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Thread: Drake Maverick (Rockstar Spud)

  1. #1
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    Drake Maverick (Rockstar Spud)

    Here's something I've wondered for a long time. What's the best way to use someone like Rockstar Spud?

    I know not everyone is on the same page, but I've seen a lot of people so mostly complimentary things about Spud, which leads me to believe that if he could have gotten over the way he has but he weighed 220lbs and was 5ft 11 then he'd have been a nailed on main event worked for TNA/GFW. But Spud isn't even remotely a heavyweight contender. If he was a boxer, he'd probably be a featherweight, and that seems to have led to his being valued a lot less and getting used in a variety of different roles.

    So given his size, how would you use him for the best? Is Spud a perfect top-tier talent for a wrestling promotion that would be 'post-Sport', where size wouldn't matter in the least? Or the man who should lead a specific weight division? Or is he the perfect man to try and kickstart the traditional wrestling manager, as he almost certainly would have been had he tried to break into wrestling in the territory days. Or would you be using him in any of the other roles that TNA/GFW have engaged him over the years?

  2. #2
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    Spud is in the same position as Enzo. He got over, he's got what he needs to be a top guy...except he doesn't look the part. He's too small. Now, I'm not saying that he can't be a top character, but I would see him in more of that Roddy Piper/Jake Roberts type guy. Not necessarily a top heavyweight contender, but an over dude that you can main event shows with and put into memorable storylines that draw. He can be around the top heavyweight contenders, but isn't necessarily one. He can be a guy that doesn't need a belt to be over and be a drawing guy. He just needs good stories.

    Jake Roberts, Roddy Piper and Ted DiBiase never had the WWF Title, but they are legends because they were guys that were so unbelievably over without ever needing the belt.

  3. #3
    The Brain
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    Poor Spud. The guy was one of the most over guys on the roster in 2015 in the wake of the EC3 stuff, and won the XD title to a huge pop, but then they forgot about him and his heat slowly slipped away.

    Frankly, I've never seen Spud in a role where he didn't add value (except maybe ring announcer, because he's far too good for that). He was absolutely fantastic as EC3's manager when he first came in, and I do wonder if that's not the best role for him. As you said, 30 years ago he'd be an obvious lock for a full on career in managing, but there's stupidly little call for that these days.

    He was a great underdog foil to EC3 when they turned on each other and had me thinking he could succeed as an upper midcard underdog character in the vein of Mysterio, and I do think that's possible just based on pure charisma and ability, recognizing that size matters less now than ever before.

    He was fine when he defected to Big Money Matt Hardy's stable and was doing well as a bitter undersized henchman, but that got scrapped suddenly in favor of the Broken Universe (which he would have fit into wonderfully, but alas no luck). He could have been good as Aron Rex's manager but that was scrapped too soon to really say for sure.

    If I were a promoter and got to work with Spud, it would definitely be as a manager and periodic wrestler. He's wonderful in that role and can really antagonize a crowd, but he's charismatic enough that if he ever starts to get face pops it's easy to turn him for a while until a fresh story presents itself. I agree with Coach in that using him in good stories is the key, as he's got a great talent for making anything he's handed work on a deeper level.

  4. #4
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    Is there a difference in that Roddy Piper, though small for the day, was still 6 feet tall and around 200lbs or bigger, and Roberts wasn't significantly smaller than a lot of the guys he was working with, but Spud is obviously so much smaller than the average? I mean, let's face it, DJZ probably has 30lbs on the guy and a couple of inches in height. Enzo, too, is way bigger than he is. In the EC3 feud he was literally almost half his weight and around 9-10 inches shorter. Is that going to factor in to his ability to be a special attraction against top level guys?

    I kinda think that if you were to use him in that way, then as a manager would still be the best way to do that, because you could keep him as a special attraction but people wouldn't mind if he got his ass kicked quickly (the way Bobby Heenan, Jim Cornette and Jimmy Hart all used to). But like Heenan he'd also have the background to take a real kicking when the time comes. It almost seems to me that a talent like that demands that you create the call for it, and that you try and build around what you've got - especially for a company with such limited resources.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    I think they absolutely nailed Spud when he came in, to be honest. It was the perfect role for him, he became a hugely sympathetic character, and had a load of momentum behind him. It was the last time I was regularly watching things TNA did, just to see his and EC3's bits in the program, because it grabbed me. I tried watching a full show around then and couldn't get through almost any of the other stuff, but EC3 and Spud had me watching at least those bits.

    I think they got the turn on EC3 wrong. I think they'd built him up to be a great face and he could have thrived in that role for a long time. And I think the reunion with EC3 was, whilst rushed, kind of perfect too. I'd have loved to have seen them as a pair of faces run that for a while, with them building on the respect angle that they teased in the hair vs hair match. Think that could have been outstanding. So that's where they went wrong, in my opinion. I think they could salvage it, though have no idea what he's doing now. Wiki says he's feuding with Swoggle which sounds like it's not going to get him there.

