Home > Retro Columns > Retro: The 2005 WWE Johnny Awards

Retro: The 2005 WWE Johnny Awards

Here are a look at the Johnny Awards from 2005, the last time I did them. I wasn’t writing enough from 2006-2008 to do them. I’ll be posting them next Monday on the same day that WWE has the Slammy Awards. I’ll be posting up some polls in the next week (probably 10 in total so two per day) so you can vote in some of the main categories and I can compare the public’s results with my own. Enjoy this look back.


RIP Eddie. We love you and we miss you.

These are the awards where we honor, and dishonor, the hard working employees of World Wrestling Entertainment based on their work over the last twelve months. Having watched everything from January to December, I come to you today to present very prestigious awards that I call the 2005 WWE Johnny Awards! I used to do two awards columns in the year, but frankly I’m older now and remembering stuff twice in a year is a little much for me. Okay, that’s not the real reason, but we’ll go with that.

These awards are named after individuals. They are not just Best Wrestler or Worst Wrestler. They have names to them. Good names too, not garbage like Oscar or Emmy or Tony or whatever else is out there. Names like Ahmed Johnson, Sid Vicious and of course, the Diesel/Mabel award honoring the worst match of the year. Some of the names of awards have changed over the years, but the premise is the same. I also added some awards in there too. Since I haven’t done one of these things in two years I doubt any of you are going to notice what they are.

Before I begin, it’s worth pointing out that this is World Wrestling Entertainment stuff ONLY (I bolded it to save you from asking where other stuff is). I’ve seen every Raw, Smackdown and PPV this year (or at least 97% of ’em), so I feel like I can accurately judge what’s gone on this year. I have watched some TNA and also some ROH, but not enough where I feel comfortable enough to be handing out awards to them. Maybe next year or at another point in 2006 I’ll write about those companies because I like what I see there and I want to put down my thoughts one of these days. Not now, though.

The gist of the awards is pretty simple. You see the category, I explain what the category is about, I do my write-up and I give you my winner. As you’ll also see, some categories will be serious ones (you’ll see the red heading) while others will lighthearted or honoring the worst in the year (the blue heading). Unless of course you think the Ahmed Johnson Award for Worst Promo is a serious category. Maybe you do. Ahmed Johnson does. May God bless that illiterate slob. (I didn’t change that paragraph at all from the 2003 version of this column. Now that’s dedication! Or something.)

Note: Everything that happened between January 1, 2005 and December 31, 2005 is eligible in these awards.

Without further Apu, here she blows…

To be given to the person that best combines workrate, character, mic work and everything else into one. Also known as best wrestler.
Winner: Shawn Michaels
Runners-Up: Kurt Angle, Rey Mysterio, Eddie Guerrero

Michaels has been a runner up the last couple of years. I didn’t do the awards last year, but if I did Benoit would have won a hell of a lot. In 2002 and 2003 it was Angle. So now Shawn has gotten over that hump to win the award that is partly named after him. The reason Shawn is the winner this year is because he had the best combination of strong matches with a variety of opponents (Edge, Angle, Benjamin, Mysterio), good feuds throughout the year (Edge, Angle, Hogan) and he was consistent in all areas. I think you can say the same for Angle in a lot of ways, but the difference there is Angle had that bad feud with Booker T. where he suddenly became a wife molester while Michaels actually made me care about a Hulk Hogan match, which hasn’t been done since the Rock did it in 2002. I wouldn’t say Michaels won by a lot, but I feel confident in my pick.

Angle is second, as noted, and then Mysterio and Guerrero round out the top four. I put Mysterio and Guerrero there because they had strong matches (largely against eachother) throughout the year, played their characters well and I think both grew as performers in the year. Obviously the passing of Guerrero is sad and tragic, but I think we can still look back on his work this year and admit that he was a shining star. Mysterio was strong as well, carrying his end of the feud by being that consistent babyface performer that we enjoy because of the underdog aspect he provides.

If you’re wondering, Jim Ross came in 1,461st place for that match he had against Triple H on Raw. Good job, JR.

