Sunday, September 16, 2007

Performer Analysis: Steiner Brothers

I chose to use the mulitcolored letters for this analysis in tribute of the ridiculous tights they wore for most of their career. The Steiner Brothers are former 2 time WWF Tag Team Champions, 2 time former IWGP Tag Team Champions, former NWA Tag Team champions and former 6 time WCW Tag Team Champions, and have also won several other regional and independent tag titles throughout their career. They are synonomous with tag team wrestling, but this analysis is not a team sport. Each man will be graded based upon their career and own individual talents. And there will be a drug test immediately following. Scott, where are you going? Come back…..

1) Innovation- 10(Scott)/ 8(Rick)
The Steiner Brothers came together as a team around the end of 1988 and ever since dominated the tag team landscape. They revolutionized (and that's a word thrown around loosely in wrestling) tag team maneuvers and what a team could be capable of. When I was a child, I had a wrestling magazine and the cover story was people who had wrestled the Steiners claiming it felt like being in a car crash. They used simple amateur wrestling moves, devastating suplexes and new, never before seen moves in the states to absolutely crush their opponents. Both men get credit for their innovative style, but Scott racks up extra points for introducing the Frankensteiner, one of the most popular moves of the last 20 years. He also came up with several other devastating moves, like the Steiner Screwdriver and the double team bulldog and belly to belly.

2) Conditioning- 4(Scott)/ 6(Rick)
Both men in the prime of their career were built like the proverbial brick shit house and could tear it down in great matches. They both had excellent stamina for men their size, but in the last 10 years or so, both men have been plauged with injuries, namely Scott. Steiner has had some life and career threatening injuries and most of them due, ( to any one with the common sense of sight) to steroid abuse. Steiner boasts the largest arms in wrestling (sorry, Hulk) and has constantly since been on the DL. His body is nearly immobile now and his conditioning is in every wrestling geek's punchline. In some ways, Scott is a pathetic shell of the competitor he once was. Rick, hasn't fared much better. He's looking quite awful in his own right, out of shape and completely gassed in matches less than 10 minutes. I'm sure he's shared a needle or two from his little bro.

3) Skill- 6(Scott)/ 6 (Rick)
Nothing but the last 3 years could have dropped these once great athletes to much below a 9 in my eyes. Not only were they the most astounding tag team of the 90's, but they were individually two of the best singles in the world, often times either wrestling for or winning singles belts during tag team runs. But, Scott, ever since his WWE stint has looked worse than a Test- trainee. He often uses the same sloppy suplexes over and over again, as does Rick. Scott recently started doing his frankensteiner again, but has experienced near death trying it. I can never take away their legacy as a team and wouldn't want to, but they are from my favorite people to watch in the ring these days. Neither man takes many bumps in the ring either and their pace is always in one speed: slow.

4) Psychology- 7(Scott)/6(Rick)
Scott can still rile up a crowd, it's something he does very well. He loses a lot of momentum in the ring though with his near extinction pace. Rick has the ability to hit a big move that has a lot of impact because, well frankly, it seems as if he doesn't care about the well being of his opponent. Neither man uses facials very effectively, never have but Rick still has a great stomach sell. I have to give Scott just a little bit of an edge because Rick always seems to be looking straight ahead, not looking at the crowd, or giving any kind of reaction anymore. That's the kind of things that loses your audience.

5) Interviews- 8( Scott)/ 6 (Rick)
Scott is a censor's worst nightmare; he is known to say anything that comes to head, especially if it's on live TV. His unpredictability makes him very fun to watch and his style is very much centered around that. Rick uses the same beaten catchphrases every interview and damn it gets old. Rick used to have great material, playing the dumb happy go lucky guy early in his career, doing the Perry Saturn gimmick where he would say anything that came to his mind. Now, I wish he would not talk at all. Scott lets his emotions control where the interview will go and that's the most exciting thing about him now, something WWE stifled and got nothing out of him for 2 years.

