Holy mackerel are AEW loading up those Arthur Ashe shows! As Gorilla Monsoon on this very Blog would say, they’ll have people hanging from the rafters in that stadium for Dynamite and Rampage. It will truly be a happening!
Shout out to Club Bruges last night who managed to hold the mighty PSG to a draw. I’m sure the Belgian fans liked sticking it to the French!
OK, with NXT entering the new awkward phase of green rookies and indy vets, would it benefit WWE to split the 2-hour block? Have Hour 1 be the “young lion/rookie” hour and focus them around the North American Title, while Hour 2 is the more experienced guys with the Women's and NXT Title only being featured that hour. Also, give each hour a different name, then when the ratings come in, try to claim the show did double what the 2-hour block averaged because TECHNICALLY it's two different shows, so when Hour 1 does 450,000 and hour 2 does 670,000, you can say you did 1.2 million, even though the combined average is probably somewhere around 620,000? Also, how would you re-book the NXT Invasion of Raw and Smackdown?
I appreciate the build and payoff there. Well done.
Date: September 15, 2021
Location: Prudential Center, Newark, New Jersey
Commentators: Excalibur, Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone, CM Punk
Things have been getting big in a hurry around here and that is going to be the case again this week. This time around we have the in-ring debut of Adam Cole, which should make for quite the moment. Other than that, Grand Slam is on the horizon and that should be an even bigger show. Let’s get to it.
Tonight we have Dynamite, and I couldn’t find a preview from our friends at the Observer. But it turns out that our friends at AEW actually preview the show on their website. Here’s a run down of tonight’s card from Newark, New Jersey:
Adam Cole makes his AEW and Dynamite wrestling debut against Frankie Kazarian.
Monday Night Raw
Date: April 16, 2007
Location: Datchforum, Milan, Italy
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler
We have a special one here as the show is in Italy for the first time ever. That should make for a cool atmosphere if nothing else and that is almost always a good idea. For once though, Raw is on a roll as we move towards Backlash. If this show can continue that streak, they’ll be able to say…..however you praise something in Italian. Let’s get to it.
Vince McMahon and Jesse Ventura are in the booth, concluding the tapings in LaCrosse, Wisconsin. Ventura argues that his MIA bracelet will come off faster than McMahon’s Hulk Hogan friendship bracelet.
Mabel vs. Savio Vega ending a PPV. This was so bad it feels like a hard-boiled noir detective should be doing narration over it.
KING OF THE RING QUALIFYING MATCHES (1995):
* Back for more King of the Ring Qualifiers- technically still part of my “Dream Matches” column, haha. And with a special edition of everyone’s favorite wrestling standby: FANTASY REBOOKING!!
This year’s King of the Ring was very well-represented on YouTube. This is the most infamously bad tournament in history, which is hilarious, as “on paper” it looks to be the biggest one ever- while most tourneys are foregone conclusions or are full of mid-level guys, this one had Lex, Owen, Razor, Shawn and even the UNDERTAKER wrestling, with a ton of matches having equal stars. So the disaster that was the ’95 KOTR is a true epic. Come watch as the long national nightmare of Savio Vega in a prominent role begins, plus how NOT to create a new Monster Heel.
Previous tournaments re-legitimized ex-champion Bret Hart and gave credibility to Owen for his feud with Bret. A third tournament could either legitimize another would-be champion (Shawn Michaels, in this case), or set up a challenger for Diesel, who’s coming out of a feud with Psycho Sid. It looks like Bob Holly beating Mantaur is not on YouTube, but I found the rest.
MABEL (w/ Mo) vs. ADAM BOMB: (WWF In Your House, May 14th) * This was a strange decision- putting the first KOTR Qualifier on the first-ever In Your House PPV as a throwaway bout. Mabel had just recently turned heel, while Bomb was spinning his wheels as a directionless babyface after splitting with Harvey Whippleman last year. Bomb’s in the red & yellow gear as usual (he only briefly wore other colors), while Mabel’s in black & purple.
Welcome to another ROH Wednesday, as we tackle the next show from our 2003 retrospective in the form of Wrestlerave. We’ll split this into two parts again, so we’ll go on till intermission and then pick up the concluding part next week.
Is this really a good way to get a guy over as a top babyface? It was an awesome, refreshing angle when Edge first did it as a heel to screw Cena out of the title, but WWE now goes back to it again and again for a big babyface title win.
The pattern then seems to be the same. The new champion is then regarded as a fluke (and usually loses some non-title matches along the way) and moves back down the card once they drop the title.
