The world of sports is not only complex but dynamic. Heroes, heroines and legends have been made out of sports in general. From soccer (Pele, Maradona) to boxing (Mohammed Ali, Mike Tyson); motor racing (Michael Schumaker), to tennis (Boris Becker, Andre Agassi, Roger Federer); from track and field (Ben Johnson, Carl Lewis) to wrestling (Hulk Hogan, Rick Flair) the world of sports is not short of surprises; a world where tears of defeat are shed and excitement of triumph celebrated. The world of sports is almost a winner-takes-all thing giving every room for competitiveness and competition and rewarding less mediocres and mediocrity.
Among the aforementioned sports pro-wrestling and soccer are my all-time favourites. Though I’m not a wrestler nor a footballer I enjoy the sports for their thrills and frills. I play snooker and gym up on weekends to be in shape. Sports bring out the youth in an individual almost making the person look somehow ageless. Looking good is good since our God created us in His image wonderfully and besides health is wealth!
The game of football is not without its tragedies. The entire Zambian national team led by Kalusha Bwalya were wiped out in an air crash years back. Bwalya survived it because he was not in the flight. Samuel Okwaraji of the Nigerian Super Eagles slumped in the main bowl of the National Stadium Surulere Lagos while playing in a match against the Angolan national side many years ago. Ditto for Vivien Foe of
In professional wrestling full of sadistic fun, the World Wrestling Entertainment, WWE, is indeed entertaining millions across the world with modern wrestling that involves physical battles that often result in blood and extreme organized violence. From the owner of the billion-dollar entertainment company Vince Mcmahon to spectators one sees a lot of glorified junkies and addicts on parade. America boasting of a paradise for greater majority of over-fed junkies and ‘niggas’ the sports of wrestling provides a perfect setting for these ‘modern animals’ to exhibit their penchant for anything blood and sadism.
Modern wrestling, having been reformed away from the Graeco-Roman traditional kind, not only parades as members today young and old ambitious men and women out to make name for themselves and above all money even if it involves ‘killing’ their opponents in the ring in a sport that advertises itself as a bestial game of cruelty. Survival of the fittest is the other name of the game for the strong and confident!
Like football, boxing and track and field wrestling is a popular sporting event liked and watched by millions the world over. The hazards associated with sports generally are many. In pro-wrestling monstrous characters have been created and heads and bones are constantly broken on or off ringside and arena. You have wrestlers high on intoxicating substances, steroids et al, pummelling one another in the ring using every technique (and sometimes weapons like iron chairs, title belts or hammer) to subdue an opponent who at the count of three (by the referee) with his back on the ground loses the fight.
The greatest wrestling match I have ever watched involved “the heartbreak kid” ‘showstopper’ Shawn Michaels, a veteran resourceful former heavyweight champion who defeated the legend Bret “hitman” Hart in early 90’s in an epic pulsating hell of a championship to become the champion, the first time ever he was so crowned in his career squared up against “the game” Triple H who was then the reigning champion and “the best in the business”. HHH, a talented vindictive wrestler with weird instincts did everything humanly possible to subdue Michaels who was himself determined to dethrone ‘the game’.
A bloodied and battered Shawn had what it takes to stay on course. And when he bounced back into reckoning Tripple H was ‘swimming’ in his own blood. In the end ‘the heart break kid’ prevailed to the standing ovation of fans who were not expecting disappointment from one of the greatest wrestlers ever to showcase his skills and raw guts.
The victory ovation had hardly died down when Triple H went for his monday hammer and from behind attacked Michaels. He dropped the sledge hammer first on Shawn’s upper backside and seconds later on his waist! The ‘show stopper’ collapsed!! He stayed in hospital and out of action for close to six months but he survived the savage attack. Today he is still in contention though age has had its toll on him; HHH and him are best of friends even wrestling together in tag-team category.
In another epic heavyweight title encounter earlier this year in “New Year Revolution” the current Champion, ‘Rapper’ John Cena accepted a challenge from Umaga, a 400-pound savage from the Island of Samoa who spoke no English but his native language guided by one cigar-smoking Estrada. In the match which followed that of a bloody body-tearing tension-soaked tag-team encounter between ‘The Generation X’ (Shawn Michaels/Tripple H) and ‘Rated RKO’ (Edge and Randy Orton) Umaga manhandled the champion but Cena managed to run away with a surprising victory against a monster that has fought the best in WWE and stood undefeated for almost a year long.
“…Please Don’t Try This At Home” is a popular WWE dissuasion slogan but whether those watching and aspiring to be brutes and bullies in the future will heed the call is left for conjecture. But we have watched in interesting bewilderment as ego squabbles among wrestlers degenerate into a street no-hold-barred brawl: Tripple H vs Diesel ‘Big Daddy Cool’. Their subsequent cage fight produced the best example of human aspiration for bodily harm! Triple H had used freely tools like hammer and chisel and blood flowed freely.
Like Chris Jericho, Edge, Test, the Harts and Ms Trish Stratus Chris Benoit is a Canadian pro-wrestler with big heart. He was once the reigning champion defeating the likes of Triple H, Shawn Michaels and Kurt Angle. Benoit, known as the “Canadian Crippler,” was in the news few weeks back. He strangled his wife Nancy and son and then confronted with his crime hanged himself in their apartment in
The Benoit murder-suicide tragedy has raised concerns in
Investigators had interrogated Benoit’s doctor for the prescription he gave him days before he choked life out of his family. The search conducted in his
ng a monster was written all over Benoit as he laboured to remain in the spotlight. He sounded often like someone psychologically drained, a psychopath.
But late Chris Benoit whose father is still alive and living in
Vince McMahon and Ric ‘Nature Boy’ Flair must be told in clear terms by the regulatory body to de-emphasize the issue of drug usage in professional wrestling. With deaths associated with steroids and ‘roid rage’ WWE is becoming a harbinger of violent death.