Apr 20, 2009
Is Sherdog.com contributor Jake Rossen a royal elitist?
I know a few elitist who are fans of MMA, but they are not prudes. In fact they are also fans of professional wrestling. This makes me wonder what kind of person Sherdog.com contributor Jake Rossen appears to be or tries to portray. In his latest article, Mr Rossen calls the "TNA Lockdown" PPV slang for "embarrassment to the human race." Rossen was writing about Bobby Lashley and his appearance on the TNA PPV. He continued with "I assume some poorly performed theater for the hygiene-challenged ensued" referring to Lashley's encounter with Kurt Angle. "It's a deranged spectacle, full of drug-addled performers taxing their adrenal glands in a poorly scripted imitation of athletics." is another one of Rossen's knocks on pro wrestling. Rossen finished his rant with a quote from a Woody Allen Film: "Can you imagine the level of a mind that watches wrestling?" While reading his column half asleep, I was taken back by Rossen's elitist attitude. I felt insulted and degraded.
My insulted feelings were quickly pushed aside and replaced with anger as I took my cool and refreshing morning shower. As a 19 year pro wrestler myself and as a man who worked with Lashley many times before and after he debuted on WWE TV, I can honestly say I am very proud and honored to be apart of this industry we call pro wrestling and/or sports and entertainment. I have loved pro wrestling for as long as I can remember and I am not alone. Pro wrestling for me is one of the greatest forms of entertainment this planet has ever seen. The incredible feeling one gets as they masterfully take 18 000 plus screaming fans on an emotional roller-coaster ride cannot be duplicated. The exhilarating power to make fans scream, cry, smile, laugh or any other emotion humans feel, is intoxicating. I digress. I could go on and on about how great pro wrestling is, but that's not what I wish to speak about right now.
While pro wrestling has fans from ALL walks of life from the VERY rich to the VERY poor, VERY young to the VERY old, MMA also has the same fan makeup. I am one of those people who happens to be a huge fan of MMA. MMA is NOT pro wrestling. Pro wrestling and MMA are two completely different animals. While performers in both industries must be well conditioned athletes, pro wrestling is more theater of the mind while using physicality to entertain the fans. MMA on the other hand is pure competition. However, even though MMA is of the competitive nature, the casual MMA fan still wants to be entertained. You need look no further than Anderson Silva vs Thales Leites at the UFC PPV in Montreal for that fact to be proven. The reality is both pro wrestling and MMA fans want to be entertained. The overall difference between the two industries is how entertaining the fans is accomplished. MMA entertains the fans with great fighters having great matches while attempting to pull out a REAL victory. Pro wrestling attempts to entertain the fans with great wrestlers telling captivating story lines both in the lead up to the match and another story in the ring. The goal in pro wrestling is not to win the match necessarily, rather to thoroughly entertain and satisfy the audience. Real elitist understand completely the difference between these two beasts. A real elitist likes to have their sense of reality lifted for a couple of very entertaining hours while watching pro wrestlers tell their stories both in and out of the ring. Those same REAL elitist also love to be entertained by MMA as they respect the intricacies of the fight game. So is Jake Rossen the elitist he portrays in his columns?
We could go into what makes the individual an elitist, but that would become a 350 page book. Lets just get to the bottom line. I have met many REAL elitist during the last 19 years of my pro wrestling career. While working for the WWE, I have met countless business/corporate men and women at meet and greets for company sponsors in major cities around the world. Politicians who frequented WWE events and some I became friends with were definitely people I would label elitist. Most REAL elitist love to be entertained. They understand how both MMA and pro wrestling can accomplish this task and are more than willing to let these two industries satisfy their desire to be entertained. Jake Rossen however, will on one hand, hold MMA up on a gold platter(rightfully so) because "IT'S FOR REAL!" On the other hand, he will bury pro wrestling because the outcome is predetermined. Rossen is incapable of seeing wrestling for what it is. If Rossen was a true elitist, he would have the brain power to compute the equation (Demand to be entertained)+(The supply of entertainment)=Very satisfied human beings from all walks of life who just want to be entertained. Rossen however, cannot see past the "predetermined" aspect of pro wrestling and may not be intelligent enough to just relax and let his sense of reality be suspended for just a couple of hours. While REAL elitist continue to be entertained around the world by a variety of options including pro wrestling, Rossen pretends to be an elitist by telling the world that he is too good for pro wrestling. The truth is, he is too dumb to understand it. Perhaps the quote from Woody Allen's film should have been "Can you imagine the level of a mind incapable of understanding REAL entertainment!"
at 2:36 PM