Yesterday at National Pro Wrestling Day (NPWD), I had the pleasure to watch four veterans of independent wrestling work the Ring of Honor (ROH) match when the SCUM team of Steve Corino and Jimmy Jacobs faced the ROH tag team champions, The Briscoes.
Seeing Jacobs in action, it struck me that he has history with two-thirds of one of we smark's favorite things in WWE right now, The Shield. He was stable mates with Seth Rollins (back when he was known as Tyler Black) in the Age of the Fall faction in ROH. And he had a highly entertaining feud with Dean Ambrose (then known as Jon Moxley) in the early days of Dragon Gate USA.
A little googling around the internet wrestling community (IWC) proves I was far from the first to make the connection. In fact, PWTorch columnists Pat MacNeil and Sean Radican just spoke to him about it last week on their Livecast podcast.
Ambrose struck him as someone who carried himself like a star, even before he had the scalps on his belt to back it up.
He had this unique thing about him. Even though I had been around a lot longer than him, he never treated me like - he never took a back-seat to me. In that, he commanded respect, which is a unique trait to have backstage. Most guys who are younger that come up and work with me let me do whatever I want; give me the lead. But, Moxie never gave me the lead...in WWE, I don't know how he's treating those guys, but that's the sort of thing that could piss someone off or command respect, like it did with me. He commanded respect and I gave it to him.
The first thing I thought of when I read this quote was Ambrose's aborted feud with Mick Foley from about a year ago. The plug was reportedly pulled on the internet-based feud because Ambrose mentioned Foley's kids in a twitter promo without the pending Hall of Famer's permission.
The two later cleared the air and Foley called Dean "a unique kind of cat". The kind of cat who might act like a big wig in dealings with veterans? Jacobs quote would seem to indicate so.
Rollins, on the other hand, sounds like the picture of locker room etiquette:
Tyler always gave me the respect whether I deserved it or not being there longer than him. He listened to me, respected me, and always gave me the lead. He was a fabulous kid then and I was fortunate enough to see him when he started off in late 2004.
The Zombie Princess sees a bright future for both in WWE. Ambrose is "a special talent" who Jacobs sees as being "a millionaire before he's 30" (Ambrose is now 27).
While Rollins may not have the same immediate presence, Jimmy is still bullish on his potential. "I've seen him blossom and we pretty much knew from the beginning that he would be a star. He is just starting to prove it."
"It's just beginning for these guys."
Many Cagesiders are high on all three members of The Shield. What about you? Are Jacobs comments in line with your impressions of Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins? Will Dean be his own worst enemy, or will Seth be too respectful to show the ruthless aggression it often takes to succeed in the WWE?