Main Event Review From Someone Who Actually Watches It

Late-Start-GraphicIntercontinental Champion Bad News Barrett comes down to the ring for a promo about his upcoming title defense later in the show. He blames Cesaro walking out on him for his pin fall loss to RVD which earned him a rematch from Payback later tonight. He said RVD has been hit in the head so much that he wanders around repeating his initials over and over. He did other lame jokes before RVD attacked and ran him off. Uninspired build-up.

Recap in the latest on the Bryan/Stephanie saga

Luke Harper/Erick Rowan vs Goldust/Kofi Kingston

First match of a 45 minute show begins 12 minutes past the hour. The makeshift team starts of with some good teamwork including an impressive double dropkick. The Wyatts took control and work over Kofi until Rowan got hit with boot to the face and Kofi made the hot tag. Goldust went wild and hit a huracanrana into a power slam for a near fall that was broken up by a Harper distraction. Rowan hits Goldust with a spin kick as we go to break. We come back from break to find Goldust being worked over until he is able to make his hot tag. Kofi comes back in and starts pulling out the high flying offense. A top rope huracanrana sends Harper to the outside and Kofi hits him with a somersault plancha. Back in the ring it breaks down with all four men in the ring. Goldust sends Rowan out over the top rope and the two legal men are left in the ring. Kofi misses a Trouble in Paradise and gets blasted with a spinning clothesline by Harper for the win for The Wyatts. Decent match but this Goldust “search for a new partner” storyline has no legs because no one wants to see Goldust team with anyone else. Well, except maybe Booker T.

Clips of the end of the tag team match where RVD pinned Barrett.

Renee Young interviews RVD who takes umbrage with Barrett for thinking he is the better man after just one victory. He said wins and losses are judged over the course of a career and not one match. RVD said he would win tonight like he has most of his career.

Recap of the Seth Rollins betrayal of the Shield.

Bad News Barrett vs. Rob Van Dam (Intercontinental Championship)

Barrett makes his entrance at 8:32 EST in only the 2nd match of the show. After RVD’s entrances Tony Chimel then does the in-ring introductions for this championship match. They exchange holds to start. Barrett teases the Bull Hammer early but RVD holds onto the ropes and they go back to exchanging holds. RVD hits the first impactful move of the night; that being a spin kick. Barrett ends up in the corner where he is greeted with a dropkick to the face. RVD continues his offense with 10 punches in the corner and a spun kick with Barrett against the turnbuckles. Barrett goes outside for a breather but RVD has other ideas as he baseball slide dropkicks Barrett to the retaining wall and then does a running somersault senton of the apron onto Barrett on the floor. Back in, RVD leaps to the top rope but is shoved off by Barrett and his the retaining wall himself as we go to break. Back from break RVD is in a chinlock. RVD ends up hung in the ropes where he is battered with knees and then knocked to the outside with a big boot. Barrett sends RVD head first into the steps and then back into the ring. RVD attempts a comeback briefly but is caught on a 2nd rope springboard with a clothesline. Barrett goes for another big boot while RVD is against the ropes but RVD moves out of the way and Barrett crotches himself on the top rope. RVD finally recovers and hits a superkick followed by Rolling Thunder for two. RVD gets caught in the Winds of Change after a back flip roll for another 2 count. Barrett misses a corner charge and RVD kicks him in the head before heading to the top. 5-Star-Frog Splash attempt is broken up as Barrett crotched RVD across the top turnbuckle. Barrett signals for the Bull Hammer which brings out Cesaro to break it up. Cesaro, angry over what Barrett said earlier, gives Barrett the Neutralizer to draw a DQ win for Barrett. Cesaro then turns his attention to RVD and gives him the Neutralizer as well. The show closes with Cesaro and Paul Heyman celebrating on the ramp.

Average match as Barrett/RVD just do not bring out the best in each other.

Final Thoughts:

Skippable show this week. Nothing you should go out of your way to see. – Chris

Class Is In Session: #NXT Review – Takeover

From artfire.com

From artfire.com

The show began with an excellent pre-show hype special hosted by Renee Young, Paul Heyman, and Christian. Christian was just kind of there but the chemistry between Renee and Paul was just off the page. These two have the potential to be the next Heenan/Okerlund if not the next Heenan/Monsoon (the highest level imaginable). Paul was definitely the star of the show as his analysis was spot on especially when establishing the stakes for Tyson Kidd in the main event. The pre-show in general was a hit and the pure sports feel was a welcome change to the clown show that is the Raw pre-show. If you a planning on watching Takeover on demand this week, do not skip over the pre-show as it is required viewing. (Kevin’s Edit: We might be known for publishing material late. This review is no different. We’ll be gunning for a more on time report, hopefully free of computer problems.)

