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The NBA Playoffs are pro wrestling


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#41 jdw

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 07:30 PM

 

Kobe might be Kobashi. Think about that one a bit.

 

The only real difference is that most everyone hates Kobe, including some Lakers Fans like myself who thank him for Five More Rings. In contrast, I think most people in the business liked Kobashi.

 

But the other parallels run far and deep.

 

I actually thought about Kobe-Kenta. But I recently read Meltzer's big Kobashi retrospective from a couple of years ago and I decided against that comp because Kobashi wasn't a star athlete in high school like Misawa and Kawada. Obviously Kenta was great from the start. I went with Terry Funk leaning on 2nd generation stars, great work, and just having totally unique and bizarre lives even within their profession which is full of people with unique and bizarre lives.


 

 

Kobashi had "it" right from the start, and got a push beyond his level really early: those 1989 TV matches in his second year are similar to Kobe making the All Star Game push in his second season.

 

I think Kobashi had a natural gift for pro wrestling, similar to Kobe for basketball. There isn't pro wrestling in jr high and high school, or Kobashi would have been eating up the Nike Puoresu Camps and been a McDonalds High School All-Nippon member. :)

 

There are some dissimilar things, such as Kobe being an utter dick. But the similarities, right down to them both "playing through injuries" that hardly anyone else would and then breaking down body part by body part. They also both were more insanely driven than any player of their generation... kind of pathological in each case.



#42 elliott

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 08:01 PM

I agree with everything you said about Kobe/Kenta. That is all precisely why  I thought about it. Since I tried to include some sillyness in all of my comparisons, I also would have said "Later Chop-Fu Kobashi is the equivalent of Later All Offense No Defense Kobe."

 

You could even draw a comparison between Kenta's long losing streak to start his career and Pre-Phil Kobe jacking airballs in the playoffs against Utah.

 

I would also like to revise my Kawhi Leonard as Jun Akiayama comment and say that I hope it is more like Kawhi Leonard is 1991 Mitsuharu Misawa. That would be phenomenal. Jumbo would be Timmy in this scenario which would also be a good comp.



#43 Johnny Sorrow

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 08:18 PM

Shouldn't Flair be Wilt since they both fucked 20,000 women?

#44 elliott

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 08:25 PM

I'm struggling to come up with a good comp for Wilt.

 

I didn't think of Flair, but you could absolutely say that Wilt slept with 20,000 women like Flair wrestled 100,000 matches. :)



#45 Johnny Sorrow

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 08:43 PM

Who's Laimbeer?

#46 Jesse Ewiak

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 11:09 PM

Who's Laimbeer?

 

Um, RVD? Unsafe to work with, but loved by his fans?



#47 elliott

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 06:19 AM

I would say Laimbeer is like a poor man's Greg Valentine.



#48 Cross Face Chicken Wing

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 11:51 AM

Flair is much closer to Wilt than he is to Kareem. 

 

Laimbeer was too chickenshit to be Valentine. Laimbeer is kind of a blue collar version of Buddy Rose.



#49 jdw

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 12:52 PM

Flair won lots of titles. Kareem won lots of titles: 3 in college & 6 in the NBA. Both of them were winning titles after their prime.

 

Wilt won 2 titles, only one when he was truly the top guy (West was in 1972).

 

Wilt is Andre the Giant. Titles largely meant nothing to him. He won the 1967 Title to prove that he could, then the belt went back to Russell. Wilt was all about being larger than life. Of course there's also the famed quote about no one loving Goliath.

 

* * * * *

 

Laimbeer was a dirty thug heel. I don't think Rose was enough of a thugish tough guy to be Laimbeer.  Laimbeer was limited, but had a few strong characteristics: team defense, rebounding, outside shooting (pulling the opposing center away from the hoop long before it became vogue), and dirty intimidating hacking. So you're looking for a tough heel who does a few things good/well, is a thug, but overall limited. Laimbeer certainly wasn't a big bumping heel... though Parrish did beat the living shit out of him once.

 

* * * * *

 

Too early to tell of Leonard is Misawa. On some level, the "Misawa" should be someone whose career we've already seen come to an end (or largely to an end). You can't tab that on someone earlier in their career.

 

Misawa might be Bird.

 

The clear Ace in the World at his peak, respected by everyone even his rivals (Mutoh totally respected Misawa as the real Man in Japan back when both were Champs in 1995). Major titles and honors in his prime. Deadly icy cooler finisher who could take you out with all sorts of spots (Bird could kill you deep, could kill you driving to the hoop, could kill you drawing the foul and going to the line, and could kill you with a super smart "counter steal" like the famous one against the Pistons). Both broke down at the tail end of their primes: Bird after yet another insane year in 1987/88, and Misawa right as he was heading into his first headlining Tokyo Dome. Both stuck around after that, got other honors and flashed some brilliance here and there, but never were really the same after the big injuries.