To be given to the worst wrestler.
Winner: Gene Snitsky
Runner-Up: Orlando Jordan

I’m still amazed that Gene Snitsky is still employed by World Wrestling Entertainment. I mean I know WHY he has a job because he’s ugly looking, tall and has a good build, enhanced or not. I just don’t know why he STILL has a job. They brought him in for that Kane feud, it was horribly written and was only memorable for Snitsky’s horrible promos as well as the baby kicking incident. I’ve had people email me over the year to say he’s not as bad as last year, well, that may be true, but he’s still the worst. On the bright side, they signed that Giant Singh dude and I’m sure he can give Snitsky a run for his money in this category.

You know how the announcers keep trying to put over Orlando Jordan by saying he’s a good athlete? You know why they do that? Because he stinks in the ring. I give him credit for taking Benoit to his worst PPV match in a long time at Great American Bash. It wasn’t one of the 20 second matches they had. It was like 15 minutes and it sucked because of Orlando’s horrible offense. He’s a decent promo, but since he had no storyline in the year other than “guy who loses quick matches to Benoit” there’s not much to him.

To be given to the two men that function best as a unit. Also known as best tag team.
Winner: MNM
Runners-Up: None.

Horrible year for teams. MNM wins because they truly are a team in the way that they are presented and how they work together. Melina comes across as the biggest star of the act because Mercury & Nitro rarely get to speak, but I don’t mind that one bit. She has a great look to her and proof that women managers still work well.

I have no runners up for it. I know there are other teams, but there’s been nothing this year that warrants mentioning. The teams there were there part time like Eddie & Rey were strong, but since they were only part time I can’t really include them in here.

For runners up I nearly put Trish Stratus & Mickie James simply because they teamed up a few times, they shared a kiss and that’s enough for me, quite frankly.

To be given to the most delusional person in the company.
Winner: Hulk Hogan
Runners-Up: Vince McMahon

Let’s see what Hogan did this year. He came back for the Hall of Fame. I admit, that was pretty cool. The one more match chant was memorable and it turned into a few matches. Of course, he also had his reality show, which was about as real as his wrestling matches. Then there was his feud with Shawn Michaels. The turn was well done by Michaels, but then Hogan basically disappeared. Michaels carried the feud and ripped on Hogan constantly while earning praise by a lot of fans, smarts and marks alike, because the Hogan mystique had started to wane a bit. Then in the days and weeks leading up to the match there was a lot of talk of how the finish would go. Would the part timer Hogan put the full timer Michaels over? Hahahahaha, the thought of that is just laughable. Hogan doesn’t care about the business. He cares about Hogan. That’s why he does what he does. To top off his year, he spent the last few months ripping Michaels. At one point he said he carried the feud, which is comedy gold right there. Fuck Hulk, you were on TV for maybe a quarter of the feud. Then when you showed up on the last show before Summerslam you mentioned Bret Hart’s name more than Shawn Michaels. You had to use a feud that was 8 years old to get your own feud over. But yeah, you sure carried Shawn. Then he mentioned his feelings hurt being by Michaels because he ripped him on TV after Summerslam. Hulk, wake up, you’re not 12 years old anymore. You make the guy do all the work in the feud, you then take credit for the feud and then you cry like a baby because comments made on TV. Come on Hulk, even you should know that Shawn’s comments were about as real as your reality show. On the October 3rd Raw Hogan mentioned Steve Austin wrestling against him. It won’t happen. Austin won’t take Hogan’s shit and frankly, as a bigger draw than Hulk, he never should.

I have respect for Hulk Hogan for all that he has done for the business, but in the last few years he has proven to be a selfish person that loses my respect every time he talks. “One more match” is going to turn into another ten years of matches. Trust me. He’ll never go away.

Vince McMahon is the runner up because he made a lot of bizarre decisions over the course of the year. The reason he is the runner up, though, is because of some of the comments he made after the classless terrorist angle he came up with involving Muhammad Hassan and Undertaker in July. Instead of admitting any sort of fault for coming up with the stupid angle in the first place, Vince blamed the angle failing on Hassan. McMahon has a lot to be proud of, but he has his faults too and one of them is his inability to take the blame when things go wrong. There’s more to say about Vince like the idea he had that Coach should beat Steve Austin and the whole Dr. Hiney experience. Let’s not forget the “comedy” bit with John Cena at Survivor Series too. I don’t mind Vince on screen most of the time. It just seems like the more he’s out there, the more he loses his mind before us.