As the pre-show was ending, viewers were treated to the arrival of Adam Rose and his entourage on the Experience bus. They danced their way into the building as the pre-show faded to black.

NXT Takeover began with an excellent historical video package and then went to Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and William Regal on commentary as Adam Rose and his entourage danced all the way into the arena for our opening match…

Adam Rose vs. Camacho

Rose was back at home at Full Sail University so he was mega over. Camacho has improved but considering how low he began, he still has a long way to go before even being slightly above average in the ring. The match was average at best but the crowd was totally into Rose as their returning cult hero so it was never boring. Rose won a short match with a cravat DDT he calls the Party Foul.

A video feature on Sami Zayn then aired where he spoke of his journey and the importance of his match. Good stuff again.

The Ascension vs. Kalisto (Samuray Del Sol) and El Local (Ricardo Rodriguez) (NXT Tag Team Championship)

This was a short match completely designed to show off the Ascension’s power moves and they were in there with the perfect opponents to do so. Kalisto and Local got very little so I do not know if they have a future together as a team after this. Local still has a bit of a gut on him so his moves were not as fluid as they should have been but the match was not about his team. The Ascension won with the Fall of Man high-low maneuver on Local.

Another very good video feature aired, this time on Tyler Breeze, who tried to get himself over as more than just a pretty face.

Sami Zayn vs. Tyler Breeze

Best match on the show to this point by far. Sami was his usual great self and Breeze kept right up with him to create an exciting back-and-forth match with a lot of moves. There was argument from some pundits (cough Jeremy Maes cough) over whether they did too much in fact. I don’t agree as I believe a lot of leeway should be given to a spotlight match that is designed to get over the next top contender to the Heavyweight Championship. The only spot that was borderline too much was a suplex into a powerbomb from Zayn that got only a 2 count. If they had traded big spots for another 5 minutes then it would have been too much but from there they went right to the finishing sequence which was Zayn attempting his running boot in the corner and Breeze putting his arm up in such a manor that he “accidentally” crotched Zayn. While Zayn was doubled over, Breeze hit him with The Beauty Shot which is a spin kick that I can see the argument for being weak finish to a high impact match. Great match.

Next, Lana and Alexander Rusev came to the ring carrying a Russian flag. After Lana got the obligatory Putin reference out of the way, they were then interrupted by a flag waving Mojo Rawley. He charged at Rusev and was immediately overwhelmed and destroyed him ending the beating with 2 Accolade camel clutches, one in the ring and one on the floor at Lana’s command.

A great piece then aired on the Women’s Championship match focusing on family pride.

Paige arrived to that the Full Sail crown and wish the best of luck to both competitors in the Women’s Championship final.

Charlotte w/ Ric Flair vs. Natalya w/ Bret Hart ( NXT Women’s Championship)

Best match on the show and maybe one of the five greatest North American womens matches of all time. They did a perfect job building the drama of this match both in the ring and outside. This match was a labor of love for those involved and that is always a pleasure to see and that does absolutely translate to the audience in the arena and at home. The match finish came when the ladies were exchanging submission finishers. They did possibly the longest figure-4 reversal spot in history as they rolled from one end of the ring to the other rolling outside with with Charlotte still holding on as the referee counted to 5 for a break. Once back in the Charlotte put Nattie in the Sharpshooter right in Bret’s face. Nattie was able to use her last bit of strength to escape but that was all she had left as she fell prey to Charlotte’s Bow Down To The Queen for the win. After the match everyone exchanged hugs in an emotional scene as both Ric and Charlotte were in tears. The whole thing was phenomenal and worth $9.99 on its own.

Adrian Neville vs. Tyson Kidd (NXT Championship)

Good match but it was not able to come close to the match that preceded it or reach the Zayn/Breeze match either. Following such exciting matches and the loser stigma attached to Kidd probably led to a less excited crown to close the show. To their credit, they used the stigma attached to Kidd as the story of the match and it built well. They got the crowd going again with a hot finishing sequence that saw Neville get the win with the Red Arrow corkscrew splash. After the match, a frustrated Kidd refused to shake Neville’s hand and stormed off.

Grades

Camacho – Improving steadily but still ways to go. Having a gimmick thats a copy of a copy, of copy, of a copy, etc. doesn’t help matters either. Grade: C

Adam Rose – He was in all his glory back at Full Sail but unfortunately they do not film Raw at Full Sail every week. The jury is still out as to whether his niche cult following can translate to big arenas across the world. That is also an issue with other cult NXT acts (see Emma). His in-ring was nothing special either which might be concerning for someone who spent so long in developmental. Grade: C+

The Ascension – Still a couple of green muscleheads without a lot of upside in my opinion. They were at their best tossing about smaller wrestlers here but they won’t always be in situations so specifically designed for them. Grade: C

