Every thing sports

Jermaine Every: For 25 years, WWE's Raw has been a big part of our lives

WWE Raw celebrated its 25 year anniversary. WWE.com

The spectrum of my interests is pretty wide. One of them is professional wrestling. No, not “sports entertainment” as WWE head honcho Vince McMahon would like us all to call it, pro wrestling dammit! Now many of you are ready to hit the eject button, but bear with me here.

I’m not here to convince everyone that pro wrestling is worth a shot. But I am here to give props where they are due. For WWE’s flagship show Monday Night Raw, or just Raw as it’s now called, has been airing weekly for the last 25 years. That’s a huge accomplishment in today’s instant gratification society. It debuted on January 11, 1993 and I’ve watched a great majority of the 1,287 episodes that have aired.

Think about that time span and what has happened. That 25 years can span the course of a lifetime, unfortunately. It can also provide a monumental shift in societal norms, as well as  one’s own life. Let’s take a look Tale of the Tape style:

 

1993

2017-18

Gallon of Gas

$1.16

$2.36

Average New Home Cost

$113,200.00

$256,580.00

Average Income

$31,230.00

$59,000.00

Monthly Rent

$532.00

$1558.00

Movie Ticket

$4.14

$12.00

Average New Car Cost

$12,750.00

$33,560.00

Jermaine’s Kid Count

“I’m NEVER having kids!”

Mini Me and Mad Dog dictate my life now

Jermaine’s Love Life

“Player runs through my veins.”

My wife dictates what the kids don’t

Jermaine’s Physical Numbers

5’11 145 lbs soaking wet with bricks in my backpack

6’4 240lbs after a stomach virus

Jermaine’s Favorite Activity

Playing any sport, any time, as much as I could

Watching, writing, and talking about sports as much as I can

Jermaine’s Hair

Nice fade up top and a pencil-thin, peach fuzz mustache

More hair on my face than I’ve had on my head last 5-10 years combined

 

As you can tell from the table above, a LOT can change in 25 years. Vince McMahon has managed to keep his product fresh the entire time. Going from cartoonish characters (gimmicks as they’re called in the business), to a more reality-based product, WWE has gone from a privately owned company to a publically-traded global conglomerate. He’s effectively, but not completely, eliminated the competition stateside (New Japan Pro Wrestling, or NJPW, is their WWE and is making waves internationally, as well as trying to breach the shores here in America). He’s managed to keep storylines going, as well as work through the setbacks. No matter the tragedy (post-9/11 show as a prime example) or triumphs, he’s managed to keep his product fresh. Perhaps most impressive is his ability to keep his hands on the pulse of literally everything WWE.

I’ve grown a great bit over 25 years, not just physically, but also personally. There have been some major ups and downs over the years. The one thing that was always a constant escape was Monday Night Raw. I could count on WWE giving me that two or three hour getaway from whatever was going on. After my brother was killed, grandmothers’ deaths, losing scholarship to Tulane, finding out I’m going to be a father (twice), graduating from college, moving to Texas, you name it. Raw was the blanket to my Linus.

I’m interested in hearing from you guys. What was your blanket? What gave you comfort in your hard times and helped you celebrate your good times? Get at me on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. I want to be a man of the people and interact with you guys as much as possible.

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It more of the same from the Houston Texans. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images.

Sunday afternoon provided a high-res snapshot of the state of Houston sports. The Astros, already assured of the best record in the American League, played a game they didn’t need to win. The Astros won, ho-hum, their 104th win of the season.

Meanwhile, eight miles away, the Texans, mired in last place with fan support dwindling, played a game they really needed to win. The Texans lost 34-24 to the Los Angeles Chargers in front of (giggle) 69,071 fans at NRG Stadium. The Texans really ought to stop saying the stands are packed. Every time a team punts, and cameras follow the ball skyward, there are thousands of empty seats on display. I know the NFL methodology for determining attendance, (total tickets sold, no-shows don’t count) but it just looks silly when the Texans announce 69,000 fans.

The Texans came close as usual before sputtering to another defeat. The Texans now stand at 0-3-1, the only winless team in the NFL. It’s the second time in three years they’ve started a season without a victory after four games. It’s telling to note that not one of the Texans opponents has a winning record for 2022.

In other words, the Texans have played four games they shoulda/coulda won. Shouda against the Colts, Broncos and Bears, and coulda against the Chargers.

Should/coulda four wins. Instead, none.

That’s the Texans. They’re in every game but can’t close the deal. Yeah, yeah, on Monday we hear, “the Texans are playing hard for coach Lovie Smith” and “they’re competitive” and “they’re a young team.” These are NFL equivalents of a participation trophy.

Sunday’s loss to the Chargers at NRG Stadium was straight out of the Texans playbook. Fall behind, make it interesting, lose. The Texans stuck to their script, timid play calling, momentum-crushing penalties (nine for 67 yards), self-inflicted drops, lackluster quarterbacking and Rex Burkhead on the field for crunch time. After one play where a Texan player was called for holding, the announcer said, “and he did a poor job of holding.”

Statuesque quarterback David Mills keeps saying “we’re in a good spot” and “we’re improving.” Statuesque as in he doesn’t move – or barely moves to avoid sacks. Sunday saw his first touchdown pass to a wide receiver. He’s now thrown four interceptions in the past two games. Let’s go to the tote board: 5 touchdowns, 4 interceptions, 4 fumbles, 11 sacks, qbr rating 28.5 – good for 28th in the league.

A bright spot, sort of. This was the first week the Texans didn’t cover the spread. They’re now 1-2-1 against Vegas oddsmakers, meaning you’ve won money if you took the Texans all four weeks. They head to Jacksonville next as early 6.5-point underdogs.

Meanwhile, Alabama’s brilliant quarterback Bryce Young, who will be available for the Texans when they draft first in 2023 (as Paul Heyman says, that’s not a prediction, that’s a spoiler), suffered a shoulder injury last Saturday. The Texans need to take out a Lloyds of London insurance policy on Young.

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