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  Oct. 21, 2001

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Bloody streak by RVD
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By DON 'Cyrus' CALLIS -- For SLAM! Wrestling
 Rob Van Dam claimed another victim at Smackdown on Thursday, busting open Kurt Angle in their main event match.

 This extends RVD's streak of unintentionally making his opponents bleed, having bloodied Steve Austin, Chris Jericho (twice), Kurt Angle (twice if I am not mistaken) and Raven (three staples to the head from an errant RVD garbage can shot).

 I found myself cringing for Rob's entire match with the Rock, praying he didn't do the unthinkable and cut the Rock. Rock clearly has commitments outside wrestling that help WWFE with crossover media publicity, something that has been huge for them in the past in terms of attracting new viewers.

 Thankfully, the super over movie star didn't get cut, or who knows what the repercussions could have been.

 Of course, as we like to say, 'this ain't ballet?' and things can happen in the ring, and getting busted open the odd time is certainly not unheard of. But when you are batting like .800 for busting up the top talent, something needs to be addressed. It is in this light that I strongly suggest you buy the WWF pay-per-view this weekend, if, for no other reason than to see the main event match -- it should be excellent as well as very stiff.


 The paradox here is that Van Dam is one of the most over performers in the WWF right now, some would say he is the most over, despite being a part of the heel Alliance group. Van Dam has an inexplicable charisma that fans react to, much in the same way they reacted for Goldberg when he first began wrestling in WCW.

 Like Goldberg, Van Dam is still a bit unpolished on interviews, but has the type of charisma you cannot teach. It is that charisma combined with his unmatched athleticism that the WWF hopes to continue to tap in to.

 As over as Rob is, the reality is that the WWF guys bust their asses several nights a week, working a style that is more physically demanding than ever.

 It is the obligation of every wrestler to take care of the other guy in the ring, because an injury from an errant shot or move can lead to missed opportunities and paydays for the other wrestler. Rob needs to find a way to adjust his style or eliminate some moves (shortkicks come to mind) that appear to be doing the damage.

 In Rob's defence, he is a tough guy who can take as good as he gives and, in my opinion, his errant kicks or punches or whatever are likely the result of him being excited and enthusiastic rather than careless. The bottom line, however, is that his current streak of causing his workmates to bleed in their matches cannot continue.

 Bret Hart once said that one of his proudest accomplishments was the fact that he had never hurt an opponent. He took great pride in that. This should be a standard that is strived for by every performer in wrestling.

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Listen to Cyrus every Sunday from 6-7 p.m. on 92 CITI-FM on the NHB wrestling call in show with his co-host Joe Aiello.

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