Kalisto and Local – They didn’t get the opportunity to show much here and Local showed that he still hasn’t gotten the message about his physique. If this is the lowest weight he can naturally cut down to then all involved really need to think about his in-ring future. Grade: D-

Sami Zayn – What more can be said? He is a tremendously gifted performer who I’ve never seen in a bad match. Tonight his job was to get another man over while still keeping himself just as over as he came in and he did that in spades. Grade: A

Tyler Breeze – Breeze had a lot to prove here and I believe he succeeded in surpassing even the most optimistic expectations. He proved that he can go with the best and he is ready to challenge for the NXT Championship. Grade: A

Rusev/Lana – Basic stuff from them but I noticed an intensity from Rusev that has been missing on Raw and I am interested in seeing more that from him. Grade: B-

Mojo Rawley – I don’t get the Hype Man. He does nothing for me and him doing a low rent Jim Duggan impersonation was especially horrible. Grade: F

Natalya – I’m going to preface this by saying that I am not a Nattie fan at all. There is something about the way she carries herself, both in the ring and on Total Divas, that just makes her unlikeable to me. I won’t say much more than that because I’m not looking to take over the mantle as Stunt Granny’s resident “angry white man” (cough Jeremy Maes cough). That all out of the way; what a brilliant performance by Natalya here. She was the glue that held this match together and I don’t know if there is any other WWE Diva who could have lead Charlotte to that amazing of a match so early in her career. Grade: A+

Charlotte – She will be the most athletic diva of all time and in 5 years she will be the one leading the next great female athlete through her first great match. This show was much about her as anyone and she delivered a great performance beyond her years pro. Grade: A

Adrian Neville – He had a lot to follow so this was not a showcase night for him. He still put on a very good performance and was able to get an exhausted crowd back up one more time with his big moves in the homestretch. That is an accomplishment in its own right. Grade: B+

Tyson Kidd – This was a big night for him and, while I can’t say he blew me away, he performed well. The Tyson Kidd persona, as it stands, is damaged goods. But the guy is a talented performer and there may be potential for him as a heel if he can channel his legitimate professional frustrations into a new persona. A run as a Paul Heyman Guy could work for him (watch the post-show for more on this featuring a masterful performance from Heyman stirring things up between husband and wife). Grade: B

Overall Show – A fantastic show on all fronts. A show with 2 great matches, one very good match, great production, good announcing, and nothing offensive  gets a very high recommendation. Watch this show! Overall Grade: A – Chris

Definitely Live & Half Assed Review of #WWE #Payback

payback grandmaSheamus comes out first even though he is defending the US Title. Paul Heyman comes out and quells the CM Punk chants. He then introduces Cesaro. JBL has it right that the WWE is happy about the early slugfest between the two. We get 10 Beats early in the match. Sheamus goes in for seconds. Cesaro nails an European Uppercut when Sheamus goes for a sling shot shoulder block. CEsaro only gets a two count when he suplexes Sheamus back into the ring. Double stomp from the ground by Cesaro. Irish Curse back breaker only gets Sheamus a two count. Sheamus drops a knee from the middle rope. He hits it three times. An uppercut turns things around for Cesaro. He hits the Super Uppercut. Tilt-a-whirl slam by Sheamus continues the back and forth. White Noise only gets a two count. Blackhawks score early. Chicago could be rocking tonight. Sheamus locks in the Cloverleaf as Pedro Alvarez drives two in for the Pirates. Cesaro Swing for the first time in a while. Cesaro takes time after the swing. Sheamus rolls him up for the win. It protects Cesaro a little bit but I still feel like they should have given him a win. I would have been really happy with both of them having easy wins at Payback then start a feud. It doesn’t help that roll ups are always weak especially after a smash mouth match.

For some reason, we have a Rybaxel vs Cody Rhodes & Goldust. They only had three matches planned for Payback so it’s going to be a guessing game the whole time. Axel gives Goldust a running knee that gets a two count early. Ryback comes in and out with him to continue the beating. Axel tries to keep Goldust from tagging but can’t do it. Rhodes gets Ryback reeling. Rhodes with a pair of drop kicks on Rybaxel. Cody goes for the Disaster Kick but gets tossed into Goldust. Cross Rhodes is nailed on Ryback but Axel makes the save. Rhodes goes for another Disaster Kick. Ryback catches him in Shellshock for the win. Cody tells Goldust that he needs a better tag team partner than himself. I wasn’t expecting anything that simple.

Lana comes out to introduce Alexander Rusev. Just in case you didn’t know who to root for, Big E Langston has gone to wearing red, white & blue tights. I wonder if these two had a lengthy feud in NXT and the WWE is hoping moving the feud to the main roster will spark both of them. Langston spears Rusev off the apron. A leg lariat slows down Big E. The Accolade for the win. Or maybe we’re going to see the demise of Big E.