To be given to the best match. Duh.
Winner: Kurt Angle vs. Shawn Michaels @ WrestleMania 21
Runners-Up: Money in the Bank Ladder Match @ WrestleMania 21, Shawn Michaels vs. Kurt Angle @ Vengeance, Elimination Chamber Match @ New Year’s Revolution, Batista vs. HHH @ Vengeance

Not that hard, to be honest. There’s a clear number one with everything else fighting for second place. The Michaels/Angle match captured everything I want in a match of the year. It had a good variety of moves, it had back and forth action with each man being on the offensive at different points and it had, to me, the best finish of any match in WWE in a couple of years. You watch the last ten minutes of that match and you understand why it’s special. I had no idea who was winning or how or when. There was little sense of predictability. I mean, you could have told me before WM that Michaels would tap to the Ankle Lock, but I would doubt it simply because Michaels has tapped out rarely in his career. Everything about the match worked. The crowd was into it, the atmosphere was perfect and because it was a first time ever dream match it had the special feel. Simply put, that was pro wrestling at its best. I rated it at five stars when I first saw it and I rate it at five stars right now.

As for the runners up, at no point did I ever think about putting any of them in front of Angle/Michaels. I watched them all recently for the sake of this column and I don’t believe any of them are better than my number one choice. As for the order of those four matches, I listed them in the order that I feel they belong. The first two are at ****1/2 out of five and the last two are ****1/4, which is pretty good for the top five matches in the year.

Other PPV matches I liked a lot: Cena/JBL @ Judgment Day, Raw vs. Smackdown @ Survivor Series, HHH vs. Flair @ Survivor Series, Hardy vs. Edge @ Unforgiven and Mysterio vs. Guerrero @ Summerslam.

To be given to the worst match. What else?
Winner: Undertaker vs. Heidenreich @ Royal Rumble (Casket Match)
Runners-Up: Muhammad Hassan vs. Jerry Lawler @ New Year’s Revolution, Eric Bischoff vs. Theodore Long @ Survivor Series

You know how much I pain I go through for you people? So much pain that I re-watch these horrible matches. Not for me, but for you! Then again, watching bad matches is kind of fun in the sense that I wonder how anybody could put any of these matches on paper and think of them as good ideas.

Look at Undertaker/Heidenreich for example. I don’t know how many times they wrestled to end 2004, but it was at least two or three times with Undertaker winning each time. Yet Vince McMahon for some reason thought it would be a good idea to have ANOTHER match with these two even though every previous match sucked and nobody gave a shit about Heidenreich as a heel AT ALL. When Snitsky and Kane played a part in the match it only made it worse. Then again, maybe for the demented out there it made it better. I don’t know anymore. Just talking about it makes me feel bad.

Hassan/Lawler was horrible because the work in the match was really bad with a young guy not really deserving of his spot and an older guy that shouldn’t be working in a match where there were no announcers because Ross was at ringside. Horrible idea. Speaking of horrible ideas, Long vs. Bischoff. I was at Survivor Series and am thankful that the Detroit crowd joined me in shitting all over this match. It was downright awful.

To be given to the best TV match.
Winner: Shawn Michaels vs. Shelton Benjamin @ Raw (May 2)
Runners-Up: Eddie Guerrero vs. Rey Mysterio @ Smackdown (June 23), Shawn Michaels vs. Edge @ Raw – Street Fight (Feb 28), Kurt Angle vs. Rey Mysterio @ Smackdown (Feb 10)

