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The WAWLI Papers, page 1


THIS 'N THAT ABOUT PROFESSIONAL WRESTLING


"Whatever the ingredients, the spectacle has definitely caught the fancy of the mob.    Today, wrestling is probably the most popular of the pro sports."
-- Joe Williams, Judge, 1932

"The one nice thing about rassling is that no one can libel it."
-- Arthur Daley, New York Times

"Professional wrestling is not a fraud.    It is preposterous, if you wish, or ludicrous, but it is not fraudulent, any more than it is fraudulent when Abbott and Costello fall into a cement mixer with a baboon -- injuries may be regarded as industrial accidents -- to use the word 'champion' in professional wrestling is to lose touch with reality."
-- Sam Beal

"Can you imagine the level of a mind that watches wrestling?"
-- Max Von Sydow character in "Hannah and Her Sisters," 1986

"Although professional wrestling matches are reportedly as fixed as the romances of Helen Trent, 20,335 customers jammed Madison Square Garden last night to watch hefty matadors grunt, groan, pull hair, knock heads, and generally behave like Mau Maus."
-- Gay Talese, New York Times, May 25, 1958

"Men like Savoldi, Sonnenberg, McMillen -- football players -- started using that flying tackle mess and with it came kicking, butting and even some biting.    Wrestling wasn't ability any more, it was more like legalized murder.    If wrestling is ever to gain the popularity it deserves, it needs to cut out all the punching and kicking and throwing guys out of the ring.    Wrestling wasn't dull when Caddock, Stecher, Pesek and Strangler Lewis were going good.    Those guys were real grapplers and they'd give you a real contest.    The officials have got to stop these guys from getting away with everything and anything."
-- George Bothner, former wrestler and longtime referee, to Nat Loubet, editor, Ring Wrestling, August, 1965

Nat Loubet's All-Time Top 15 in August, 1965, Ring Wrestling: Frank Gotch, George Hackenschmidt, Great Gama, Stanislaus Zbyszko, Joe Stecher, Earl Caddock, John Pesek, Strangler Lewis, Ivan Poddubny, Lou Thesz, Tom Jenkins, Dick Shikat, Alex Aberg, Youssouf the Terrible Turk, Hans Steinke
"A few of them can wrestle, but I don't hold that against them.    I've never seen an honest wrestling bout in my 20 years in the game.    Maybe there was one, but I wasn't there."
-- Jack Pfeffer

"In our view, all-in wrestling cannot be regarded as true wrestling.    We do not consider that it contains any element of sport, and we regard it as a degrading and unhealthy form of entertainment."
-- Public Control Committee, London (England) County Council, in asking for a wrestling ban, Nov. 17, 1941

"For many years, professional wrestling was popular in the United States, reaching its peak in the 1920s and 1930s.    Notable wrestlers in the 20th Century included George Hackenschmidt, Ed (Strangler) Lewis, Earl Caddock, Jim Londos, Joe Stecher, Stanislaus Zbyszko and John Pesek.    Professional wrestling in the United States has now largely degenerated into a pre-arranged parody of rough and tumble acting."
-- Philip J. Rasch, Encyclopedia Americana, 1970

From Punjab, in India, came Daula He had shoes but not any caula But his shoes they were tight And he threw them one night At a wrestler who started to haula
-- Unknown Author, 1930s (perhaps Dan Parker)

"The things they say about in politics no honest man can take.    If I say in politics, I'll slug somebody for sure.    When a wrestler gets personal in the ring I let him have one right on the jaw, or maybe I pick him up and slam him to the mat.    But if I tried that on one of these politicians, I'd land in jail and be sued for all I own.    Wrestling is on the level, but politics ..."
-- Man Mountain Dean, after withdrawing from race for lower Georgia house of legislature, Aug. 8, 1938

 
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