It looked like Kofi Kingston was going to Bo-Lieve but Kane comes down to the ring. Kane attacks Kofi. He ends proceedings with a Tomb Stone. Nice of them to get us to the nine o’clock hour. All Kofi has to do to come back is Bo-Lieve. What a douche. Ha. No one cares that Hornswoggle got his hair cut.

RVD comes out to challenge for the Intercontinental Title against Bad News Barrett. I don’t care about this match. RVD should do the job in this match. A slow moving swinging neck breaker for Barrett only gets a one count. RVD drop kicked Barrett who was on the outside. RVD tossed Barrett into the barricade. RVD nails the cork screw leg drop from the apron. Barrett kicks RVD in the stomach after tossing him into the air. RVD turns it back around with the round house heel kick to the face. RVD misses the Frog Splash. Winds of Change side slam only gets Barrett two. Barrett hits the post with the elbow. RVD takes advantage with a DDT but still can’t get the three. Barrett nails the Bull Hammer Elbow for the win.

Continue reading

Kevin’s Blog: Almost Live, Definitely Half Assed Review of #WWE #Raw

destructoid.com

destructoid.com

I’ve thought about a couple of introductions and scrapped both of them. One will become a column. The other will remain on the scrap heap. So, let’s roll.

Bray Wyatt greets us during the Raw introduction with another rendition with “I’ve Got The Whole World..” I do dig his choice of Hawaiian shirts. After singing with him, the crowd starts “What?”ing him. Have they finally found John Cena’s equal in being able to split a crowd? Then after talking about his teacher lady more, they start singing again. Wyatt is evil. Necessary at that. He calls Cena a phony. Now a “Cena sucks” chant. Hold on, are they in Chicago again? I have a good picture set up for Stunt Granny. John Cena pulls some misdirection music and attacks Wyatt who was by himself after Luke Harper & Erick Rowan ran for the ramp. He AAs Wyatt and leaves the ring before they can attack. I’d love to know why they keep replaying Steph & Brie. It’s terrible acting.

Paul Heyman ends up insulting the crowd then patting himself on the back when defining what the crowd & stars roles are. Awesome. Oh, they’re in England. If there are spoilers out, I didn’t read them. He announcers a match between Cesaro and Sheamus for the US Title later in the night which ends up being right now. I wish this match had more build up. Does it make sense that they could be building up the US Title too quickly? Whatever, I’ll take this match. I have enjoyed their past slugfests. The match picks up after the break. Sheamus gets in the Irish Curse Back Breaker & Rolling Hills. He can only get two. Cesaro turns it around by tossing Sheamus into the corner face first. Sheamus gets caught with an uppercut as he jumped off the top. Sheamus power slams Cesaro. Heyman distracts Sheamus. Cesaro takes advantage and wins with a German Suplex. Nice. I like Heyman playing more of a role in Cesaro’s matches. Lesnar & CM Punk were well established and he enhanced them. Cesaro dodges the hand shake. Nice. I’m not sure Sheamus goes into Evolution if he’s going to feud with Cesaro.

Big E Langston is taking on Ryback in the first of a series of Beat The Clock Challenge for a shot at Bad News Barrett for the Intercontinental Title. I hate these challenges because the matches are inevitably short. Ryback is distracted by the clock. It’d be much better just to attack the person. You’re wasting time by looking at the clock especially in the first match. You’re setting the standard. It matters when the clock counts down after wards. Big E takes the Meat Hook Clothesline but kicks out three consecutive time. Big E gets tossed too far but pops up quickly. Big Ending at 5:02. Great, matches shorter than 5:02. My favorite kind. It reminds me of the Daniel Bryan interview with Chris Jericho. They both said that no matter how hard they worked, they were never satisfied with a three minute match. It wasn’t enough time to make it quality.

Why isn't this one on Total Divas?

Why isn’t this one on Total Divas? from 2009abc.deviantart.com

R Truth has the Funkadactyls. The English love Fandango and Layla El. Before the match starts, Summer Rae comes to the ring. She kisses Fandango and attacks Layla. So is that Summer’s music? Is she a baby face now? Truth, Cameron & Naomi become window dressing.

Stephanie comes out to Daniel Bryan’s music. Ha. She is at her mocking best. Stephanie is ready to say “Bad News” when they introduce Wade Barrett. Oh no, she just uses a video prop. She’s only contemplating stripping Bryan of the title. She then gives ideas for who should be champion. The crowd plays along with her games. She then demands he be at Raw next week. Where I expect him to say he can defend the title at the PPV.