Much like in the best match of the year race, there were a number of matches that were close, but unlike that one the race for best TV match was pretty close as far as the winner goes. I watched a number of the best TV matches in the last month or so to try to come up with my choice for this and I ultimately went with Michaels/Benjamin. Unlike the two other matches here, it wasn’t a match to end a feud or to continue one. This match stood out on its own as part of the Gold Rush tournament. I remember how excited I was when Benjamin was in the ring and Michaels came out to face him. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it was a “dream match” but as a fan of Shelton and a longtime fan of Michaels it was a match I did want to see. They didn’t disappoint. The finish was amazingly good with Benjamin springboarding (that’s a verb now!) off the top ropes, leaping all the way across the ring and getting nailed with a perfect superkick by Michaels that looked so painful. They timed that perfectly. This is what I wrote about in a Raw recap the day after the show: “What I liked a lot is that the nearfalls they kicked out of weren’t finishers. That’s what made it work because it gave you the sense that should one of them hit their finisher that the match would end at that point. Not only did Michaels hit his finisher, but he hit in such a way that you’re going to remember it for a long time.” Seven months later and I still remember. I have it rated at ****1/4 out of five.

Guerrero/Mysterio was a slow paced, old school wrestling match filled with a lot of psychology. I thought it was their best match of the year. Michaels/Edge was a great street fight with some really smart bumps and good drama throughout. Angle/Mysterio was a 20 minute match in Japan that saw a lot of holds and counter holds by both guys. Highlight was the final sequence where they were fighting to hit their big moves until Angle slowed him down, put the Ankle Lock on and won the match.

To be given to the worst TV match.
Winner: Torrie Wilson vs. Ashley (Raw on 09/05/05)
Runners-Up: HHH vs. Jim Ross (Raw on 04/18/05)

Just to give you an insight into the creative genius that is the WWE these days. Ashley won the Diva Search contest a few weeks before this. She had started some light training to wrestle and WWE felt comfortable enough to put her on LIVE TV against a woman in Torrie Wilson who has had matches for five years, yet has never been good in any of them. Think about that for a second. Then, think about the one writer who went up the McMahons to say maybe it’s not a good idea to do this match. Guess what happened to the writer? He was fired. This is reason #1,474 why Vince McMahon is not a genius for those wondering. It’s also another example of why nobody says anything when he comes up with a bad idea. They’ll lose their job.

I guess now that Jim Ross isn’t a TV character we get to avoid seeing him in matches. What’s the over/under on how long it’ll be until Joey Styles gets put in a match? I say May.

To be given to the best feud.
Winner: Shawn Michaels vs. Kurt Angle
Runners-Up: Rey Mysterio vs. Eddie Guerrero, Batista vs. Triple H, Matt Hardy vs. Edge

Close race. The difference for me is that I was so excited for all three Michaels/Angle matches because they were truly dream matches. They were to answer to that “if you could see one match this year what would it be?” question for me. So because of that and them also having the match of the year I have to give it to them. Let’s not forget about how this feud started brilliantly at the Rumble, then on Raw when Angle brutally beat the crap out of HBK and bloodied him after a grueling match with Edge. From there they gave us the match of the year at WrestleMania, another contender at Vengeance and a decent 30 minute Ironman match on Raw.

Mysterio/Guerrero is a runner up again only because I felt their matches should have been better. I think they had a number of strong matches between three to four stars, but they never took it to the level of their Halloween Havoc ’97 match, which I’d rate at five stars and consider one of my favorite matches ever. I didn’t mind the storyline aspect of the feud because it turned Eddie into a scummy heel and helped elevate Rey as a sympathetic character that added more to his character than simply being the short underdog guy.

Batista/HHH was the best main event feud of the year, but aside from their match at Vengeance in the Cell I wasn’t THAT into the feud. They did a good job building it up at New Year’s Resolution, then Batista won at Mania, but the Backlash match was a disappointment and then they waited another two months for the next PPV to do the blowoff. It didn’t need to stretch that far, which hurt it a bit. Still, Batista had his best match ever with HHH and the ending to the feud was the right way to go.

Hardy vs. Edge comes in fourth because it was intriguing for a while, but then it died down, faded away and Hardy went back down to obscurity as if the fans chanting his name and wanting him to be pushed never happened.

Other feuds I liked: Michaels vs. Edge, Cena vs. JBL (after WM anyway), HHH vs. Flair and Jericho vs. Cena

To be given to the worst feud. RIP Katie.
Winner: Kurt Angle vs. Booker T.
Runners-Up: John Cena vs. Eric Bischoff, Edge vs. Kane, McMahons vs. Jim Ross

It pains me to give a “worst” award to Kurt Angle, but it really brought down both performers and added nothing positive towards any of them. Horrible direction for both guys. The way Angle went from honorable Olympic hero to wife hunter was stupid, the matches were awful with Angle groping Sharmell and I don’t see how anybody thought it was a good idea.