    This is still outstanding:


  6. #6
    The Brain
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    Strongly agree that turning Spud against EC3 was a bat move. I respected it because it made sense for the character, essentially the guy who bullied him and made his life hell just turned around and, without ever apologizing or making amends, was being cheered by the crowd. So it made sense that Spud would feel betrayed. If they had committed to it, it could have been something, but it feel apart as soon as Matt started on the "Broken" thing, and Spud was left to make the best out of things while being given basically nothing.

    All the EC3/Spud comedy heel stuff is brilliant, that segment especially. I loved how TNA slow burned the split between them, with Spud still acting goofy and buffoonish while EC3 started to get so much meaner and more paranoid after he saw his aunt go through a table, despite all her power and influence, and realized there was nothing he could do about it. I'll always love that entire arc, a perfectly told story.

  7. #7
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    My girlfriend hated the Spud heel turn, for what it's worth. I tend to pay attention to her opinions just to get a sense of what someone who isn't too close to it all is thinking. But she didn't see the value in it and thinks that he's effectively been wasted since. I think that if the most casual of casual fans are thinking that, then there's an obvious issue in it all.

  8. #8
    King of the Columnists Leaf's Avatar
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    For what it's worth, Spud currently has a gimmick on the UK indies in which he believes that he is living in 2002 following a shot to the head - think Eric Young's crazy gimmick. I haven't watched Impact in a very long time so I don't know if he has brought it there.

    2002 is significant as he still believes that he is a trainee and he is doing everything he can to get himself noticed and to get a chance in the wrestling business.

    Anyway, it's absolutely hilarious, and his Twitter is a hotbed for his antics.
    https://twitter.com/rockstarspud

    I personally don't think it would be too hard for him to introduce this gimmick to Impact if he hasn't already. Eventually, someone has to be concerned for his mental wellbeing, and that would be the perfect way to unite EC3 and Spud as EC3 tries to remind them of their friendship in some comedy segments, conveniently skipping the betrayal parts until another heel wrestler brings it up and makes Spud question his allegiances.

    That's where I would go anyway.
    Catch up on my column series, Sound Of The Underground, only on Lordsofpain.net

  9. #9
    The Brain
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    Oh yeah, he's been brilliant doing shtick with the new gimmick. I honestly don't think Impact is even using him at all right now, are they? I don't think he's done anything since the Hornswoggle feud. At this point he'd probably be better off just breaking ways with the company, if they're too stupid to use him. Then again, if they're paying him to sit at home (or work indys), then maybe it works out for the best.

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    Not using him, and has led to him asking for his release. So I guess for Impact, the Spud conundrum doesn't exist anymore.

    Think at 30lbs lighter and 4 inches shorter than even Gentleman Jack, he'd be too small for 205 live?

  11. #11
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    He would fit right in on 205 Live, and I'd say he'd already be in title contention there with a strong gimmick coming in. Besides, Tozawa and Kendrick must be billed 15-20 lbs heavier than him and have been Cruiserweight Champion since it started. I'm not sure how tall either is, I imagine a bit taller than the 5' 4" that Spud is billed at, but I think he could work there. Aren't the Singh twins tiny, too, and they were at least in the CWC before now. I think it could work, if WWE had an interest in him,

    Shame to see him leave, but I think he'll comfortably land on two feet where he goes.

  12. #12
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    I picked Gallagher because he's the closest one I can think of, size wise. In terms of billed size anyway, Kendrick and Tozawa are both heavier, and Tozawa is only slightly shorter than the other two. But yeah, Harvinder Sihra is probably close enough to Spud's size, now you mention it. A bit taller but no real weight difference.

  13. #13
    Just read that the WWE is indeed interested in him for the CW division

  14. #14
    The Brain
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    I'd be a little sad to see Spud consigned to 205 Live because I still get the impression virtually no one watches it, but there would be advantages to having him there. I'm also struggling to think of a place where he'd fit better in the wrestling world, as a reasonably good wrestler whose bread and butter is comedy and character work. I'd be interested to see him in NXT too, just to see what he could do there.

    If not WWE, I think he could do some fun stuff in certain European promotions, and it'd be fun to see him appear in random places like Dragon Gate, where I actually feel he could fit right in if he really wanted to.

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    I still feel the pot of gold isn't comedy Spud or heel Spud, but combining those elements in a fully rounded 3D manager Spud. And I am sure if the demand for that existed in the way it should, it would probably have already happened.

  16. #16
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    Oh sure, that's the ideal scenario, but it just seems so unlikely at this point. I'm not even sure who he'd be paired with in WWE to maximize the effect.

    Forgot to mention before, but I do think LU could do a tremendous amount with the guy in the right circumstances. If they still exist, of course.

  17. #17
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    Seen multiple reports Spud could debut for WWE in a week or so.



    @lopprimetime

  18. #18
    The Brain
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    So I guess that's what you do with the guy! Very curious how they use the guy. They could take one look at his size, small even by 205 standards, and make him a pure jobber. Or they could look at his mic skills and make him a supporting character, not someone who is necessarily going to win the title but who can contribute in the ring and, most importantly, with storylines. I'm hoping for that, start him out as an obnoxious heel and see where he goes from there. If it goes well I think he could have the potential to move up to the title, but I won't hold my breath for WWE to pull the trigger on that.