6) Character- 8(Scott)/ 4( Rick)
The Big Bad Booty Daddy; Freakzilla; Steiner still oozes charisma and it's the right kind and the fans eat it up. He's a natural fit for the guy the TV station doesn't want on it's program and the kind of guy no one wants to get in the ring with. He's a little toned down now that he's getting more and more beat up and broken, but at one time, Scott was liable to do anything, in and out of the ring. He was arrested once after a Nitro for beating the hell out of an EMT he believed to be a plant, but he didn't care one bit. Rick, on the other hand, is the Dog Faced Gremlin, now what that has ever meant, beats the hell out of me. He's one ugly dude I know that, and he's a suplex machine, but other than that, there is no character. Rick doesn't exude charisma, he even looks quite tired before most of his matches. He just doesn't have that fire he used to.

7) Basics- 6(Scott)/ 7(Rick)

Both men were collegiate athletes at the University of Michigan, Scott being an All American finishing second in his Big Ten conference. Rick was also a great amateur wrestler so that knowledge is there. They used that style to their advantage for years in tag team wrestling, often implementing the techniques into suplexes and using basic wrestling holds to diminsh an opponent and they used them as a bullying technique. As I've said so many times already, the need for that has dropped dramatically, no fault of the Steiners, but they haven't shown much evidence in recent years. Rick has the slight edge because he was better trained in how to make those skills translate into basica wrestlings holds and how to work them into a match. Plus his punches are a lot better than Scott's.

8) Fans- 8(Scott)/6(Rick)
Both Steiner Brothers are crowd favorites, especially together as a team, as they are now in TNA. But, Scott was the one who broke out into a major singles star with his n.W.o. run while Rick dropped in and out of angles and on screen competition. It helped Scott become a very recognizable star, which I'm sure helped him get his position in WWE. The fans erupt for Scott's promos because as I've said the guy is lit dynamite on the stick and the fans know what to expect, which is anything. Rick has lost a lot of steam in recent years and while still mildly popular, he hasn't added anything to his wrestling personality so there's no extra reason to want to see him.

9) Feuds/ Opponents- 10(Scott)/ 10(Rick)
As they read aloud on TNA Impact recently, the Steiner Brothers have fought and feuded with the best teams the world of wrestling has ever seen; names like the Road Warriors, the Nasty Boys, Midnight Express, Doom, Miracle Violence Combo, the Hart Brothers, Money Inc, Team 3-D, The Freebirds, Harlem Heat, you name them and the Steiners have come up against them. Not to mention that but both men have had numerous World Title Shots in both promotions, against the likes of Ric Flair, Sting, Lex Luger, Goldberg, and HHH. There is no shortage of stars they have run up against and no doubt they have battled the best in the world for the last fifteen years.

10) Gutcheck- 4(Scott)/ 3 (Rick)
In an industry they once ruled, the Steiner Brothers are nearly obsolete. Both men gave tremendous runs earlier in their careers, but towards 1998 when the n.W.o blew up to an outrageous amount of members, Scott started suffering mysterious injuries and became a massive muscle machine. Rick was off and on the sidelines for various reasons and neither man ever seemed to bring it anymore. I'd say it was more a lack of motivation from both men. Sure Scott was on a big run at the end of WCW, but go back and take a look at those performances and tell me he wasn't bringing a stamped envelope to the ring and I'll slap you and tell you you're a moron. Now, in recent years, we've only seen either man when the money calls them back to the squared circle and never for very long and for nothing very good. Personally, I'll never forget their legacy and I love watching old Steiner Brother matches, but in the current state of things, I pretty much despise seeing them on my wrestling programs. Both men have abused substances to get ahead (Scott's whole character seems based on that premise) and they both look the worse for wear for it now. I gave Scott an extra point for fighting back from a near death tragedy in Puerto Rico where he received his huge back scar. Wonder if a needle would fit into it?

Total: 71 (Scott)/ 62 (Rick)
Ranking: Superstar (both men)
PO: 89-93 (Thumbs Up) 93-current (Thumbs Down)

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