Cena vs. Bischoff gets second because it tried too hard to rip off the successful Austin/McMahon dynamic that is never going to be replicated. I don’t think it worked that well and turned fans against Cena because it was too reminiscent to that angle that EVERYBODY remembers.

Edge vs. Kane was pretty awful because the matches they had were horrible, Snitsky became involved and once Hardy came back they basically admitted the whole Kane/Lita thing was “fake” and thus meaningless. Obviously we know it was fake, but when you present it on TV FOR A YEAR as being something real and then you just say, oh that’s fake, you’re insulting your fans.

The McMahons vs. Jim Ross comes in last because it seemed to be one of those things they booked on the fly, had no long term plan for and came off as a big clusterfuck.

To be given to the best non-wrestler.
Winner: Melina
Runners-Up: Theodore Long, Eric Bischoff

I know Melina has wrestled a few times, but she is largely a non-wrestler. Like I said earlier, she showed that the role of a woman can involve more than being in the ring. She works well as a manager and leader of the MNM team. Long and Bischoff both did a solid job throughout the year although I’m not sad to see Bischoff out as GM. That angle had run its course.

To be given to the best female performer.
Winner: Trish Stratus
Runner-Up: Melina

My girl Trish missed about four months of action with a back injury that she obtained because she has CARRIED the Women’s Division for the past five years or so. Can you blame her for hurting her back? The woman does it all, so she is allowed a little injury. I definitely went through some Trish withdrawal throughout the year, but she came back strong and finished the year on a high note. I still think she’s better as a heel because I liked her work in 2004 better and to start 2005 she was doing well in trying to make Christy Hemme look credible. She’s still the best woman in the company because she has all the tools. She’s a good promo, she’s a good actress, she’s over with the fans and she can wrestle well too.

Melina is the runner up. I think she has some flaws because some of her acting is bad and when she wrestles she still needs some work. In a couple years she might very well be at Trish’s level, though.

To be given to the worst idea for a character.
Winner: Jillian Hall as the Mole Girl
Runners-Up: The Boogeyman and The Dicks

Courtesy of my “sources” I bring you the Johnny Award exclusive conversation that shows you how WWE came up with the gimmicks for Jillian Hall, the Boogeyman and the Dicks.

Genius Writer #1: “Remember in Austin Powers 3 when that dude from the Wonder Years had that big mole on his face and Austin kept making fun of it?”
Genius Writer #2: “Yeah, man. That was so funny. Like, oh my god, he had a mole on his face and it was big!”
Sane Person: “I think that’s a little ridiculous.”
Genius Writer #1: “No. How about we do that to a woman wrestler? She won’t care. She’ll do anything to be in WWE.”
Genius Writer: #2: “And Vince won’t know. He doesn’t watch movies. He thinks everything we do is original.”
Genius Writer #1: “But that’s not all. It will be bigger than a mole. It will be some stupid looking object on the whole side of her face.”
Sane Person: “Really, I think you’re a bunch of idiots. A girl works her whole life to get here. She has some surgery on her face, she has her breasts enhanced and this is how you treat her? What is wrong with you?”

(Vince McMahon walks in the room.)

Vince: “What’s up gentleman?”
Genius Writer #1: “Remember how we were talking about that Jillian Hall chick and how to bring her up?”
Vince: “Yes.”
Genius Writer #2: “How about we put a giant facial feature on the left side of her face and when people see it they’ll be grossed out!”
Vince: “Wow, that’s genius. Now remember what I said earlier. I want a guy to be eating worms as his gimmick and I want a team called the Dicks because everybody loves dick jokes.”
Sane Person: “How old are you again?”
Vince: “60.”
Sane Person: “I quit.”

(Sane Person walks out of the room.)

Vince: “Must be afraid of worms. See, the gimmick is working already.”

The sad thing about all of that? I’m probably not that far off.

