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Friday, January 15, 2016

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Retrospective: Diamond Dallas Page in WCW

In WCW, there are some guys who instantly get their shot. Some guys worked for years to obtain their spot and earned it through their will to win. Diamond Dallas Page fits that description. He was never first choice in WCW, but he worked so hard that they couldn't deny him. After years of sitting in the mid card and not being prominent, DDP started to ascend in WCW during the year 1997, and never looked back. Today, we reflect on him and his role in WCW.

Much like his career, DDP didn't capture my attention until late in the game. I fell in love with him during the "Diamond Cutter Tour", which coincided with my senior year in high school. My friends and I were so hooked on the rise of DDP, we went out and bought the single "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana and played the first 15 seconds of the song over and over as we took to the "mean streets" of East Haven, CT! Okay, maybe we took it to a new level, including the constant mimicking of the Diamond cutter taunt wherever we went! No wonder why the ladies weren't streaming in at that point.

Sure, there's no question DDP has had a HOF career, but for me, it comes down to his miracle work with Scott Hall and Jake Roberts. Let's be honest, if you're a wrestling fan, you were counting the days before these two men were going to be added to the long list of wrestlers passed. But DDP stepped up and stepped in, providing these men with direction and a new lease on life.

DDP was one of my favorites as a kid. He was a WCW stalwart and about as babyface as it gets. One of the few to stand up to the NWO from day 1. You know "RKO outta nowhere"? DDP had a decade-long head start on that by doing Diamond Cutters outta nowhere. He could turn almost any situation into a Diamond Cutter, and the crowd would explode every time. Page has gone on to a second life with his yoga instructing, and he is credited with saving both Jake Roberts and Scott Hall's lives. Any time I see someone throw up the diamond, I don't think Jay-Z, I think of Diamond Dallas Page.

Diamond Dallas Page is a legend. Hands down. His time in WCW was truly spent wisely, as he would work his way up the ladder and maintain the ability to be the man at all costs. I remember watching him and Kimberly Page together and honestly I just liked looking at her. However, the Diamond Cutter is what brought me to being a bigger fan of him. The move was so dope, the execution of it could be applied at any time, and it would make the crowd go wild. DDP became a big focus in 1997, when he ended up in a big beef with the NWO, and while he would have a classic feud with Macho Man Randy Savage, I feel as if WCW dropped the ball big time, but not letting Page go over on Hogan for the WCW title during his big face run.

Page was just as over as anybody on the roster and I remember the Hogan vs DDP feud involving Jay Leno and Karl Malone, but it was a formality in many ways. I always thought they screwed DDP out of a 2 month WCW title reign before it went to Goldberg. DDP deserved better, as he would eventually win the WCW title, but WWF had been kicking WCW's ass at this point, so it really didn't matter as much as it should have. DDP would maintain his popularity and while he is now known for his great DDP Yoga program, his legacy in WCW can never ever be denied. A true WCW legend who earned his way to the top.

Self High Five!!



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