The Union Jacks comes out. Nice of them to remember this gimmick. Heath Slater gets mic time for the first time in a long time. Lana comes out hoping not to laugh at herself again. Alexander Rusev shows up. He takes out Heath Slater, Drew McIntyre then Jinder Mahal. It appears as if Slater will have a match with him. The whole “Crush” thing is stupid. The Accolade. Great a short match even when there’s no clock to worry about. The Shield is in the back in some odd room as usual. Dean Ambrose thinks Evolution is scared of them and he doesn’t want that. He wants their best shot. Roman Reigns tells them they’re going to keep coming at Evolution. Seth Rollins admits to a mistake in his last match with Batista. He’s going to correct that mistake. Believe In The Shield.

RVD takes on Alberto Del Rio, who gets a terrible in set promo. He’s some smug crazy person now. JBL only plays up the angle more. Congrats, ADR, you have a gimmick again. RVD takes a Back Cracker with 2:30 to go. Del Rio wastes time and gets clocked. RVD misses the Frog Splash. 1:30 left. Del Rio rests entirely too much time. Van Dam rolls him up for the win with 47 seconds left. Great, matches shorter than 4:15. The announcers have to act excited about this development.

Renee Young interviews John Cena. He’s bringing the Usos with him again. I can handle this rub especially if we get an Usos vs Harper & Rowan match at Payback in two weeks. They do some silly heart pounding thing. HHH talks their group up. Randy Orton tries to continue it. Batista is going to do it all by himself. Let this not be a short match in this sea of short matches.

Seth Rollins comes to the ring. HHH makes himself an announcer and Randy Orton as the time keeper. He then introduces Batista. Mitchell Cool correctly questions JBL’s opinion. Rollins has a microphone for some reason. Dean Ambrose & Roman Reigns come down as guest commentators. This just became stupid. Ambrose informs us that Brad Maddox made them official commentators. Why did Ambrose take us to break? Why am I laughing about it? Rollins barely touches the steps he’s supposed to crash into. He’s no John Cena who shoulder blocks those things into the ring barrier. Batista starts the ground and pound on Rollins back in the ring. I know why I laughed earlier now, because Ambrose is killing me. “Reigns’ momma hit him harder than that” about the nine stitches. Rollins fights off the superplex. Rollins nails a Block Buster. Rollins runs into a boot. Rollins drop kicks Batista thru the ropes. Suicide Dive by Rollins. “He didn’t do anything” after Orton at least attempted to grab Rollins leg. Order is restored. Rollins nails a spring board knee for a two count. The Game pushes Rollins off the top rope. Orton and Ambrose join the fun. HHH clocks Rollins which gets the DQ. Batista is the brunt of another spear. HHH distracts the Shield, Batista slips out. Why is Evolution the underdog after losing again? They need to out smart the Shield and soon to seem credible.

James Van Der Beek from TheAtlantic.com

James Van Der Beek from TheAtlantic.com

Alicia Fox is in the ring. Paige is her opponent. The crowd politely applauds. I go to get a beer, Sun King Brewing Fistful of Hops, which I picked up on an unexpected trip thru Indianapolis. My trip should really make it to air or print. Complete ridiculousness. Paige gets to learn about WWE policy mandating that you job in your home town. Alicia Fox wins. Luke Harper compares John Cena to a mouse. Bray Wyatt thinks Cena & the Usos are like dominoes in a mine. They all fall down.

Mark Henry is taking on Dolph Ziggler, who wants to show off quickly. Henry comes into the inset promo and laughs at him. If my boy wins this match under the time limit, I’d feel really bad for Mark Henry. That’s another thing about these beat the clock matches, the formula is predictable. It is usually longest match, shorter match, time limit match (this one) and winner of the challenge. Ziggler is recovering with 1:30 to go. A second drop kick takes way too much of a toll on Ziggler. Henry catches Ziggler and power slams him. Henry wastes time. Zig Zag but time runs out. Thanks for sticking to the formula and not making me look like an ass. It’s only three matches? Bad News Barrett lays out a celebrating RVD. The crowd is much more behind Barrett. He informs us that England sets the time for the entire world. I guess I’ll have to look up Bloody Yak like everyone else that isn’t English. (Next Day Note: It usually has penis attached to it according to the Urban Dictionary. I didn’t get amusement out of finding the answer.)

Adam Rose comes out with more action than Paige, less than Barrett. Renee Young interviews him. Sort of. She asks to know what a “Rose Bud” is. We’re not to be lemons. JBL cracks me up with Bunny hate. Rose just wants Zeb Colter & Jack Swagger to have some fun. The crowd cheers for them too. The Bigg Hoss still cracks me up. Colter tries to insult them but they keep up being Rose Buds. Zeb challenges Rose. Swagger sucker punches him. Swagger goes after someone in the Exotic Express. Adam Rose gets the jump on him. Colter & Swagger beat a hasty retreat.