To be given to the best person at cutting promos.
Winner: John Bradshaw Layfield
Runners-Up: Eddie Guerrero, John Cena, Shawn Michaels

JBL is the winner here. I’ll be the first to admit that I disliked this guy quite a bit in 2004 because I don’t think he deserved his spot and I rarely enjoyed him in ’04. This year, though, he grew as a performer and really won me over with his promos. His heel act reminds me a lot of Steve Austin in 2001 when he was a mix of being a dickhead heel and a comedian at the same time. JBL has the humor to pull it off. I doubt they have to write that much dialogue for him because he’s bright enough to think this stuff up on his own. I don’t want to say he’s won me over because I think his matches are too boring, but he’s gone from somebody I dislike to being watchable and somewhat enjoyable when he’s talking.

Guerrero is second because of the depth he showed throughout the year as a babyface to start the year, then a sadistic heel in the middle of the year and then as that lovable, funny babyface to end the year. He showed that he could do a good job in either role. The reason he didn’t win this award is that I’m against all the flip flopping he did as a character. Even though he did a good job with it, I wish I stayed heel rather than do that babyface turn, even if it was a faux turn, I’d rather it never happened.

I know the relationship Cena has with fans is very much a love-hate type of thing, but personally I’ve always been a fan of the guy. It’s not just because we share the same initials either. It’s because in John Cena I see a guy who is striving to make himself better in the ring, on the microphone and as an overall performer. I think he grew on the microphone this year. In 2004 when he was a babyface for the first time I think he took a step back. This year, though, he took a step forward.

I’m not a huge fan of Michaels’ babyface promos compared to his heel work from the past, but he warrants mentioning for the heel work he did against Hogan. That was gold.

To be given to the person that should not be cutting promos.
Winner: Lita
Runners-Up: Candice Michelle, Torrie Wilson

In the words of Ahmed Johnson: �ughgahgoa ahgahghogahg ahgghagah aahogghaghah wowhwohaogngnoa.� Now you know why the award is named after him.

Lita gets it because she sure screws up a lot on the microphone. Then again, maybe because she’s not used to her mouth being empty because she’s so used to sucking�ah forget it. I’m going to cut back on the Lita jokes. They’re like cigarettes. You may enjoy them, but you know others find them annoying and they’re not good for your health. I’m trying to drop the habit. Please don’t encourage it.

I don’t like to pick on Candice or Torrie because I find them to be attractive and frankly picking on beautiful women is not something I like to do. In Candice’s case, she’s pretty new and probably felt clueless out there a few times. However, she was still bad on the microphone every single time she had a chance to talk. As for Torrie, she’s always been up for this award. Not a very good talker at all. “Evil” Torrie is even worse. She seems like the nicest person you can ever meet and since she has no depth as an actress she’s unable to play a heel the right way. Maybe she should take some notes from her legendary father, Al Wilson.

To be given to the best announcer.
Winner: Tazz
Runner-Up: Jim Ross

Tazz has been the best announcer for three years in a row now. There’s nobody I enjoy listening to more in a big match situation than him. He’s great at being light hearted when he needs to be and explaining the intricacies of certain moves when that is needed. As a former wrestler he has the credibility that a guy like Jonathon Coachman lacks as an analyst and his knowledge of the business shows in his commentary.

Ross comes in second because even though he might have slipped a little this year, he was still good at his job, all things considered. I think the way he was let go sucks and I don’t see any sort of follow-up coming, which is a shame. That’s always going to leave a sour taste in my mouth.

I like Styles, but he’s only been there a couple of months, so doesn’t qualify at this point.

To be given to the most overused performer.
Winner: The Undertaker
Runner-Up: Orlando Jordan

I’m going to pose a serious question to you that I don’t want you to answer by emailing me, but just think about it. How many people did Undertaker wrestle on TV or PPV this year not named Randy Orton? I remember Heidenreich at the Rumble. Man, that stunk. Luther Reigns at No Way Out. That was horrible. Mania was Orton, Summerslam was Orton, No Mercy was Orton & his dad and then Armageddon was Orton again, this time with Undertaker winning because the old dude in his 40s winning over the future of the company makes no sense. The first two Orton matches were fine, I admit that. I haven’t seen Hell in a Cell, but frankly I’ve seen the zombie Taker act enough that I’d rather avoid watching something like that again. Throw in the fact that he “died” 6,162 times this year and it’s enough to make me want to turn off Smackdown every time he’s on there. Oh wait, he’s never on. I forgot.