 

* * * * *

 

Don't really know who Kawhi is. So early in his career. We don't even know if he's going to turn into a serious MVP candidate, or if he's Pippen 2.0 which itself is an exceptional level but never really rose to serious MVP candidate level. I really think we need to let someone who is four years into their career, just 23, and "only" averaged 17-7-3 have some time to develop and show us where the high end of is play on a night-in, night-out basis ends up. I certainly look forward to watching it. :)



#50 DR Ackermann

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 02:20 PM

Laimbeer is Bradshaw. Fake tough guy bully who gets his ass handed to him when push comes to shove. Never one of of the elite guys but had a run at the top that is underrated.

#51 Cross Face Chicken Wing

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 03:13 PM

There it is. Bradshaw is a better chickenshit thug comp for Laimbeer than Buddy. 

 

JDW: Kareem had the charisma of a bag of sand. No way he's even close to comparable to Flair. Instead of getting drunk and running around the bar wearing only his wrestling robe like Flair, Kareem converted to Islam and became a cultural ambassador (albeit a crabby one). 



#52 jdw

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 05:57 PM

 

JDW: Kareem had the charisma of a bag of sand. No way he's even close to comparable to Flair. Instead of getting drunk and running around the bar wearing only his wrestling robe like Flair, Kareem converted to Islam and became a cultural ambassador (albeit a crabby one). 

 

You say the Flair Show like it's a good thing. :)

 

Anyway, Flair has a long history of treating women like shit. Kareem does as well. He also had a long relationship with Pam Grier before she was big. Let's be honest and admit:

 

Pam Grier > Any Women Flair Had

 

;)



#53 jdw

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 05:58 PM

Agree with the thoughts on Laimbeer as Bradshaw.  Good comp.



#54 goodhelmet

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 08:12 PM

Russell is Bruno. Gave the belt up for a couple of cups of coffee but nobody else was worthy of the strap during that time. 



#55 elliott

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 08:34 PM

Wasn't Johnny Ace in charge of the divas at one point or did I make that up? I wanted to throw him out as another Laimbeer possibility.

 

My Kawhi-Misawa comp is 100% based on Misawa circa 1991. He's not the undisputed ace yet. 6/8/90 would be the equivalent of winning the finals MVP last year. I went with Jun at first with late 90s Akiyama in mind with Timmy as Misawa, Tony as Kenta and Kawada as Manu. Then I got depressed because I love SA and Kawhi and the early 90s MIsawa comp made me happy. If Duncan goes one more year and then Kawhi turns into a real MVP candidate (btw, I can't wait to argue Kawhi as MVP and talk about how the game changed) it will be like taking the triple crown from Hansen as the new undisputed ace.

 

You're right though, its hard to project with Kawhi because he is so young. I lean towards early 90s Misawa because the Spurs booking (think Front Office stuff/Coaching) has been so great for his career. Its difficult to see the signs of them crumbling provided everything breaks well.

 

HOWEVER, you could also argue  "staleness on top" for so long combined with what could be major roster turnover coming up soon, that the Jun comp works better. We'll have to wait and see. As a long time Spurs fan I'm hoping Timmy as Jumbo and Kawhi as Misawa and Pop as Baba the Booker end up being the best comps. :)

 

Also, just have to say how disappointed I am that you overlooked my Jumbo/Magic late night tv comedy workers joke. :)



#56 jdw

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 09:02 PM

I will continue to ignore all meanspirited jokes at the expense of Saint Magic. ;)

 

Agree a big with Bruno = Russell, except I like the Londos quality of Russ just retiring with the belt as if no one in the NBA was worthy of him jobbing the title to. :P



#57 elliott

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Posted 29 April 2015 - 09:11 PM

John who would be a good Baba comp?



#58 Cross Face Chicken Wing

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Posted 30 April 2015 - 10:19 AM

Hakeem Olajuwon?



#59 jdw

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Posted 30 April 2015 - 11:14 AM

There is no Baba: megastar wrestler + megastar promoter. There's not always going to be a match.

 

Back in the 90s I use to make the analogy that Choshu was the wrestling equiv of West: high end HOF player/wrestler + high end HOF GM/booker. The problem is that West's personality and Choshu's aren't quite the same. You could say that both were intense, but Choshu is charismatic while Jerry wasn't a flamboyant player, though certainly exciting to a degree.



#60 jdw

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Posted 30 April 2015 - 11:23 AM

That reminds me of this one:

 

 


Vince Russo is Donald Sterling. Obviously.

 

Russo would need a GM equiv, while Sterling needs an Owner/Promoter equiv.

 

Sterling is kind of Herb Abrams, but with more longevity.

 

Russo is probably David Kahn, better known as KAAAAAAHN!1 Totally incompetent, raised to a level he wasn't qualified to handle, ass backwards theories on his sport, and best of all had loads of fanboys who would defend his shitty moves as actually being smart. Remember all those idiot Russo Apologists who would explain why his ratings were really good, how his booking choices were smart, and how everything that went wrong was the fault of someone else? That's Kahn to a T(imberwolves). One dumbass decision after another. You could see at the moment he pissed Love off (Rubio contract vs Love contract) that Love made a decision to leave, and set up his own contract to do just that... while Kahn was thinking he'd worked Love's contract to the team's benefit. Idiot drafted. Idiot trader. There was the running joke of the team having half a dozen point guards, none of who were as good as Kahn thought.

 

Yep... that's Russo. :)

 

 

 

1 - trademark Bill Simmons






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