I blow through the ring entrances for John Cena & Luke Harper. Just short of catching up. They cut to commercial early which I agree with. I can skip first gear. Cena takes too much time on the Shuffle. Harper misses a Mafia Kick then a clothes line. Cena gets in the Five Knuckle.  Harper gives him a tilt a whirl face plant. This back and forth is too quick for my liking. Harper takes over and finishes it off with a suicide dive. Harper nails a super kick but Cena kicks out at two. Neck breaker by Harper only gets another two. Cena nails a clothes line. STF gets locked in. Harper breaks it. The Usos stop interference by Erick Rowan. Wyatt Abigails the Usos in the ring. Attitude Adjustment on Harper. Rowan blasts Cena for the DQ. Sister Abigail to Cena. The crowd plays sing along. Harper & Rowan attack Cena. Fall away slam onto the ramp. Sister Abigail on the stage. Cena loses a shoe. Sing along time, because we haven’t had enough of it. – Kevin

Kevin’s Blog: Almost Live, Definitely Half Assed Review of #WWE #Raw

sigh-of-reliefSo I’m watching this game between the Penguins & Bluejackets for entirely too much time. The Pens got a 2-0 lead pretty quickly. They then made it 4-0 in the 2nd period so that they hopefully would avoid the jinx of the 3-1 lead in this series. (Next Day Note: I had to re-write the beginning but should have scrapped even more because I didn’t watch that game for too long. The Pens lolly gagging on a PP led to the Jackets getting a burr under their saddle.) They tried to blow it by allowing three goals in the third period but got their shit together long enough to hold off the Jackets. I’m going to be so happy to “upgrade” the announcers next round to the morons on NBCSN. Very slight upgrade. Time for wrestling. Let’s roll.

John Cena is in the ring first inside a cage. I just sat back and listened because when Cena is on, he can really spin a yarn. He did by asking why the crowd picked the worst odds for him. Cena needs to contain the message of Bray Wyatt because the fans don’t understand how bad that could be. Okay, so that part is a little over dramatic but we’re talking wrestling here. A choir of children sign for Bray Wyatt. He then marches down to the ring with the Family and the choir. They end up having the lambs masks on after Wyatt blows out the kerosene lamp. We get a dull “Cena” chant. This angle has edged his crowd more than normal in the somewhat favor or Wyatt, who gets sing alongs but not much otherwise. He laughs as he rocks one of the children. It’s supposed to draw more heat, right? Good stuff though.

Rybaxel is taking on The Usos for the tag team championships. Curtis Axel starts against Jey, who I can now remember has the full tattoo on his right shoulder. Ryback comes in and of course uses brute force. He misses a splash so that Jimmy come in. Flying Usos. Jey holds his left ankle at the break. (Next Day Note: I was wondering if they’d move the titles to Rybaxel until the “injury.” Sure fire sign the baby faces win.) Jimmy is taking the beat down. Jey ends up getting a hot tag even with the injury. It holds up long enough for a Samoan Drop. Corner splash only gets a two count. Ryback gets a tag behind Jey. He power slams Jey but only gets two. Super kick as Ryback goes for the Meathook Clothesline. Ryback clothes line Jey. Sunset flip by Jey only gets a two. Jimmy gets a tag behind Axel’s back. Jey takes a Perfectplex but Jimmy splashes Axel for the win. Fun stuff. I hope Rybaxel stays together. Sad that’s a statement after a loss in a TV title match.

Paul Heyman admits his faults to Cesaro but guarantees he takes his clients to the top. It’s enough for Cesaro. (Next Day Note: I’d like to hear more from Cesaro but there’s time.) It was all Steph vs Daniel Bryan stuff afterwards. Thanks for letting me play catch up.

Titus O’Neil attacks Sheamus from behind as he made his way down to the ring. Titus tries to take it to Sheamus. The ref breaks it up. Sheamus comes out of the corner with a Brogue Kick for the win. Goodnight to O’Neil’s career of relevance. That’s all I had to type for another segment.

Dolph Ziggler, who I learned is my child over the weekend, (Next Day Note: I was wearing Kent State gear at a bar over the weekend and the waitress asked me if my child went to KSU. I knew I was getting old but not that old.) who gets to introduce Hugh Jackman. Of course they bring up the punch. “Jack Swagger has kicked me harder than that.” is a nice line from Ziggler. Damien Sandow comes out dressed in Magneto’s oversized outfit. This segment is going nowhere fast. They act like Sandow can pull the mic towards hip. Jackman hip tosses Sandow and the he gets Zig Zagged. Woof. Video packages for a PPV = time saving device though it’s good practices by the WWE. (Next Day Note: It also prevents me from typing as much as normal.)

I'm hot so I know what looks good. I picked Jack's new hair cut. Any questions?

I’m hot so I know what looks good. I picked it just for him. From pwmania.com.