Orlando Jordan comes in second for the worst title reign maybe ever when he was the US Champion. Again, I don’t see the appeal of this guy.

Speaking of Billy Gunn, how funny is it that he said in some interview recently that he didn’t get enough opportunities in WWE? That’s hilarious. The dude got push after push, failed every single time and only had himself to blame for his lack of talent. Be happy about the money you made, Billy.

To be given to the wrestler that is most poorly used (Is underused a good word?).
Winners: Paul London
Runners-Up: Shelton Benjamin, Rob Conway

I give it to London because I’ve seen matches of his in places like Ring of Honor where he showed me that he’s an all around talent that could shine if he ever got the opportunity. Instead, he languishes on Velocity week after week, only shows up on Smackdown to get beat up by the “mean heel of the month” and is remembered in 2005 for that sick bump he took when Snitsky knocked him out of the Royal Rumble. I think London and Brian “Spanky” Kendrick would be a great Rockers like babyface team if only they got a chance to be showcased on Smackdown instead of Velocity.

Benjamin was horribly underused despite having quality matches with just about everyone and being well liked by the crowd. At least he appears to have some direction in 2006 as a heel.

I don’t understand why or how they re-introduce a guy like Conway with a gimmick that has potential, put him on TV for a couple of weeks and then all of a sudden he’s gone from being a regular on TV again. A run with the Intercontinental Title would have been nice. Maybe next year.

I almost put Chris Benoit as a runner-up because he was pushed so well last year and for whatever reason went down the totem pole this year. Still, at least he is used quite a bit, unlike these three.

To be given to the best pay-per-view.
Winner: WrestleMania 21
Runners-Up: Vengeance, Judgment Day, Survivor Series, ECW One Night Stand

Thoughts on each:
1. WrestleMania 21 – Strongest lineup from top to bottom and my MOTY in Angle/Michaels. The appearances of Austin, Hogan and Piper were enjoyable as well. Too bad Rock didn’t appear on camera.

2. Vengeance – Great Angle/Michaels rematch, strong triple threat for the WWE Title and a terrific main event.

3. Judgment Day – Loved it. Very underrated show. Four matches above three stars and a main event in Cena/JBL that was better than expected.

4. Survivor Series – This is the only one I saw live in the arena and I enjoyed myself very much. The elimination tag was fun, as was the Flair/HHH battle.

5. One Night Stand – Not the best show for matches, but for pure emotion and fun it was a blast.

To be given to the worst pay-per-view.
Winner: Great American Bash
Runner-Up: New Year’s Revolution

The Bash wins for a couple of reason: 1) It was a really bad show with a lot of bad moments in it. The only bright spot was Eddie/Rey, but even in that case they had a better match on free TV just a few weeks before the show. 2) It pissed me off so much that I stopped doing live PPV recaps or any PPV recaps.

New Year’s Revolution comes in second because aside from a strong main event it had one of the worst undercards I can ever remember.

Keep in mind I haven’t seen Armageddon or No Mercy yet, although I doubt I’ll be watching them anytime soon. I think that says a lot about my interest in WWE because in previous years I watched every PPV. This year I saw maybe half of them live and waited for others to come out on DVD before renting them. I just think the quality of the PPVs, after the five I mentioned above, was pretty weak this year.

These are the smaller, less important awards that won’t be written about with as much length as the previous awards.

Best Theme Music: Rob Conway
“Just look at me. Just look at me. Ain’t I a sight to see? Wait, you forgot I’m still on the roster? I said just look at me!” Catchy song, no?

Best Use of Comedy: The Trial of Eric Bischoff
I think the winner there is pretty clear. Second place would be HBK imitating Hogan. In 142nd place would be Dr. Hiney.

