What was your "never say never" moment as a pro wrestling fan?
Promoters, commentators and various industry-adjacent hucksters used the phrase for years, but to such an extent that it became just another well-worn cliché. The "Anything Can Happen In The World Wrestling Federation" during one of its driest periods or "Where The Big Boys Play" from a version of WCW relying more on cruiserweights than heavyweights for half decent matches, for example.
Ironically, it was the coming together of the two originators of these lines that served as a turning point for fan expectations in 2002. When Vince McMahon and Eric Bischoff shook hands on July 15th 2002, a generation of viewers accepted that nothing was off the table. If anything, it permitted wilder speculation than ever, carrying the post-Monday Night Wars discourse as the McMahon monopoly got stronger.
The August/September 2021 AEW arrivals of CM Punk, Daniel Bryan and Adam Cole all served as recent reality checks yet again. Nothing's off the table in pro wrestling, and long may this latest golden era continue. Four years counts for several lifetimes now, unless it's the term remaining on your WWE contract. And speaking of that...
10. Conrad Thompson Presents: Ladies & Gentleman, My Name Is Paul Heyman
It's astonishing to think that Paul Heyman has spent longer in his current stint with WWE than any other role in wrestling he's ever had.
A pro wrestling icon for his contributions behind and in front of cameras for five decades, Heyman's best cultural contributions will mostly be tied to his work with ECW in the 1990s and alongside Brock Lesnar in the early 2000s, falling right in the wheelhouse of Conrad Thompson's typical line of questioning for three hours at a time. As a natural storyteller, he won't have a problem filling the run-time.
Based on his shows with Bruce Prichard and Jeff Jarrett, it isn't a pre-requisite that the interviewee not be in the WWE system, but will Heyman still be there in four years? His on-screen relationships with both Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar may have cooled by then, and one can only take Vince McMahon's bullsh*t for so long, can't they?
Speaking of which...