Zeb Colter & Jack Swagger come to the ring. Paul Heyman comes out and tries to shame the crowd by saying his kids love him. Oh man, how did I not see that coming with the joke about the Undertaker? I hope that’s the end of the ground beating on the Streak talk too. Good timing to stop after a funny couple of weeks. Cesaro gets introduced. I saw someone complaining about Cesaro’s music on Twitter while looking at game tweets. I agree. It sucks. Cesaro takes control early. Swagger is trying another dopey hair cut. Swagger finally locks up Cesaro with a reverse full nelson. Colter grabs Cesaro’s leg. Swagger takes advantage. Paul Heyman grabs Colter’s mustache. Swagger gets distracted. German suplex for the Cesaro win. Weird finisher. Renee Young wants a reaction from John Cena. He gives no answer just a look of concern.

Cody Rhodes is taking on Alberto Del Rio. Goldust is in Rhodes’ corner. Del Rio takes control when I start paying attention. I was trying to do other stuff. Cody gets out of a reverse chin lock. Cody kicks Del Rio in “the gut.” Del Rio locks in the cross arm breaker. Cody holds out but eventually taps. Cody is still pissed at Goldust. (Next Day Note: I’m not sure why Cody is getting another singles push. I can’t wait for the next inevitable one trick pony gimmick he gets.)

Alexander Rusev gets introduced while Xavier Woods is in the ring. Why is he taking him on again in singles competition? Rusev goes for the Accolade when R Truth clocks him for the DQ win. Woods & Truth work together to get him out of the ring. Lana wisely holds back Rusev. (Next Day Note: Rusev is going nowhere fast.) They show John Cena granting wishes today. Renee Young gets my attention when she talks to RVD. Bad News is going to receive some tonight. Zeb Colter asks RVD to help get rid of their common enemy. He gives a stoner response, grandpa.

Los Matadores is taking on 3MB again. Holy crap. A Wee LC Match. I pay little attention to this match because the high light is the little guys on the outside. Heath Slater pins Fernando. “Barry Horowitz is spinning in his grave but he’s not dead yet.” – JBL.

Stephanie McMahon comes to the ring. Daniel Bryan comes out to the ramp before she says anything. Bryan says “She’s full of crap.” Harsh words. She admits her faults. She just wanted a credible opponent for TLC for Bryan. Brie gets a Divas Title match out of the gig. Ominously, Kane’s mask is gone.

From quicklol.com

From quicklol.com

Paige doesn’t get an entrance. Brie gets the offense in first. Paige goes psycho and takes over. Paige knees Brie who was tied up in the ropes. Running knee by Brie is not sold enough. (Next Day Note: Paige takes a knee to the head but recovers before Brie was even on the top rope. Whoever laid out the match didn’t think about that much.) Paige superplexes her. Kane comes up through the ring. Why are broads too dumb to run? Bryan clocks Kane with a giant monkey wrench. Kane recovers as Brie is shuffled out of the ring. But she goes back in for some stupid broad reason after Bryan gets choke slammed. Good build up for such short notice. (Next Day Note: Although in no way do I still buy Kane as a credible opponent.)

Stephanie plays sorry again. Brie “Bitch, get out.” PG rated, right? Renee Young finds John Cena for a second time. Cena just can’t help himself. Stop making the dumb jokes. You’re tainting the greatness you dealt to start the show. Wade Barrett cheers me up with his promo when cutting down of RVD.

RVD takes on Barrett in the IC Title Tournament. They pimp a Big E interview online since he has barely been seen except for short peaks from the back. (Next Day Note: Another shot of Big E rubbing his chin hit right after I typed that.) Barrett gets in some early shots. RVD takes over. Barrett back elbows out of the ring. B-n-B with the thumbs. Barrett kicks RVD “in the stomach.” Barrett has a reverse chin lock. RVD fights out. Winds of Change by Barrett only gets a two count. Neck breaker by Barrett. RVD warms it up as I realize I forgot to tape The Boondocks. I suck. Cesaro comes to the ring. RVD is distracted. Swagger comes down. Barrett misses the Bull Hammer. RVD goes to the top when Cesaro interferes again. Bull Hammer Elbow leads to the win. I hope the match on Sunday is better. (Next Day Note: I meant Barrett vs Big E. Lots of noise surrounding this match. Not sure why RVD got drug into the Real Americans break up aside from the Heyman reference.) Cesaro attacks RVD. Swagger attacks Cesaro. Then RVD. Then RVD gets to go over on both of them. That was a serious Five Star in the distance department. The Shield is in blue light. Dean Ambrose notes that it’s past Evolution’s time. Seth Rollins thinks they believe in false power. Roman Reigns thinks Randy Orton is the past and he’s the future. Believe in the Shield.

