Happy Flag Day Everyone!
Now onto the Kayfabe.
The X division right now is the talk backstage. Everyone is trying to figure how to make it more appealing. The wrestlers in ring ability is fine. Problem is when a X Division match take place the ratings drop. Bischoff, and Russo have seen this happen in WCW and WWE with the cruiserweights. Now TNA's dealing with the same problem with the X Division. Shane Helms, once his 90 day no compete clause is complete, will be a big part of the division.
Bischoff wants to use lucha stars, and guys with a lot of charisma to spark more interest. Lethal, Kendrick, and Kaz are all in line for a big push within the company. The early idea for Helms is use to pair with Hardy, Neal, and Moore, which is obvious due to the North Carolina connection. Another idea is to build him up as a heel when he debuts. I do not think that will work too well. The answer will take place at the next set of tapings. Kurt Angle is said to be a huge supporter of Amazing Red. Kurt thinks Red could be the next Rey Mysterio. Red's match with Kurt got rave reviews and may get rewarded for it.
That is who I want to talk about with this week's Kayfabe Monday--Amazing Red. But as always, here is some background history of Amazing Red.
Jonathan Figueroa (born April 26, 1982) is an American professional wrestler better known by his ring name, (The) Amazing Red, or simply Red for short. He currently wrestles for Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, where he is a former two-time X Division Champion, while also working on the American independent circuit.
Red, who was already known for his work in the United States independent circuit, joined Total Nonstop Action Wrestling at its 2002 inception, quickly establishing himself in its X Division. During his first run in TNA Red held both the TNA X Division Championship and the NWA World Tag Team Championship with Jerry Lynn, simultaneously. While working for TNA he also wrestled for Ring of Honor as a member of the three man tag team The S.A.T. with cousins, Jose and Joel Maximo. Eventually he began to team with "The Phenomenal" A.J. Styles, becoming known together as Amazing Phenomenon. The team would go on to win the ROH Tag Team Championship from Christopher Daniels and Donovan Morgan.
Through late 2003 Amazing Red, wrestled as Misterio Red as well as Airwalk Spriggan while on a tour with All Japan Pro Wrestling. During the tour he suffered a near career-ending knee injury, tearing his anterior cruciate ligament and having to undergo surgery which kept him on the sideline for an entire year.
Red returned to TNA to wrestle in March 2004, staying there for the majority of the year. When he left TNA he went back to the independents, only returning on occasion to TNA throughout 2005 and 2006. He also wrestled CM Punk in a dark match at a WWE SmackDown taping on May 12, 2005.
On October 15, 2005, Red was forced to cancel his Uniting Champions booking in Tulsa, OK at the last minute, and his replacement, a local by the name of X-Cal was dubbed as the "Amazing Blue". Red's last appearance was at a New York Wrestling Connection event at the beginning of 2006, where he lost his match to Javi-Air and re-injured his knee.
It was made official on the Pro Wrestling Unplugged Website that he would be making his return to their "Haunted" event although he requested off since it was announced that his wife was expecting their child on March 14, 2008.
Red left the wrestling business and took on a full-time job to heal his knee after several surgeries. After being on the sidelines with his injury, Red made his long awaited return on December 13, 2008 at Jersey All Pro Wrestling's Best of the Light Heavyweights, the match was won by Archadia as he defeated Amazing Red, Flip Kendrick, Louis Lyndon.
In April 2009, it was announced via the TNA website that the Amazing Red would return to the company in the Team 3D Tag Team Invitational Tournament. On the April 30 edition of Impact! he teamed with then-X Division Champion Suicide to defeat the Motor City Machine Guns of Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin.
Suicide and Amazing Red were eliminated from the tournament on the May 14 episode of Impact! by the new stable, The British Invasion after interference from the Motor City Machine Guns.
On the May 28 edition of Impact!, he challenged Suicide for the X Division Championship but was unsuccessful in winning the title for a second time. Red competed in a Steel Asylum match at the Hard Justice Pay-Per-View on August 16, in another losing effort. On the October 1 edition of Impact! Red became the number one contender to Samoa Joe's X Division title by defeating Jay Lethal, Consequences Creed, Sheik Abdul Bashir and Kiyoshi in a ladder match. On the following Impact! Red won the X Division Championship for the second time by pinning Samoa Joe following interference by Bobby Lashley. On the October 15 edition of Impact! Don West debuted as Red's new manager. At Bound for Glory Red retained his X Division Title in an Ultimate X match against Homicide, Daniels, Suicide, Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin. The following week on Impact! Red lost to Homicide in a non-title match. The return match between the two was booked for Turning Point, where Red was able to retain his title. Since then Don West has quietly broken off his affiliation with Red, while he has been defending his title on TNA's weekly Webmatches against the likes of Chris Sabin and Homicide. At Genesis Red retained his title in a match against the returning Brian Kendrick. On the January 28 edition of Impact! the British Invasion attacked Red after his six man tag team match. As Rob Terry was going to cash in his "Feast or Fired" briefcase, which gave him the right to challenge for the X Division Championship anytime, anywhere, his stable mate Doug Williams managed to convince him to hand it over to him and defeated Red to win the Championship. On the April 12 edition of Impact! Red took the place of the injured Hernandez and teamed up with Matt Morgan to successfully defend the TNA World Tag Team Championship against the Motor City Machine Guns. After the match Morgan attacked Red for getting the pinfall in the match.
Thank you again Online World of Wrestling for this history.
So what is my point? It is proven time and time again that the younger guys will bend over backward, literally and figuratively, for their fans and for television. Personally, I am not a fan of highspots and moonsaults but I am in the minority. I rather my submission wrestling and mat wrestling ala Doug Williams, Bryan Danielson (I refuse to call him Daniel Bryan), and William Regal. But if TNA really wants ratings, I suggest they focus more on the younger guys instead of established stars like Rob Van Dam, Sting, Jeff Hardy, and so forth. Jay Lethal, Amazing Red, AJ Styles, Kazarian, are the FUTURE. I think some investing needs to happen.
As always, I believe in Kayfabe,