    I don't think he'd have much future on the main roster as a wrestler, but I do think he could thrive there in other roles. As we've discussed, he's picture perfect for a manager.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    Here might not be the best place to discuss it at length, but I've just read there's a chance he might be joined by his best friend/best enemy Ethan in 6 months or so...

  20. #20
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    I've heard that too. It's probably the best time for EC3 to jump ship on Impact as they aren't supporting/featuring him like they once did, and he's improved a hundred times over since leaving the 'E. If they have Spud work 205 Live for 6 months then make him Ethan's flunky on the main roster, I would be just fine with that.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    I suppose it depends on what WWE have in mind for EC3. I personally wouldn't be completely against them bringing him in as, like, Ethan McMahon and essentially rerunning that gimmick from day one with him. Get him in as the guy who represents Steph on Raw or Shane on Smackdown, and immediately give him a main event spot.

    Don't really want to see him come back in and have to 'earn his dues' like Roode, by first main eventing in NXT and then ending up rebuilding from the ground up on the main roster. He's ready for that main event spot already.

  22. #22
    The Brain
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    I got terrifying flashbacks to the "who is Vince's illegitimate child" storyline when you said that. On the flip side, I do kind of want them to make up a fictional brother for Vince now.

  23. #23
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    Spud just tweeted a picture of him and EC3 together with a message about how there is a whole universe to conquer.

    Could be a sign that they are both going to WWE, but more interesting, could they be arriving as a unit?!



    @lopprimetime

  24. #24
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    Oh God please.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by comfortablynumb View Post
    Drake Maverick though....
    I actually quite like it. Sometimes if you're going to have a stupid name you might as well go for the most stupid name. I wonder if Spud being GM was always the plan or if this is just a kick back from the Enzo stuff.

  26. #26
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    Yeah, the name isn't any more stupid than Rockstar Spud.

    Good call on the new GM, and good call by the announcers on acknowledging that he was known as Rockstar Spud. To a new viewer, the chants of Spud could have been quite confusing or even sounded like they were taunting him.

  27. #27
    The Brain
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    I am SO happy for this guy. He's been a great performer for so many years and was even legitimately hot a while back, though TNA never really capitalized on it. I think he works equally well whether he's wrestling or not, so this could be the perfect role for him. He deserves a spotlight and I'm really glad he's getting one.

  28. #28
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    He's bringing energy to the show, so that's always good. 205 Live was great last night all around.

  29. #29
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    Reviews for the first few weeks of 205 under Spud were pretty solid all round, seems people are noticing the show again... for the right reasons.

    Will do him no harm to be associated with that.



    @lopprimetime

  30. #30
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    He's perfect at doing what they're asking him to do. He's a very good promo man and just letting him rip into guys for not being on the CWC level anymore is great fun. best GM of all the brands tbh.

  31. #31
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    I really like that they're making him appear as a real on screen agent for change. Things like getting Gulak to drop the PowerPoint presentations (even though I loved them and that character) and the bit with Gallagher this week about his clothing. Little things that show us that this is 'his' show.

  32. #32
    The Brain
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    He's one of the top guys in wrestling when it comes to taking literally anything and making it work. I'm thrilled that people are digging him, but not surprised. The man is just damn good at what he does. I don't even really care if he wrestles or not, keep him in this role as long as it's working if need be.

  33. #33
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    The other day I daydreamed about them putting him with Gable and Benjamin as some sort of 21st century version of the heel Hart Foundation of '87...



    @lopprimetime

  34. #34
    The Brain
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    Spud as a manager is another brilliant way to go, he and EC3 were utterly brilliant as a team. And, as history shows, you can get a lot of mileage out of breaking it up in the end.

  35. #35
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    Hey, add EC3 and you have a stable. The Maverick Family, if that isn't too on the nose.



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  36. #36
    His promos the last two weeks have been some of the best on any show they have.

    Especially the one on Neese/Gulak. That was money.

    Here it is just in case you missed/forgot:



    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAT9PHrCXD4



  37. #37
    The Brain
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    It says a lot that I actually clicked that, I haven't clicked a WWE video in quite a while. And DAMN was it good. I'm getting a little emotional at how fantastically Spud is doing.

  38. #38
    205 Live is becoming a destination finally. I mean, the crowd didn't give the main this week enough of a chance. Gulak/Neese killed it.

    Each of the last few weeks (since the tourney was announced) has been worth it for at least one match.



  39. #39
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    God, I've just remembered how much I want Gable on 205Live, suplexing people around. Dude's billed at 202 lbs, only 5' 8", and would look amazing against most of the guys on the show.

    Agreed with Mourn here, Gulak/Nese was a terrific match, probably my favourite of the first round so far.

    In terms of Maverick - he's got that perfect managerial thing going on, for sure. Would love to see him have a stable of dudes. But at the moment I'm just enjoying him in the role he's in.

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