Much like Zhalia Fears and El Trebol, there was no way I could sleep on Duke and Luke Dibbins. Those two wouldn't have enough sense to fear the brand new UTA World Champion.
To see them milling around backstage, or running around the country looking for the retired tag team title belts...
It wasn't natural. They seemed, well, weird.
"I want your undivided attention Duke and Luke Dibbins."
I hesitate, thinking this a waste of my time, or my words too big for them to understand. But as the new UTA World Champion, it was my responsibility to stop these idiots from going backwoods on me.
To keep this from being a re-enactment of the movie "Deliverance" or worse. Hey, with some of these people, you can't be too careful.
"Because I don't want any confusion."
Of course watching these two was like an old episode of the Beverly Hillbillies, without the money. Raising my eyebrow, I'm hoping they never find their way to the arena.
After all, they are rednecks. A poor man's version of the Clampett's, with a travel rv that requires a tetanus shot for just looking at it.
They were bootleggers, backwoods trash without a clue that Michael Lorenzo just put them on death row, with an executioner ready to throw the switch in Albany.
"But playtime is over."
There is a serious tone to my voice, focused on the task at hand. These guys were dangerous, if for no other reason, they appeared mentally unstable. A Bud Light away from a car wreck with no air bags or common sense.
"Now that I have the gold, I plan on keeping it. Which means you two knuckleheads had better lay off the duck hunting, the beer swilling, and the cousin chasing for five seconds..."
I could see them sitting outside that run-down rv, having a burping contest while counting wet farts. Or better yet, Duke using the Hardcore title as a beer coaster.
Or worse, a plate to eat the pickled pigs feet on.
Yeah, I shudder at the thought. A man dis-respecting his championship belt in that manner. Well it won't happen to the UTA World Championship, because there's no way in hell I could ever let that happen.
"Because this is professional wrestling, not the redneck games."
Acting like they are going to find the retired tag belts.
What they need to find is a barber, or maybe something better than Goodwill. A mullet and uneven cut-off jeans told me everything I needed to know about Duke Dibbins. Sure he was the Hardcore Champion, but that just meant the kid was nuts.
Just like his brousin Luke.
"This is where champions dress with pride, not like trailer park trash. You wouldn't catch me dead in cut-offs and trucker caps."
I crack that million dollar smirk, knowing what was at stake. After years of performing down south, in front of the redneck masses, I knew those inbreds weren't the sharpest tools in the shed, but they could still hurt you.
They could also be taken off their game.
"Just like you wouldn't catch me in some junky rv. I'm a man who has expensive taste in clothes, drives expensive cars, and takes up residence in the most expensive places."
Their workout consisted of lifting beer cans, while mine took place in the classiest gyms across the country.
"I take pride in my appearance, unlike you two goofs who walk around shirtless, exposing your beer gut and poor hygiene to the masses."
In my mind, these guys were more suited for the wilderness and not a wrestling ring. Hell, they were more suited for wrestling pigs and cows, not sharing the ring with the World Champion.
"Face it Dibbins, you two are walking, talking punch lines. The fact you made your way into this company means Michael Lorenzo has a morbid sense of humor."
Okay, I'm talking a lot of shit, but I still consider these guys a serious threat. Sure, I've started the New Year on a high note, but these guys couldn't be taken lightly.
Especially at the same time.
In a handicap match.
I can only shrug, not knowing what these two were about. They could either come down to the ring to wrestle, or engage in a beer-bottle brawl with the fans in the arena. Would they be crazy enough to drag a live possum to the ringside area? you just never knew with these guys.
"He has put all rational thought to the side, and is giving you the opportunity to share the ring with a man who not only destroyed Eric Dane and Will Haynes..."
There is a pause on my part, not understanding Lorenzo's thought process. After swooping in and stealing the World Championship, he rewards me with Duke and Luke Dibbins?
Hey, that's my version and I'm sticking to it.
"But did it without breaking a sweat."
Hell yeah I'm going to lie.
They are inbred pin heads, completely illiterate. The two of them combined were intolerably stupid, black eyes on the human race everywhere. But again, still dangerous.
So you had better believe I was going to lie.
"Michael Lorenzo is a masochist guys, pure and simple. He knows when backed against the wall, I come out swinging. In essence, he is sacrificing you in Albany."
Sharing the ring with those Dibbins boys was a sin, completely beneath me. 2016 was going to be all about me, no matter who stood in my way. I had made up my mind, if I can't beat you physically, I'll do it mentally.
Albany, New York in the middle of January?
I'll choose to do both.
"He knows you can't survive in that busted up RV with no heat. He also knows you guys live from arena to arena, what little money you make going for gasoline and booze..."
You didn't need to see thru a facade with these guys. Everything about them was right there, in total view of the public. But they were liked, remarkably by just about everyone. I couldn't understand the love-fest the country had for these two, but I did know that I didn't like them, and that was all I needed to know...
For the time being.
"And not on athletic skills."
The plan was to tear them down, make them feel weak.
"Trust me boys, it isn't going to be the Redneck Olympics in Albany. There won't be any beer drinking contests, nor will you be wrestling greased pigs."
That had to be disappointing to them. I bet if someone says beer is outlawed in Albany...
I think about finishing the statement, but....
Nobody is that dumb.
"There won't be a guess who your daddy is either."
I shake my head.
"But there will be a match against the most dangerous man in wrestling. A man who doesn't care about your inner struggles..."
It is a life lesson these two need to learn.
"A man who doesn't care about your love affair with a bunch of so-called fans. But go ahead and keep drinking the liquid courage, thinking it enough to survive in my world, that it will somehow ease the storm that's coming."
Ah yes, their need for booze. It is the cure all for people like that, especially with anything started by hey, watch this. It is also a good way to forget stupid decisions like...
Oh, I don't know.
Stepping into the ring with the Mental Rapist?
"If anything, it has blinded you..."
The smug sound in my voice is unmistakable.
"Blinded you both from the truth.
The idea isn't to turn them on each other, but to turn them against the fans that adore them.
"That those people, who you believe care about you, really don't. Now granted, they will cheer every step you take towards that ring. But once you enter, all they will want to do is laugh at you..."
I let that last sentence linger. After all, even rednecks hate to be laughed at.
"Even as you are being decimated..."
Don't believe me, just look at livelinks and youtube. There are hundreds, even thousands of videos there as proof.
"Because everyone enjoys watching rednecks get hurt by doing stupid things..."
My head tilts to one side.
"Isn't that right Michael Lorenzo?"