If that means that we're gonna have to scrap years worth of deterrence and actually go to war with each other again like old times, then I'm fine with that too.

Tom, you're not a priority of mine at Battle of the Belts. Do yourself a favor and don't make yourself one. Because whether I sink your chances at a World Heavyweight title shot in the team challenge match, or whether you, Mutt, and Jeff overcome the odds and make it to the battle royal - I have a target package that I intend to fulfill. If you stay out of my way in the team challenge match, then you may just be limited to suffering some collateral damage and living to fight another day. But, if you get cute, Tom - or if you get a little too uppity with the other Intruders, then you'll be included in that target package, and the full weight and fury of the Strongest Arms in the World will come crashing down upon you.

I'm not saying that to scare you, Tom - I know you're way above that. I'm saying it to appeal to your smarter nature. Do what you've been doing in the CSWA for the last few years, Tom - lay low and hope to survive. Pop your head out of the foxhole, and it might get blown off.

And if you make it to the battle royal, and our paths do cross - you won't be Mr. Magnificent, you won't be the #1 contender, you'll just be another souvenir for some lucky fan, courtesy of Third Row, Inc.

05-28-03, 12:08 PM
Seems I can't HELP but be a target, GUNS.

There are three men on our team that pretty much share only one thing in life... that none of us wanna see Miles and Mayfield come out on top of this thing.

Not because I care if you or any of them walk out with the World Title at some point... but because getting there means you have little choice but to go through me.

Well, sorry, GUNS, but if there's one thing you know about me, it's that I don't lay down. It's that one little stubborn streak about me that my smarter nature just can't seem to overcome.

Now... if you can come up with some amicable way for us to all co-exist in such an atmosphere, fine. I'm all ears. But, if you think I'm just gonna sit on the apron like a good little boy and watch while the odds go from five on three to five on one... sorry, that's not gonna happen.


05-29-03, 12:58 PM
(FADEIN: 'COCKY' CRAIG MILES standing in front of the BOB backdrop)

MILES: "Listen Tom, I'm glad I'm now part of your year-long streak. But y'know what? (smiles) At least I know you need someone like Eric Wright to beat someone you didn't respect as a singles wrestler. And this coming years after years of Wright denying any association with the <> Exchange. Maybe I should break out one of those Steve Masters masks for someone to wear around here. Adler, know why I don't respect you? You don't do your own dirty work and then pretend it wasn't even there. Battle of the Belts has a wild card, Adler - just not YOU."


05-30-03, 02:17 AM
Ya know, Craig, complaining about somebody else getting involved is pretty amusing coming from you. But, I'm sure me grabbing ahold of somebody at ringside and pulling myself out of the way is far more heinous an act than anything you guys have perpetrated in the last year.

PLEASE accept my sincerest appology because somehow a man who never laid a hand on ya cost ya a match.

But, for the record, I don't recall Wright ever denying or admitting anything. There was never anything to deny. Wright signed on with the <>X about two days before we reformed at On Time.

Why'd we want him? Simple. Because he has more contacts and more inside information on just about everybody in this business than any man alive. If you've got a hangnail, chances are he knows about it.

Why'd he accept? Who knows. You'd have to ask him. But, like he told GUNS, his association with the <>X isn't really the issue, is it?

Unless, of course, you're afraid somebody might find out something you'd rather they didn't. But, that's not likely to be the case, now is it.