Best One Night Promo: Rob Van Dam at the ECW PPV
God, that was a great promo, wasn’t it? What’s the chance of them letting RVD speak from the heart like that when he gets back to full health? Correct answer: zero. Heyman’s promo is second by the way simply for the line he used on JBL.

Best Crowd: New York vs. Lita
I’ll never forget Trish in ring with Lita as the New York crowd ripped Lita to shreds. Trish tried to carried it, but the crowd was too strong.

Worst Name(s) For a Character: The Dicks
Sorry Dr. Hiney. I apologize for not recognizing, but if you want to bring along Nurse Slobberknocker for a visit I’d be more than happy to accommodate her. Who was that woman? I miss her.

Worst Firing by WWE: Dawn Marie
She asked them if she would have a job if she got pregnant. They said yes. She got pregnant, they fired her. Classy.

Second Worst Firing by WWE: Charlie Haas & Jackie Gayda
Vince: “Congrats on your wedding, guys!”
Charlie & Jackie: “Thanks. We’re really excited!”
Vince: “Yeah whatever. Hit the road. And look out for the Boogeyman. He’s coming to get ya!”

On the plus side, at least Charlie got hired back.

Worst Crowd Reaction: ECW Crowd Booing Rey Mysterio
Just because the guy did the 619 doesn’t mean you got to boo him. Anybody that boos that man needs to have their head checked. Otherwise, the crowd on that night was pretty good.

Worst Idea: Heidenreich seeking out young children to be his friends
Well, at least you know Michael Jackson liked that angle.

It’s going to be hard to remember 2005 without thinking about Eddie Guerrero. I’m always going to be sad when I think about this year in wrestling. It’s a shame because there were some strong feuds and matches this year, but nothing is going to trump the death of a legend like Guerrero. I think I speak for everybody when I say we love him, we miss him and we will never forget him.

The highlights are the Michaels/Angle feud for me because it was a dream feud. I’m glad to have seen them wrestle a number of times. Another personal highlight was being at the Survivor Series event. It was a lot of fun. Going in I wasn’t sure if it would be a good night, but I ended up happy, so that’s cool. Plus PPVs like WrestleMania, Vengeance and One Night Stand were big time successes in my book.

The lowlights are there seemed to be more than a normal amount of tasteless angles by WWE this year. It’s a shame because none of them ever did a thing to boost business. They do these moves that they think are risks, but end up being stupid moves that bite them in the ass in the end. I’ve lost a lot of respect for the company this year. I support it because of the wrestlers. I still enjoy the company more often than not, but I sure wish they’d grow the fuck up sometimes.

Overall, it was an average year. Maybe below average. The bad was really bad, the good was really good and everything else was just sorta there. So it gets a 5 from me on the vote, but I’d give it a 4.5 out of 10 officially.

Congratulations to all the winners. To everybody else, better luck next time.

Thanks for reading,

Categories: Retro Columns
  1. kris Karcher
    December 7, 2009 at 11:23 AM

    Man, this was a lot of fun to read. It really makes me look forward to the one that you will be doing this year. and as a side note I’m really glad that you’re doing a lot more writing now. i enjoy everything you do. keep up the great work and if you write all day… I’ll read it all day.

  2. Mark Hallam
    December 7, 2009 at 12:08 PM

    Dude, that conversation about Jillian Hall was hilrious!!!! HAHA!!! Keep up the good work man.

  3. TKO
    December 7, 2009 at 3:17 PM

    i used to head over to f4wrestling.com to read on fan blogs but all i read now is the john report. i been a fan of wrestling since austin showed up…i remember that year. i remember eddie,sad day when his face popped up on screen sayin he passed. i was like wtf? angle vs hbk was the only great match i remember that yr…i look forward to your 2009 year in review…my quick rundown
    wrestler of the year-jericho…hands down
    breakout star of the year-kofi kingston
    best show-smackdown
    most underrated-ziggler…give the guy a belt
    best ppv-wrestlemania obviously
    best match-hbk vs taker obviously
    best fued-punk vs hardy
    worst match-mickie vs gail kim…ouch
    worst ppv-breaking point…why’d i get that
    worst fued-drum roll…hhh/orton…ugh
    most overused-hornswaggle..,.need i say more

    keep writing man, i believe in the John Report

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