Special thanks to Shawn Cain for his help on this induction
Note from RD Reynolds: Before I hand things over to K-Cubed, I need to say a few words about today’s induction. As most of you know, prior to starting WrestleCrap.com, I worked the independent wrestling circuit in Indianapolis and the surrounding area. During that time, I worked with a lot of people, some famous (Mark Henry, Big Show, Batista), some not so famous (POOL STAR!). But the one thing I took away from being with these folks is that there are a lot of people who REALLY want to make it in this business.
I think, in some ways, that’s why I started WrestleCrap.com. I see people who are doing everything they can to succeed, learning the craft, working out to insane degrees, getting matches under their belt…and I see these same people going to major promotions who have no idea what to do with them.
Such is the case with Chris Harris. I worked with Chris on a handful of shows, and he was always a super nice guy and a hard worker. I was so happy to see him (and Abyss, who I worked with when he was Prince Justice and demanded that the fans not refer to him as a “Blueberry!”) get his chance in WCW and later TNA. After a pretty spectacular run in TNA (I’ll ignore the last couple of months there), he signed with WWE.
I’ve not talked to Chris in years (and honestly, he may not even remember me), but I have to believe that was a lifelong dream, to finally work in the top wrestling company in the world, the one that he probably watched since he was a kid. And then…it all fell apart, thanks to a horrendous character that I don’t think even Ric Flair could have made work.
As a reminder…I designed WrestleCrap to never (well, rarely at least) to mock the workers, but rather those who booked those workers into horrible angles and stupid characters. I can think of no better example than the one we present here today.
Miss Kelly, the floor is yours.
I think it’s apparent to anyone with a brain blessed with common sense that the WWE and TNA desperately need new up and coming talent to train and prep to take over for the old guys who have overstayed their welcome and even the not-so-old established guys who…well, just won’t go away. Let’s face it, if they keep doing Triple H Vs. Cena or Triple H Vs. Orton or Batista Vs. Pretty Much Anyone, then people are not going to watch your crappy show except to ridicule it, no matter how many “celebrity” guest hosts you bring in.
The thing is, there are tons of young guys who could be pushed to one day take over the reigns, fresh blood to get fans interested in for the day that will inevitably come when no one is willing to continue to pay to see the same old, same old. Instead, both companies have seem to have made it their mission statement to bury any and all new talent.
Such was the case with one Chris Harris.
After a very short stay with WCW in late 2000 to early 2001 when the company was sold, Harris made a name from himself in Jeff Jarrett’s TNA promotion as James Storm’s tag team partner in “America’s Most Wanted”. Thankfully, John Walsh was not called in to feud with the duo.
The team enjoyed great success until the decision was made to break them up and to feud them, wherein Harris developed into a smark-like whiner who constantly complained about the conditions of TNA and how they only cared about outside talent. Russo has struck again!
Realizing he was constantly being jobbed to his former partner and all the old guys (notice a pattern here?), Harris decided to be released from his TNA contract and sign with the WWE, the REAL big time wrestling promotion. The promotion that every young wrestling fan dreams of joining one day when they grow up.
It wouldn’t take long for his enthusiasm to be killed off.
It took about three weeks, in fact.
Harris’s debut came in the middle of a WWECW show with General Manager Tiffany (because women in wrestling are not allowed to have last names, unless your first and last name are the same cause it’s funny…somehow…) and Teddy Long having a conversation that’s rudely interrupted by Armando…
(Note from RD: Hey look – yet another fresh guy who could talk and be entertaining. No wonder he had his legs cut off too!)
Armando has been de-frocked as WWECW General Manager and now instead of wearing nice white suits with panama hats, he is dressed like he’s about to jump to TNA to join LAX (in case this happens in the future, you heard it here first, folks!). He complains to Teddy that he wants his job back and he’s willing to do ANYTHING for it. Even watch all 10 High School Musicals without once heading to the bathroom. I kid. Teddy agrees but under one condition, he has to wrestle and defeat…
“PISTOL” PEZ WHATLEY!
Man, I totally didn’t see that one coming!