I'm all for big moments, and Big E. winning accomplishes that for a single segment on Raw, but it feels weird to me that they've continuously used this booking trope to get over babyfaces. From a purely narrative perspective, this just makes Big E. look like a coward who got lucky taking advantage of the cool unstoppable monster.
The fact that they internally seem to regard the briefcase as an albatross that needs to be gotten rid of as soon as possible after winning it speaks to how shitty the trope has become. They need a new idea for it and fast.
So outside of some new paint, and a wrestling wedding reaching completion, the big takeaway from NXT 2.0 is Bron Breakker (I know, what a shitty name) making his debut, and possibly being setup as the next challenger to newly crowned NXT Champion Tomasso Ciampa.
Maybe I’m just a sucker for early 90’s WCW (I’m all for a redo of the Yellow Dog gimmick or Dangerous Alliance) but I’m getting some Rick Steiner (Bron’s dad) vs Lex Luger vibes. Rick doing awww shucks and Luger wanting to be acknowledged as the champ (another WCW thing that could work in WWE. Nah, would never work.) was fun, and even if Rick was never going to hold the title it was interesting and a fresh matchup.
If the plan is to match people like Bron vs guys who can get good matches out of anyone, NXT 2.0 should be perfectly acceptable. Hell, with Ciampa, Gargano, and Kyle, putting the title on Breakker wouldn’t be the worst idea.
First up, if WCW 91 is the quality bar to clear, mission accomplished already.
If you want to put the belt on Rick Jr, have at it. I just want them to decide once and for all what NXT is actually supposed to be and stick with it. If you want to be Florida Championship Wrestling then great, but cut back to an hour and put it on the Network again and I’ll happily watch that. But a two hour show that’s supposed to be important live TV on a major cable channel filled with stumbling promos from guys I’ve never heard of is a recipe for disaster. Last night was not a product that should have been presented as “major league”.
This upcoming rematch between Black and Cody, especially given how he's dismantled the Rhodes group, has me worried that we'll see Cody triumphantly win.
We've seen what happens as a result in other scenarios like Cena putting Owens over strong in the first match but then winning the rematch; ditto for Triple H vs. Brock or AJ vs. Jericho. It just fails to establish the new character more firmly and cools them off badly in the meantime. Winning one match doesn't mean much if the hot new character has to almost immediately give the win back.
Here's hoping Cody gives Malaki Black a really tough, long match where the story is that he fights valiantly and humbles Black a bit before just barely failing.
Cody is off doing reality TV. I bet he eats another kick because wins and losses mean stuff in AEW.
Found out today that I’ll finally be heading back to the office after a LONG time of working at home, so these updates might not be quite as detailed from next week regards news and whatnot, but I’ll still make sure to get a thread up every day. I’m quite relieved to be honest as the lack of human interaction was becoming a genuine bummer recently.
NXT Date: September 14, 2021
Location: Capitol Wrestling Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Beth Phoenix, Vic Joseph, Wade Barrett
We have arrived as it is time for the all new NXT, featuring a lot of the same people and whatever angles need to be wrapped up. I’m almost terrified of what this is going to include as the usual suspects from Raw are in charge. We have a wedding and a vacant World Title to fill though so let’s get to it.
The PG Era Rant for AEW Dark, Episode 108 (“Japanese Numerologists Rejoice”), September 14, 2021.
WHAT IS EXCLUSIVELY FIRST-CLASS SPORTS ENTERTAINMENT DOING IN THE IMPACT ZONE?
Your hosts are Tony Schiavone and Taz.
TONIGHT! Leyla Hirsch prepares to face Jade Cargill by taking on another person with a foot of height on her in KiLynn King! Fuego Del Sol’s been on the wrong end of many one-sided Dark matches, but now he’s the featured performer! And it’s a six-man tag main event, as Wheeler Yuta, Chuck Taylor, and Orange Cassidy battle Jora Johl, Angelico, and Jack Evans!
PLUS – Anna Jay, 2point0, Shawn Spears, Jade Cargill, and Butcher and Blade!
But first, Alex Marvez interviews both Leyla Hirsch and Jade Cargill at the same time about their Dynamite match. Cargill tells Hirsch she should be thankful. Hirsch counters by saying she’s putting Cargill’s bitch ass in place in her hometown. Cargill laughs it off, and Mark Sterling doesn’t know how delusional Hirsch is for thinking she can beat Cargill AND for being proud of being from New Jersey. Hirsch isn’t laughing, even though Cargill and Sterling are.