HHH, Randy Orton and Batista come to the ring. They each get short promos. Weird that you book the main event so tight. I’m sure this ends in a brawl. Ric Flair’s music hits and he comes out. He sells them out, right? Yep, after he talks up his ties with Evolution, he picks the Shield. Then walks away. Unless this ends in a hurry, I’m not catching the end. Mitchell Cool mentions “cream puff” again. They really want that to catch on or are rubbing in a terrible choice of words. HHH yanks Reigns leg as he sets up for the Superman Punch. Ambrose & Rollins attack HHH & Batista. Superman punch connects as my DVR comes to a halt. Piss off for the first time since WM, WWE. – Kevin

Stunt Granny Audio #255

The better half.

The better half.

If you were wondering why it is considerably more sexy in here, it is because Dusty and Kevin are back for another rousing edition of Stunt Granny Audio. Kevin starts things off by breaking things down in the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs, and Dusty retaliates by regaling us with the lowdown on the NBA playoffs. They then move on to talking about the latest episode of Monday Night Raw. Dusty is still disgusted by the overly long Gettysburg Address reading interviews that WWE seems to love. Does Paul Heyman get a pass for his work? Where does Rob Van Dam fit in to this current landscape? Is Stephanie McMahon the worst?

They then break down which promotion has the better looking women – WWE or WCW. Which TNA performer has that ass? Which ring announcer chick does Dusty prefer – Renee Young or Christy Hemme? If you have to ask, you’ll never know. Do they have any faith in Jeff Jarrett and Global Force Wrestling making a dent in TNA’s business? What kind of pizza do they prefer? Who was the better member of the Powers of Pain? All that and a whole lot more nonsense, and if you don’t listen, you’re going to get arrested for public stupidity.

Kevin’s Blog: Almost Live, Definitely Half Assed Review of WWE Raw

From themusicwithinus.com

From themusicwithinus.com

If you have ever been to this site, you know I put everything on hold when the Pittsburgh Penguins are in the Stanley Cup Playoffs so you are not surprised I’m starting this column late. Hockey is my favorite sport. This year, things are made interesting by the fact that they’re playing the Columbus Bluejackets, to which I have half season tickets. I thought I would be going to all home games but it turns out I’m only going to half so that at least allows me to finish this column in somewhat timely fashion. It also means I’m attending Game 4 on Wednesday so this game tonight was extra important. I feel much better about going to that game with a 2-1 game lead than being down one. I love Columbus, but that’s on hold until this series is over. Let’s Go Pens!

Brie Bella gets her in ring time with her husband Daniel Bryan, except Stephanie McMahon interrupts the fun. We get condescending Steph so it’s a good one. We’re supposed to be worried about the evil Kane being back though which needs more convincing from me. Kane from “out of nowhere” aka just where Bryan & Brie walked to. Bryan gets tombstoned by Kane as Steph shouts “No!” Kane sets up Bryan on the lower half of the stairs. Another tombstone. Is Bryan injured? (Next Day Note: No he isn’t. Unfortunately his father died. Man, that’s tough. You accomplish your dream, get married way above your looks only to have that happen. Yuck. Condolences to the Danielson family.) A third tombstone on the announce table still doesn’t sell me on Kane being able to beat Bryan. They’re trying at least.

If Bad News Barrett wins this match against Sheamus, then Cesaro loses against RVD later. These two have had some fun brawls in the past so I expect a good match. The cross body block is getting popular for the big guys to show off the agility. It never quite looks right and Sheamus is no different. Sheamus gets kicked off the apron to go to break. Sheamus takes over in this stretch. He does look much smoother doing the top rope shoulder block. Barrett turns it around with the Winds of Change side slam. Barrett misses the Bull Hammer Elbow. Sheamus turns it into White Noise. The cross body block to the floor looks rough. So much can go wrong when you do that. Bull Hammer Elbow as Sheamus goes for the suicide dive. Nice win for Barrett. I like Barrett more as an IC opponent than Cesaro, who seems destined for larger prizes. (Next Day Note: Of course I’m assuming that they won’t go baby face vs Big E who is also babyface. I don’t see RVD holding the IC Title though at this time in his career. They could use him as a stepping stone if they go that route though.)

Bray Wyatt and the Family are on the stage. We’re a nation full of sheep, lead by wolves and owned by pigs. It’s a wonderful night for change. Everyone is abandoning John Cena and coming to his side. We get a sing along. He ends by warning us to fear him. I dig his work.

I was amused by the set up for the El Torito vs Hornswoggle on Smackdown. They wrestled a real match as far as the sequence of moves went. The crowd could have cared less. El Torito is an impressive athlete considering his limitations. Jinder Mahal breaks up a pin. Drew McIntyre comes in to take on El Torito. Los Matadores hold up McIntyre for El Torito to sit on him from the top rope. El Torito then pinned him. “Evolution has always been the measuring stick” from Jerry “The King” Lawler. Is he going heel? He was just running down El Torito. I’m so confused. (Next Day Note: Lawler went back into baby face mode for the rest of the show which makes me even more confused.)

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