(Note from RD: A Pez Whatley reference…ah, you truly are a worthy apprentice.)
Ok, it isn’t Shaska, it’s that guy in the singlet right over there, the one Teddy describes as WWECW’s “newest superstar”.
The newest superstar…and the EXTREME MASTER OF THE KNOCK KNOCK JOKE, THAT IS!
Really.We’re not joking.
(break for a rant paragraph)
Wait a minute….your name is BRADEN WALKER???!! It sounds like the kinda name the writers of a CW “teen drama” came up with. I guess he can’t just be “Chris Harris: New Up and Comer to the WWE”. Gimme a break. And I think this is the first time a wrestler was ever threatened by a KNOCK KNOCK JOKE PROMO.
A HORRIBLE KNOCK KNOCK JOKE PROMO.
What a debut. Though I’m disappointed Armando didn’t bother with, “Braden Walker and I’m gonna knock your brains out WHO?”, which would’ve left Walker speechless until he just decided to leave the room.
(back to induction)
Anyways, Armando’s cruel and frighteningly witty comeback to this strong threat of brain-knocking-outting?
The same thing as anyone else’s: take off the glasses.
WOO! What a comeback!
Sadly, the nodding and staring comes to a close as we’re taken to a graphic promsing us a Mark Henry-Tommy Dreamer match-up, who I believe both weigh the same amount now.
(Note from Raven: CAUSE HE’S FAT!)
Get outta here, Raven.
Out to the ring we go, as Armando and Braden Walker…
No, I can’t do it.
I just can’t do it.
Seriously, has there ever been a STUPIDER name than BRADEN WALKER? It’s hard enough to type it, let alone attempt to rationalize that someone thought that was a GOOD WRESTLING NAME.
Ok, ok, I’ll try. So Braden and Armando go out to the ring and have an okay match. Nothing spectacular but it’s watchable. In fact, it’s even more watchable if you turn down the inane commentary from the epic announce team of Mike Adamle and Tazz, and discuss important details like Armando’s pants pockets hanging out. Don’t get too excited now, kids.
And the crowd is completely silent for the match, which is somewhat understandable because no one knows this new guy whose name sounds like he belongs in the cast of Gossip Girl and Armando has as much heat as Winnipeg in February.
Anyways, the match ends with Braden Walker getting the pinfall victory over Armando. So far it’s 1-0 for Walker.
Laugh if you will – Goldberg had to start somewhere too, ya know.
The next week, we see Braden having a talk with Matt Hardy backstage. I like how most WWE wrestlers can simply ignore the camera in front of them, no matter how private you think you are or what embarrassing deeds you perform.
Braden introduces himself to Matt and the two have a friendly chat.
And…and…well, that’s really about it.
You may ask me why I chose to include this insignificant bit of information but you’ll see why in a few minutes.
Braden now has his 2nd WWE match against James Curtis, main roster jobber, who had lost to nearly everyone in WWECW at least twice, but was supposed to be a challenge for Walker: Texas Toast Eater.Sort of a step down from wrestling Armando but Walker shouldn’t fear yet.
And check out the C-cups on Curtis.
Get him a manziere, Kramer!
The two have another okay match, which Walker wins once again (2-0!) and people seemed to be warming up to the new guy.
Maybe next week, they’ll warm up to him even more and maybe even give Braden a shot at one of the big names in WWECW.
Except there was no next week.
That’s right, after his first 2 matches, Braden Walker (aka Chris Harris), WWECW’s “newest superstar”, was GONE from World Wrestling Entertainment.
In his time in the WWE, Chris Harris has been given a pussy teenager name, challenged Armando via Knock Knock promo, beat him, talked to Matt Hardy in the hallway, beat James Curtis.
Curtis, it should be noted was also fired.
Armando? Armando hung around long enough to lose to Colin Delaney until the WWE got tired of the both of them. With his release, there was no real way to remember Braden Walker outside of Matt Hardy walking down hallways and talking to random people.
The Unemployment Line, and here’s your first check.
But don’t feel bad – after your expenses, it’s probably more than WWE was paying.